Whereas DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS before the 1990s moved Federal funding from New Deal and War on Poverty programs to expanded growth of a few corporations globally-----Clinton in the 1990s wanted to expand that public money being sent to Wall Street and global corporate expansion so he hastened the privatization of our public services and public works departments----that is our public utilities of electric, gas, and water/sewer=====our public works like roads, streets, sidewalks, bridges, parks===and our public services like our public transportation, parking, health and education. All of these functions then moved from our communities and city hall to more quasi-governmental organizations working under Baltimore Development Corporation. This gave us the Maryland Energy Authority privatizing our BGE----the Public Works Authority----The Parking Authority----and the Baltimore Housing Authority. Now the corporate fraud and corruption filled all public agencies as Baltimore Development and now these Authorities told citizens
NO TRANSPARENCY THIS IS ALL PROPRIETARY BUSINESS.
A city of working class and poor citizens would have been educated on public policy back in the late 1980s-1990s against the likes of Reagan/Clinton neo-liberalism and how Republicans were not REALLY pushing for FREE-MARKETS AND JOB CREATION with all these monopoly and subsidized selected winners and losers policies coming from DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS. They would also have been told that any graduate from Harvard and Yale, like Schmoke would be working for extreme wealth and Wall Street/global corporate power---not citizens, small business, and community development controlled by the people living in communities then. Baltimore built the most captured of media, captured Wall Street Development 'labor and justice' organizations just so the citizens of Baltimore could be fooled in voting these crony corrupt politicians moving these bad economic development policies.
So, Schmoke came on board with the goal of doing all of the above----the Clinton agenda of privatizing all that was public in our services and public works departments. Baltimore Development then became those Authorities as well. Keep in mind, as a State's Attorney in the 1980s---Schmoke would have been the one fighting against the misappropriation of all these New Deal/War on Poverty funds===but as with today's State's Attorney Elizabeth Embry all those funds continue to enrich the few in Baltimore---including the Embry family----the process filled with fraud and corruption because we have NO PUBLIC JUSTICE STRUCTURE.
In 1982 Schmoke ran for his first elected office. He challenged incumbent Baltimore City State's Attorney William A. Swisher in a city-wide contest. Swisher had won the job away from Milton B. Allen, Baltimore's first African American State's Attorney. Schmoke ran an energetic, grassroots and race-neutral campaign and upset Swisher in a landslide.
On November 3, 1987, he was elected mayor.
After leaving office in December 1999, Schmoke practiced law at the firm of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering in Baltimore.
Mayor Schmoke was the one posing progressive in using the Harlem Enterprise Zone model for developing underserved communities by lifting people in those communities with small businesses and housing ------and allowed it to take the form of Enterprise Zones for global corporate campuses and the affluent. This was the Clinton-era directive that moved our FHA, small business association, and HUD funding more and more towards this global corporate subsidized building and away from that FDR community for working and middle-class with strong public housing for the poor. Schmoke started installing the privatized university structures making our public universities into corporate campuses----the main reason our college campuses are not central in leading the protests against global Wall Street and US International Economic Zone city development. Schmoke called his terms BALTIMORE ---THE CITY THAT READS----and his education reforms created this mess of public schools deteriorating, citizens not able to read or do math from misappropriation of now our public education funding. This is when Baltimore's School Board was sent to state control so all this privatization could occur without Baltimore citizens having a voice. A billion dollars in Federal education funding was lost to Baltimore Public Schools during these periods.
Here we see Schmoke/Clinton Enterprise Zones were always a Republican development policy
'As secretary of Housing and Urban Development during the George H.W. Bush administration, Kemp continued to push hard for enterprise zones, which he liked to call empowerment zones. Legislation was finally enacted in 1993 and expanded in 1997 and by subsequent legislation'.
Mayor Schmoke has made Baltimore a national model for neighborhood revitalization. His community development projects include the transformation under way in the Sandtown-Winchester community in West Baltimore and the neighborhoods surrounding the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in East Baltimore. In 1994, these neighborhood revitalization efforts received a major boost when President Clinton selected Baltimore as one of only six Empowerment Zone cities in the nation. This designation brings millions in federal funds to support job development, housing, and social service projects in targeted, low-income neighborhoods, as well as tax credits and incentives for businesses located in these neighborhoods. As a result of its success in bringing jobs and businesses into the Zone, Baltimore has been recognized by the Clinton administration as a "top performer" among Empowerment Zone cities.
Who We Are
The Maryland Stadium Authority
In 1987, legislation was enacted approving Camden Yards as the site for the new stadium complex and granting to the Stadium Authority administrative and operational powers, including condemnation authority and a special financing mechanism.
