If you aren’t still disgusted with Bob Dole’s lackluster performance in the presidential campaign, you will be after reading Jeffrey Tucker’s excellent column in the current issue of the Free Market.

Remember how Dole boasted of creating his own charity, the Dole Foundation? Didn’t you conjure images of Dole and Liddy digging into their own pockets to get it up and running?

Well, you’re about to be disappointed again. The Dole Foundation, it turns out, is a project of the United Cerebral Palsy Association with an operating budget of $540 million. Of that budget, 80 percent comes, as Tucker writes, “straight from the taxpayer’s wallet.”

“Voluntary contributions are only 11 percent, less than the percentage the UCPA spends on pro-welfare political lobbying,” Tucker points out. “The Doles do not fund the Dole Foundation. Taxpayers do.”

Tucker also makes the case that government support is ruining private charitable endeavors.

“Government at all levels funds the nonprofit sector to the hilt, corrupting the idea of compassion,” he writes. “Thirty-nine of the largest 100 charities received $3.5 billion in government finance in 1995. And charities that take the government dollar invariably become part of the problem by spending part of their budget to lobby for ever more government money.”

Did Clinton abscond with insurance money?

Judicial Watch, the public interest organization that helped expose the Clinton fund-raising scandal, has filed suit against State Farm Insurance, the president and his attorney Bob Bennett.

The suit seeks to force Clinton and Bennett to return to State Farm money spent on the defense of the Paula Jones sexual harassment suit.

“State Farm has paid Mr. Clinton and Mr. Bennett large amounts of money they had no right to receive,” said Larry Klayman, chairman of Judicial Watch. “That money made it possible for the president to delay his day of reckoning with Ms. Jones for more than three years. Unless you live at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, no insurance company in the country would dream of paying for your defense in a case like this.”

Thank you, Kenneth Starr

Good news from the Office of Independent Counsel: According to the Evans-Novak Political Report, Kenneth Starr “is seriously investigating a cover-up in the Vince Foster death and what provoked his suicide. Indictments, probably on charges of obstruction of justice, are expected in early autumn.”

We can only wonder if Judge Starr has figured out how the body was moved to Fort Marcy Park.

Perhaps Starr is finally appreciating the good reporting done on this case by our associate Christopher Ruddy. He seemed to pay tribute to him, and us, in a recent speech to the Newspaper Association of America convention in Chicago. Asked if he approved of the job newspaper investigative reporters were doing on covering Whitewater, he replied, “Yes, I do, very much, at the expense of sounding shamelessly Uriah Heep-ish and obsequious, it is a helpful thing for the Fourth Estate, as you are so often called, to be out there digging.”

I certainly have seen some very high-quality, important reporting that has been done, shall we say, not unhelpful to my own investigation.”

You’re welcome.

Those Nike sweatshops

Did you see the report in WorldNetDaily last week about abusive child-labor practices by companies like Nike in Indonesia?

Well, you sure didn’t see it anywhere else. But Nike is fighting back with a public relations campaign nonetheless. The company has hired Andrew Young to look into the allegations.

Hong Kong bungled away

The Chinese, it turns out, never really wanted nor expected to have Hong Kong handed back to them so soon and so easily.

“Beijing had no intention of recovering Hong Kong,” said Wong Manfong of the official Xinhua News Agency.

China was never that interested in Hong Kong as an economic center. Its long-range plans called for Shanghai to serve that role. Therefore, there is some speculation in intelligence circles that China will actually strangle Hong Kong’s productivity along with its freedom.

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