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Posts from the ‘Special Topics’ Category

16
Oct

Where Does $100 to Americans For Prosperity Go?

Americans for Prosperity is actually two organizations:  Americans For Prosperity (AFP) and Americans For Prosperity Foundation (AFPF). Both organizations are tax-exempt non-profit organizations but AFP is a 501 (c) (4) while AFPF is a 501 (c) (3). The primary difference between the two organizations is that donations to AFPF are tax deductible while donations made to AFP are not. In addition, AFP is considered a social welfare organization so they can engage in more lobbying while AFPF is considered an educational organization and is therefore limited in how much they spend on lobbying.

Although both organizations operate out of the same office in Arlington, Virginia and share employees, how a donation was spent depends on which organization received the donation. Read more »

18
Sep

Executive Compensation at Johns Hopkins Health System

The Johns Hopkins Health System Corporation (JHHSC), along with Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine is collectively referred to as Johns Hopkins Medicine – an integrated healthcare system that includes the medical school, six hospitals, four healthcare and surgery centers, and 39 outpatient healthcare sites. Although Johns Hopkins Medicine has numerous non-profits, the focus of this post is the executive compensation at JHHSC (a non-profit 501 (c) (3)  that serves as a support organization for the healthcare system providing management, centralized purchasing, distribution, legal, claims management and other services to support the medical service providers.

In 2016-2017, JHHSC employed 2,967 individuals who were compensated $179 million, which equates to an average compensation of $60,300.  459 employees received more than $100,000 in compensation with the 43 most highly compensated employees listed below: Read more »

14
Sep

Executive Compensation at the NRA (2017)

The National Rifle Association of America (NRA) is a non-profit 501 (c) (4) organization that fights tirelessly for our second amendment rights. Whether or not you believe the second amendment refers to “militia” or “the people” has always been controversial but is even more so in the wake of the near weekly occurrence of mass shootings in this country.

People are speaking out for gun control because quite frankly, there are too many guns and assault weapons in the hands of the wrong people (primarily males under the age of 60 if you look at the statistics of who is committing these mass shootings), and too many people are dying (about 36,000 a year from guns although admittedly not all from mass shootings). Read more »

10
Sep

Remembering Captain William (“Billy”) Francis Burke, Jr.

On 9-11, 343 firefighters were killed trying to help others. One of those firefighters was Captain William “Billy” Francis Burke, Jr of FDNY Engine Company 21. A firefighter for over 20 years, Captain Burke led his company into the north tower on that September morning but ordered them out of the building while he continued searching for people who needed help or to be rescued.  At 46 years old, Captain Burke was an experienced firefighter who understood the dangers but couldn’t turn around when there were people trapped in the burning building. Read more »

19
Aug

Vegan Dining Options in Asheville, NC (Part 7)

Asheville’s vibrant restaurant scene is often compared to Portland, Oregon’s (often referred to its sister city) but its not because both cities have numerous vegan restaurants. Instead both cities are known for being incredibly tolerant and accommodating to diners preferences.  Plant-based options are available at most restaurants even when the menu doesn’t list a vegan option.

There are many fine, casual, southern, Mexican, Italian, Spanish, Greek, Thai, Chinese, and Indian restaurants in Asheville. Here’s just a few that offer some great vegan dining options: Read more »

20
Jul

Granola Bites by the Organic Pantry Co.

For plant-based eaters who prefer a farmer’s market over an outdoor vegan fest, please know I get it. It’s not that vegan foods are bad, although there are certainly a lot of unhealthy ones out there, its that far too often these products contain oil, refined sugar, syrups, or other undesirable sweeteners, too much sodium, or ingredients that I can’t pronounce.

If most of your diet is whole food plant-based then very few commercially prepared foods are on your pantry’s shelf or in the refrigerator or freezer because finding really stellar products – foods made with top notch ingredients without all the additives, and that taste great – is tough (there is just no getting around being vigilant and reading labels).

Every once in a while, a truly great product is introduced (and it feels like a reward when you find it), which is the case with Granola Bites by the Organic Pantry Co. Granola Bites are tasty pieces of granola (almost like thin crunchy cookies) with mulberries (Cashew, Date & Mulberry) or coconut and raisins (Coconut, Cacao, and Raisin) : Read more »

15
May

Plant-Based Tips

Living a plant-based lifestyle is a journey. No matter what anyone says, the vegan you are in year one is not the vegan you are five years down the road because you learn so much along the way. For me, going plant-based was very gradual (I never thought I could give up cheese on my bagel or real milk in my coffee) but once I started feeling so much better without dairy in my body, I became more committed to reading and learning more about the health benefits of a plant-based diet (thank you NutritionFacts.org).

Over the past few years, there are several important things I learned that I wish I knew way back then so I pass this information along and hope it helps anyone who is trying to gradually move towards a plant-based diet or who just wants to make their plant-based life easier. Read more »

30
Mar

Executive Salaries at AIPAC

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is a 501 (c) (4) based in Washington, DC whose mission is to “strengthen, protect, and promote the US Israel relationship in ways that enhance the security of Israel and the US.” Although AIPAC is exempt from taxes, donations to AIPAC are not tax deductible (although they may be tax deductible as trade or business expenses) because the organization is a social welfare organization that can engage in unlimited lobbying (this is key). Read more »

28
Mar

Executive Compensation at the Special Olympics

Rarely is there a disagreement about the importance of funding the Special Olympics but yesterday, Betsy DeVos, the Education Secretary proposed cutting $17.6 million in government assistance to the organization next year, asserting that the non-profit is better supported by philanthropy.  Before anyone makes up their mind about this issue, they should know the financial facts about the organization, which include revenue, expenses, executive compensation, and the fund balance (which many refer to as the endowment) and ask if the Special Olympics needs the government contributions? Read more »

22
Mar

What Happened to Character?

Apparently, there is absolutely no way Robert Kraft, the billionaire owner of the Boston Patriots is going to accept the plea deal in the Florida prostitution case even though the police supposedly have two tapes of Kraft paying for and receiving sexual acts from massage parlor “therapists.”

And, it looks like Felicity Hoffman and Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli may plead “not guilty” to the charges related to illegally helping their children gain entrance to prestigious colleges, even though the FBI has recorded conversations and a money trail that shows they cheated and/or bought their children’s admission. And, then there is Donald Trump trash talking John McCain, who died of brain cancer last year, and Kellyanne Conway’s husband, George Conway, who Trump called “a whack job” and a “stone cold loser and husband from hell” (as if Trump was heaven-sent). Read more »