Hitting dominionism where it hurts: Who to avoid
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Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 01:25:16 PM EST
In a companion piece to a rather unexpectedly popular piece I've done on dominionist abuse of "nonprofit affiliate" programs, I'm going to start documenting--and inviting you, the reader, to reply with--both what "nonprofit" programs are being abused by dominionist groups, and which companies directly fund dominionism.

This particular list is the worst of the worst--companies that have been definitely linked to, or are active funders of, the dominionist movement.  You are urged not to do business with these companies, and to encourage others not to do business with them (and yes, this includes other companies that might be getting sponsorship money from the worst of them).

Part 1: Direct corporate promoters of dominionism

Chick-Fil-A

Chick-Fil-A has generally been one of the worst direct supporters of dominionism on the corporate level as well as via foundations.  Examples I've been able to find include
stealth evangelism targeting kids--via use of both Veggietales (the creator of Veggietales is linked to one of the early dominionist "charismatic" groups, Maranatha, which was so spiritually abusive it was banned on multiple state campuses) and via giving out Focus on the Family audio programs as children's meal incentives.  Chick-Fil-A has also been associated with the promotion of "dad's groups" linked to Campus Crusade for Christ (which has been noted as being coercive on a number of campuses).

Truett Cathy, the head of Chick-Fil-A, is also a major funder of dominionist agendas including National Bible Week (a dominionist campaign in which dominionist groups get state and national legislatures to pass resolutions declaring a week of bible study)--to give an example of just how long dominionist groups have been at work, the first National Bible Week was proclaimed by FDR in 1941.  Cathy is one of the most well known promoters of Focus on the Family--a fact that FotF itself promotes on their web pages.  Cathy himself also claims to use  "Biblical principles" in running Chick-Fil-A and has promoted the Arthur S. DeMoss Foundation--a group that uses sports personalities for stealth evangelism campaigns.  Truett Cathy also operates a foundation for funding dominionist causes.

Amway (also dba Quixtar and Alticor)

Amway in and of itself, especially the "training sessions", has been noted as being a highly abusive and coercive group to the point that many exit counseling groups list Amway as a cult.

What is less well known is Amway has connections with the dominionist movement on at least two different levels.

The first level is that the founder of Amway is a direct corporate sponsor of the dominionist movement--the DeVos Foundation almost exclusively funds dominionist groups, and is a multi-billion-dollar corporate sponsor of dominionism that is largely funded from proceeds from a barely legal pyramid scheme.  Another group that the DeVos foundation funds is the Coalition for National Policy--a highly secretive, invitation-only planning committee for dominionist causes that has been the focus of exposes first by the (now dead) Institute for First Amendment Studies and (more recently) People for the American Way.  Theocracy Watch has some documentation on the CNP--suffice it to say that the CNP is the largest of, and possibly the most influential of, the three major think-tanks of dominionism (the two others being the Coalition on Revival and the Arlington Group).  In fact, the links between DeVos and dominionism run so deep that I've made a specific post on it.

The second level is the close level of relationship between Amway itself and dominionists, especially within the Assemblies of God.  Multiple politicians and political figures associated with the Assemblies, and in particular the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International, are also Amway Diamond members (a fairly high ranking in the pyramid); these "Assemblies Diamonds" include John Ashcroft and Doug Wead.  Amway itself is heavily promoted in Assemblies of God churches, especially by FGBMFI members, as a "Christian alternative" to secular companies; of note, dominionist Amway distributors may be the ultimate source of a persistent urban legend (stretching over thirty years at this point, if not longer) claiming that Proctor and Gamble's service mark is a Satanic symbol and that P&G are run by diabolists.

Hobby Lobby

Hobby Lobby, much like AmWay and Chick-Fil-A, is not only a major funder of dominionism but also is promoted by dominionists and (like Chick-Fil-A) claims to run on "Biblical business principles".  This includes playing of "Christian Contemporary" music, closing on Sunday...and per at least one unconfirmed report, refusing to hire non-dominionists (I have heard similar reports re Chick-Fil-A refusing to hire non-dominionists for managerial positions).

One particular dominionist funded by Hobby Lobby's founder is none other than Jerry Falwell.  Hobby Lobby also runs a specific charity front promoting dominionism.

Curves Salon

Curves is a chain of spas and gyms geared towards women.  One would think Curves would be woman-friendly, but per several different articles--a a Salon Magazine article summing up the controversy, articles in the San Francisco Chronicle and Christianity Today, and finally on Operation Save America's own website, the owner of Curves funds multiple dominionist causes.

As noted, one of the more distinctly infamous groups funded is Operation Save America.  This group is the successor group to Operation Rescue, is even more hardline than Operation Rescue was, and is hardline Christian Reconstructionist.  Operation Save America is one of the groups that has targeted children for evangelism and often stakes out school systems for that explicit purpose.

