Category: Celebrities

No business for amateur philanthropists: Part 3, abuse

21 November, 2012 (12:13) | Celebrities, Charities, Development, Disaster relief, Haiti, Housing, Nonprofits, Theory, Urban renewal, Wyclef Jean, Yele |

[Continued from yesterday's Part 2 and the preceding Part 1.]   By:David A. Smith   Now, after two days of demolishing the reputation of Wyclef Jean’s charity, Yele, using evidence presented in an exhaustive article in New York Times (October 11, 2012), the Times reporter settles down to presenting the material for a corruption indictment: […]

No business for amateur philanthropists: Part 2, fraud

20 November, 2012 (09:30) | Celebrities, Charities, Development, Disaster relief, Haiti, Housing, Nonprofits, Theory, Urban renewal, Wyclef Jean, Yele |

[Continued from yesterday''s Part 1.]   By:David A. Smith   Yesterday’s post used a thorough and heartbreaking article in New York Times (October 11, 2012) to introduce Wyclef Jean’s now-defunct charity, Yele, and showed how it was part and parcel of a life story he was weaving in which heroic young Wyclef makes a success […]

No business for amateur philanthropists: Part 1, waste

19 November, 2012 (14:05) | Celebrities, Charities, Development, Disaster relief, Haiti, Housing, Nonprofits, Theory, Urban renewal, Wyclef Jean, Yele |

By:David A. Smith   Charity is easy; work is hard; so ‘charitable work’ may be an oxymoron, and this most recent celebrity flameout demonstrates that of all the people with whom one might entrust one’s philanthropy, celebrities are surely the worst, for their fame deludes both them and us into thinking they are competent at […]

The problem with celebrity philanthropy: Part 2, reality is tougher

27 May, 2011 (10:33) | Celebrities, Charities, Donors, Fame, Greg Mortenson, Kanye West, Madonna, Nonprofits, Philanthropy, US News |

By: David A. Smith    [Continued from yesterday's Part 1.]   Yesterday we sought reasons why celebrity charities so often flame out, from Louise Ciccone’s (Madonna’s) Raising Malawi, which not only abandoned its attempt to build a school but also is entangled with an IRS investigation to potential fraud and tax evasion, as reported in […]

The problem with celebrity philanthropy: Part 1, fame is addictive

26 May, 2011 (14:50) | Celebrities, Charities, Donors, Fame, Greg Mortenson, Kanye West, Madonna, Nonprofits, Philanthropy, US News |

By: David A. Smith    What is it with celebrities and philanthropy?    Look grateful, honey   I have a theory.   Put a dollar sign on it, Albert   It’s easy to see why celebrities are adopting charitable causes.  For those for whom personal brand is the basis of economic value, philanthropy has become […]