Authority's responsibilities continued to expand as new projects began and were completed on time under our oversight. These projects included the design and construction of University Commons at the University of Maryland Baltimore County; demolition of Memorial Stadium, the Sports Complex at Towson University; the University of Maryland College Park Parking Garage; the Comcast Center at the University of Maryland College Park (the replacement for Cole Field House), Ripken Stadium, the Veterans’ Memorial and restoration of the historic Hippodrome Theater and Camden Station.
Current Maryland Stadium Authority projects are the Ocean City Performing Arts Center and Baltimore City Schools Replacement and Revitalization Program.
Below you see Schmoke's legacy tied to Clinton era policies PRETENDING TO BE PROGRESSIVE ---with the goal of moving all housing and development funding of underserved communities to these same global corporations and Wall Street tied to Baltimore Development these few decades. This article shows these policies as failures---but to Schmoke, Baltimore Development, and Johns Hopkins they were astounding success in moving hundreds of billions of dollars into Enterprise Zones to become US INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ZONE global corporate campuses like East Baltimore, Harbor East, and downtown.
Again, the media portrays these Wall Street Enterprise Zone policies as modeled after social Democratic FDR community development---they were sold that way----but the goal was always the opposite---AND CLINTON WAS ALWAYS A FAR-RIGHT REAGAN NEO-LIBERAL and not a Democrat. This is why we have our US cities in such a mess staged for global corporate campuses minus WE THE PEOPLE.
Below you see Obama doing the same community development policies as Clinton -----rebranding Enterprise Zones to PROMISE ZONES all designed to move money to the same corporate structures. This is happening because Obama is a far-right Clinton neo-liberal and NOT a social Democrat.
Officials said the administration hoped to expand to 20 Promise Zones by the time Mr. Obama leaves office.
Obama Announces ‘Promise Zones’ in 5 Poor Areas
By MICHAEL D. SHEARJAN. 9, 2014
President Obama at the White House with Kiara Molina and her classmates from the Harlem Children’s Zone Promise Academy. Credit Doug Mills/The New York Times
WASHINGTON — A year after promising to direct federal attention and support to needy areas across the country, President Obama said Thursday that the government would begin helping five economically hard-hit communities fight poverty and assist children.
In a ceremony in the East Room of the White House, Mr. Obama said the five areas would become “Promise Zones,” where federal agencies will cut through red tape in an effort to give struggling residents a chance at better lives.
“We will help them succeed,” Mr. Obama said as he stood with children who have benefited from a similar community in Harlem. “Not with a handout, but as partners with them, every step of the way. And we’re going to make sure it works.”
Each time we get these far-right extreme wealth and global corporate campus power policies POSING PROGRESSIVE----all the Wall Street Baltimore Development 'labor and justice' organizations probably built in the Schmoke-era come out promote and cheer for these same bad policies.
WAS IT A BIPARTISAN FAILURE OR DID REPUBLICANS RUNNING AS DEMOCRATS INSTALL VERY BAD COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT POLICY?
Enterprise Zones: A Bipartisan Failure
By Bruce Bartlett, The Fiscal Times
January 10, 2014
Powered by Newsmax.
The idea of targeting tax and other incentives to specific areas dates back at least to the 1968 presidential campaign, when both Richard Nixon and Bobby Kennedy endorsed the idea. In the 1970s, the idea was picked up in England, where more than two dozen enterprise zones were established.
In the 1980s, New York Reps. Jack Kemp and Robert Garcia, the former a Republican and the latter a Democrat, cosponsored legislation to create enterprise zones in the U.S. But they failed to get Congressional approval, although some state-level enterprise zones were created.
As secretary of Housing and Urban Development during the George H.W. Bush administration, Kemp continued to push hard for enterprise zones, which he liked to call empowerment zones. Legislation was finally enacted in 1993 and expanded in 1997 and by subsequent legislation. In 2000, Congress enacted the New Markets Tax Credit as an additional enterprise zone incentive. Thus we now have considerable experience with the enterprise zone idea in operation.
Unfortunately, the evidence shows that enterprise zones are at best a very weak generator of jobs. The U.S. Government Accountability Office has done several studies and concluded that there was no significant difference in economic growth or job creation inside the enterprise zones from the surrounding area.
Academic research confirms this conclusion. A 2006 article in the Journal of Urban Affairs found only a few instances in which economic activity in the zone was better than that in comparable areas outside the zone. An article in the Economic Development Quarterly in 2009 found “no evidence that these enterprise zones affected the employment of zone residents.” An article in the Journal of Urban Economics in 2010 found, “The evidence indicates that enterprise zones do not increase employment.”
