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In the wake of rare black Southern Poverty Law Center lawyer Meredith Horton’s alleged allegations that racism and sexism at the SPLC go all the way to the top, leading to the SPLC firing its Face of Hate, Morris Dees, it’s time for the SPLC to add to its list of Hate Groups … the SPLC.

Update: Journalist Jim Tharpe, whose investigation into the Southern Poverty Law Center was ignored 25 years ago, called today for the feds to finally come in and investigate the SPLC.

“I would hope the IRS and the Justice Department would take this as [an] opportunity to come in and take a close look at The Center, it’s finances and it’s day-to-day operations,” … “It’s long overdue.”

With the news today that the SPLC has just fired its co-founder, junk mail genius Morris Dees, for as-of-yet unspecified sins, it’s worth reflecting on how saintly the SPLC’s reputation has been in the Conventional Wisdom, despite numerous hardworking journalists digging up the facts about it.

The truth about the nature of the Southern Poverty Law Center has been in print for a quarter of a century, since the Montgomery Advertiser newspaper ran a multipart series summarizing a multi-year investigation of the local institution. But nobody nationally cared and the SPLC went from strength to strength, piling up vast amounts of money (currently about a half billion dollars) and forming alliances with crucial chokepoints in the flow of information, such as Amazon and the New York Times, to deplatform its enemies.

Here are excerpts from a panel discussion at Harvard in May 1999 put on by the Nieman Foundation. The subject is reporting on not-for-profits.

Panel Discussion: Nonprofit Organizations
May 1999

Nonprofits Require Special Handling

Bill Kovach, Curator, Nieman Foundation

This is the revealing statement of Jim Tharpe, the Deputy Metro Editor of the Atlanta Constitution, about his experience editing a massive Pulitzer-finalist investigative series on the Southern Poverty Law Center during his days at the Montgomery Advertiser:

I’d never done any reporting on nonprofits, I thought they were all good guys, they were mom-and-pop, bake-sale, raise-money-for-the-local-fire-department type operations. I had no idea how sophisticated they were, how much money they raised, and how little access you have to them as a reporter, some of which has already been covered here.

Summary of Findings

Our series was published in 1995 after three years of very brutal research under the threat of lawsuit the entire time.

Our findings were essentially these:

The [Southern Poverty Law] center was building up a huge surplus. It was 50-something million at that time; it’s now approaching 100 million, but they’ve never spent more than 31 percent of the money they were bringing in on programs, and sometimes they spent as little as 18 percent. Most nonprofits spend about 75 percent on programs.

A sampling of their donors showed that they had no idea of the center’s wealth. The charity watchdog groups, the few that are in existence, had consistently criticized the center, even though nobody had reported that.

There was a problem with black employees at what was the nation’s richest civil rights organization; there were no blacks in the top management positions. Twelve out of the 13 black current and former employees we contacted cited racism at the center, which was a shocker to me. As of 1995, the center had hired only two black attorneys in its entire history.

Questionable Fundraising

We also found some questionable fundraising tactics. One of the most celebrated cases the center handled was the case of a young black man, Michael Donald, who was killed by Klansmen in Mobile, Alabama, and his body suspended from a tree, a very grotesque killing. The state tried the people responsible for the murder and several of them ended up on death row, a couple ended up getting life in prison.

The center, after that part of the case took place, sued the Klan organization to which they belonged and won a $7 million verdict. It was a very celebrated verdict in this country. The problem was the people who killed this kid didn’t have any money. What they really got out of it was a $51,000 building that went to the mother of Michael Donald. What the C enter got and what we reported was they raised $9 million in two years using the Donald case, including a mailing with the body of Michael Donald as part of it.

The top center officials, I think the top three, got $350,000 in salaries during that time, and Morris got a movie out of it, a TV movie of the week. I think it was called, “The Morris Dees Story.” [Actually, “Line of Fire: The Morris Dees Story” with, appropriately enough, Corbin Bernsen (who played sleazy lawyer Arnie Becker on “LA Law”) as Morris.]

As I said, being the editor on this series really raised my eyebrows. I never knew anything about nonprofits before this. I thought we would have complete access to their financial records; we didn’t. We had access to 990’s, which Doug mentioned earlier, which tell you very little, but they are a good starting point.