Several of the other contributions by Curves' founder included donations to three separate "crisis pregnancy centers" run by dominionist groups.  (These typically operate to appear to be women's clinics--including advertising in "abortion services" sections of the paper.  Persons who visit them are given pregnancy tests but are not told the results until they view a dominionist-oriented, graphic video including dismembered stillborn fetuses; teenagers are often pressured to live in dominionist-operated "halfway houses" where they must agree in a contract to follow a dominionist lifestyle and must either raise the child in a dominionist fashion or give it up to a dominionist-operated adoption agency.)

This, like several cases (like with the Coors Foundation and multiple other groups) is a case where a founder friendly to dominionist causes either uses their own profits or sets up a foundation specifically to fund dominionist groups.

Part 2: Funders of dominionism primarily from foundations funded from profits of other companies

Coors Brewery

Coors, much like several other corporations, is best described as a "foundation funder" of dominionism--the owners, who are supporters of dominionist causes, have set up charitable foundations (using profits earned by their businesses) specifically to support dominionism.

In this case, this is via two separate foundations--the Coors Foundation and the Castle Rock Foundation.  One of the groups funded by the Castle Rock Foundation is none other than the Coalition for National Policy (in fact, the Castle Rock Foundation and DeVos Foundation are the two major funders for the CNP and many, many other dominionist causes).

Mellon and Scaife Foundation companies, possibly including Alcoa Aluminum and several media firms

Three of the Scaife Foundations (there are four; the fourth is owned by a daughter who, ironically, funds largely progressive causes) are major funding sources for dominionist causes.  The operator of most of the trust funds, Richard Scaife, is himself largely a trust-fund baby (the Scaifes held interest in a large number of companies, including at one time B. F. Goodrich).

Scaife is also an inheritor from the Mellon Foundations, also major funders of dominionist causes (in other words, he's a trust-fund baby twice over)

As both funds have been in business for almost 100 years (and fairly recently--since only about the sixties or so--turned towards funding of dominionism), plus the fact that many of the companies that earned the wealth of those foundations have been sold off, it's hard to determine what companies that were owned by Scaife are still sources of funding.  (And Scaife has been a major bankroller for some time--both Scaife and the DeVos Foundation are largely responsible for bankrolling the hijacking of the Republican Party, starting in the early 70's.

Interestingly, Mellon Financial is not one of the major sources of funding--as the company has not been truly controlled by the Mellon family for at least fifty years.  (Neither Richard Scaife nor his father ever had controlling interest in the company.)

Other companies that have been historically connected to the Scaifes and Mellons were Gulf Oil (now fully owned by British Petroleum) and Alcoa Aluminum--both of which were controlled by Scaife circa 1981.

There is considerable difficulty in determining even how much Richard Scaife is worth--estimates vary widely from 150 million to 1 billion to tens of billions

One definite source of funding is media--much of Scaife's present wealth not from the foundations is from weekly newspapers in many areas.  Scaife may still own stock in Alcoa, and uranium mining has also been a source of income in past.

Walton companies, including Wal-Mart, Sam's Wholesale and Walton Foundation

This is another group whose funding of dominionist causes has been via foundations--and while they fund dominionist causes less than in past (and have occasionally stood up to dominionists--temporarily pulling out of KingdomBuy.com's racket and being firmly on the "Happy Holidays" side of the (bogus) "war on Christmas") they are still friendly towards dominionism on several levels and have been a major funder of dominionism in past.

Firstly, Wal-Mart's pandering to dominionism can be seen in the record and magazine sections--Wal-Mart has refused to carry Maxim, claiming it is "pornography", and also forces record companies to create not only bowdlerised records but bowdlerised album covers.  (At least one metal band--Megadeth--refused to distribute its album through Wal-Mart rather than force the album cover to be "Walmart-ised".)

"Wal-mart versions" of records have been a problem for decades--not only for music fans but even second-hand music stores--with some albums, there is no way to tell other than by listening to determine if it's the "Wal-mart" version or the full version of an album.

As with most companies that fund dominionism, Wal-Mart has typically done it in the form of foundations--in this case, the Walton Foundation.  While not as much of a founder as in past, the Walton Foundation has been a major funder of dominionist groups as recently as 2003, and in particular is a major funder of dominionist groups dedicated to destroying public education.  In fact, most of its pro-dominionist funding nowadays goes to groups pushing voucher initiatives and dominionist correspondence school programs.

Tom Monaghan

One special case of a company that is no longer a major funder of dominionist causes--but was when its founder still ran the company--is Domino's Pizza.

Domino's was founded by Tom Monaghan, who is a major funder of dominionist causes; among other things, he used the profits from Domino's to fund dominionist groups like Operation Rescue and Focus on the Family.  Reportedly, Monaghan (via his foundation) has also funded the Word of God Fellowship, a group that is recognised as a coercive religious group by many experts.