The evidence is equally weak regarding the New Markets Tax Credit. A 2009 article in the Public Finance Review found no change in investment in low-income communities. A report on the tax credit for the Treasury Department by the Urban Institute in 2013 found that job creation was small and carried a high cost, averaging $53,162 in tax credits for each job created.
There are a variety of reasons for why enterprise zones have failed. One is that businesses simply gamed the system and figured out ways to get the tax cuts without doing much of anything in return, something economists call “rent-seeking.” Often, the “job creation” in the zones resulted simply from the relocation of business just outside the zone into the zone. Another problem is that high taxes are not a significant reason why businesses don’t invest in the inner cities now. It’s more because they lack an educated labor force, transportation, a local population with purchasing power and other factors that the enterprise zone concept didn’t address.
Supporters refuse to acknowledge that enterprise zones were a good idea that was worth trying and just didn’t work. Instead, they keep beating this dead horse as if it is still an untried idea from which we have no experience of failure. On Dec. 18, Sens. Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell, both of Kentucky, proposed new enterprise zone legislation as if they just came up with the idea for the first time.
It is tempting to members of both parties to come up with a place-oriented policy that targets the problems of poverty and unemployment in high-profile locations where they are especially bad. In theory, a relatively small amount of money can be leveraged to jump-start growth in areas where there may be positive spillover effects.
This approach is attractive in an era when government resources are severely limited. Democrats are unable to repeat Lyndon Johnson’s “war on poverty,” which was launched 50 years ago this month, while the sorts of big tax cuts implemented by Ronald Reagan 33 years ago are also off the table due to the budget deficit.
Perhaps the new Obama administration initiative will add something new to the tried-and-failed enterprise zone strategy of the last 20 years. But I am extremely doubtful. To me, this looks like the equivalent of establishing a government commission to investigate a problem; that is, a way to appear to be doing something about it without really doing anything at all.
O'Malley was in Baltimore City Hall while Baltimore Development Corporation was in full swing---moving all funding to Wall Street and the expansion of Johns Hopkins into every industry in the city. He was supporting Schmoke's policies Schmoke was supporting Clinton's policies---and all bound Baltimore City Hall to Wall Street Baltimore Development controlling all Federal, state, and local government revenue coming to Baltimore. The 1990s were when US cities losing our industrial economic base SHOULD HAVE REBUILT SMALL BUSINESS/SMALL MANUFACTURING LOCAL ECONOMIC STRUCTURES ----but instead more quasi-governmental organizations were created moving more and more funds to now expanding Wall Street and global corporations overseas.
This was O'Malley's legacy as he introduced entities like The Parking Authority, The Housing Authority, handed our public water and sewage to global corporate control.
As Maryland privatized BGE ----O'Malley was privatizing our water and sewage---and what were public agencies tasked with not only OPERATING our energy and water/waste sector---but MAINTAINING AND UPGRADING them as well. Each time a citizen pays a monthly BGE/water bill revenue is required to be set aside to maintain and upgrade energy power lines/natural gas lines/water and waste pipelines. We had ENERGY/WATER TRUST FUNDS set aside with those funds ready to do so----all that money was privatized and handed to Baltimore Development to use in Wall Street/global corporate campus development. This was the period where citizens in Baltimore having paid for decades to have BGE/water/waste infrastructure ALREADY DONE AND PAID FOR-----are now being told they have to have rate increases soaring costs because what was supposed to be used during the Schmoke/O'Malley terms were misappropriated to Wall Street Baltimore Development.
In 1988, O'Malley was hired as an assistant State's Attorney for the City of Baltimore, holding that position until 1990. In 1991, he was elected to the Baltimore City Council to represent the 3rd District and served from 1991 to 1999. As Councilman, he served as Chairman of the Legislative Investigations Committee and Chairman of the Taxation and Finance Committee.
Mayor of Baltimore
O'Malley announced his decision to run for Mayor of Baltimore in 1999, after incumbent Kurt Schmoke decided not to seek re-election. In his campaign, O'Malley focused on reducing crime, and received the endorsement of several key African-American lawmakers and church leaders, as well as that of former Mayor of Baltimore and Maryland governor, William Donald Schaefer. On September 14, O'Malley won the Democratic primary with 53%. O'Malley went on to win the general election with 90% of the vote, defeating Republican nominee David Tufaro.
