The accurate quote:
"For considerable sums of money, public opinion can
be molded, constituents mobilized, issues researched, and public officials button-holed,
all in a symphonic arrangement."
was never written or spoken by Mr. Joshua
Reichert, Pew Charitable Trust's Environment Program Director.
It was misattributed to Mr. Reichert by writer
Mark Dowie in his book, Losing Ground, published in 1995 by MIT Press.
Mr. Dowie is the former editor-at-large of
a transnational feature syndicate based in New York. He is a former publisher and editor
of Mother Jones magazine, the magazine of the Foundation for National Progress,
which is funded by large private foundations, including the Arca Foundation, the Joyce
Foundation, the Schumann Foundation, the Streisand Foundation and others. Mr. Dowie has
won fourteen major journalism awards, including an unprecedented three National Magazine
In a congressional hearing in February, 2000,
Influence author Ron Arnold cited the above quote as it appeared in Mr. Dowie's
Ground. Mr. Reichert responded to the chairman of the congressional committee denying
that he ever wrote or said the quote, and requesting that the quote be retracted. Mr.
Arnold stood by his story, saying the quote had been known to the public and to Mr.
Reichert for five years without challenge. Mr. Arnold held firm subject only to any actual
evidence that Mr. Reichert's denial was true.
In April, 2000, Mr. Dowie sent the Pew Charitable
Trusts' chief attorney the following correction and apology:
12642 Sir Frances
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956
April 11, 2000
Joy A. Horwitz, Esquire
Director, Legal Affairs and General Counsel
One Commerce Square
Philadelphia, PA 19103-7077
Dear Ms. Horwitz:
I am writing to
acknowledge a misattribution on page 51 of my book,
Losing Ground, regarding the block quote attributed
to Joshua Reichert, director of The Pew Charitable
Trusts' Environment program, in footnote 25. Although
Mr. Reichert has said to me in an interview that he
strongly believes that environmental groups need to
respond more effectively to the tactics of environmental
opponents, to my knowledge, the quotation was not
written or spoken by him. Nor does it appear in the
document entitled "Environmental Strategies: Concept
Statement" (December, 1993), which I inadvertently
listed as the source of the quotation.
language appeared in a report on environmental issue
campaigns prepared by four individuals, including Tom
Wathen, then an Environment program officer at Pew.
Specifically, the quoted language was presented in a
list of the most frequently cited reasons given by
members of the environmental community, who had been
interviewed by the report's authors, explaining why the
environmental movement had failed to employ its assets
as effectively as it might have.
I am sorry if
this matter has caused you undue hardship.
Mr. Arnold did not
respond when the congressional committee staff asked if
he had any further comment, and remained silent out of
respect for Mr. Dowie, letting his apology stand in the
One can only
wonder why such a distinguished writer made such a basic
error, why Mr. Reichert did not detect the error for
five years, and what kind of pressure produced the
subsequently completed a book,
American Foundations. The Foundation for Deep
Ecology gave Mr. Dowie an individual grant of $3,500 on
February 16, 1996 for "travel expense to Rockefeller