What’s Clive Palmer on about?

Even Andrew Bolt is shocked. On Tuesday mining magnate Clive Palmer fronted the media and announced that the US Central Intelligence Agency is using the Rockefeller Foundation to fund a campaign to undermine Australia’s coal industry.

Palmer appeared in front of the cameras brandishing a funding proposal for the Australian anti-coal movement — a document titled Stopping the Australian Coal Export Boom. On page two, the report acknowledges "the generous support of the Rockefeller Family Fund".

The Rockefeller Family Fund (controlled by members of the Rockefeller family) is a separate entity from the larger Rockefeller Foundation. Palmer seems confused about this.

When it comes to CIA involvement Palmer’s logic is a little hard to follow. Part of his argument is that : "You only have to go back and read the Church Report in the 1970s and to read the reports to the US Congress which sets up the Rockefeller Foundation as a conduit of CIA funding."

As Bolt notes, this is one part of Palmer’s diatribe that has at least some foundation in evidence. The US Senate’s Church Committee began an investigation of US intelligence in 1975. Among its findings was the CIA use of charitable foundations as a conduit for funds. As Volume I of the final report explains:

The CIA’s intrusion into the foundation field in the 1960s can only be described as massive. Excluding grants from the "Big Three" — Ford, Rockefeller, and Carnegie — of the 700 grants over $10,000 given by 164 other foundations during the period 1963-1966, at least 108 involved partial or complete CIA funding. More importantly, CIA funding was involved in nearly half the grants the non-"Big Three" foundations made during this period in the field of international activities. In the same period more than one-third of the grants awarded by non-"Big Three" in the physical, life and social sciences also involved CIA funds.

While there’s no evidence that Australian green groups are being funded by the CIA there is one Australian organisation known to have received CIA funding — Quadrant magazine.

Update: In Thursday’s Herald Sun Andrew Bolt claims that "the CIA has funded the Rockefeller Foundation in the past."

While Bolt claims this is a fact, he doesn’t actually have any evidence that the Rockefeller Foundation has been a conduit for CIA funding. In his Herald Sun piece he quotes from a review of Frances Stonor Saunders’ book The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters that appears on the CIA’s web site. The review notes that Saunders "does a fine job in recounting the intriguing story of how the CIA worked with existing institutions, such as the Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation, and established numerous ‘bogus’ foundations to ‘hide’ its funding of the Congress for Cultural Freedom and its other covert activities."

There’s no doubt that the Rockefeller Foundation worked with the CIA during the Cold War. But it’s not clear that it was a conduit for funding. In her book she writes "’Bona fide’ foundations such as Ford, Rockefeller and Carnegie were considered ‘the best and most plausible kind of funding cover’" (p 135). She supports this claim with a reference to ‘Final Report of the Church Committee, 1976’ (endnote 15 p 442).

However, volume 1 of the Church Committee’s final report (officially titled Final report of the Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities, United States Senate) doesn’t actually say that the Rockefeller Foundation was a conduit for CIA funds.

What the report does say is that: "Until 1967 the Agency … maintained covert ties to American foundations in order to pass funds secretly to private groups whose work the CIA supported. " It notes that: "The use of philanthropic organizations was a convenient way to pass funds, in that large amounts could be transferred rapidly, and in a form that need not alert unwitting officers of the recipient organizations to their source."

While the report says: "Bona fide foundations, rather than those controlled by the CIA, were considered the best and most plausible kind of funding cover for certain kinds of operations", it does not mention the Rockefeller Foundation as one of the foundations used by the CIA. The details the report gives about CIA money passed through foundations specifically exclude the "big three" foundations — Ford, Rockefeller and Carnegie.

Since Bolt’s claim rests on Saunders’ book and the reference that Saunders gives doesn’t support the claim that the Rockefeller Foundation was a conduit for CIA funding, Bolt doesn’t have any evidence for his claim about the Rockefeller Foundation.

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26 Responses to What’s Clive Palmer on about?

  1. swearyanthony says:

    This is one of the greatest days in Australian political history. FINALLY THE LiZARDS WILL BE REVEALED. Clearly the lizards who live underground would oppose mining for coal, their lairs will be revealed.

    I am not sure how the chinese submarines that kidnapped Harold Holt get into Lake Burley Griffin, or indeed if it is deep enough for a submarine. THAT’S JUST HOW SNEAKY THE CIA IS.


    In all seriousness, watch a whole lot of MPs run away from http://www.openaustralia.org/search/?s=clive+palmer

  2. Bill Posters says:

    Didn’t the CIA stop funding Quadrant because it was too stridently right-wing? In which case, maybe Professor Palmer is on to something…

    I, for one, welcome our new lizard overlords.

  3. conrad says:

    You guys are deluded about the lizards. They’re simply dinosaurs that didn’t die out 5000 years ago like the rest of them when God put humans on the Earth because they lived underground and ate worms. God obviously just forgot to remove them, probably because of Eve creating all those problems for Him. Like most dinosaurs, they also have brains the size of chickens, so we don’t need to fear them, and they probably taste like chickens too, so that can only be a good thing. Also, Anthony, stop being so ignorant — it was a Japanese submarine, not a Chinese one. Everyone knows that.

  4. meika says:

    Yes, Quadrant, these were my immediate thoughts too. Clive should also know one of the Rockerfellas owns a lot of property in Hobart and has installed wind turbines onto of the Marine Board building.

    I’ve heard it all before, in the 80s mind you. I shared a fairly open house, and one released unhappy-chappy had a monomania about the Rockefellas. He claimed ‘it’ was all run by Michael Rockefella who did not disappear while in New Guinea in the 1970s, but now lived on Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef, in some secret Thunderbirds like island installation. The only difference was that the CIA was the conduit not the source.

