Clarice Feldman, at Pajamas Media, shows that our adversaries have long been buying influence in Congress and among the public by funding U.S. professors who advocate for them.
The funding, in the range of $600 million, can buy an awful lot of influence.
In arguing that it is crucial to address this issue more forcefully, Feldman offers the following, perfectly reasonable ”first step”:
the notion of foreign governments, especially those who pose national security issues for this nation, buying up or paying off like-minded professors or directing undue scholarship towards a benign reading of matters in their interest is especially troubling.
Aside from monitoring what information is made public, is there anything else that can be done? I think a first step would be for universities to adopt a code of conduct, requiring professors who speak publicly before Congress, in the media, and before public audiences to disclose any foreign funding of which they are the recipients . . . I can’t see why this policy merits objection from academia. Increasingly the public is used to and demanding transparency in all our institutions — why should universities and those who run them and work there be exempt? They have a unique ability to shape public opinion, and with that comes a special obligation to be candid about who’s footing the bills.