Organizations Monitor Nonprofits

I also learned that there are organizations out there that monitor nonprofits. A couple of these that might be worth your time are the National Charities Information Bureau, the American Institute of Philanthropy, and the Charities Division of the Better Business Bureau. They have rather loose guidelines, I think, for the way nonprofits operated, and even with those guidelines, they had blasted the center repeatedly for spending too little on programs, for the number of minorities in management positions, just very basic stuff that they’d been criticized for but nobody had reported.

The relationship with sources on this story was pretty interesting, because like I said, most of these people were our friends, and as somebody mentioned earlier, these were the disillusioned faithful. They were people who didn’t resign. As I said, most of their jobs simply ran out, but they left the center very disillusioned and very willing to talk about it, although most of them wanted to talk off the record.

That presented a number of problems for us. We did not publish anything in the series unless it was attributed to somebody, but we went beyond that. I think if we had stuck with that tack as the only thing we did in the series, we would have ended up with people at the center could have easily dismissed as disgruntled employees.

By looking at 990’s, what few financial records we did have available, we were able to corroborate much of that information, many of the allegations they had made, the fact that the center didn’t spend very much of its money that it took in on programs, the fact that some of the top people at the center were paid very high salaries, the fact that there weren’t minorities in management positions at the center.

If I had advice for anybody looking into a nonprofit it would be this: It’s the most tenacious story. You have to be more tenacious in your pursuit of these things than anything else I’ve ever been a part of. These guys threatened us with a lawsuit from the moment we asked to look at their financial records.

They were very friendly and cooperative, up until the point where we said, “We want to see the checks you write,” and they turned over their 990’s and said, “Come look at these.” We said, “We don’t want to see those, we know what those are and we’ve seen them. We actually want to see the checks you write,” and they said, “Well, there’s 23,000 checks we’ve written over two years, you don’t possibly have time to look through all those,” and we said, “Yes, we do, and we’ll hire an auditor to do it.”

First Threats, Eventually No Response to Questions

At that point, they hired an independent attorney. They’re all lawyers, you’ve got to understand. They hired an attorney who began first by threatening me, then my editor, and then the publisher. “And you better be careful of the questions you ask and the stories you come up with,” and they would cite the libel law to us. So we were under threat of lawsuit for two years, basically, during the research phase of the series.

They initially would answer our questions in person, as long as they could tape-record it. After we asked about finances, they wanted the questions written down and sent to them in advance, and then finally they said, “We’re tired of you guys, we’re not answering anything else,” and they completely cut us off.

We published the series over eight days in 1994, and it had very little effect, actually. I think the center now raises more money than it ever has. [Laughter]

The story really didn’t get out of Montgomery and that’s a real problem. The center’s donors are not in Montgomery; the center’s donors are in the Northeast and on the West Coast. So the story pretty much was contained in Montgomery where it got a shrug-of-the-shoulders reaction. We really didn’t get much reaction at all, I’m sad to say.

One of our editorial writers had an interesting comment on it. I think he stole it from somebody else, but his comment was this: “They came to do good and they’ve done quite well for themselves, and they’ve done even better since the series was published.” I’m not sure what the lesson in that is, but don’t assume because a nonprofit has a sterling reputation it’s not worth looking into, and don’t assume when you start looking into it that it’s going to be easy to get the information, because it’s not.

Today, the Montomery Advertiser reported:

A 1994 Montgomery Advertiser series provided a deep look into the organization controlled by the multimillionaire Dees, illustrating his near-singular control over the organization and its mammoth budget.

The series, a Pulitzer Prize finalist, revealed a figure seen as heroic by some and single-minded by others. Dees’ critics said he was more concerned with fundraising than litigating.

The series also alleged discriminatory treatment of black employees within the advocacy group, despite its outward efforts to improve the treatment of minorities in the country. Staffers at the time “accused Morris Dees, the center’s driving force, of being a racist and black employees have ‘felt threatened and banded together.’” The organization denied the accusations raised in the series.

