Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. Joined
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    27 Apr '15 02:371 edit
    http://nypost.com/2015/04/26/charity-watchdog-clinton-foundation-a-slush-fund/

    The Clinton Foundation’s finances are so messy that the nation’s most influential charity watchdog put it on its “watch list” of problematic nonprofits last month.

    The Clinton family’s mega-charity took in more than $140 million in grants and pledges in 2013 but spent just $9 million on direct aid.

    The group spent the bulk of its windfall on administration, travel, and salaries and bonuses, with the fattest payouts going to family friends.

    On its 2013 tax forms, the most recent available, the foundation claimed it spent $30 million on payroll and employee benefits; $8.7 million in rent and office expenses; $9.2 million on “conferences, conventions and meetings”; $8 million on fund-raising; and nearly $8.5 million on travel. None of the Clintons are on the payroll, but they do enjoy first-class flights paid for by the Foundation.

    In all, the group reported $84.6 million in “functional expenses” on its 2013 tax return and had more than $64 million left over — money the organization has said represents pledges rather than actual cash on hand.

    Some of the tens of millions in administrative costs finance more than 2,000 employees, including aid workers and health professionals around the world.

    But that’s still far below the 75 percent rate of spending that nonprofit experts say a good charity should spend on its mission.

    Charity Navigator, which rates nonprofits, recently refused to rate the Clinton Foundation because its “atypical business model . . . doesn’t meet our criteria.”

    Charity Navigator put the foundation on its “watch list,” which warns potential donors about investing in problematic charities. The 23 charities on the list include the Rev. Al Sharpton’s troubled National Action Network, which is cited for failing to pay payroll taxes for several years.

    Other nonprofit experts are asking hard questions about the Clinton Foundation’s tax filings in the wake of recent reports that the Clintons traded influence for donations.

    “It seems like the Clinton Foundation operates as a slush fund for the Clintons,” said Bill Allison, a senior fellow at the Sunlight Foundation, a government watchdog group once run by leading progressive Democrat and Fordham Law professor Zephyr Teachout.

    In July 2013, Eric Braverman, a friend of Chelsea Clinton from when they both worked at McKinsey & Co., took over as CEO of the Clinton Foundation. He took home nearly $275,000 in salary, benefits and a housing allowance from the nonprofit for just five months’ work in 2013, tax filings show. Less than a year later, his salary increased to $395,000, according to a report in Politico.

    Braverman abruptly left the foundation earlier this year, after a falling-out with the old Clinton guard over reforms he wanted to impose at the charity, Politico reported. Last month, Donna Shalala, a former secretary of health and human services under President Clinton, was hired to replace Braverman.

    Nine other executives received salaries over $100,000 in 2013, tax filings show.

    The nonprofit came under fire last week following reports that Hillary Clinton, while she was secretary of state, signed off on a deal that allowed a Russian government enterprise to control one-fifth of all uranium producing capacity in the United States. Rosatom, the Russian company, acquired a Canadian firm controlled by Frank Giustra, a friend of Bill Clinton’s and member of the foundation board, who has pledged over $130 million to the Clinton family charity.

    The group also failed to disclose millions of dollars it received in foreign donations from 2010 to 2012 and is hurriedly refiling five years’ worth of tax returns after reporters raised questions about the discrepancies in its filings last week.

    An accountant for the Clinton Foundation did not return The Post’s calls seeking clarification on its expenses Friday, and a spokesperson for the group refused comment.
  2. Joined
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    27 Apr '15 02:41
    I know, I know, this is what we should expect from any future Presidential candidate.

    Everyone does it, right? 😞
  3. Germany
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    27 Apr '15 05:47
    The sad truth is that there are many charities with similar ratios to income and money spent on actual aid. A charity has no incentive to save - they can't just go back to their donors and say "well, we didn't need quite this much, here, have some back." There are some notable exceptions such as the Wikimedia Foundation which has managed to provide an enormous benefit to society with only 250 employees.
  4. Joined
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    27 Apr '15 10:562 edits
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    The sad truth is that there are many charities with similar ratios to income and money spent on actual aid. A charity has no incentive to save - they can't just go back to their donors and say "well, we didn't need quite this much, here, have some back." There are some notable exceptions such as the Wikimedia Foundation which has managed to provide an enormous benefit to society with only 250 employees.
    So in your estimation this is how the average charity operates?

    I guess it's how the government works as well. Out of every dollar collected to help the poor, only about 10 cents on the dollar actually goes to the poor.

    I guess this is the approach all Progressives seem to take with the poor. Create lavish slush funds and help just enough people to be deemed beneficial.


    According to the article:

    "But that’s still far below the 75 percent rate of spending that nonprofit experts say a good charity should spend on its mission."

    Would you say that the article is being untruthful here?
  5. Germany
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    27 Apr '15 12:58
    Originally posted by whodey
    So in your estimation this is how the average charity operates?

    I guess it's how the government works as well. Out of every dollar collected to help the poor, only about 10 cents on the dollar actually goes to the poor.

    I guess this is the approach all Progressives seem to take with the poor. Create lavish slush funds and help just enough people to be ...[text shortened]... harity should spend on its mission."

    Would you say that the article is being untruthful here?
    So in your estimation this is how the average charity operates?

