George Mason economics department admits it sold hiring control to anonymous, super-rich donors

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"In the mid-eighties, the Kochs provided millions of dollars to George Mason University, in Arlington, Virginia, to set up another think tank. Now known as the Mercatus Center, it promotes itself as “the world’s premier university source for market-oriented ideas—bridging the gap between academic ideas and real-world problems.” Financial records show that the Koch family foundations have contributed more than thirty million dollars to George Mason, much of which has gone to the Mercatus Center, a nonprofit organization. “It’s ground zero for deregulation policy in Washington,” Rob Stein, the Democratic strategist, said. It is an unusual arrangement. “George Mason is a public university, and receives public funds,” Stein noted. “Virginia is hosting an institution that the Kochs practically control.”

read Jane Mayer’s Dark Money


The dismal science indeed.

@kpkpkp, I keep meaning to read that.


Sounds like Fake Academia.


You can bet there are plenty more


Everybody read “Dark Money”. It was kind of funny for me, in the midst of a really, really not-funny book, when Mayer pointed out that though the Koch-network messaging has “Freedom” in every other sentence, Charles is not remotely for any “freedom” for thought in those whom he’s paying. Koch outfits are held to a tight party line, and “Institute scholars” of their various think tanks are promptly pressured or pushed out when they stray. Most of the Heritage Foundation staff a few years back, for instance.


I grew up near Mason. Even then, this was no secret.


George Mason tarnished their own reputation to the point that, for more than a decade now, any time I cite or link to one of their papers or studies from any department I have to throw in a disclaimer about the Koch funding.


Someone needs to update the Wikipedia articles for George Mason and this hokey institute.

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