Reportedly, both Monaghan and Steve Case (former head of AOL) were also fingered as major contributors to "de-gaying" organisations run by dominionists.

Monaghan (even after having sold Domino's to a company that--ironically--also owns its major competitor, Little Caesar's Pizza) is still a major funder of dominionist causes, including the planned town of "Ave Maria" (which is designed to be a community where people buying in must sign a dominionist statement of faith before being allowed into the community association).  Monaghan is also the major promoter of dominionism within the Catholic community; quite a few Catholics are openly critical of Monaghan. EDIT:

Some people have asked regarding my reasoning behind listing some of the groups as corporate sponsors of dominionism. I hope to explain a little bit more here so as to clear things up.

Part of the reason I was attempting to separate into different categories was that *some* of the funders of dominionism--mostly the Scaife and Walton foundations--also do fund other right-wing stuff.

The reason I mentioned the Curves article is that /dominionist groups themselves/ are using this to claim support--in other words, the fact that Operation Save America is using the claim in /their own promotional literature/ has heavier weight, so to speak, than just an anonymous report. (No offense, but the mere fact that a dominionist group is claiming support from a company *combined* with multiple reliable reports of support of dominionist groups is another.)

Supporting mere "pro-Life" groups is one thing, too; Operation Save America, for those unaware, is Randall Terry's group that has as its goal nothing less than the establishment of theocracy. Terry himself is connected with the Constitution Party (this gives you an idea just HOW dominionist he is); even pro-life Catholics and even some evangelicals will /not/ have anything to do with Terry or his groups.

This article gives an example of the kind of targeting of schools that Operation Save America does. The tactics are almost identical (save for the lack of butyric acid attacks and bombings) to tactics Randall Terry promoted in his last group Operation Rescue.

Terry would be considered a frank Christian Reconstructionist, hence /any/ possible association is worrisome.

The mere fact of promoting "crisis pregnancy centers" is worrying, too, because a great number of them are specifically set up to deceive women who may be seeking abortion services (I have no problem with *legitimate* groups that will help women who have decided to have the child and give it up for adoption--my problem is with the /deceptive tactics/ used by these groups). The setting up of "crisis pregnancy centers" by dominionist groups is such a common practice that *legitimate* women's clinics are offering warnings, and New York State Attorney-General Eliot Spitzer is actively investigating these groups for fraud which may lead to the shutdown of those groups in New York; at least one group has noted the health hazards inherent in "crisis pregnancy centers" run by dominionist groups.

This article details how dominionist-operated "crisis pregnancy centers" even discourage birth control, promoting many of the same canards about birth control promoted by dominionist groups pushing "moral refusal" clauses:

Telephone callers, on the other hand, may have no idea that they have reached a pro-life organization. When I phoned the Elyria Cornerstone with a scenario about unprotected sex, I was greeted only with “Cornerstone Pregnancy Services, how may I help you?” The telephone counselor provided inaccurate information about emergency contraception (EC), or the morning-after pill. Explaining how EC works, she said it can “inhibit the child from embedding in the uterine lining…it keeps it from providing nutrients or something.” Though unimpressed by her hesitant grasp of medical facts (EC can prevent implantation of a fertilized egg), I stayed in character. She did not recommend that I take it or tell me where I could get it, warning of blood clots, infertility, and cancer risk (none of which are mentioned in the FDA’s approval brief for EC, which has been prescribed off-label by doctors since the 1970’s.) When I pressed the counselor for concrete advice, she said that I had “a 50/50 chance” of being pregnant and that I should “just wait it out.” If I took the morning after pill, I could be sick “for a few days. Would that be worth it?”

I got more incorrect information when I wrote to the Optionline e-mail counselors. Using a yahoo.com account, I posed as a rape victim concerned about pregnancy. I got a speedy response from “Dawn” suggesting that I come to a CPC for a pregnancy test and counseling. When I wrote back asking if the test could detect pregnancy from the assault (which had supposedly occurred the night before), Dawn said, “It may be possible for the pregnancy test, which the center gives, to detect if you are pregnant or not.” What Dawn didn’t mention is that this pregnancy test would only identify a pregnancy resulting from intercourse earlier in the month, not from an assault in the last 24 hours.

Planned Parenthood's warning regarding "crisis pregnancy centers" (often set up as fake women's clinics) details typical tactics:

They falsely suggest or promise a full range of reproductive health services. They list themselves in the yellow pages of telephone directories under any or all of the following headings:

  • Abortion
  • Abortion Alternatives
  • Abortion Services
  • Birth Control Information Centers
  • Clinics, Medical
  • Family Planning Information Centers
  • Social Service Organizations, and
  • Women's Organizations

Usually the only "service" offered is anti-abortion counseling, and most such centers have no medically trained or medically supervised personnel.

