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Joanne Barkan – Charitable Plutocracy: Bill Gates, Washington State and the Nuisance of Democracy

Once upon a time, the super-wealthy endowed their tax-exempt charitable foundations and then turned them over to boards of trustees to run. The trustees would spend the earnings of the endowment to pursue a typically grand but wide-open mission written into the foundation’s charter — like The Rockefeller Foundation’s 1913 mission “to promote the well-being of mankind throughout the world.” …