April 5, 2010, - 2:56 pm

Responding to Schlussel Expose, Charity Navigator Downgrades Hannity Charity: Freedom Alliance Rating Now Only 2 Stars (“Needs Improvement”)

By Debbie Schlussel

(bumped up by Debbie’s site administrator)

We’re finally starting to see the rest of the world come to realize what I originally reported on this site:  that both Sean Hannity and Freedom Alliance are defrauding donors to their scams, er . . . “charities.”  And now, as a result of my work, a major charity evaluator–a charity evaluator whose rating of the group I exposed as completely flawed–has woken up downgraded Freedom Alliance, slashing its rating in half.

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A few weeks ago, I blew the lid off of the fraud that is Sean Hannity’s Freedom Concerts and the scam “charity” known as “Freedom Alliance.” I showed you the organization’s tax returns and how Hannity lied to his audience when he told them a $30,000 sponsorship by Boca Java would fund a whole year’s college scholarship for the child of a fallen American soldier.  I showed you that, in fact, Freedom Alliance has NEVER paid for the full year’s tuition of a college student.  Not even close.  And I showed you the pitifully small amounts–$200 here, $165 there–that Freedom Alliance gave to soldiers who lost three limbs and an eye or were totally blinded with their face blown up.

And since then, after I followed up and reported the accounts of TWO insiders, witnesses to Oliver North telling Sean Hannity to stop spending hundreds of thousands of dollars of the concert revenues on private planes–money that was secreted through the bank accounts of Premiere Speakers Bureau, the conservative amen crowd (no different than Obamabots) has been largely silent, unable to refute what I’ve written, with Hannity and Premiere refusing to disclose the financial records of the concerts.  At first, like Obama’s brainless, hypnotized minions, they attacked me and echoed the empty denials of the malefactors here, declaring that a “debunking.”  But if the debunking of con artists and frauds was actually “debunking,” we’d have no need for prisons.

But now, as a result of my investigation, Charity Navigator–which many of the smirking apologists for Hannity (most of them as fraudulent as he is and, yes, that includes Fraudkin and Big Follywood) cited–has downgraded Freedom Alliance from a “Four Star” charity, to a “Two Star” charity, meaning it “Needs Improvement” and “Underperforms Most Charities in Its Cause.” And, frankly, even that rating is charitable.  As I noted in my piece, Charity Navigator’s original Four Star ranking was baloney.  It was bogus, and involved a silly, inept number-crunching formula which counted Freedom Alliance’s millions of dollars spent on cronies and consultants as actually going to the intended recipients of the charity.  I’m glad that, after my work, Charity Navigator sorta woke up.

As I noted then:

In investigating Freedom Alliance and its tax forms, I learned that the organizations which evaluate charities are entirely worthless. Freedom Alliance is certified as “Best in America” by the “Independent Charities of America.” It is also rated a “Four Star Charity” by “Charity Navigator.” Both of these “ratings” are posted prominently on Freedom Alliance’s website, misleading donors into believing they are donating to a worthy cause, when in fact they are mostly donating to a black hole of expenses. Even Charity Navigator notes in its strange, illogical, and mostly inaccurate Four Star rating that Freedom Alliance has a fund-raising “efficiency” of only nine cents on the dollar. And, in fact, Charity Navigator’s ridiculous rating formula robotically crunches numbers in a way that considers the money spent mostly on consultants, postage, and printing as having gone to the wounded soldiers and kids of fallen soldiers, when in fact that’s not where it went at all. It simply can’t be taken seriously.

Well, now Charity Navigator wants to be taken seriously and has revoked its baseless Four-Star baloney. Like I said, glad this lackluster charity evaluator finally, partially woke up.

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But you know who still hasn’t woken up and doesn’t want to be taken seriously?  The many prominent conservatives in the apologist crowd, who cited the original, bogus Four Star rating in their phony defenses of Hannity, the con-artist charity, and their concert scam.  Not one has noted the downgrade.  Not one.  And maybe that’s because they’ve all taken money for ads for Vannity’s new book on their websites and whored themselves out to appear on his book tour (the cost of their travel, including Fraudkin’s and Paulnut/anti-Semite Erickson’s, reduces the amount of money–the non-existent “profits”–Vannity said he was going to “give to charity” to the troops, via the Two Star/Needs Improvement Freedom Alliance).

