But the Koch Brothers and Koch Industries’ right-wing family foundation network are far from the only big money influencers featured in the must-read book which has jumped to #4 on the Best Sellers list at Amazon.com.
Enter the Scaife, Olin and Bradley family fortunes, all three of which have served as key nodes through which the right-wing have tried to reshape the public policy landscape within (and beyond) the U.S. in the years following the Cold War until present day. If those family names sound familiar to DeSmog readers, they should: we have a profile in our database for Scaife and have written fairly extensively about Olin and Bradley.
Mayer devoted some 60 pages of the 380-page tome to the three families.
More than just a profile of those families and their influence in shaping policy, the pages also serve as a primer on the historical roots of the 501(c)(3) non-profit system itself and how and why plutocratic interests pushed the U.S. Congress to create it to begin with.
Self-interest, Mayer meticulously documents, played a central role. But that’s a long and vital history lesson for another day.
For now, here are some of the most compelling details about a few of the families not named Koch probed by Mayer in “Dark Money”.
Scaife, “League to Save Carthage” and ALEC
At the center of the Scaife story is Carthage. Yes, Carthage of the north African variety, sort of.
In 1964, Richard Scaife — namesake of the Scaife Family Foundations, whose money came largely from the Gulf Oil fortune — helped create a group called the League to Save Carthage, harkening back to the city conquered and colonized by the Roman Empire now situated as a suburb of Tunis, Tunisia.
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