“I would hope the IRS and the Justice Department would take this as [an] opportunity to come in and take a close look at The Center, it’s finances and it’s day-to-day operations,” said Jim Tharpe, managing editor of the Advertiser in the mid-1990s, who oversaw the Advertiser series. “It’s long overdue.”

People on all sides complain all the time about Fake News, but in a lot of ways the problem is not Fake News, it’s too much news. There are lots of hard-working reporters out there digging up news, but it’s hard to mentally process and remember news that you don’t have the right mental categories to digest.

If you haven’t been paying extremely close attention, you know that Morris Dees and the SPLC are The Good Guys.

How could a member of the Direct Marketing [i.e., junk mail] Hall of Fame not be wholly trustworthy? After all they made a TV movie about what a hero Morris is and they cast Corbin Bernsen to play him.

They wouldn’t have cast Corbin Bernsen, who played sleazeball divorce lawyer Arnie Becker in L.A. Law and lazy third baseman Roger Dorn in Major League, as some kind of ethically complex, not wholly virtuous character now would they?

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  1. SPLC seems to illustrate Tucker Carlson’s Law of Leftist Projection: whatever they accuse you of, that is what they are themselves doing.

    • Replies: @anon
    , @Joe862
  2. trelane says:

    Any 103C with more than $50,000,000 in net assets should be investigated, seriously, as a racket.

  3. Anon[257] • Disclaimer says:

    By law, non profits need only spend 11 percent of income on whatever it is they do and can spend 89 percent of income in administrative costs basically salaries.

    Out of work and can beg or borrow $1,000?
    Think up a liberal cause, Save the Cockroaches or Raise money to buy transgenders wigs and dresses, any liberal cause . Set up a tax deductible foundation. $200 to $600 depending on which state a mailbox and new cellphone.

    Then hire a commission grant writer who only gets his her cut after money is raised.
    Pay yourself a good salary, give your teeen kids a 150k a year contract to clean your 10 by 12 office, and enjoy the good life.

  4. Unfortunately the SPLC is only one of many Anglo-American globalist organisations out to demonise populists, nationalists and conservatives in English-speaking countries. One of the worst offenders is Amnesty International, which still wears a hallow in polite society and is currently out to destroy Trump’s modest attempts at reducing illegal immigration:

    • Replies: @Mr. Anon
    , @anon
  5. Modern American life is more and more resembling a Picasso painting. I swear I saw the clock on the wall melting at work today. Good that the SPLC is finally getting its #nowitsyourturn moment. I’d like to think it’s in no small part because of your due diligence, Steve.

  6. He called for the Feds to come in, did he? I appreciate Mr. Tharpe’s great efforts 25 years back, as the excerpts were very interesting reading. However, if he thinks he will get impariality from “the Feds” in the matter of the center-of-hate $PLC, he’s living in the past, at least as far back as his articles.

  7. PhDPepper says:


    ‘I came here because my dad asked me to come vote against the lesbians.’

  8. @Anon

    I heard The Human Fund is soliciting:

  9. This is the type of thing that our government should investigate, a Mueller level inquiry. When the black politicians see this why don’t they jump on with both feet. Need seed money for reparations? How about SPLC’s half a billion.

  10. The SPLC is too useful to the Left to get #metoo’d.

    Whatever Dees did will receive the “one bad apple” treatment, and then it’s back to “[conservative group], which has been identified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, . . . .”

  11. athEIst says:

    tax deductible foundation

    Is there any other kind? Every foundation is a tax scam.

  12. MBlanc46 says:
    @Captain Tripps

    Melting clocks is more Dali than Picasso but we get the point.

    • Replies: @Captain Tripps
  13. athEIst says:
    @Captain Tripps

    Actually that was Dali(who really could paint). Picasso was good for putting both eyes on the same side of a face.

  14. JohnnyD says:

    Here’s an old video of Dees praising the Confederate flag:

  15. istevefan says:

    OT – Mass shooting in NZ at a mosque. Here is the purported video of the event. I don’t know how long it will remain up. If you advance to the 6 minute mark, it starts.

    • Replies: @Almost Missouri
  16. @Captain Tripps

    Modern American life is more and more resembling a Picasso painting. I swear I saw the clock on the wall melting at work today.