And in one, case, Fraudkin’s, it’s the only primetime outlet she has left on FOX News on which to pimp herself, since she’s in a petty woman-scorned feud against Bill O’Reilly (one of her many such petty feuds against myself, Ann Coulter, and many other conservatives to whom she rightfully feels inferior). Fraudkin demanded an apology from me for telling the truth and being able to read a tax form, neither of which, as she’s amply demonstrated, she’s competent to do. I won’t demand an apology here, because none will be forthcoming from these haughty phonies and liars, and even if it did it would be as relevant and important as an ant urinating. (Fraudkin didn’t apologize to the two AIPAC lobbyists she repeatedly attacked in her anti-Israel, anti-Semitic rants. I can’t expect better treatment from the selfish charlatan.)

Oh, and by the way, Freedom Alliance quietly erased all references and links to Charity Navigator from its site, despite using the bogus, now-downgraded rating from the group as a defense for its waste and fraud, just weeks ago.

I’m still waiting for the financials on Hannity’s private planes and the millions in profits Duane Ward and Premiere made from the Freedom Concerts, all while Hannity knowingly lied to his audiences telling them all the profit would got to the troops.  Nope, the profit went to his cronies.  And by the way, I now have evidence some of the profit may have gone into his pockets.  Plus we already know that hundreds of thousands remained in his pockets as concert revenue went to pay for his private planes and fancy accommodations for his posse.

Stay tuned for that, as I have a lot more on Hannity, the Freedom Concerts, and the Freedom Alliance coming up.  This isn’t going away.

For now, ask  yourself:  why would anyone give to a charity that even Charity Navigator now says, “NEEDS IMPROVEMENT”?

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66 Responses

Good work, Debbie. I love the comment from the Conservabot above me – the only argument they can EVER muster when given the inconvenient truth is to attempt some sort of personal smear – as if EVERYONE would ride around like a King on money they supposedly collect for the widows and orphans of dead soldiers if only given the chance! How dare you! I would say “unbelievable” if only it were. Instead, I’ll say, “typical.”

My one issue, though, is of your use of the term “Obamabot.” Frankly, as one who travels in liberal circles, I’ve yet to meet one. In fact, it is liberals who call the President out for not living up to his promises. Cons, on the other hand, are in mass hysteria about outright fabrications, so it really can’t compare. Stop by my website. You will see that I routinely write about the flaws of the current administration – of course, not for the fantasy “Socialist” the Cons insist him to be (IF ONLY he were half the Socialist they say he is! I can dream, though)… but for the fact that he is a rather milktoast centrist forever bargaining away true “change” in the misguided attempt to woo Republicans.

The kind of REAL intellectual debate – based on reality – not fantasy or ideology – does not exist on the right. When it rears its head, it is immediately stomped. As we saw recently when David Frum was forced out of his fellowship at the conservative American Enterprise Institute after writing a thoughtful essay based in reality.

The true “bots” exist on the right – as evidenced by the lack of outrage during 8 years of Bush – the worst President in history, who turned record surpluses as far as the eye can see, into trillions in debt. Of course, he was just practicing Jude Wanniski’s Two Santa Clause theory… you know… spend and bankrupt government while in power and scream about deficits while out of power… its all in the Republican playbook to turn the “Land of the Free” into “The United States of Serfs and Lords”… but that’s a story for another day…

Great work on this important issue. Having been a member of the National Guard, I find the exploitation of soldiers is particularly egregious. Best of luck to you always.

