The Nation Institute (TNI)

organization

Overview

  • Non-profit entity closely linked to for-profit magazine The Nation
  • Sponsors leftist conferences, fellowships, awards for radical activists, journalism internships, and many other things 
  • “Our graduates…constitute an informal network operating in the mainstream media.”

The Nation Institute is a non-profit entity closely linked to, and operating synergistically with, the for-profit magazine The Nation.

The Institute’s Board of Trustees is presided over by former Nation owner-publisher [Hamilton Fish V][2] and includes among its members former Nation owner Arthur Carter, Nation Editor/owner [Katrina vanden Heuvel][3], Nation Publisher/Editorial Director/owner [Victor Navasky][4], Hollywood actor [Tim Robbins][5], and others.

Founded in 1966, The Institute, according to its website, “sponsors a number of projects including conferences, seminars, televised town hall-style meetings, e-mail and web communications, book publishing, syndicated public affairs radio programming and film production, fellowships and internships.”

One Institute “project” is [RadioNation][6], a weekly syndicated radio program uplinked to satellite via a [National Public Radio][7] (NPR) transponder. The show is hosted by Laura Flanders, who has also worked for [Air America Radio][8] and [Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting][9]. It features a wide range of writers and editors from The Nation and thereby promotes this for-profit magazine’s newsstand, subscription, and related enterprise sales. Before Flanders, the program host was [Marc Cooper][10], Contributing Editor to The Nation magazine.

Another Institute undertaking is Nation Books, a “venture” begun in 2001 in partnership with a for-profit outside publisher. Authors’ revenues are boosted by the advertising of the tax-exempt non-profit RadioNation and [TomDispatch][11].

The Nation Institute is also involved in giving out at least $130,000 each year in awards and prizes to leftist activists. Moreover, it endows “journalism fellows,” almost all of whom already have places on the masthead of The Nation magazine. Recent and ongoing Institute “fellows” include [Eric Alterman][12], [William Greider][13], [Tom Hayden][14], Jack Newfield, Katha Pollitt, and Jonathan Schell. This offers a way to pay with tax-exempt dollars those whose writing produces the for-profit Nation magazine.

The Nation Institute since 1978 has worked in conjunction with The Nation magazine to recruit, train and influence journalism interns who will carry the Institute’s leftist politics into the mainstream. Former Nation interns have worked at such media outlets as [ABC][15], AP, the Christian Science Monitor, [Harper’s][16], [Ms.][17], the [New York Times][18], The New Yorker, The News Hour with Jim Lehrer, [PBS][19]-Frontline, Time, UPI, Vanity Fair, the Village Voice, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post.

The Nation Institute receives funding from the Gilder Foundation, the Irene Diamond Fund, the JKW Foundation, the Lannan Foundation,the New York Community Trust, the [Open Society Institute][20], the PLACE Fund, the [Public Welfare Foundation][21], the [Schumann Center for Media and Democracy][22], and the [Stewart R. Mott Charitable Trust][23].

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