They offer free pregnancy tests but give ambiguous answers about the results.In fact, the Pearson Foundation manual, HOW TO START AND OPERATE YOUR OWN PROLIFE OUTREACH CRISIS PREGNANCY CENTER, urges anti-abortion counselors to give deceptive answers. For example, it cautions, "Do not tell the client that she is or is not pregnant." Instead, counselors are advised to only say whether test results are positive or negative. In California, two weeks after a woman was led to believe by an anti-abortion counseling center that she was not pregnant, she had to undergo emergency surgery and could have died when her undiagnosed tubal pregnancy burst. On the other hand, women who are not pregnant are often led to believe they are pregnant so they will be more available for anti-abortion indoctrination.

They show shocking and deceptive films or slide shows that include pictures of mutilated fetuses and stillborn babies; the testimony of distraught women who claim that abortion caused them emotional disturbances and physical ailments; and distorted statistics about the medical and psychological consequences of abortion. Such films are shown as part of a half-hour "counseling" session which takes place while waiting for pregnancy test results results, which should be available within three minutes.

They attempt to induce guilt by engaging women in discussions about their religious views and beliefs.

They refuse or fail to provide contraceptive information. The Pearson Foundation manual explicitly instructs counselors "never to counsel or refer for artificial contraceptives or sterilization." In fact, they advise unmarried women to abstain from sex, presenting abstinence as the only way to avoid further unwanted pregnancies.

They make exaggerated promises of financial assistance, medical treatment, prenatal and postpartum care, adoption or child-care arrangements, and/or psychological counseling all in an effort to induce women to carry their pregnancies to term.

From all accounts, such practices are fairly standard although no two centers use exactly the same tactics.

In Worcester, Massachusetts, an anti-abortion counseling center posted a sign on its door saying "PP Inc." to imply that it was the Planned Parenthood clinic. It then positioned its counselors in the corridors to harass women who were trying to reach the real Planned Parenthood facility. These practices were eventually stopped by court injunctions.

In San Francisco, a staff member of an anti-abortion counseling center is being sued for attempting to hide a pregnant teenager from her parents until she gave birth. The parents were told that the young woman was going to Europe on a special scholarship. Illegal arrangements for the adoption of the child were also being set up before she was reunited with her parents.

Some centers have been reported to go beyond abortion prevention as far as harassing a woman for months after she obtains her abortion. Some go to the length of informing the woman's parents or employers and make threatening, latenight phone calls. They have called women on the date they would have delivered to point out their babies would have been born on that day. They then tell these women that they are baby-killers.

Regarding Scaife, I maintain he's a major funder of dominionist causes. One of the groups he has funded in past was the Conservative Caucus (the first dominionist group whose explicit goal was hijacking of the Republican Party); a major recipient has been Paul Weyrich's Free Congress Foundation. (Weyrich is a founding member of the Conservative Caucus, along with Jerry Falwell, Howard Phillips, and several parties affiliated with the Assemblies of God (which has a 50-year-plus history of support of dominionism) and several of the architects of the hijacking of the Southern Baptist Convention.)

Scaife also has links with the Coalition for National Policy via Weyrich:

(from a page with bios of CNP members and the following Media Transparency article)

American Legislative Exchange Council, (ALEC): Established in 1973 by Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation's Coalition for Constitutional Liberties, among others, ALEC's purpose is to reach out to state office holders. In the words of ALEC's former executive director, Sam Brunelli: "ALEC's goal is to ensure that these state legislators are so well informed, so well armed, that they can set the terms of the public policy debate, that they can change the agenda, that they can lead. This is the infrastructure that will reclaim the states for our movement."

ALEC has the financial support of more than 200 corporations including Coors now Castle Rock Foundation, Scaife's Family and Allegheny Foundation, Amway, IBM, Ford, Philip Morris, Exxon, Texaco and Shell Oil. William Bennett, [CNP's] Jack Kemp, [CNP's] John H. Sununu, and George Bush have all addressed ALEC sessions in recent years.

ALEC was also one of the first groups, if not /the/ first group, to coordinate corporate funding of the dominionist movement; this article details more:

So what is ALEC and why are corporations its most ardent supporters? ALEC was founded in 1973 by Paul Weyrich -- considered by many as the granddaddy of the Religious Right. (He currently heads up a Washington, DC-based outfit called the Free Congress Foundation.) ALEC's website points out that it was organized to create "a bipartisan membership association for conservative state lawmakers who shared a common belief in limited government, free markets, federalism, and individual liberty."

In fact, there is actually a watchdog site on the Internet--ALEC Watch.

Scaife is also apparently a major funder of efforts to split mainstream denominations:

(from Yurica Report mirror of New York Times article)

As Presbyterians prepare to gather for their General Assembly in Richmond, Va., next month, a band of determined conservatives is advancing a plan to split the church along liberal and orthodox lines. Another divorce proposal shook the United Methodist convention in Pittsburgh earlier this month, while conservative Episcopalians have already broken away to form a dissident network of their own.

