IRONY ALERT: Occupy Wall St Gets Tax Exempt Status
Most protesters still can’t define their goals beyond ending capitalism and making life more fair, which means they want other people’s money. Meanwhile, donations of goods and cash pile up, with a reported $500,000 on deposit.
The cash marks an embarrassment for a movement supposedly railing against capitalism and wealth, especially now that a radical group called the Alliance for Global Justice is legally sponsoring the protest. By lending its tax-exempt status — for a 7 percent cut! — the global-justice group allows donors to deduct their contributions from federal taxes and gives its own board control over the money.
The alliance, based in Washington, is a hotbed of far-left causes that range from backing hunger strikes in California prisons to denouncing the CIA and oil companies. Its Web site says the group sponsors operations in the Gaza Strip, with Hamas, and boasts of an alliance with Anarchists Against the Wall, which contests Israel’s security barrier in the West Bank.
The group suggests it has a relationship with Iran, supported the Sandinista revolution in Nicaragua and expresses solidarity with Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez against the United States.
For the 7 percent fee, it offers its tax-exempt status to “grassroots nonprofits” and provides payroll services, liability insurance and prepares federal tax forms. It also offers “activist training” — which is like job training without an actual job.