    Qualifies as an add to the budding iSteve compendium of good words to describe our nightmare.

  17. Steve’s earlier observation [that the SPLC is to the SCLC as “J.T. Marlin” was to “J.P. Morgan” in the film Boiler Room] is legendary.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  18. @PennTothal

    A commenter pointed that out to me. Unfortunately, I don’t remember who.

  19. Bill Clinton and Morris Dees seem to be cut from the same cloth.

  20. @istevefan

    Well, as our Leftist betters have taught us, at a time like this, the most important thing is that we guard against any backlash against the white supremacist community, the overwhelming majority of whom are law abiding citizens, and certainly that we must never allow the incomprehensible actions of a lone individual to tar an entire group…

    • Replies: @istevefan
  21. Mr. Anon says:
    @unpc downunder

    Unfortunately the SPLC is only one of many Anglo-American globalist organisations out to demonise populists, nationalists and conservatives in English-speaking countries.

    Yeah. Right. “Anglo-American”

  22. …in a lot of ways the problem is not Fake News, it’s too much news.

    It is impossible to write ancient history because we do not have enough sources, and impossible to write modern history because we have too many. –Charles Péguy, 1909

  23. istevefan says:
    @Almost Missouri

    I would guess a backlash is a comin’. And a big one at that.

  24. @istevefan

    Looks like the nut wrote some “manifesto” where he seems to be trolling practically all political angles. Meta. A twisted sense of humor.

    • Replies: @Olorin
  25. Olorin says:

    This is a concise road map of how these organizations can work. But more often they are started to look like mom-and-pop or Shield Of The Downtrodden/think-up-a-cause organizations…when in fact the idea and seed money for their launching comes from a rich individual, family, or foundation programming area.

    Sometimes they are launched out of MSM coverage of an issue or content area via stories placed in one or more outlets by professional story-placers in these families/foundations/agencies.

    Sometimes they are launched by these parties after someone(s) in their ranks notice media coverage of a trend, or a new idea, and want to elevate, focus, or magnify that trend/idea. These ideas are rarely novel; they are chosen to illustrate, extend, or underscore larger/meta agendas, like globalismo applied to everything under the sun.

    During the tech boom of the ’90s, many such “NGOs” were launched because those cleaning up on financial speculation/government gibs for tech had to have somewhere to put their money. So these NGOs also serve as money laundering shops.

    The game changed IMO in the late ’90s in this regard as the amounts of tech boom money available for spending/laundering exploded. Then contracted. Dees piloted SPLC through this era by relying on a very old communications medium: the post office, enhanced with Excel/spreadsheet analysis/organization for direct mail, and increasingly e-mail and Web content.

    When you get enough of these organizations competing for the same pools of money–say after X years when the market turns down/spending is restricted, or when an issue area is saturated with bunches of people working on the same ideas–then comes staff cutbacks, change in program areas, etc.

    Or new ideas come up, and the funders chase those, throwing money in the air for the same or new bunches of NGO staff to chase.

    “Doing good” can cover all sorts of malicious activity. Which points to the fact that these organizations often exist to preserve the illusion of being separate from the very power structure they are created to represent/extend the reach of.

    In the case of SPLC, we have a literal media corporation posing as a non-media-corporation…by literally creating desirable content for its high-subscription-paying audience.

    They call them “donors”–but they’re actually subscribers seeking a regular/reliable stream of SJW blackpill/fear porn to feel mad or virtuous about. This is why the list of “hate groups” has to be continually expanded.

    It’s like the ADL: it’s their job to give their subscribers (“donors”) a constant programmed stream of “anti-Semitism.” Neither group is going to break it to their lucratively farmed audiences that their favorite subjects–hate and anti-Semitism–are practically non-existent. And as we know, belief abhors a vacuum–if these things don’t exist, it is necessary to invent them.

    Sure, SPLC now creates Web content, and TV/video, and podcasts, and PR, and conferences, and school curriculum, and such. But it was founded as a media group posing as a legal advocacy group.”Direct mail” is/was a medium. Morris Dees was very good at exploiting that medium in the same way other mediagarchs exploited other media. It’s just that “direct mail” isn’t as sexy as the stuff with cameras and bimbos and himbos and CGI stage sets and crawllines and such.

