A recent celebration by the Open Space Institute offers a window on gentry class fractivist enablers pursuing not only more riches, but also peer approval.
If you really want to understand fractivist enablers—members of the Haas, Heinz, Park and Rockefeller families, you must go here. A bit of caution, though. It could well make you throw up in disgust. I’m talking about nothing more than a news release and a collection of professional photographs, but I guarantee any reader with a sense of the common man and his interests will find it repulsive in every way. It is an ostentatious display of gentry class wealth, interests, and, ironically, classlessness.
The news release comes from the Open Space Institute, a wing of the NRDC gang, which is to say the Rockefeller family. They are the original land scammers who pioneered corporatist deals with state government to build preserves around their private holdings, create new playgrounds and make themselves even more wealthy while boosting their trust-funder egos. The release is all about a celebration of the contributions of Lucy Rockefeller Waletzky to the cause of creating more parkland in New York State, which, at 37%, already has more state land than any other state and more parkland altogether than any other state east of the Mississippi.
Here are the key elements of the news release, accompanied by dozens and dozens photos such as the one above depicting Waletzky and Kim Elliman, the former a descendant of John D. Rockefeller and the latter being the great-grandson of William Rockefeller, John D.’s brother and partner:
The Open Space Institute (OSI) has presented its annual Land Conservation Award to Lucy Rockefeller Waletzky, M.D., an early supporter of OSI’s parks program, for her groundbreaking contributions to restoration and support of New York’s state parks. The luncheon also acknowledged the role of the New York State Council of Parks, of which Dr. Waletzky is chair.
More than 325 people gathered at OSI’s Annual Luncheon, held at the Metropolitan Club in Manhattan, to honor Dr. Waletzky. Florence Williams, prize-winning author of The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier, and More Creative, delivered the keynote address. Photos from the event are here…
“The foremost supporter of New York’s glorious state parks, Lucy Rockefeller Waletzky has had an immeasurable impact on the health and wellbeing of countless individuals and communities throughout New York. Her work is key to the natural and economic strength of communities across the nation,” said Kim Elliman, OSI’s president and CEO. “As an organization committed to conserving lands for the public and protecting our state parks, OSI is honored to celebrate Lucy’s invaluable contributions.”
Through her successful partnership with OSI — including the 2010 founding of OSI’s parks program, an initiative devoted to restoration and support of New York’s magnificent state parks — and support of other groups, Dr. Waletzky has built on her family’s remarkable tradition of conservation and improved access to parks for their 71 million visitors each year. This includes nearly $800 million in state investment under Governor Andrew Cuomo that has transformed a beleaguered and rundown collection of parks to an updated and modernized system of state parks and historic sites…
As chair of both the State Council of Parks and the Taconic Region State Parks Commission, Dr. Waletzky, along with many of her fellow members, has partnered with OSI on other projects aimed at elevating state parks and making them more enjoyable to visitors.
Take a few minute to click on the photos link helpfully provided and bolded as part of the news release. These people just love pictures of themselves enjoying their opulence. It’s how they impress their peers. It’s why there are such things as the party picture pages of the New York Social Diary and the New York Times still reports high-society weddings.
Peruse the pictures and experience for yourself the incredibly fake world in which these fractivist enablers live. It’s one far removed from the lives of the ordinary people of upstate New York. The common upstater simply want to survive the destitution that pervades so much of the Southern Tier. OSI has no interest in him or her. It’s only desire is to make a wilderness of what they own—a wilderness for the enjoyment of its own class.
You’ll find numerous pictures of the John Adams family, the dapper fellow who co-founded the NRDC and its Open Space Institute (OSI) spin-off. He then established his son Ramsay as the Catskill Mountainkeeper, a spin-off of the spin-off. The Mountainkeeper organization has acted as the tip of the fractivist spear in fighting both fracking and pipelines in the Empire State. The nitty-gritty work, though, has been done by true believers such as Wes Gillingham, while Ramsay attends parties at the upper crust Metropolitan Club, founded by J. P. Morgan. (Be sure to also check out that website for additional photos that will take your breath away if you’re a guy or gal trying to make a living, raise kids and pay exorbitant Empire State taxes in the Southern Tier of the state.)
Returning to the celebration photos, you’ll find at least one of Joe Martens, the OSI guy shipped off to run New York State DEC long enough to kill fracking and then welcomed back to a cushy job. There are several other fractivist kingpins, as well.
Then, there’s Larry Rockefeller, Lucy’s brother. Larry is a land developer and has spent three or more decades creating a private and very exclusive Rockefeller and friends preserve in the Catskills. He’s using John Adams and OSI as a front as the clan has worked to make a wilderness of the land upstaters have called home. They want ever more wilderness as a buffer around their preserve and more places to play elsewhere in the state.
There’s also former Governor George Pataki, who helped make their land scams possible. He facilitated the state loaning money intended for economic development to OSI to buy land they could then strip the development rights from and then sell back to the state for wildly inflated prices. This feathered the Rockefeller nest in three ways. It got them additional wilderness, of course. It also provided earnings to be used to rinse and repeat. Finally, it helped pay Kim Elliman, heir to the Rockefeller fortune, over $500,000 in salaries and bennies; like the guy needed any of it.
The OSI board, of course, overlaps that of the NRDC, the Catskill Mountainkeeper and other Rockefeller enterprises. The family tree of the NRDC gang is, as they say, a wreath. That’s why they find nothing at all unusual about one cousin feting another and not mentioning the relationship—it’s a given. The club simply isn’t that big and it’s all for the high-society picture sharing anyway.
The members of the club, including Lucy, are also passionate fractivist enablers. John Adams may be the biggest of all in setting up his beer-making son Ramsay Adams as the Catskill Mountainkeeper, of course, but the money comes from the Rockefeller family itself, which is used to fund a multitude of fractivist initiatives, especially in New York and environs where gas leasing would be a big obstacle to making that wilderness.
The Rockefellers aren’t the only fractivist enablers, of course. The Haas (William Penn Foundation), Heinz and Park families are in there, too, as is Tom Steyer, who made his fortune in fossil fuels and now hopes to repeat with investments in “green energy,” just like the Rockefellers. Steyer’s brother Hume R. Steyer also happens to be a trustee of OSI, uniting the old money and special interests with the new. Indeed, OSI’s 2016 IRS 990 return indicates the following:
HUME STEYER IS A TRUSTEE OF BOTH OSI AND OSILT. MR STEYER AND THE LAW FIRM WHERE HE IS A PARTNER REPRESENT SEVERAL HEDGE FUNDS THAT ARE OSILT INVESTMENTS. MR STEYER ALSO REPRESENTS MEMBERS OF A FAMILY WHO SOLD LAND TO OSILT.
“OSILT” is the Open Space Institute Land Trust, a separate entity designed facilitate OSI land transactions. This brief paragraph not only demonstrates the connections between the Rockefeller and Steyer clans, but also provides a window into the way things work in the world of fractivist enablers and the nature of their real interests. This is the world of Larry and Lucy Rockefeller and the Steyers, who honor each other’s interests and massage each other’s egos as they steal the land out from under upstaters. That’s what happened at the Metropolitan Club the other day.