In each denomination, the flashpoint is homosexuality, but there is another common denominator as well. In each case, the Institute on Religion and Democracy, a small organization based in Washington, has helped incubate traditionalist insurrections against the liberal politics of the denomination's leaders.

With financing from a handful of conservative donors, including the Scaife family foundations, the Bradley and Olin Foundations and Howard and Roberta Ahmanson's Fieldstead & Company, the 23-year-old institute is now playing a pivotal role in the biggest battle over the future of American Protestantism since churches split over slavery at the time of the Civil War.

In other words, Scaife is directly financing a group whose primary goal is hijacking /other/ mainstream Christian churches in exactly the same manner that the Southern Baptist Convention was hijacked--of note, because many of the people Scaife funded in the Conservative Caucus back in the 70's were the very planners of the takeover of the SBC.

In fact, per multiple sources, the Scaife Foundation is the primary source of funding for Free Congress Foundation (to the tune of millions of dollars a year) and Scaife himself may be a board member of the FCF.

Scaife and the Coors Foundation are also at the center of other dominionist funding--the Heritage Foundation is yet another Weyrich-associated group that is actively funded by both the Coors and Scaife foundation groups.

How this relates to dominionism--the Free Congress Foundation also happens to be the group that literally wrote the manual on how dominionists can take over the US. (Interestingly, the Free Congress Foundation is also a dominionist-friendly group that has, like several others, known links to racists; per this article and several other sources, Weyrich had an honest-to-God Nazi collaborator as his right-hand assistant (specifically his advisor on Eastern European issues), and Weyrich himself has been documented as admiring Father Coughlin who was a radio preacher in the 30's who espoused antisemitic and even pro-Nazi views.)

Both the Coors and Scaife foundations are funders of another dominionist group, the Parent's Television Council. PTC is a branch of a group called the Media Research Council; the Parent's Television Council is also singlehandedly responsible for over /99.8 percent/ of all indecency complaints to the FCC, including complaints over Hardee's and Carl's Jr. advertisements (in fact, if Janet Jackson and "Boobgate" are removed, the PTC was responsible for very nearly /100 percent/ of complaints). PTC is also explicitly lobbying to have censorship extended to pay TV services such as cable TV and satellite; they are also almost singlehandedly responsible for Howard Stern having to go to satellite radio (hence why they are pushing for extending indecency standards to cable TV). Disturbingly, a person (Penny Nance) linked to multiple dominionist groups is now an assistant in public relations for the section of the FCC's Enforcement Bureau in charge of investigating indecency complaints--increasing the chances that PTC complaints will be heard favourably.

The Walton Foundation's funding of dominionism is more tenuous--after Sam Walton died they have not funded as many dominionist causes as in past. Their big thing is censorship (in store policies) and especially funding of school voucher initiatives.

As I've noted, post-Monaghan, Domino's Pizza seems to have its nose clean. Monaghan has still been a major funder of dominionist groups (largely connected to the pro-life movement, but as noted, he was a major funder of Randall Terry's groups--and as I've noted before, Terry at the time was considered "out there" even among mainstream sympathisers with the pro-life movement. It is my opinion that funding of /known dominionists who make no attempt to hide their dominionist sympathies/ does mark things as a bit worrying.

There are a few groups (notably the Olin Foundation) that I have not included as they seem to be mostly funders of conservative causes in general, and not funding of specific groups linked to the dominionist movement in particular.




Display:
I found the first part of your post helpful with links to dominionism spelled out. Then things seemed to get a bit shaky. Guess I'm questioning whether you weaken your argument by using the term "dominionism" too loosely.

For example, while Scaife certainly has a strong record of supporting Republicans and various right wing causes and political groups, I don't sense a connection to theocratic religious groups. He's also donated to some neutral to liberal groups like universities, Planned Parenthood, etc. Mellon Foundation reference I'm very dubious about unless you're thinking about a different one than I'm familiar with. The Andrew Mellon Foundation is a major funder of mainstream/liberal groups such as universities, symphonies, art museums, and environmental causes. If you're talking about a different foundation or have information of which I'm not aware, it would help to spell it out.

Similarly, the Walton connection to dominionism isn't clear. Conservative, yes; lousy employment practices at Walmart, yes; education reform if designed to introduce Christianity into the classroom, maybe - but I don't see the evidence. They might want to privatize education but that may reflect a profit motive - maybe they think they can run schools better and make even more money. Support of voucher programs might be related to that. In any event, not all supporters of vouchers and charter schools are dominionist.

Monaghan is a very conservative Catholic, certainly is anti-abortion and has donated private funds to anti-abortion groups. Doesn't own Dominos anymore. Not sure what his political connection/clout is at this point or how well documented his link to FoF or ex-gay ministries. Saw no clear evidence and they seem like strange bed-fellows. Wants to set up his own "Christian" town but that sounds separatist rather than dominionist.