In 2003, O'Malley ran for re-election. He was challenged in the Democratic primary by four candidates, but defeated them with 67% of the vote. In the general election, he won re-election with 87% of the vote
O'Malley captured for Wall Street and global corporations our Housing and Parking agencies by creating these quasi-organizations----now we know the amount of fraud and corruption in these NGOs is MASSIVE. Again, citizens are told we cannot have TRANSPARENCY because these agencies are now PROPRIETARY business.
We oversee the management of 17 parking garages and numerous lots, over 850 EZ Park Meters, over 1,500 reserved residential handicap parking spaces, and 46 residential permit parking areas.
The mission of the Parking Authority of Baltimore City is to find, or create, and implement parking solutions for Baltimore City, and to be the resource on all things "parking" in Baltimore.
History / Creation
The Parking Authority was created by City Ordinance 2000-71 to enhance Baltimore City's position in planning, development, management and operations of its parking institution. A five member without compensation Board of Directors for which 4 are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by City Council and 1 is a member of the City Council appointed by the City Council President governs the Authority. Each member of the Board serves a 3 year staggered term any may be removed at will by the appointing representative. The Authority's staff is employed to administer the Authority's programs and fulfill the decisions of the Board.
PABC is a “quasi” governmental agency of Baltimore City. We are also a registered 501c3.
Today, the result of Clinton/Bush era privatization of all that is public ---in this case our PARKING AUTHORITY ----has created nothing but fraud, from purchasing, operations, maintenance AND these parking authorities are now controlled by global investment firms. We do not read as much on fraud and corruption discovery in Baltimore because we have NO OVERSIGHT AND ACCOUNTABILITY unlike cities across the US but we have lots of research saying this is organized crime.
KEEP IN MIND----THESE POLICIES ALL STEM FROM DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS------
Fraud doubles with $10M parking upgrade
A $10 million upgrade of credit card readers in the Toronto Parking Authority's pay-and-display parking meters that was supposed to make them fraud resistant has actually resulted in a doubling of fraudulent use, a city audit has found.
By Jack_LakeyThe Fixer
Thu., June 18, 2009
I understand citizens in Baltimore know all these problems exist in handing city hall over to Wall Street Baltimore Development but our new citizens may not----and many citizens do not know how their leaders became Wall Street players
Public parking garages used to be free------then they charged a small fee----now you have to go to credit card to pay for parking lot fees with garages and lots crumbling from no upgrades.
Wednesday, July 13th, 2016Inside City Hall
The Dripby Mark Reutter4:12 pmJun 29, 20120
Inside City Hall: Parking garage operators get no-bid extensions
A range of management fees charged to the Parking Authority.
In a little-noticed item approved without comment on Wednesday, the Board of Estimates signed off on no-bid extensions of management contracts to run some of the city’s main parking garages.
The deal, requested by the Parking Authority for Baltimore City, obliges the quasi-public agency to pay $3.57 million in management fees to four operators, led by the ubiquitous PMS Parking group headed by Amsale Geletu, a certified woman-owned business.
PMS, Landmark Parking, LAZ Parking Mid-Atlantic and Republic Parking Systems were awarded the management contracts some 15 months ago.
The contracts were set to expire tomorrow (June 30), but the parking agency blew the deadline for writing up new agreements. Hence, the old contracts will stay in effect until December 31, 2013.
The Penn Station Garage boasts the highest management fee per space under a contract approved by the Board of Estimates. (Photo by Mark Reutter)
All this was explained in the unique nomenclature of the Board of Estimates agenda: “. . . efforts [to write the new agreements] have been delayed due to the Parking Authority experiencing significant disruption in the personnel charged with oversight and administration of this and other management agreements, and the procurement of new management agreements.”
As a result, “This amendment to the original agreement provides additional funding to pay for anticipated operating expenses and compensates the organization during the extended term upon the original compensation structure.”
Costs Vary Among Garages
The breakdowns of the individual parking contracts provide some interesting reading. Take the cost of security over the 18-month extension period.
Republic Parking will be paid $211,000 for providing security at the Lexington Market parking garage. (Photo by Mark Reutter)
It ranges from a low of $4,000 for the Fleet and Eden Garage in Fells Point to a high of $211,000 for the Market Center Garage serving Lexington Market.
The charges for maintenance also vary widely.
PMS will maintain and repair the 376-space Franklin Street Garage for $275,888 under the extended agreement.
Landmark, on the other hand, is authorized to bill the city 2½ times that amount ($670,000) for the somewhat larger (525 space) Penn Station Garage.
Even with its high security costs, Market Center is not the costliest municipal garage under private management.