    What we now see is that SPLC has evolved into a media corporation that tells the very largest and most powerful techmedia corporations what they should and should not be covering, or allow to be said, based on what SPLC’s own carefully assembled audience of subscribers (“donors”) want to hear or not. In a way SPLC’s subscribers (“donors”) are the ultimate media content focus group.

    SPLC is more than a financial scam. It is a magnificently engineered media scam, infotainment posing as judicial reform/intervention. And now a/the primary gatekeeper for the most powerful media companies on earth, literally determining the mindscape of billions of people and access to that. Unceasingly.

    If I could ask the Sailertariat to understand ONE THING about these NGO’s/501(c)(3) corporations, it would precisely that. These are media corporations. Content delivery organizations. Narrative shaping groups. Audience development agencies.

    When you go to work for any of these, you find out that they spend very little time actually accomplishing anything and most of their time “shaping opinion,” etc. Usually for people even higher up the access food chain than they are. It is at those higher-ups’ beck and call that real things get accomplished. See the example of David Gelbaum’s buyout of the Sierra Club, turning this long-standing, robust network of local and regional conservationists into a nine-figure platform for bolshie/leftist stances on open borders and white racial replacement, in the process firming up the MetaNarrative that brown good white bad to hell with nature. Nature, the wallpaper/stage backdrop for the latest Sierra tourism package.

    • Replies: @Lurker
  26. Olorin says:

    For a good time try typing

    ctrl-F jew*

    in the body of that “manifesto.”

    No way it was written by a /pol/lack.


  27. @Mr. Anon

    Yeah. Right. “Anglo-American”

    Gotta LOVE those Anglo-Amurkins.

  28. Theory.mine

    Dees was kicked out of the KKK for moral turpitude.
    His revenge was to devote decades to fleecing liberals and quashing the Klan

  29. It was alleged that in his divorce documents he was accused of attempting to sexually molest his step-daughter, and also alleged to have had an affair with a $PLC staffer. Those allegations plus an apparent pay-gap between white and black staffers seem to brought things to a head; on the latter point, it shows that hiring black staffers to appease people who years ago claimed he was a racist, because for a long time $PLC had very few black staffers (essentially none of any import), was like using a bandage to fix a severed appendage.

  30. “There was a problem with black employees at what was the nation’s richest civil rights organization; there were no blacks in the top management positions.”

    Sounds rather like the NAACP, heavily Jewish dominated… so much so that WE DuBois was disgusted with it and eventually quit. A few token blacks, but kept within the tribe.

  31. @Mr. Anon

    Your Point?

    The only significant Continental European organisation pushing open borders is Doctors Without Borders. Or are you one of those willful idiots who thinks open borders is some 100 percent Jewish conspiracy with no white liberals involved?

  32. gsjackson says:

    Will Dees take some of his well-heeled celebrity donors along with him, such as Mr. and Mrs. George Clooney, who tossed in $1 million to fight hate not too long ago?

  33. @unpc downunder

    Well, we know who the money comes from..

  34. @istevefan

    Weird how there’s never a big backlash no matter how many “Allahu Akbar” attacks there are…

    If this attacker had just screamed “Allahu Akbar” instead of writing a ridiculous manifesto, the press would be seeking to minimize and memory hole the attack as soon as possible.

  35. Mr. Anon says:
    @unpc downunder

    Your Point?

    That the SPLC is not really “anglo-american”, at least not to judge by the names of the people who actually run it.

    The only significant Continental European organisation pushing open borders is Doctors Without Borders.

    I doubt that. Perhaps you arrive at that conclusion by assuming that any other organization that does so is not “significant”. What about the various Soros-linked Open-Society organizations? Your implied comparison of DWB and SPLC is irrelevant anyway; SPLC is not an interanational organization (well, other than their banking), but is mostly or purely domestic to the US

    Or are you one of those willful idiots who thinks open borders is some 100 percent Jewish conspiracy with no white liberals involved?