Solon article gives mixed (and more balanced) picture of "Curves." Claim that he funded Operation Save America was rebutted and Planned Parenthood has apparently praised some of his women's health clinics.

The right is fond of painting "liberals" with a broad brush. If we're going to be effective, it seems important for us to define terms and and document claims carefully. It's possible we see dominionism differently. If so, would be happy to hear your views.

by Psyche on Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 05:16:46 PM EST

(I'm amending the main post to detail this more, just noting to you directly)

Part of the reason I was attempting to separate into different categories was that some of the funders of dominionism--mostly the Scaife and Walton foundations--also do fund other right-wing stuff.

The reason I mentioned the Curves article is that dominionist groups themselves are using this to claim support--in other words, the fact that Operation Save America is using the claim in their own promotional literature has heavier weight, so to speak, than just an anonymous report.  (No offense, but the mere fact that a dominionist group is claiming support from a company combined with multiple reliable reports of support of dominionist groups is another.)

Supporting mere "pro-Life" groups is one thing, too; Operation Save America, for those unaware, is Randall Terry's group that has as its goal nothing less than the establishment of theocracy.  Terry himself is connected with the Constitution Party (this gives you an idea just HOW dominionist he is); even pro-life Catholics and even some evangelicals will not have anything to do with Terry or his groups.  

This article gives an example of the kind of targeting of schools that Operation Save America does.  The tactics are almost identical (save for the lack of butyric acid attacks and bombings) to tactics Randall Terry promoted in his last group Operation Rescue.  

Regarding Scaife, I maintain he's a major funder of dominionist causes.  One of the groups he has funded in past was the Conservative Caucus (the first dominionist group whose explicit goal was hijacking of the Republican Party); a major recipient has been Paul Weyrich's Free Congress Foundation.  (Weyrich is a founding member of the Conservative Caucus, along with Jerry Falwell, Howard Phillips, and several parties affiliated with the Assemblies of God (which has a 50-year-plus history of support of dominionism) and several of the architects of the hijacking of the Southern Baptist Convention.)

Scaife also has links with the Coalition for National Policy via Weyrich:

(from a page with bios of CNP members and the following Media Transparency article)

American Legislative Exchange Council, (ALEC): Established in 1973 by Paul Weyrich  of the Free Congress Foundation's Coalition for Constitutional Liberties, among others, ALEC's purpose is to reach out to state office holders. In the words of ALEC's former executive director,  Sam Brunelli:

"ALEC's goal is to ensure that these state legislators are so well informed, so well armed, that they can set the terms of the public policy debate, that they can change the agenda, that they can lead. This is the infrastructure that will reclaim the states for our movement."

ALEC has the financial support of more than 200 corporations including Coors now Castle Rock Foundation, Scaife's Family and Allegheny Foundation, Amway, IBM, Ford, Philip Morris, Exxon, Texaco and Shell Oil. William Bennett, [CNP's] Jack Kemp, [CNP's] John H. Sununu, and George Bush have all addressed ALEC sessions in recent years.


ALEC was also one of the first groups, if not the first group, to coordinate corporate funding of the dominionist movement; this article details more:
So what is ALEC and why are corporations its most ardent supporters? ALEC was founded in 1973 by Paul Weyrich -- considered by many as the granddaddy of the Religious Right. (He currently heads up a Washington, DC-based outfit called the Free Congress Foundation.) ALEC's website points out that it was organized to create "a bipartisan membership association for conservative state lawmakers who shared a common belief in limited government, free markets, federalism, and individual liberty."

In fact, there is actually a watchdog site on the Internet--ALEC Watch.

Scaife is also apparently a major funder of efforts to split mainstream denominations:
(from Yurica Report mirror of New York Times article)

As Presbyterians prepare to gather for their General Assembly in Richmond, Va., next month, a band of determined conservatives is advancing a plan to split the church along liberal and orthodox lines. Another divorce proposal shook the United Methodist convention in Pittsburgh earlier this month, while conservative Episcopalians have already broken away to form a dissident network of their own.

In each denomination, the flashpoint is homosexuality, but there is another common denominator as well. In each case, the Institute on Religion and Democracy, a small organization based in Washington, has helped incubate traditionalist insurrections against the liberal politics of the denomination's leaders.

With financing from a handful of conservative donors, including the Scaife family foundations, the Bradley and Olin Foundations and Howard and Roberta Ahmanson's Fieldstead & Company, the 23-year-old institute is now playing a pivotal role in the biggest battle over the future of American Protestantism since churches split over slavery at the time of the Civil War.