Taradacktyl on April 14, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Hannity’s tushy wiping of Marco “the low life” Rubio isn’t suprising given the fact that Rubio, like Hannity knows how to drain a charity( or a political party) of thousands in donations. Also seeing to it that the booty is laundered to pals, friends, family and hangers-on. The amazing story is how
Fox-TV, WABC-AM770 in New York and Premier Radio Networks
continue to be part and parcel to this obscenity..hence the name
“Sean Obscenity”
Keep doing the work most are too pidgeon-livered to do.
The truth will out, itis just a matter of time.
The Carl Rove School of Obfuscation has two new graduates
to be proud of. Rubio and Hannity are professors emeritus at that audacious establishment of pilfery training.

Dick Farrel on April 20, 2010 at 9:29 am

I would like to know why andrew brightbart on his site
big government would defend the establishments radio host
the phony from long island and call debbies report false when all the facts are laid out in plain sight,with multiple facts
traceable and the report is damming enough to have the rating
changed. Also for a musician who was a participant to withdraw
from the cause and to be angry at what he saw.
Also since he has so much money and his punk mouth friend
that sounds like groucho, who only has stinking show that
broadcasts from the bunker because of sean hannity is
a lawyer himself would have already filed law suits by now
do people forget that debbie herself was going in and investigating muslim crap hole buildings and reporting on it
why because she cares
somebody should remind andrew brightbart nobody ever knew who he was until he was on with michael savage
saun hannity never ever had mentioned the name of andrew
brightbart
If you are happy with husane obama thank sean hannity
who tried to get julliani elected rather than a true conservative in duncan hunter and all you fricken milk toast
mush cake sheep who listen to such a stinking dam phony
on fox news thank all you idiots for obama because
you had to listen to a fool on radio to tell you how to vote

ken lunceford on May 21, 2010 at 2:18 pm

I would like to know why Charity Navigator gives Freedom Alliance a 4 star rating now.

TW on April 15, 2011 at 1:59 pm

As the wife of a wounded warrior, I would just like to say that our family have directly benefitted from the good that the Freedom Alliance does for our wounded service members and their families. My husband has recently been medically retired after serving in 3 deployments and suffering severe injuries. Freedom Alliance helped my husband by providing him ( and in one case myself) with moral boosting trips which could otherwise never be enjoyed due to physical and financial limitations. They have teamed up with some amazing people to provide outdoorsmen events and other gatherings which help our wounded have a chance to decompress, get away from the grind of doctors and hospitals, and talk to one another and share a bond that can only be made between men and women who have seen the ugly side of war and came home completely altered.

Not only has the Freedom Alliance been there for my husband for these events, but they have also continued to keep in contact with and be sure that things are going well as we adjust to a wounded warrior family lifestyle. When my husband had a 4 month stretch away from the family at a naval hospital, Freedom Alliance jumped in and sent us a grant so that we could stay in contact with one another via a much needed new family computer.

I would expect that a great deal of the “postage” expenses you are siting were incurred sending care packages overseas to our troops. Yup folks, I know for a FACT that they pay postage for groups that compile care packages to send to our troops.
As for the amounts that you say are given to “this wounded warrior with this injury” or “That wounded service member with that injury”, what you tend to miss is that Freedom Alliance does not “assign” the people requesting help a certain amount based on what they think their injuries are worth…. If anyone had that task, it could never be a sufficient amount to compensate for what the person in question has to endure. Is there really an amount that you think would compensate my husband for the amount of absolute pain and suffering his 24 year old body will endure for the rest of his life?? Could you come up with an amount that would compensate for the fact that he will never be able to play chase with our 1 year old as she grows, or teach our other children to fly kites? Nope. The amounts given are based on what the service member is requesting help with. Sometimes, it’s something as small as restocking their groceries, or needing clothing altered to fit over prosthetics, etc.

I just want to say that every experience our family has had with Freedom Alliance has been amazing and we have seen them personally help families for Christmas, as well as emergency travel money when another military family needed to get to The hospital where their newly (and seriously) wounded warrior was landing stateside for life saving treatment. It’s important to note that the Freedom Alliance is NOT wasting funds as vastly as you reported, and they DO in fact have many project funds that benefit families like ours directly….

Carissa Harrold on January 11, 2012 at 2:55 am

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