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Sunday, June 05, 2005

Foundation Watch's David Hogberg Says "Something Smells at Pew," Interviews Sean Treglia

David Hogberg is an accomplished blogger - Hog Haven - and editor of two Capital Research Center online publications, "Educationwatch" and "Greenwatch." He also is a co-host of CRC's monthly radio show, "Organization Watch."

All of that is by way of introducing a guy who knows the foundation and philathropy community very well indeed, which makes him quite possibly the ideal person to sit down with former Pew Charitable Trusts Vice President Sean Treglia for a little chat about the March 2004 panel presentation he made to a group of journalists.

Hogberg's Treglia interview and an accompanying article by Hogberg about the highly controversial March 2004 presentation appear in the June 2005 issue of "Foundation Watch." You can read a PDF version of the interview and article here.

In his March 2004 presentation at USC's Annenberg School for Communications, Treglia described how he came up with a political and media marketing strategy that led to passage of the campaign finance reform in 2002 and its being ruled constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003.

Since the Blogosphere exploded when New York Post/Tech Central Station columnist and Miscellaneous Objections blogger Ryan Sager described Treglia's presentation and encouraged people to view his remarks on the Internet and judge for themselves, Treglia has been backpedalling at hyper-speed.

In March 2004, Treglia said he helped fund a spectrum of groups in an effort "create the impression that a mass movement was afoot. That everywhere they [Members of Congress] looked, in academic institutions, in the business community, in religious groups, in ethnic groups, everywhere, people were talking about reform."

Now Treglia is claiming Sager and other bloggers "with a political agenda" have been purposely mis-interpreting and mis-representing his remarks. Hogberg not only went back to Treglia's March 2004 presentation, he also dug into the clips and did a thorough job of researching Pew's conversion from one of America's most reliably conservative charitable trusts to one of the most liberal.

Whatever one thinks of Treglia, Hogberg's piece is worth reading for his authoritative description of Pew's history and current leadership. Read Hogberg FW piece, including the interview with Treglia, then go back and review Treglia's presentation. The backpedalling simply doesn't wash -it's clear what Treglia meant in March 2004 and it is just as clear in June 2005 how strongly he wants us to think he really didn't mean what he clearly said.