SPECIAL SUNDAY EDITION
I came across this article today: "Beyond license plates PRISONS | The union battle in Wisconsin may result in helping prisoners become better prepared to enter the job market upon release" published by "World Magazine". Since this article, published under a Christian label applauds Walker's ending collective bargaining in Wisconsin, my curiosity got the best of me - I mean, really?
The hours I spent researching this Publisher were fruitful indeed. It led me all over the world and back, finally revealing links to the Koch bro's, their Heritage Foundation and issues of global warming - er, "Climate Change" - and other nefarious and cooperative efforts of members of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).
Grab a favorite drink, make sure you're securely seated comfortably with snacks at hand and allow me to give you an enlightening tour of just how insidious, far ranging and pervasive the Koch and ALEC influences really are...
This article has statements supporting the use of prison labor - which all of you know is an issue I'm passionately against - presented from a "Christian" POV:
"Until now, in many states, union officials have used their clout to keep inmates from producing any goods or services that could compete with the work of their members."and includes information about the PIECP program and the Ashurst-Sumners Act:
"In 1935, at the height of New Deal labor union power, Congress passed the Ashurt-Sumners Act that banned interstate transport of products made by prison labor. Two years later the Supreme Court declared the act constitutional in a case involving Kentucky prisoners who made horse collars."
This case cited in the article; KENTUCKY WHIP & COLLAR CO. V. ILLINOIS CENTRAL R. CO., 299 U. S. 334 (1937) was in fact decided by the SCOTUS in 1937. Ashurst Sumners is fully explained at Wikipedia:
"The Ashurst–Sumners Act, Pub. L. No. 74-215, 49 Stat. 494 (1935), codified at 18 U.S.C. §§1761-62, is a United States Act of Congress that made it unlawful to knowingly transport in interstate or foreign commerce goods made by convict labor. Certain exceptions are provided for agricultural commodities, parts for the repair of farm machinery, commodities manufactured in a Federal, District of Columbia, or State institution for use by the Federal Government, or by the District of Columbia, or by any State or Political subdivision of a State or not-for-profit organizations. The Act is currently reflected in United States Code Title 18 Sections 1761-1762 which provide in part:
"Whoever knowingly transports in interstate commerce or from any foreign country into the United States any goods, wares, or merchandise manufactured, produced, or mined, wholly or in part by convicts or prisoners, except convicts or prisoners on parole, supervised release, or probation, or in any penal or reformatory institution, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.
The constitutionality of the act was upheld by the United States Supreme Court in Kentucky Whip & Collar Co. v. Illinois Central R. Co., 299 U.S. 334 (1937).
The Prison Industry Enhancement Certification Program, created by Congress in 1979, provides another exception from the Act. It exempts certified state and local departments of corrections from normal restrictions on the sale of prisoner-made goods in interstate commerce."
I knew from my earliest research that this article in support of ending collective bargaining and using inmates in place of union or public sector workers, appeared to be a poorly disguised form of propaganda - presented by a Christian news organization. This had to be researched, and am I glad I took the time to do it, for I found heretofore hidden links to the Koch brothers and many of their funded or controlled organizations and of course, right back to ALEC and their corporate members.
"We are dependent on God and independent of any political faction or interest group. We don't let advertisers influence news content. We don't print glorified press releases. We respect the office of president of the United States and submit to the ruling authorities instituted by God (Romans 13:1-6), but we will be critical when necessary—even with those whose policies we generally agree with. We criticize corruption, even when (sometimes especially when) it erupts among Christians. We avoid sourcery, where unnamed sources spin the news their way."...okay, now I was really curious after reading the article and knowing it was disinformative and finding their promise that they were "independent" of any political faction or interest group, and said they avoided "sourcery" and spinning the news in such a manner. So I went further and checked out God's World Publications and found GWP has had many names throughout it's existence. Today it is actually known as the World Journalism Institute. At their site I found this information:
"A Brief History of the World Journalism Institute
The offices of the World Journalism Institute are located on the campus of The King's College in New York City.
In the early 1940's, L. Nelson Bell returned from his work as a medical missionary in China to Asheville, N.C. On his return, he found that theological liberalism was threatening the very Presbyterian denomination that had sent him out as a missionary.
So the Dr. Bell founded a new magazine, the Southern Presbyterian Journal, in an effort to return the church to its biblical moorings. In the 1950's, the Journal was read beyond Presbyterianism for its reporting on the church scene and its analysis of ecumenical liberalism. Dr. Bell also used what he had learned about magazine publishing to play a lead role in the formation of yet another magazine, Christianity Today.