  5. Pedro says:

    A friend of mine worked (closely) for Palmer for some years. He probably can’t answer the question, but he won’t be shocked that it needs to be asked.

  6. Sancho says:

    Sounds like Palmer has been out to lunch with the LaRouchians.

    Next stop, reptilians.

  7. Bill Posters says:

    Couple this with the recent Lowy outbursts and the Professor seems a little less balanced and coherent than usual.

  8. Dan says:

    After careful consideration, I had arrived at the conclusion Clive Palmer was a reptoid, but this really throws a spanner in the works. I’ll have to skeptically re-scrutinise the evidence. Maybe he’s a Freemason. I don’t think he’s Jewish, otherwise my grandmother would know his mother.

    (A libertarian FB friend of mine says: ‘Not a reptoid. I would have seen him at the reunion.’)

  9. john says:

    Its the fluoride.

  10. paul walter says:

    Wot Conrad sez!
    But what about the hidden Soviet armoured divisions hiding behind Ayres Rock?

  11. Tel says:

    Well a quick google search comes up with:


    Listing top two Greenpeace donors as the “Turner Foundation” and “Rockefeller Brothers Fund” to the tune of a million dollars each. Of course, you would have to ask who is funding “ActivistCash” and to answer that you need “SourceWatch” who will tell you:

    ActivistCash.com is a web site affiliated with the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF), a front group for the restaurant, alcohol and tobacco industries.

    So there you go, the evil tobacco overlords are at it again. Mind you SourceWatch can’t actually find anything untrue about the Greenpeace donations, what they find is that:

    In reality, none of the information that ActivistCash “exposes” has ever been hidden. It is available in public foundation reports and IRS tax statements that nonprofit organizations make available to anyone who asks.

    Which would have to imply that SourceWatch also believes that the Greenpeace donations are real, I had to laugh when I read the ABC article where Drew Hutton struck back at Clive Palmer with the following:

    Certainly there’s no amount of money that I’m aware of that’s come to my organisation, or for that matter any organisation that I’m aware of, by the Rockefeller Foundation or anybody else.

    Egats, Greenpeace is funded by nobody at all! Drew Hutton is absolutely certain of that, or at least certain of what he is not aware of (seemingly a broadly encompassing sphere). I wish I could be so certain of what I am not aware of, it would save me a lot of time pacing up and down at night checking for nearby CIA assets.

    Astute readers should be asking the pertinent question, where does SourceWatch get their funding from? Well, I’m very glad you asked, because SourceWatch is part of the “Center for Media and Democracy” which in turn is completely transparent about being funded by George Soros, and (wait for it) the Rockefeller Family Foundation as well as the Turner Foundation (and others, all documented by PR-Watch, also under the CMD umbrella).

    None of the above has anything to do with conspiracy by the way, and anyone who doesn’t believe me on that point should consult a dictionary.

  12. Paul Montgomery says:

    To be fair to Clive, Lowy is catching a bit of the Kerry Packer Syndrome and turning into a goanna.

  13. Don Arthur says:

    I’ve added an update to this post (see above). Palmer says “You only have to go back and read the Church Report in the 1970s and to read the reports to the US Congress which sets up the Rockefeller Foundation as a conduit of CIA funding.”

    I’ve searched the Church Committee’s report and I can’t find any support for the claim that the Rockefeller Foundation was a conduit for CIA funding. I’m not saying it wasn’t, I’m just saying I can’t find any support for Palmer’s claim in the report.

  14. Pingback: Australia: Mining Magnate’s Bizarre Claim of CIA Coal Conspiracy · Global Voices

  15. Pingback: Australia: Mining Magnate’s Bizarre Claim of CIA Coal Conspiracy :: Elites TV

  16. JB Cairns says:

    perhaps the post was due to his daughter Diana?

  17. Brian Johnston says:

    Lets not overlook something which may be important.Rockefeller funds the Eugenics movement.You know. Depopulation. Plus other frightening issues e.g Zero Growth. A smaller world will use less coal.

    Brian of Sydney

  18. Brian Johnston says:

    Lets not overlook something which may be important.Rockefeller funds the Eugenics movement.You know. Depopulation. Plus other frightening issues e.g Zero Growth. A smaller world will use less coal.

    Brian of Sydney

  19. Sancho says:

    Haven’t seen a LaRouchian around the intertubes for a while, which is a shame.

    I can never remember if the queen mother is in charge of the Rockefellers or vice versa, but it’s always good to hear the latest news about the global genocide conspiracy.

  20. desipis says:

    After all that, Clive claims he was just trollin’.

  21. Dan says:

    A diabolical masterstroke!

  22. JB Cairns says:

    I still think Diana Palmer’s husband was involved.

  23. Sancho says:

    As everyone knows, the most effective way for a powerful, high-profile business figure to manipulate electoral outcomes is to publicly express deranged conspiracy theories lifted directly from the most paranoid corners of the internet in order to distract voters.

    It was obvious all along, really.

  24. john says:

    Ethics, Part II, Proposition XLVII

    Now many errors consist of this alone, that we do not apply names rightly to things. For when one says that lines which are drawn from the centre of a circle to the circumference are unequal, he means, at least at that time, something different by circle than mathematicians. Thus when men make mistakes in calculation they have different numbers in their minds than those on the paper. Wherefore if you could see their minds they do not err; they seem to err, however, because we think they have the same numbers in their minds as on the paper. If this were not so we should not believe that they made mistakes any more than I thought a man in error whom I heard the other day shouting that his yard had flown into his neighbour’s chickens, for his mind seemed sufficiently clear to me on this subject.


  25. JB Cairns says:

    John ,
    That is just spinnozing

  26. abc says:

    Lowy is catching a bit of the Kerry Packer both jews

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