    No, but you appear to be one of those willful idiots who think that the significant representation of one particular tribe in such organizations is purely incidental and of no importance and should not ever be noticed.

    Too bad. One notices.

    • Replies: @unpc downunder
  36. Anonymous[255] • Disclaimer says:
    @unpc downunder

    The only significant Continental European organisation pushing open borders

    You seem to have overlooked the governments of Germany, France, the European Union, and certain Scandinavian countries. I guess those are “insignificant” organizations.

    • Replies: @unpc downunder
  37. anon[393] • Disclaimer says:
    @Richard of Melbourne

    yeah carlson stole that from vox days- SJWs Always Lie:

  38. Despite this being in the public domain at the time, I had the distinct displeasure of listening to Mr. Dees as the commencement speaker for the my 2001 Rice U. graduation.

  39. @MBlanc46

    Thanks MB and athEIst for correcting my brain cramp; in my defense, it was late and I had just finished a 3-finger gin martini at the bar…

  40. anon[354] • Disclaimer says:

    I would be willing to believe the SPLC is a front for the US government deep state. This might explain how they’ve avoided criticism for so long.

    The SPLC has had long and deep ties with both the Department of Justice and various secret police organizations such as the FBI and the ATF, providing both groups with “intelligence” on law-abiding American citizens; one of these groups was even receiving practice shooting targets for a while depicting stereotypical conservatives. Officially, it is inappropriate for the FBI to do what the SPLC does, so I wouldn’t be surprised at all if they simply used this front group to do their dirty work for them. It’s similar to a money laundering operation whereby someone filters illicit cash through a seemingly legitimate source in order to hide the nefarious origin of the money. In this case, the government may have been hiding their influence by using a legal proxy, a charity. This will be either validated or rejected based upon whether the FBI does indeed step in and take a hard look at this group. If they don’t, then …

  41. anon[260] • Disclaimer says:

    “If this attacker had just screamed “Allahu Akbar” instead of writing a ridiculous manifesto, the press would be seeking to minimize and memory hole the attack as soon as possible.”

    I don’t think that’s what the guy wanted. He may have been hoping to inspire violence. Hence, his bizarre mentioning of Candace Owens and labeling himself an “eco-fascist”. In any case, the mask has dropped farther as evidenced by some Leftists on Twitter trying to use the incident, before the facts are in obviously, to get their competition banned – Pewdiepie, for example, an innocuous YouTuber who spends most of his time making “laugh and you die” videos.

  42. TA says:

    Morris Dees and the SPLC have ALWAYS leveraged racial fears for their own $$benefit. They use their fraudulent “Hate Group” list to keep SERIOUS Black & White thinkers far apart.


  43. People on all sides complain all the time about Fake News, but in a lot of ways the problem is not Fake News, it’s too much news.

    If the story did not get out of Montgomery, Alabama, it is not because there is too much news – it is because the NYT and others decided they did not want to run the story on the front page.

    They’ve got so many more important stories to cover, what with Emmett Till, Haven Monahan and all.

  44. Lurker says:

    “Doing good” can cover all sorts of malicious activity. Which points to the fact that these organizations often exist to preserve the illusion of being separate from the very power structure they are created to represent/extend the reach of.

    Yes, exactly right.

    Many exist purely to supply quotes to the MSM and politicians and give the appearance of popular support.

  45. Art Deco says:

    It’s a reasonable wager the media know the $PLC is a scam. They use it as a quote mine in order to defame people without taking responsibility for it. The charity raters have been perfectly useless. What’s worse, moles operating at Visa, MasterCard, and an array of tech companies make use of $PLC smears as an excuse to engage in economic warfare on dissenters.

  46. @Anonymous

    Yes, but these are democratic governments that are yielding to public pressure. Hence, the sharp slowdown in immigration into Europe:

    In contrast, these British and American based NGOs like the ADL, SPLC and Amnesty International are flush with lots of money and aren’t democratically accountable. Which could be one reason why Trump is having such a hard time making any head way on reducing immigration.

  47. @Mr. Anon

    By “Anglo-American,” I mean based in the US and or UK. In retrospect that was sloppy catch-all phrasing. I wasn’t referring to ethnicity. As Soros, his headquarters is in the US, and he has already admitted that he has largely failed in Europe.