In other words, Scaife is directly financing a group whose primary goal is hijacking other mainstream Christian churches in exactly the same manner that the Southern Baptist Convention was hijacked--of note, because many of the people Scaife funded in the Conservative Caucus back in the 70's were the very planners of the takeover of the SBC.

In fact, per multiple sources, the Scaife Foundation is the primary source of funding for Free Congress Foundation (to the tune of millions of dollars a year) and Scaife himself may be a board member of the FCF.  

Scaife and the Coors Foundation are also at the center of other dominionist funding--the Heritage Foundation is yet another Weyrich-associated group that is actively funded by both the Coors and Scaife foundation groups.  

How this relates to dominionism--the Free Congress Foundation also happens to be the group that literally wrote the manual on how dominionists can take over the US.  (Interestingly, the Free Congress Foundation is also a dominionist-friendly group that has, like several others, known links to racists; per this article and several other sources, Weyrich had an honest-to-God Nazi collaborator as his right-hand assistant (specifically his advisor on Eastern European issues), and Weyrich himself has been documented as admiring Father Coughlin who was a radio preacher in the 30's who espoused antisemitic and even pro-Nazi views.)

Both the Coors and Scaife foundations are funders of another dominionist group, the Parent's Television Council.  PTC is a branch of a group called the Media Research Council; the Parent's Television Council is also singlehandedly responsible for over 99.8 percent of all indecency complaints to the FCC, including complaints over Hardee's and Carl's Jr. advertisements (in fact, if Janet Jackson and "Boobgate" are removed, the PTC was responsible for very nearly 100 percent of complaints).  PTC is also explicitly lobbying to have censorship extended to pay TV services such as cable TV and satellite; they are also almost singlehandedly responsible for Howard Stern having to go to satellite radio (hence why they are pushing for extending indecency standards to cable TV).  Disturbingly, a person (Penny Nance) linked to multiple dominionist groups is now an assistant in public relations for the section of the FCC's Enforcement Bureau in charge of investigating indecency complaints--increasing the chances that PTC complaints will be heard favourably.

The Walton Foundation's funding of dominionism is more tenuous--after Sam Walton died they have not funded as many dominionist causes as in past.  Their big thing is censorship (in store policies) and especially funding of school voucher initiatives.

There are a few groups (notably the Olin Foundation) that I have not included as they seem to be mostly funders of conservative causes in general, and not funding of specific groups linked to the dominionist movement in particular.

by dogemperor on Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 07:41:08 PM EST
Parent

I would like to know what Richard Mellon Scaife, the Scaife Foundation, the Arizona State Retirement System and the City of Sierra Vista, AZ have in common?  Is there someone who can check into this?

by optimistic on Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 11:12:16 PM EST
Parent
The issue with the Scaife foundations (yes, there are five separate ones) is a bit complicated.

The four Scaife foundations are the Allegheny, Sarah Scaife, Carthage, and Scaife Family Foundations along with the Mellon Foundation.

The Scaife Family Foundation is no longer controlled by Richard Scaife, but by a family member who disagrees with the funding of dominionist groups.  That foundation largely funds progressive causes, and can be safely said to not be associated with the other Scaife and Mellon Foundation groups.

The other foundations (the Sarah Scaife Foundation, the Allegheny Foundation, the Mellon Foundation, and the Carthage Foundation) are Scaife-controlled, and it's those groups that are the funders of dominionism.

Richard Mellon Scaife operates the dominionist-funding groups.

There is little info on links between the Arizona State Retirement System and any of the Scaife foundations because (among other things) the Arizona State Retirement System has refused to provide any information re its holdings  to the state treasurer.

Before it broke away from the other Scaife foundations, there is some evidence that the Scaife Family Foundation had funded anti-immigration initiatives in Sierra Vista; this was when the group was managed by Cordelia Scaife-May who passed away in February 2005.  Jennie Scaife now operates the Scaife Family Foundation and it--and her--are estranged from the rest of the family; ironically, one of the groups the Scaife Family Foundation now funds is a group researching spiritually abusive groups.

by dogemperor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:21:24 PM EST
Parent



But I'm still left wondering about the nexus between foundations/individuals and dominionist groups as well as the credibility of some of the links.

I think most people would agree that some groups, such as OSA, are clearly dominionist. But the OSA site doesn't say the Curves owner funded OSA. In a slightly hysterical post on their site they say that:

Several months after contact Gary Heavin made a five million dollar grant to Family Practice, Carenet, and McCap.

Was it because of OSA? And what do these groups represent. Looks like a women's health clinic, one of a group of "pro-life" pregnancy care centers scattered around the South and an abstinence-only media campaign for teens - the former two targeted at people who don't have health insurance. I agree totally that such pregnancy care centers, in addition to providing some needed services, present a skewed perspective. Also well aware that abstinence only programs are not only ineffective but dangerous since they increase the risk of unwanted pregnancy and STD's. But such programs are common in TX (and elsewhere) and receive state and federal funding. Such broad and pervasive problems certainly need to be tackled but don't know how effectively that can be done through Curves.

