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How the rise of elite philanthropists is shifting the power landscape in America




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The words "In God We Trust" are seen on U.S. currency October 14, 2004 in Washington, DC.
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When the Forbes 400 list was first unveiled in 1982, there were only 13 billionaires; now, there are more billionaires in America than can fit on that 400-slot list.

And as the number of billionaires in the country grows, so too does the number of philanthropists who can invest hefty resources into any organization of their choosing. So what does this mean for the future of American politics, where lobbyists and interest groups already wield such influence?

That’s the question that David Callahan poses in his new book, “The Givers: Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age.” As the founder and editor of the media site Inside Philanthropy, Callahan takes a nuanced look at today’s super-donors — how their financial donations allow them to influence a lot of policy in America, and how, due to rising income inequality, “big philanthropy” is here to stay.

You can find Callahan at Chevalier’s Books tonight at 7:30pm. For more info, click here.

Guest:

David Callahan, founder and editor of the media site Inside Philanthropy and co-founder of the national think tank Demos; he is the author of the book, “The Givers: Wealth, Power, and Philanthropy in a New Gilded Age” (Knopf, 2017)