Ecclesia College President Oren Paris and Others Plead Not Guilty in Arkansas Bribery Scandal

According to the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette, Ecclesia College president Oren Paris, state Senator Jon Woods, and mutual friend and alleged co-conspirator Randell Shelton pleaded not guilty in a bribery and kickback arrangement which has already ensnared a state Representative.Read the indictment here. I suspect the defense of Woods, Paris and Shelton will be complicated by the previous plea deal accepted by former state Representative Micah Neal. Neal admitted guilt in the … [Read more...]

Former Mercury One Donors Speak Out About Recent Changes

In response to my series of articles on the changes taking place at Mercury One, I have been contacted by Mercury One donors. Two such donors, now former donors, agreed to comment anonymously about the changes in focus and donation allocation policy.Lack of CommunicationOne source of frustration for the former donors is the lack of communication from Mercury One. Without my posts, these donors would not have become aware that the changes had been made. The former donors said, "We did not … [Read more...]

With Changing Focus, Mercury One No Longer Taking Restricted Fund Donations for Nazarene Fund

Since late 2015, one of the flagship projects of Mercury One has been the Nazarene Fund. On the Nazarene Fund website, the purpose of the fund is described: For several years, ISIS has invaded peaceful communities in the Middle East and painted the Nazarene symbol on the door of people they seek to convert, extort, or murder. While ISIS uses the Nazarene sign to symbolize death, we use the sign to symbolize life. Mercury One is a US based humanitarian aid and education non-profit organization … [Read more...]

Mercury One Clarifies How Donations Will Be Handled; Some Restricted Donations Allowed

Last week, Mercury One, founded by Glenn Beck, announced that all donations would be consolidated into one fund. In the past, Mercury One created various funds to accomplish specific goals. Donations to those funds (e.g., the Nazarene Fund for rescue of refugees) had to be spent on fund purposes. For instance, funds donated to rescue refugees could not be spent on purchasing historical artifacts.At the time, I took a skeptical view of the changes. In my opinion, charities are more … [Read more...]

Mercury One Gave $104,000 to a Wall Builders Charity Which Had Its Tax Exempt Status Revoked

Last year and then again recently, I pointed out that the charity founded by Glenn Beck, Mercury One, gave David Barton's Wallbuilders $204,000 over a two year period from 2013-2014. The grants are complicated by the fact that David Barton is chair of the board at Mercury One. When I reported this, I neglected to point out that the recipient organization for one of those grants ($104,000 in 2014) was stripped of tax exempt status in 2011 by the IRS for failing to submit yearly forms. Look at … [Read more...]

Mixed Donation Allocation Signals from Mercury One

Tuesday, I wrote about changes in the donation allocation at Mercury One. The Texas-based charity was founded by Glenn Beck with David Barton as the current chair of the board of directors. After years of allowing donors to focus their giving to a particular cause (e.g., disaster relief, helping refugees or even the general administration of the charity), Mercury One announced on their blog that all donations from now on would go into one fund: Beginning in March 2017, Mercury One is … [Read more...]

How to Use Bad Situations to Teach Good Lessons – David Barton’s The Jefferson Lies in Foundations of History

Most of my professor colleagues use negative events in the news to teach various lessons. For instance, I have used Mark Driscoll's plagiarism to teach my students about plagiarism. I feel sure many profs have used Monica Crowley's plagiarism to teach about that subject. I also refer to David Barton's faux doctorate to help my students understand how to simulate expertise.With this post, I hope to start a series of occasional articles which illustrate how one may turn a negative situation … [Read more...]

Changes at Mercury One: Should Donors Be Concerned?

Mercury One is a non-profit humanitarian organization founded by Glenn Beck about five years ago. The main thrusts of the organization have been education, disaster relief, veteran assistance, and humanitarian assistance to refugees. As a part of Mercury One's mission, the Nazarene Fund was created to fund the rescue of Christians refugees from ISIS held territories. If the reports of rescues and refugees restored to safe places are accurate, Mercury One has performed a valuable service within a … [Read more...]