Have been concerned about the IRD and its destructive influence on mainstream churches for some time (your Yurica link). Edgar of the NCC is clearly aware of IRD. Suspect that groups such as the NCC and individual denominations are going to have to sort this out. Brent Bozell's PTC might be called dominionist although I don't see convincing links between either IRD or PTC and Scaife.

I think partly we may disagree about terminology. You seem to refer to all right wing groups as dominionist. I tend to distinguish between dominionists who are religiously motivated and the politically far right neocons. They clearly complement each other but have rather different goals. I would put Scaife, Coors, Walmart, Heritage Foundation, ALEC, etc. in the neocon category.

You obviously have a lot of valuable information. If there are groups that you feel we could effectively target it would be easier to understand if you could list the groups, then list the links that establish them as dominionist and suggest what actions we might take. Some of the issues you address here might be saved for separate posts.

 

by Psyche on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 03:04:30 AM EST
Parent

I'm not even sure it's so much of a difference in ideology--you're looking at the ideology, and I'm looking at the funding sources, so to speak.

Part of the problem (and I am speaking here largely as someone who grew up in a dominionist group) is that the level of "dominionist-ness" in some groups is shades of grey.  You have the blatantly dominionist companies (like Chick-Fil-A and Hobby Lobby), the "we'll fund anything on the right wing" groups (like Olin Foundation and possibly the Walton Foundation as it is presently run)...and you have a mess of shades of grey in between.

Part of the issue in disentangling this is that dominionist groups, as a general rule, like to put on a public face and a private face.  (This is why, among other things, they tend to set up separate foundations for the funding of dominionism.)

One of the things, too--how to put this--there are people who support conservative causes in general who might not fund dominionist causes if they knew what they were funding--but there are also plenty who would happily fund them because they in part sympathise with the dominionists.  (This is, I think, where we're debating--whether, for instance, Curves' owner or Walton Foundation has any idea what they are funding and whether or not they sympathise with whom they are funding or if they got suckered in.  If the former, we need to expose them; if the latter, we need to educate them just as Ford was educated.)

This is an area that I do think needs more research all around.  It is not going to be easy, however.  (Keep in mind that the second largest--and the earliest-involved group--in dominionism has over 40 front groups it uses, including those devoted to targeting Christians and/or infiltrating mainstream churches.  Deception is part and parcel of what they do.)

by dogemperor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 11:33:56 AM EST
Parent


I guess you could say that your concern is with groups that are actively dominionist in and of itself, my concern is a bit broader and includes companies that aid and abet dominionism knowingly.

For the blatantly dominionist, Chick-Fil-A, Hobby Lobby would definitely count.  So would the three main Scaife foundations.  

Curves' owner may be funding dominionist groups knowingly, or not (it's hard to tell--this is one of the areas dominionists are a bit deceptive in)--more research needs to be done.  (Based on what I have seen myself with Operation Rescue and Operation Save America, and how those groups are seen among more moderate pro-lifers, I'm inclined to say that anyone supporting them knows what they're getting into--but that is just my two pence and my own experience.  We also don't know if the clinics involved are willing accomplices, which is the big thing complicating matters, I think.)

Wal-Mart may have sympathies towards dominionists, has gotten progressively cleaner, may be a mostly right-wing funder at this point.

Olin Foundation (which is now defunct) is largely a right-wing funder.

Tom Monaghan himself is a dominionist funder (and also a right-wing-Catholic funder; the two are not necessarily separate, as there is a small dominionist movement within Catholicism).  Domino's itself seems to be completely clean since he left (the quality of their pizza is quite another thing, but as far as  your $5 for a pizza possibly funding dominionism indirectly, that's no longer a concern).

I would probably list Hobby Lobby and Chick-Fil-A as groups to avoid.  There's very little public info on what Richard Mellon Scaife owns now (and most of his funding and income is from him being a trust-fund baby); a few weekend mags, for the most part.

Curves should possibly be treated with caution till we know more on exactly WHAT is going on with those clinics (if their affiliation with Operation Save America is even a little bit public, basic research should have picked up on this; otherwise, there IS the possibility that  Curves' owner got suckered in).  "Watch like a hawk" is the best I can describe.

I'd probably avoid Wal-Mart, if only because of their censorship policies and their other bits of mistreatment.  If one chooses to (or one has to) shop there, I'd keep a careful eye on WHAT groups the Walton Foundation is funding.

Domino's, as I've noted, is safe now.  Most of the companies that the Scaifes and Mellons formerly owned are safe.  

by dogemperor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 11:45:08 AM EST
Parent





The deVos family is also a major funder of National Right to Life and its affiliated political/legal groups and state action groups.

by cyncooper on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 07:21:29 PM EST


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