Politics

The Fight For Freedom Continues For George Soros

The Open Society Foundation has quickly grown to become one of the world’s largest networks of charitable groups thanks to the funding provided for the organization by philanthropist and founder George Soros. Best known for his work as a legendary hedge fund manager, the gamble taken by Soros on the devaluation of the British Pound resulted in him becoming known as the man who broke the Bank of England according to Forbes, Soros has spent a large amount of his time exploring the need for cultural change across many nations on the planet. As he has now developed a fortune estimated to be worth more than $25 billion George Soros believes it is his responsibility to the community he serves to give back in a way that benefits those in the greatest level of need. Read more on NYTimes.com

George Soros is not the kind of billionaire philanthropist to blindly throw money at a cause without first completing a high level of research into any difficult situation and finding the best way of assisting those being stripped of their rights. A good example of his approach to the cultural problems he encounters can be found in the way Soros sought to aid Europe’s Roma community as they sought to be accepted as members of society in the European Union; The Open Society Foundations explains George Soros has been a major donor to the legal battle taking place in European Union to integrate the Roma community into the world around us all, Soros has helped provide legal representation for the Roma community and other groups seeking to protect their rights.

The human rights of people from various communities have not been the only aspect of the work of George Soros that he has explored through The Open Society Foundations; the Hungarian born financial expert has also been seeking to assist those in Africa and Asia in battling the crippling effects of the drug war on their communities. Soros has been a strong supporter of the fight to legalize marijuana since the early part of the 21st century when he was part of a campaign to alter the tactics of the United Nations in fighting the criminal drug industry. Prior to his work in Africa and Asia, George Soros was well known for being a major supporter of the bid to bring down the Berlin Wall and end the Cold War on the side of the West. Much of the desire of George Soros to end the Cold War was located in his own history as a Hungarian who was forced to live under Soviet rule following the end of World War II, which would prompt him to take his own refugee journey across Europe to London and later New York.

Visit Project Syndicate to learn more about George.

Billionaire Republican Donor Charles Koch Is Having Second Thoughts About Supporting A Republican Ticket

Charles Koch is one of the wealthiest men in America. His father played a part in his wealth, but for the most part, Charles and brother David have accumulated most of their billions on their own. The Koch brothers are considered part of the Republican establishment. Charles has never wanted to run for office. His philanthropic interests and Koch Industries are his passions. Charles likes to sit a few seats behind the political leaders and influence them in subtle but forceful ways. Money has a way of doing that, and Charles Koch has a lot of money and power.

Even though Koch’s father gave the Koch brothers a head-start in the financial world, Charles has managed to carve out a quiet but powerful place himself. Koch is not a New Yorker like brother David. Charles likes the mid-west and the country life even though he plays in the big political arenas in Washington and New York. Koch has donated millions of dollars to conservative universities and Republican candidates through the years. Eighty-year-old Charles has been part of the upper crust in the Republican Party for decades. Koch likes to call the shots from his Kansas home-base, and he’s not afraid to talk about his political ideology or his mission to keep a conservative in the White House.

But Koch’s message may be changing thanks to Donald Trump. Even though Trump and Koch know each other and brother David lives in the same city as Trump, Charles is not warming up to Trump, the Republican presidential candidate. It seems Charles is not buying what Trump is selling under the Republican umbrella. In a recent ABC News interview, Koch said he was more in line with Hillary Clinton than Donald Trump. That revelation sends a strong message to the Republican establishment. If Charles Koch isn’t happy with the Republican candidate, the money stops. And if the money stops from the Koch brothers, it stops from other big Party donors.

There is no doubt that the Republican Party is going through a metamorphosis. This is the first primary election where the people are choosing who they want in the White House. Money is not buying this primary election, and it may not buy the general election for the Republicans either. If Koch throws his money behind Clinton and other Republican donors follow him, the Republican Party is going to crash and burn, and the people will let it happen.

Additional Links:

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/01/25/new-koch

Venezuelan Opposition Fed Up with Nicolas Maduro

When Hugo Chavez passed out in 2013, Nicolas Maduro could feel as a lucky man who took over the Presidency. Since then, things in Venezuela have been getting increasingly worse. The big drop in oil prices has led to budget deficits, and was magnified by economic mismanagement.
No wonder many citizens aren’t happy with their president. According to Anadolu Agency, the Venezuelan opposition has collected over one million signatures for a referendum proposal to remove President Maduro from the office.

But, to remove him according to Jose Manuel Gonzalez, the opposition needs more than 7.5 million votes. The recent polls indicate Maduro’s popularity standing at 25%. At the same time, there’s very strong sentiment against him- more than 70% want the man out.

The reason: severe recession caused by economic mismanagement. Maduro isn’t the only man to blame. His predecessor, Hugo Chavez, started spending as if there was no tomorrow. Things would hold out a bit longer if the oil didn’t drop so much. Now, Manuel Gonzalez said that the current president is both an accomplice and a scapegoat.

Charles Koch; A Philanthropic That Gives More Than Money

In a time when most university’s scramble for funding, Virginia’s George Mason University (GMU) is flush with cash, thanks to Charles Koch’s largess. The billionaire unconditionally donated $48 million to the university from 2011 to 2014. GMU President Angel Cabrear praises Koch for his generosity and willingness to donate his time to serve as a member of the Mercatus board, a free-market think tank, and as chairman of the Institute for Humane Studies board. Considering Koch is also CEO and Chairman of the Board of Koch Industries, an author, a husband and a father of two, it’s amazing that Charles Koch finds the time to take a personal interest in the universities that he helps fund.

Founded in 1980, the Charles Koch Foundation has always supported higher education, maintaining that institutions have academic freedom to do research as they see fit, without restrictions. Koch donates primarily to institutions that focus on discovering new market-based solutions to society’s problems. The Mercatus Center at George Mason University supports Koch’s business philosophy, hence the generous donations. Koch believes in supporting programs that he knows will benefit society as a whole using approaches that have proven successful in the past.

Charles Koch surprises many people these days by getting out in public and talking about issues that are important to him. The public knew him as a political donor; however, Koch realized that he could drum up support for causes that meant something to him, such as criminal justice reform, by giving interviews and making public appearances.