    My main point this stands, British and American based globalist NGOs like Amnesty International, and anti WN organisations like the SPLC, are much wealthier and more numerous than their counterparts in Europe. There is also the possibility that Soros is increasing his efforts in the US due to failure in Europe.

    And no, I don’t ignore the role Jews (and other market dominant minorities like the Chinese) play in pushing open borders. Nor do I ignore the role urban white liberals play in pushing open borders, and I don’t assume people in Israel have the same views on immigration into western countries as diaspora Jews in the US.

  48. I worked for major non-profits part of the United Way. Sterling reputations. I was completely disillusioned. As an IT exec, I told myself that no matter who I worked for my salary was in line with industry standards, and I didn’t make policy. That policy was to use the clients/victims as excuses to virtue signal for rich “donors” at formal dress silent auctions doing elite business networking, and for massive salaries for those running the operations. Some folks working there were bothered by the abuse of client interests, but were told, “you want to not have your salary this week instead?” In one case, clients were promised and had advertised that their tuition to a community college was paid by the charity, but when they tried to take classes, no money had been paid to the college. There must be some good charities out there, but I’ve never seen one once I saw them close up.

    • Replies: @Autochthon
  49. Joe862 says:
    @Richard of Melbourne

    I’m wondering if this is a situation where we’ll find out that person/organization A hates organization B so they give the SPLC 50k to label B a hate group. Could it be that simple?

  50. @Fran Macadam

    I’ve worked (and been on the boards of) a few, many years ago In my experience the common, important characteriatics were:

    – Local, small operations doing concrete things (feeding people, services for the disabled, helping cats and dogs, etc. – not Herculean or abstract stuff like fighting -ists and -isms or higher education for the poor or stopping climate change).

    – Leadership by founders or at least those not distant in time from founding; persons further removed from the original vision in time or space (see my point about local outfits) become cynical.

    – Leaders and workers not motivated by money nor beholden to it, but also not the vapid, idle rich – you want the director to be a passionate woman with an empty nest and no need for moneh because her husband’s plumbing business does well, not Melinda Gates.

    – Funded primarily if not entirely by teir own efforts and local donations with the knowlede to maintain accountability; not from distant or wealthy foundations, and certainly not grants and (saints preserve us!) never the government. They’ve got annual carwashes, silent auctions, fun-runs, and such, and a network of benefactors among local churches and businesses who know the non-profit’s work well and are genuinely connected to he real differences it makes (“they really helped my wife when she had problems as a teenager,” “my nephew volunteers for them and tells me about the way things are done,” etc.).

    In other words, everything outfits like the United Way, the SPLC,, etc. are not.

    Some outfits seem to do real, boots-on-the-ground stuff, but I’m nevertheless cynical about overhead, especially executive pay (e.g., the Red Cross, the Humane Society); better I reckon to support a local clinic run by Dr. Smith because he genuinely wants to help the poor, sick people on Saturdays or to support a local no-kill shelter, etc.

    A good gauge of worthiness is how much the outfit values in-kind help over cash: the no-kill shelter will live you for cleaning litter-boxes all afternoon each Wednesday, or bringing them a bunch or kibble every week, whereas Morris Dees’ ilk will be uninterested in your offer of pro bono representation of victims of illegal discrimination in employment – imagine that…).

    • Replies: @Art Deco
  51. Art Deco says:

    In other words, everything outfits like the United Way, the SPLC,, etc. are not.

    Unless I misunderstand, United Way is a bundler which distributes cash to a mess of outfits who do hands-on work. They may do this inexpertly, but they’re not a racket like the $PLC. Not sure how much local autonomy there is in the United Way anymore. They started out as an association of local Community Chests.

  52. @Captain Tripps

    The melting clock is not Picasso – it is the work of Salvador Dali.

  53. Does anyone here actually want them to spend that money? If they did, it would be on novel ways to screw over white people. Every disgruntled minority employee who didn’t get the promotion he didn’t deserve would get their lawsuit funded.

    Better it goes to make a small handful of people wealthy or pile up irrelevantly than it actually be used on its mission.

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