March 10, 2013

MARK TAPSCOTT: Why Do The Koch Brothers Get All The Sunshine?

Here’s a couple of data points that bear serious thought this week by transparency advocates celebrating Sunshine Week and by everybody else who cares about protecting and preserving a free and independent press:

1,130 – Number of results for search term “Koch Brothers” on The New York Times web site.

64 – Number of results for search term “The Tides Foundation” on The New York Times web site.

For the few stray souls out there who don’t know, the Koch Brothers are Charles and David, principals of the Koch corporate conglomerate and chief bete noirs of President Obama, liberal journalists covering national politics and Citizens United obsessives everywhere.

It’s equally certain that few reading this post know anything at all about the San Francisco-based Tides Foundation, even though its roots go deep into the radical student movement of the 1960s and it has helped fund or startup virtually every significant liberal, progressive and radical cause in the years since. . . . Consider these numbers, derived from multiple searches of foundation grant databases, IRS Form 990s and other public records:

Three Koch foundations made a total of 181 grants worth $25,405,525 in 2010 (most recent available records). The one Tides Foundation made a total of 2,627 grants worth $143,529,590 in 2010.

Put otherwise, for every one grant made by a Koch foundation, Tides made more than five grants.

Read the whole thing.