A conservative view of national, state and local politics by Steve Fair
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Clinton Foundation releases list of donors By Kevin Bogardus from The Hill Posted: 12/18/08 01:04 PM [ET]
Former President Bill Clinton has raised millions of dollars for his foundation from foreign governments across the Middle East and Europe that his wife may end up negotiating with as the next secretary of state.The Clinton Foundation released a list of its donors Thursday as part of its agreement surrounding the nomination of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) to President-elect Obama's Cabinet. The ex-president agreed to disclose the donors due to the potential of his expansive foundation work conflicting with his wife’s new role in the incoming Obama administration.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia gave at least $10 million to the Clinton Foundation. Kuwait and Qatar have given at least $1 million to the group, along with the sultanate of Oman and the government of Brunei.European countries have also pitched in. Norway donated at least $5 million to the foundation while Italy’s Ministry for Environment and Territory gave at least $500,000.Beyond foreign governments, the list is heavy with well-known Democratic donors and major corporations.
For example, the Wal-Mart Foundation and the foundation of the retail giant’s founder, Sam Walton, gave at least $1 million each to the foundation. Sen. Clinton sat on the company’s board from 1986 to 1992 when her husband was governor of Arkansas. The corporation is based in Bentonville, Ark.Other companies that have donated to the foundation include Duke Energy, Hewlett Packard and the Citi Foundation, affiliated with Citigroup, one of several financial services firms that have received rescue funds from the federal government this year.
Big contributors to the Democratic Party are also littered throughout the list. For example, movie producer Stephen Bing and media mogul Fred Eychaner both gave at least $10 million. Robert Johnson, founder of Black Entertainment Television, donated at least $1 million. In addition, George Soros’s Open Society Institute also gave $1 million.Disclosing the foundation’s donors is part of a tough ethics regime for the former president. Clinton will have to disclose future donors as well as submit his paid speeches and foundation activities to ethics officials at the State Department for review while his wife is at Foggy Bottom.
Obama’s presidential campaign often pushed Clinton to disclose donors to her husband’s foundation during their Democratic primary battle this year. Founded in 1997, this is the first time the Clinton Foundation has released its donors publicly, which is not required by law.Funds raised by the former president have financed several different foundation initiatives around the world, such as supplying medicine to those living with AIDS and developing programs for child nutrition in Latin America.“I want to personally express my deepest appreciation to our many contributors, who remain steadfast partners in our work to impact the lives of so many around the world in measurable and meaningful ways,” said former President Clinton in a statement Thursday.The full list of donors is available on the Clinton Foundation's website,
FAIR- because that's my name and BIASED because the truth is we are all biased-either for something or against it. What's important is that our bias(opinions) are based on right- on absolute truth and not on changing values. What's right cannot change based on a change in circumstances. That is the basis for situational ethics.
Situation Ethics is a theory that is concerned with the outcome or consequences of an action; the end, as opposed to an action being intrinsically wrong. In the case of situation ethics, the end can justify the means. There are no absolutes. Your actions are guided only by your conscience.
A person's view of right can be subjective. But there is a way mankind can definitely know what's right and that is revealed in God's Word- the Bible. As His creatures, we should be biased toward things our Creator is for and biased against those things He is against. May God grant us the grace and understanding to know the difference.
PARTY AFFILIATION IS IMPORTANT! by Steve Fair- written in 2009
How important is political party affiliation? Some people mistakenly believe only politicians need political affiliation, which they use for support to get elected. They contend the electorate or voters, do not need to be aligned with any Party. These same people often state they “support the man, not the Party.” But whether they recognize it or not, they are supporting a party when they “support the man.” Most of the Founding Fathers had a negative view of political parties. In his farewell address to the nation, George Washington warned about political parties saying, “However [political parties] may now and then answer popular ends, they are likely in the course of time and things, to become potent engines, by which cunning, ambitious, and unprincipled men will be enabled to subvert the power of the people and to usurp for themselves the reins of government, destroying afterwards the very engines which have lifted them to unjust dominion.” In spite of Washington's warning, political parties were formed anyway. From 1796 to 1828 the first political parties were formed. Starting with the Federalists and Anti-Federalists, two opposing factions arose. Each was concerned with how the new government was to be organized. The Federalists believed in a strong central government. Their philosophy and beliefs would closely mirror the Democrat Party today. The Anti-Federalists strongly supported the rights of the states. They would more closely align with Republicans today. Since the mid 1800s, the Ds and Rs have been the two major political parties in our country. Political parties flourished in our government mainly for legislative organization and expediencies sake. Why is Party affiliation important for the average voter? Party affiliation is important for three very simples reasons. First, party affiliation is the first vote a citizen casts. When a citizen registers as a Democrat, then they are aligning philosophically with the values, beliefs, tenets, and positions of the Democrats on the issues. Party affiliation “defines” you are and what you stand for. It should be taken as seriously as a vote for a specific candidate. Research what each Party stands for, their positions on issues, and then align with the Party that is closest to your values. Copies of both major Party platforms are available on-line or at the local library. Second, legislatures organize themselves and conduct business using party affiliation. The legislative branch of government is the most powerful arm of the three branches of government. Legislative bodies hold closed meeting of party members, called a caucus to decide on questions of policy or leadership. The Republicans hold a caucus meeting and the Democrats hold a caucus meeting-both at the state and federal level. Unfortunately, conservative, moderate and liberal philosophies do not hold caucus meetings or control the legislative agendas- parties do. When someone says they vote for “the man,” not the party, they fail to understand the power and function of a caucus system in a legislative body. The Party in the majority controls appointments, Chairmanships, the agenda and countless other things through the caucus. Third, party affiliation should be a matter of conviction, not convenience. Often, people align with a party so they can vote in primary elections or based on family tradition or geographies. Even candidates will align, file and run affiliated with a Party they have little philosophical agreement with. That decision is made out of convenience, not conviction. While no political party is perfect or has all the answers, there is a distinct difference between the two major parties and honest citizens should align with the Party that reflects their convictions. The Democrat Party is more liberal than the Republican Party. Liberals believe in more government control of business, the environment and speech, using large bureaucratic programs to address real or perceived social ills and constant reinterpretation of the Constitution. Liberals are more inclined to trust government than the people themselves. They see the role of government as a great provider of goods and services and have little faith in the individual to solve his own problems. Republicans are more conservative than Democrats. Conservatives believe in less government control of the environment and business. They want fewer and less comprehensive government programs to address real or perceived social ills. They believe in personal responsibility and trust individuals to make decisions for themselves. Republicans believe in a strict literal interpretation of the Constitution. A person should find out which of these philosophies best fits their view if they wish to actively participate in the political process. Party affiliation is important. Washington’s prophecy has come to past, and political parties have been used to empower “unprincipled men,” on both sides of the aisle, but like it or not, political parties are a reality in our system of government. Each concerned citizen should evaluate the philosophy, values, beliefs and tenets of each Party and align their party affiliation accordingly.
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