Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Truthout's Moyers/Schumann Foundation Connection

On its website, the Truthout.org alternative media group makes the following claim:

“…We are almost entirely reader-supported. There is absolutely no controlling financial interest behind this organization. Over 95% of our financing comes from small, individual donations. The remainder comes from a small number of grants…We depend solely upon our readership for survival, and so we answer to them alone.”

Yet according to the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy’s Form 990 filing for 2007, Truthout.org was given a grant of $500,000 by the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy “for general support to strengthen editorial content through 2008.”

The president of the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy that subsidizes the Truthout.org website is Bill Moyers, the former Johnson White House Press Secretary turned-PBS show producer/host. Besides funding the Truthout.org web site, the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy also owned stock in the following corporations in 2008: Goldman Sachs; American International Group; Fannie Mae; J.P. Morgan Chase; Wachovia; Washington Mutual; Wells Fargo; Exxon Mobil; Chevron; ConocoPhilips; Royal Dutch Shell; General Motors; Ford Motor; Time Warner; Time Warner Cable; Time Warner Telecom; Viacom; CBS; Yahoo; Microsoft; Google; General Electric/NBC; Disney/ABC; United Technologies; Boeing; United Health Group; Starbucks; McDonald’s; and Coca-Cola

Moyers’ Schumann Center for Media & Democracy also gave the Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting [FAIR] alternative media group a grant of $500,000 in 2007. In addition, the Institute for Public Affairs/In These Times magazine alternative media publication was given a $200,000 grant by the Schumann Center for Media & Democracy, while the Independent Media Institute/AlterNet alternative media group was given a $500,000 grant by Moyers’ foundation in 2007.

Between May 1, 2007 and April 30, 2008, the “non-profit” Truthout.org’s total revenues of $1,979,,617 exceeded its total expenses of $1,699,495 by over $290,000, according to its Form 990 filing for 2007. The same Truthout.org financial statement also indicated that the president of the “non-profit” Truthout.org alternative media group, Marc Ash, was paid an annual salary of $207,933 in 2008.

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