Thursday, August 7, 2014

Sea Change Foundation, a $124 million organization whose one-page website contains no helpful information about the group, shifts this money around so that it ends up (directly or indirectly) in the hands of groups involved in political and policy activities – groups like the League of Conservation Voters, the Sierra Club, and the Blue-Green Alliance.

Look who's been getting millions in secret foreign cash! Examiner Editorial - Washington Examiner

The Bermuda-based corporation, Klein Ltd., for which there is almost no public information available, gave $23 million in 2010 and 2011 to the Sea Change Foundation. The Klein money could come from anywhere – old ladies in Florida, Mexican drug dealers, or foreign governments with a financial interest in stopping U.S. fossil fuel exploration. There is no way of knowing.

..."This is clearly a deceitful way to hide the source of millions of dollars that are active in our system, attempting to effect political change. ... It appears that Klein exists on paper only. ..."

Americans' donations for advocacy and politics should be both legal and encouraged. That's not the problem. What is stunning in this situation is the raw hypocrisy required to operate a movement this way while calling for laws that curtail others' First Amendment rights. In the ongoing IRS scandal, for example, conservative groups with comparatively tiny annual budgets faced a Spanish Inquisition when they dared to seek official nonprofit status from the IRS. Democrats in Congress have excused the actions of senior IRS bureaucrats, arguing that these Tea Party groups threaten to flood the political system with money from undisclosed sources.

Yet at the same time, Democrat politicians benefit from millions in Big Green cash that goes toward groups with similarly political and policy-based goals, and some of that money comes from at least one shadowy foreign source. There's a lesson in here somewhere.