The Can Kicks Back
Learn more about Pete Peterson-funded astroturf projects at the Fix the Debt Portal.
The Can Kicks Back (TCKB) describes itself as a "non-partisan, Millennial-driven campaign to fix the national debt and reclaim our American Dream."
According to the Washington Post, The Can Kicks Back is a "group of young deficit hawks making it their mission to warn the Millennial Generation about the dangers of an out-of-control deficit." The group is the champion of stunts and videos, like handing out bags of empty tin cans to reporters and teaching Alan Simpson to dance Gangnam style (see video). Simpson and Erskine Bowles of the Simpson-Bowles Commission are on the group's board, and it has the same goal as the campaign to Fix the Debt (a "grand bargain" by July 4; see below for more).
TCKB has been fiscally sponsored by the Concerned Youth of America, a 501(c)(3) organization. According to GuideStar, Concerned Youth for America's "exempt status was automatically revoked by the IRS on February 22, 2012 for failure to file a Form 990... for 3 consecutive years." Financial information about the group is not available as of January 23, 2013. As of February 2013, it appears now to be part of the "Fix the Debt" campaign, putting Fix the Debt's logo on its website and videos.
Ties to Pete Peterson's "Fix the Debt"
The Campaign to Fix the Debt is the latest incarnation of a decades-long effort by former Nixon man turned Wall Street billionaire Pete Peterson to slash earned benefit programs such as Social Security and Medicare under the guise of fixing the nation's "debt problem."
The Can Kicks Back is a partner organization in the Fix the Debt Campaign. The Can Kicks Back is not listed on the Peter G. Peterson Foundation website as a current project. From materials put out by the group, it appears to be not only a partner but a project of the Peterson-funded Fix the Debt campaign. TCKB shares office space with NAF and NAF's Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB), but Fix the Debt references it as an independent group, as can be seen from this Facebook post:
This article is part of the Center for Media and Democracy's investigation of Pete Peterson's Campaign to "Fix the Debt." Please visit our main SourceWatch page on Fix the Debt.
|About Fix the Debt|
The Campaign to Fix the Debt is the latest incarnation of a decades-long effort by former Nixon man turned Wall Street billionaire Pete Peterson to slash earned benefit programs such as Social Security and Medicare under the guise of fixing the nation's "debt problem." Through a special report and new interactive wiki resource, the Center for Media and Democracy -- in partnership with the Nation magazine -- exposes the funding, the leaders, the partner groups, and the phony state "chapters" of this astroturf supergroup. Learn more at PetersonPyramid.org and in the Nation magazine.
"Three-A-Week" Recruitment Challenge
The "Three-A-Week" Recruitment Challenge is a grassroots recruitment project launched by TCKB aimed at increasing "supporters" of their group by asking TCKB members to recruit three new supporters each week, who then recruit three more recruiters, etc., with President Obama's second inauguration as the deadline. The top recruiters are rewarded with prizes determined by TCKB. The group was also endorsed by Senator Alan Simpson, who made a video as a part of the "Three-A-Week" challenge imploring young Americans to use social media as a tool to encourage their peers to join The Can Kicks Back. The video featured Alan Simpson doing a viral dance move known as "Gangnam Style."
- Brandon Aitchison
- Michael Eisenstadt
- Jake Parent
- Ryan Schoenike: Executive Director
- Nick Troiano: Field Director
- Joshua Boone: Legal Advisor
- Tierra Warren: Finance Advisor
Resources and Articles
Featured SourceWatch Articles on Fix the Debt
- Fix the Debt Portal Page
- Fix the Debt's Leadership
- Fix the Debt's Partner Groups
- Fix the Debt's State Chapters
- Fix the Debt's Lobbyists
- Fix the Debt's Parent Group
- Fix the Debt's Corporations
- Pete Peterson
- Peter G. Peterson Foundation
- America Speaks
- New America Foundation (NAF)
- Simpson-Bowles Commission
- Erskine Bowles
- Alan Simpson
- Social Security
- Nancy Cook, Billionaire Peterson Sounds Alarm on Deficit, National Journal, November 26, 2012.
- Paul Blumenthal and Christina Wilkie, Fix The Debt Campaign's Bipartisan Veneer Masks Conservative Backing, Huffington Post, December 3, 2012.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 "About The Can Kicks Back", The Can Kicks Back, Accessed January 16, 2013.
- ↑ Suzy Khimm, Meet the millennial deficit hawks, Washington Post, November 12, 2012.
- ↑ Jeremy Duda, Just got a bag of empty soda cans from Fix The Debt delivered to me at work to urge feds to "stop kicking the can down the road." Cute., tweet, Twitter.com, January 15, 2013.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 "GuideStar", Guide Star Non-Profit Database, Accessed January 23, 2013.
- ↑ "Partners", Fix the Debt, Accessed January 25, 2013.
- ↑ Paul Blumenthal and Christina Wilkie, Fix The Debt Campaign's Bipartisan Veneer Masks Conservative Backing, Huffington Post, December 3, 2012.
- ↑ Peter G. Peterson Foundation, New America Foundation/Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, organizational website, accessed January 2013.
- ↑ Public Accountability Initiative, "Peter G Peterson Interlocks: People in Common Orgs" LittleSis, Accessed January 17, 2012.
- ↑ "Three-A-Week Recruitment Challenge", The Can Kicks Back, Accessed January 18, 2013.
- ↑ "Video: Take the 'Three-A-Week' Challenge", YouTube, Accessed January 20, 2013.
- ↑ The Can Kicks Back, "Advisory Board", group website, accessed January 16, 2013.
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 The Can Kicks Back, "TCKB Team", group website, accessed January 16, 2013.