A DUer posts an interesting find. Jones, it seems, wasn’t pushed out by Glenn Beck. Beck was just the vehicle. The real pushers were anti-climate change advocates from, wait for it, the oil industry. From this DU post, which identified Phil Kerpen from “Americans for Prosperity” as the man “who started it all.” Apparently, he even bragged about his role on Fox News yesterday, and also issued the following boast on his website:
How Van Jones Happened and What We Need to Do Next
Now that Jones has resigned, we need to follow through with two critical policy victories. First, stop cap-and-trade, which could send these groups trillions, and second repeal the unspent portion of the stimulus bill, which stands to give them billions.
The Van Jones affair could be an important turning point in the Obama administration if we use it as a window to understand the structure of the left and to stop the huge power-grab now taking place in the name of green jobs. It’s also one of the most significant things I’ve ever had the honor of being involved in. …
Kerpen claims that on July 9, he was invited to appear on “Fox and Friends” to discuss “green jobs,” which he was “glad to do… because exposing the green jobs scam is critical to fight cap-and-trade, my top legislative priority for the year. The producer asked me if I knew anything about green jobs “czar” Van Jones. I didn’t but said I would find out.”
Here’s what Kerpen says happened next:
I e-mailed a friend who follows the green groups and he said he thought Jones was socialist. — I doubt he had any idea how deep it went. A couple Web searches later, I couldn’t believe what I found in an article from the alternative San Francisco newspaper the East Bay Express. The man was a self-professed communist, with ties to ACORN and a radical Maoist group called STORM. His real name was Anthony, with “Van” made up in college because he thought everyone cool has a one-syllable name.
… As soon as I got back to the office, I e-mailed the East Bay Express article to one of Glenn Beck’s producer, saying: “Please share with Glenn this article about green jobs czar Van Jones, a self-described communist who was radicalized in jail. Confirms “watermelon” hypothesis.”
Read Kerpen’s Fox News post here.
Kerper also claims that the “Color of Change” boycott was retaliation against Beck, and not the other way around:
Two days later, the stakes got higher when another Jones-founded organization, Color of Change, called for a boycott of the Beck show. Amazingly, many in the mainstream media would report the fiction that Beck’s coverage of Jones was retaliation for the boycott, even though coverage of Jones started first. Given the chronology, if there is any connection we should consider whether the boycott was retaliation for the coverage.
By the way, I’m sure you’re wondering what the “watermelon hypothesis” is. According to Kerpen, it’s his way of explaining cap and trade: “green on the outside, communist red on the inside.” I’m sure his and Beck’s choice of that particular fruit had nooooothing to do with the fact that both Jones and President Obama are Black…
And who is behind Mr. Watermelon and Americans for Prosperity?
AFP, and its former incarnation the Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation, are the third largest recipient of funding from the Koch Family of Foundations, which is run by the ultra-conservative oil baron Charles G. Koch. The Koch Family of Foundations has been a major funding source for many of the think tanks that are in the business of delaying action on climate change issues.
Americans for Prosperity is also the group that sent buses around the country to town hall dust-ups, where its speakers compared healthcare reform to the Holocaust, and its proponents hung members of Congress in effigy (they’re also connected to the Jack Abramoff web of intrigue and tangentially, to the birthers) but their main issue is climate change — or rather climate change denial, for the purposes of stopping any reform that would cost its financial benefactors money. From the DeSmog Blog:
Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is a conservative think-tank established in Washington, D.C. in 2003. It replaced the Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation. AFP is the sister organization to FreedomWorks. FreedomWorks is an organization that formed in 2004 when Citizens for a Sound Economy merged with the think tank Empower America. Both the Citizens for a Sound Economy and Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation were created by the Koch Foundations.
Americans for Prosperity describes itself as a grassroot organization that is committed to engaging “citizens in the name of limited government and free markets on the local, state, and federal levels.” Further, the AFP offers training to not only educate citizens about economic policy, but also, to mobilize those citizens to become advocates in the public policy process. As a result, the AFP has state chapters in twenty-three states; these chapters focus on issues particular to their region.
The organization is extremely conservative in its economic and governance beliefs. It’s mission is to reduce taxes and government spending, promote entrepeunership, and restore fairness to the American judicial system.
AFP is a non-profit organization who does not to disclose its donors. However, the Media Transparency project shows from 2003-2006, Americans for Prosperity received $1,181,000 from conservative foundations. $1 million of that funding was given by the Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation–one of the Koch Family Foundations.
The AFP is the third largest recipient of funding from the Koch Family Foundations, behind the Cato Institute and the George Mason University Foundation.
Before 2003, when the AFP was still named the Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation, it received $18,460,912 in funding. 84% of that funding came from the Koch Family Foundations ($12,906,712) and the Scaife Family Foundations ($2,510,000).
Koch Family Foundations is funded by Koch Industries. According to Forbes, Koch Industries is the second largest privately-held company, and the largest privately owned energy company, in the United States. Koch industries has made its money in the oil business, primarily oil refining. Presently, it holds stakes in pipelines, refineries, fertilizer, forest products, and chemical technology.
Americans for Prosperity is also connected to oil giant ExxonMobil. According to ExxonSecrets, between the years 1998-2001, Citizens for A Sound Economy and Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation received $380,250 from ExxonMobil.
Alternet is also on this story, and expect Keith and Rachel to be up on it tonight too. Bottom line: this wasn’t about Van Jones calling Republicans “assholes,” or about “communism” or the 9/11 truth movement. It was about big business, big oil, and creating President Obama’s next “Waterloo” — on cap and trade.