After 35 years in the news business, you might think it’s hard to be shocked, amazed, stunned by a story.
Well, it happened to me this week with the latest development in a series WND has been publishing on the scandal-plagued Internal Revenue Service’s so-called “trusted partner.”
The “trusted partner” is a radically “progressive” group called the Urban Institute. It’s been around for a long time. But most Americans, even highly informed Americans – like members of Congress – had no idea this nonprofit was funded with hundreds of millions of dollars in government grants, including some from the IRS.
What does the Urban Institute do for the IRS?
That WND reported over a week ago. That was surprising enough, though apparently not to the rest of the news media that seems to accept at face value that radical left groups have a perfect right to be paid hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars for performing politically sensitive services of this kind. But it was a followup story this week that floored me.
And that’s just the beginning of the absurdity.
“The Urban Institute, the IRS’ ‘trusted partner’ for small nonprofit organizations to publicly disclose their financial information, has been paid millions of taxpayer dollars to research various topics for the federal government – with subjects ranging from exploring the networking habits of Latino gangs and studying food distribution on Indian reservations to finding the best ways to stop girls in D.C. public housing from getting pregnant,” the story continued.
- In 2011, the Urban Institute was given a $499,925 Department of Justice grant for a project described as “Identifying and Understanding LGBTQ and YMSM [Young Men Who Have Sex with Men] Youth Engaged in the Commercial Sex Market in New York City.”
- The organization was also awarded nearly $3 million in taxpayer funds to study “housing discrimination” against homosexuals.
- The institute has been given other grants, contracts or task orders for research and work based on topics such as “Norms and Networks of Latino Gang Youth”: $599,529; “Understanding Youth’s Use of Technology to Perpetrate Dating Violence, Stalking and Sexual Harassment and Victimization”: $367,429; “Immigration Enforcement and the Well Being of Children Report”: $439,905; “Home Visiting: Approaches to Father Engagement and Fathers’ Experiences”: $399,440; “CBPR [Community-Based Participatory Research] to Reduce Adolescent Pregnancy and HIV in a DC Public Housing Community”: $286,922; “Where Do People with Disabilities Live”: $214,867; “Immigrant Access to Health and Human Services”: $249,833; “Assessment of Native American Needs”: $3,964,303; “Estimate of Housing Discrimination Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) People”: $2,908,335; “Child Care Choices of Low-Income Working Families with Vulnerabilities”: $799,830; “Study of Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations”: $2,271,851; “Expenditures on High Sodium Foods by Race and Income: Implications for Food Stamp Program”: $50,000.
Nice work if you can get it, huh?
Have these stories raised concerns within the political establishment in Washington? Have the rest of the media been picking up these revelations? Have the cable news shows been talking about these wasteful studies and the propriety of handing out government contracts for them to only left-wing groups like the Urban Institute?
Can you imagine the outrage from the left if contracts like these were provided to the Heritage Foundation or other conservative think tanks?
Are Republicans and conservatives completely asleep at the switch?
Do they not understand how this kind of “redistribution of wealth” contributes to their loss of election after election? Do they not grasp that allowing this kind of gross politicization of the IRS and other agencies makes certain the agency will be used again and again as a Gestapo-like force against them and their political allies? Do they like seeing the Constitution abused like this and their country stolen?
Media wishing to interview Joseph Farah, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.