    I haven't seen estimates for "averages," but yes, many charities do operate like this.

    I guess it's how the government works as well.

    No. Unlike charities, (democratic) governments can and do give money back they don't need in the form of tax breaks and have significant incentives to do so. Of course these incentives are precisely the reason governments tend to have budget deficits while charities tend to have budget surpluses.

    Would you say that the article is being untruthful here?

    No. The article doesn't state how common such "good" charities are. Obviously I agree that charities should spend most of what they receive on what they advertise as their charitable goal/mission.
  6. Cape Town
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    27 Apr '15 17:09
    Originally posted by whodey
    I know, I know, this is what we should expect from any future Presidential candidate.

    Everyone does it, right? 😞
    Most charities I have knowledge of (my wife has worked for quite a number including, I believe, the Clinton Foundation) do spend a lot of money on salaries and other management costs. I have also seen good argument supporting doing so. If anything, the charities that just dish out free goodies often get it wrong and make things worse rather than better. In some cases I have seen charities being forced by governments to distribute free food for political reasons even when the charity in question knows that it is doing more harm than good.
    Charities should always put some effort into fixing the problem at source rather than just trying to deal with the symptoms.

    If I recall correctly (from discussions with my wife about 10 years ago) the Clinton Foundation was very successful at getting companies to reduce the price of AIDS drugs for poor countries. Now if that took expensive dinners and business class flights for pharmaceutical execs and politicians to achieve, it would not show on the books as money spent on charity. But the end result for the AIDS patients would be very significant. It wasn't long after I heard about this that many African countries started issuing free AIDS drugs to their citizens. Prior to this they were more expensive than the average person could afford.
    If the Clinton Foundation was the largest reason for the price reductions (I don't know) then it is possible that they saved more lives than any other charity.
  7. Joined
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    29 Apr '15 03:19
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Most charities I have knowledge of (my wife has worked for quite a number including, I believe, the Clinton Foundation) do spend a lot of money on salaries and other management costs. I have also seen good argument supporting doing so. If anything, the charities that just dish out free goodies often get it wrong and make things worse rather than better. I ...[text shortened]... reductions (I don't know) then it is possible that they saved more lives than any other charity.
    In other words, just giving money and food to the poor can cause harm, and we should just let charities like the Clinton charity absorb 90% of the funds trusting they will do more with the money than the poor.

    Got it!!
  8. Standard memberRJHinds
    The Near Genius
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    29 Apr '15 04:26
    NO. 😏
  9. Standard memberbill718
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    29 Apr '15 05:09
    Originally posted by whodey
    http://nypost.com/2015/04/26/charity-watchdog-clinton-foundation-a-slush-fund/

    The Clinton Foundation’s finances are so messy that the nation’s most influential charity watchdog put it on its “watch list” of problematic nonprofits last month.

    The Clinton family’s mega-charity took in more than $140 million in grants and pledges in 2013 but spent just $9 ...[text shortened]... seeking clarification on its expenses Friday, and a spokesperson for the group refused comment.
    What can I say Whodey, it's a world gone mad...MAD I SAY!!! 😠🙄😠🙄
  10. Cape Town
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    29 Apr '15 05:391 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    In other words, just giving money and food to the poor can cause harm, and we should just let charities like the Clinton charity absorb 90% of the funds trusting they will do more with the money than the poor.

    Got it!!
    Your reading comprehension is sadly lacking. But yes, merely giving money and food to the poor is not the best way to run a charity.
  11. Joined
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    29 Apr '15 11:32
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Your reading comprehension is sadly lacking. But yes, merely giving money and food to the poor is not the best way to run a charity.
    How is giving money to the poor worse than furnishing the lavish life style of Hillary?
  12. Joined
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    29 Apr '15 11:34
    Originally posted by bill718
    What can I say Whodey, it's a world gone mad...MAD I SAY!!! 😠🙄😠🙄
    There is a method to the madness.

    Everyone recognizes the need to help the poor, so Progressives like Hillary create these slush funds to "help" the poor.

    That way Progressives get rich and some of the poor are helped. Everyone is happy. 😵
  13. Standard memberbill718
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    29 Apr '15 11:40
    Originally posted by whodey
    There is a method to the madness.

    Everyone recognizes the need to help the poor, so Progressives like Hillary create these slush funds to "help" the poor.

    That way Progressives get rich and some of the poor are helped. Everyone is happy. 😵
    Well....everyone except you.
  14. Joined
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    29 Apr '15 11:511 edit
    Originally posted by bill718
    Well....everyone except you.
    Charity at the grass roots is far superior as the vast majority of donations go to the poor.

    And no, the poor are not dying in the streets because the money actually goes to them instead of fat cats like Hillary.

    I guess this is why you are a liberal. Instead of rolling up your sleeves and donating time and money to help the poor you vote for people to force you give more of your money to government who take the vast majority of that money for themselves.
  15. Cape Town
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    29 Apr '15 12:33
    Originally posted by whodey
    How is giving money to the poor worse than furnishing the lavish life style of Hillary?
    I don't know. I never claimed it was. Clearly giving to the poor is better than furnishing the lavish life style of Hillary, but it is still not the best thing for a charity to do, nor is it what the Clinton Foundation spends most of its money on.
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