The vision of Brave New Foundation is an open democratic society that encourages rigorous debate, opportunity and justice for all.
Our mission is to champion social justice issues by using a model of media, education, and grassroots volunteer involvement that inspires, empowers, motivates and teaches civic participation and makes a difference.
Politics got louder, angrier, more painful, and more complicated. We spent hours at the foundation talking, debating, reading and thinking. How can we communicate to people in this new world? How can we help people understand the system and how it works, not just an individual injustice. How can we inspire and motivate at a time of great pain and inequity?
Koch Brothers Exposed was a year-long project which shows how the Kochs use their obscene wealth to distort democracy, buy political power, and support their own economic and ideological goals. But they are not the only ones, and we worked hard and long to tell the story and make it clear that this is the result of systemic abuses. This is the result of politicians that are for sale. This is the result of laws and regulations that support the wealthy over the powerful. We worked with more than 20 groups and partners to help spread the word and with great help from the media (over 60 media hits with a press reach of over 85 million) we helped make significant steps forward.
Our Who Are the One Percent? campaign also helped us message the important frame that it is not the money that is the problem, but the abuse of the money for selfish and greedy ends.
Our Cuéntame program focused hard and laser-like on bringing public attention to private prisons. Starting with the eye-catching name, Immigrants for Sale, Axel and his team led a fierce political and creative effort to define those who profit from locking up immigrants. They illustrated the direct connection between their for-profit operations, their support of elected officials, and their support for legislation that makes it easier to incarcerate immigrants and increase their profits. From powerful personal stories to animation, the series ran the gambit. Working with 18 partners we pierced the veil of secrecy and confusion on the issue and focused on a fundamental argument: prisons should not be a source of profit contributing to the top one percent.
As the Afghanistan war winds down— not without the tragic and horrific loss of lives, homes, and billions of dollars—the political and creative team led by Derrick Crowe has begun work conceptualizing a next-step campaign, War Costs. We have a unique moment in time. There is a perfect storm with an economic collapse, exhaustion over war, and beginning cracks to what was formerly a bipartisan consensus that occupying and invading foreign countries will make us safer.
With that in mind we are deep in heavy research on the waste, fraud, abuse, and the spending of literally billions of dollars on weapons that are useless and merely serve to increase profitability of Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and other war contractors. We will employ the same strategies we used with Rethink Afghanistan and will create short videos and blogs to push back against war-hawks and the spin spit out by both the Pentagon and corporations. In addition, we will reveal the depths of corruption through longer investigative pieces.
A busy year ahead, and with deep appreciation for your help and support that makes this possible.