By 1981, the board of the Journal had taken on a new assignment. A series of current events papers for children, patterned after the long-popular Weekly Reader, was introduced. In just two years, the circulation of this new publication had already doubled the circulation and volume of the parent magazine.
The board of directors changed its corporate name to God's World Publications, Inc.
In March of 1986, World magazine was launched under the leadership of Dr. William S. Barker to provide a weekly summary of world news and commentary from a Christian perspective for adults. In March 1987, Joel Belz became the editor and publisher of World magazine.
In February 1998, Joel Belz, Marvin Olasky, Nick Eicher and Robert Case had informal conversations in Atlanta and discussed the need for God's World Publications to have its own training school for Christian journalists. Case, because of his interest, training and time, took on the responsibility to mount such a training program with the first classes to be held during the summer of 1999. The three fold focus for this journalism training would be World magazine, other Christian publications and the mainstream press...
...In the fall of 2000, Belz and Case visited The King's College in New York at the invitation of TKC journalism teacher, Helen Matthews Smith, to see how a cooperative arrangement could be managed. During spring vacation, 2001, the first college journalism workshop was held. In May 2001, at the invitation of TKC president Dr. Friedhelm Radandt, WJI took its program to New York City and held a May term course at the urban campus of The King's College in the Empire State Building. This was followed by courses in Washington, DC and Los Angeles.
The programs of the World Journalism Institute have continued to expand. Currently, the institute holds a multi-week summer course in New York City. The institute also holds various weekend conferences throughout the country. Additionally, the institute publishes a unique monograph series on the intersection of Christianity and journalism. Finally, institute staff present the WJI program at numerous national journalism conventions around the year through its table top display, monographs, public presentatons and hosted events.
In the fall of 2005, the institute opened a branch office on the campus of The King's College in New York City.
In the fall of 2006, at the invitation of President Stanley Oakes, the institute moved its headquarters to The King's College in the Empire State Building.
This "Christian Journalism" college thing was something I hadn't been aware of, but it looked to be legit - but having just published a diary on Friday about the number of colleges and professorships influenced with Koch money or fully bought, paid for and controlled by the Koch's, this reference to several colleges and involving what was more and more looking like Evangelical influenced proselytism to students had to be looked into.
So I researched Joel Belz to find out who he was - and hit pay dirt! My search led me to "Smoke, Mirrors and Disinformation…The Compromised Ties of the Apologetics Ministries - THE SPIRITUAL COUNTERFEITS PROJECT. There I found links to Belz and a Gene Veith, Patrick Henry college, Heritage foundation, Daniel Lapin and Heartland Institute and a host of other connections. The site isn't one that I would normally rely upon to provide factual information, so I dug deeper and found Cornwall Alliance. Uh-oh...here was Belz, Daniel Lapin plus E. Calvin Beisner, a name I'd found at the World Journalism Institute and in articles at the World Magazine speaking in favor of more drilling in 2008 in: "Drill team ENERGY | High prices at the pump are changing the politics of domestic oil extraction and handing Republicans a potentially hot issue for the fall campaign".
From there I was led to the Cornwall Alliance (formerly called the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance) where Beisner leads the way with Belz and Lapin sitting on the Board of Advisors with him and a bunch of other evangelicals. Here is what the People For the American Way (PFAW) has to say about Cornwall, Belz, Beisner and their connections to Koch family Foundations, Scaife foundation, ExxonMobil, Earhart Foundation and Charles Colson. (Koch, Scaife, ExxonMobil and Colson are all affiliated with or members of ALEC - or head companies that sit upon ALEC's Private Enterprise Board) in the article titled "The ‘Green Dragon’ Slayers: How the Religious Right and the Corporate Right are Joining Forces to Fight Environmental Protection":
"In 2009, Beisner’s Cornwall Alliance cosponsored a climate change denial conference led by the Heartland Institute, a pro-corporate group funded by Exxon Mobil, the Koch Family Foundations, and the Scaife foundations. Other organizations funded by energy corporations that cosponsored the conference include the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the Heritage Foundation, Americans for Tax Reform, and Americans for Prosperity.
The Cornwall Alliance has been enormously successful in recruiting Religious Right leaders to promote its anti-environmental cause. In 1999, the group started recruiting prominent Religious Right figures to sign the “Cornwall Declaration,” a document that attacks environmentalists, saying they “deify nature or oppose human dominion over creation” and promote “erroneous theological and anthropological positions.” Among its signatories were Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, Chuck Colson of the Colson Center, D. James Kennedy of Coral Ridge Ministries, Donald Wildmon of the American Family Association, Janice Shaw Crouse of Concerned Women for America, Daniel Lapin of Towards Tradition, and Frank Pavone of Priests for Life. The president of CFACT called himself “a driving force” behind the declaration.
Recently, the group started collecting signatures for an updated “Evangelical Declaration on Global Warming,” which states that “there is no convincing scientific evidence that human contribution to greenhouse gases is causing dangerous global warming” and maintains that “reducing greenhouse gases cannot achieve significant reductions in future global temperatures.”
The Cornwall Alliance’s board includes Religions Right notables David Barton of WallBuilders, Lou Sheldon of the Traditional Values Center, Jerry Newcombe of Coral Ridge Ministries and Joel Belz of WORLD Magazine.
Well...so much for World Magazine's claim: "We are dependent on God and independent of any political faction or interest group. We don't let advertisers influence news content. We don't print glorified press releases...We criticize corruption, even when it erupts among Christians. We avoid sourcery, where unnamed sources spin the news their way." They are anything but independent of political factions and instead of criticizing corruption, they are in fact practicing just that by publishing all forms of propaganda and spreading the agendas of the Koch brothers, ALEC and their members and affiliates.
Since I wrote on Friday about the use of prison labor in Wisconsin, Arizona and elsewhere, more articles have surfaced about other Red states using inmates to replace public and private sector workers in what amounts to slave labor: Maine, Georgia, Arizona, New Jersey, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida. If any of you believe that this move to increase the use of inmates to replace public sector workers is coincidentally on the increase at the same time as Walker, Kasich, LePage, Brewer, Scott and and ALEC are pushing legislation to end collective bargaining, bust unions and abolish the minimum wage in Red controlled states, I've got an ocean front condo here in Indianapolis you might be interested in buying as well.
Beyond the obvious observation that Koch's influence runs deep and their web is all encompassing in America, this demonstrates that Ol' Chucky Boy and brother Davy are throwing everything they have in their considerable arsenal into supporting their boy Scotty in Wisconsin - and their Governor minions elsewhere. Late last year I posted a diary and in it I began calling Chucky and Davy "Koch-roaches", a titular slur I thought was appropriate because when we try and focus our attention on them, they scurry from sight, hiding behind foundations, associations, ALEC, and PAC's...after this development, I have to again begin referring to them as Koch-roaches, because they indeed are, every-fuckin'-where!
The true and real Christians that subscribe to the World Magazine or other media sources owned by God's World Publication for their news are treated to the same disinformation by the same sources that others are treated to from FOX ("Fixed")News.
A quirky note to all this World Magazine crap, is this - there is a European version called German World Magazine that is owned by Koch Vision (Michael Koch)...is he related to Chucky or Davy or are the names Koch Vision and German World Magazine simply a coincidence to World Magazine and it's relationship to Chucky or Davy? I confess I have no idea and it's 2:30 am and I'm closing this to post tomorrow...instead of fixing another drink and researching this some more.
You know, this really is comparable to the "Wizard of Oz" because the Koch, Scaife, DeVos, ALEC, all their corporate and legislative members and numerous foundations, associations and PAC's really are operated with smoke and mirrors from behind a curtain of respectability. As the wife, Jean has said time and again; "Every friggin' time you pull back the curtain, there stands the Koch brothers, pulling levers, strings and coordinating these nefarious activities."
Please join us at Exposing ALEC - or donate to the ProtestALec efforts - in New Orleans on August 4th and 5th at our Protest Alec event as we continue to drag these people and their agenda into the full light of day and in sight of citizens from coast to coast. They simply have to be stopped before democracy disappears completely from the American landscape, replaced with Corporatocracy.
Last month ALEC published their "Rich States - Poor States: report. Guess who funded that? Yep a Koch foundation - the Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation and the Searle Freedom Trust (who often times donates to the same causes as Koch's Foundations - see disclosure at end of article).
Always keep in Mind that Boehner, Cantor, Walker and Kasich are ALEC Alumni and thus financial friends of Ol' Chucky and Davy, working on their behalf for corporate interests and against everything government...
4:20 PM PT: We can add Arkansas; http://www.therepublic.com/... and Florida (2 times) to the list of states reporting using inmate labor instead of public sector workers now: http://www.gainesville.com/... http://www.floridatoday.com/...