That honor goes to the Penn Station Garage used chiefly by Amtrak and MARC customers. The management fee over the next 18 months amounts to $1,533 per parking space.
The Parking Authority is one of those quasi-public governmental entities – others include the Baltimore Development Corp. and Baltimore Hotel Corp., owner of Hilton Baltimore – whose stated mission is “to enhance Baltimore City’s position in planning, development, management and operations of its parking institution.”
Its budget is not part of the annual city budget approved by the City Council. Its five-member board consists of four people appointed by the mayor and one by the City Council president. The direct link to the mayor is through Director of Finance Harry E. Black, who sits on the board.
In addition to administering 17 municipal garages and 23 surface lots, the Parking Authority operates the residential parking permit program.
Here is a breakdown of the fees to be charged for the extended contracts:
Caroline St. Garage, 325 spaces, operator PMS, management fee: $350,027, or $1,077 per space.
Little Italy Garage, 399 spaces, operator PMS, management fee: $387,363, or $971 per space.
St. Paul Place Garage, 500 spaces, operator PMS and LAZ Parking Mid-Atlantic, management fee: $533,668, or $1,067 per space.
Franklin St. Garage, 376 spaces, operators PMS and LAZ Parking Mid-Atlantic, management fee: $331,888, or $883 per space.
Market Center Garage, 606 spaces, operator Republic Parking Systems, management fee: $651,791, or $1,076 per space.
Penn Station Garage, 525 spaces, operator Landmark Parking, management fee: $804,933, or $1,533 per space.
Fleet and Eden Garage, 815 spaces, operator, Landmark Parking, management fee: $507,273, or $622 per space.
The O'Malley era as Mayor of Baltimore brought the expansion of Wall Street Baltimore Development to multiple quasi-branches. So now we have Hopkins' East Baltimore Development, Hopkins' Homewood Development both telling us they are not Hopkins BUT THEY ARE. O'Malley got the progressive posing HARLEM Enterprise Zone funding directed at building a global corporate Hopkins' East campus sending ALL Federal, state, and local revenue to this 'community development' project all part of this MASTER PLAN from the late 1980s-early 1990s making Baltimore into a US International Economic Zone----called free-trade/free market/corporate tax-free----NOTHING FREE FOR BALTIMORE TAXPAYERS----ALL THAT WE PAY IN TAXES IS BUILDING ALL THIS community development.
All the leaders knew from the start this East Baltimore development was a global Hopkins campus---they know now that the goal is to take Hopkins East and join Hopkins Homewood for one great big global Hopkins campus taking all of Baltimore City Center.
Neither Schmoke nor O'Malley HAD to follow Clinton/Bush far-right global corporate DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION format----they could have been REAL Democrats and taken the city to a strong, local small business economy rebuilding each community for the citizens living in those communities.
THEY CHOSE TO BE WALL STREET EXTREME WEALTH AND GLOBAL CORPORATE POWER PLAYERS.
By the end of O'Malley's terms we had super-sized the number of quasi-governmental organizations, created a complete system of outsourced public agencies to global corporations and corporate non-profits giving absolutely NO public voice in policy----all government funding going outside of our government coffers----with complete dismantling of all oversight and accountability setting the stage for the massive Wall Street and corporate frauds these few decades of tens of trillions of dollars.
THE TAMMANY HALL TO ROBBER BARONS LOOKS TODAY WHAT IT LOOKED LIKE IN THE LATE 1890s through the economic crash leading to the Great Depression--- these few decades were the ROARING 20s of Wall Street fraud and DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION structures facilitated all this.
Since its founding in 2003 to manage the project, East Baltimore Development Inc. has relocated 584 families to healthier neighborhoods and cleared 31 acres.
East Baltimore Development, Inc. (EBDI) is a 501 [c]  established by community, government, institutional and philanthropic partners to revitalize, re-energize and rebuild the East Baltimore neighborhood by:
- Leveraging proximity to the Johns Hopkins medical complex into a stronger economic driver for the neighborhood – increasing investment and employment in medical and life sciences industries but also capturing a greater community contribution from students, employees, faculty and visitors.
- Making the demolition, construction and development activities undertaken as part of this initiative produce significant economic benefit to residents and businesses of East Baltimore while growing the life sciences industry of Baltimore.
- Strengthening and revitalizing greater Middle East Baltimore with institutions and amenities that will encourage former residents to return and new residents to settle in this community.
- Replacing aging, obsolete, lead-filled houses with new units of mixed income rental and sale that meet the needs of today’s families.
- And in doing these things, ensuring that those families directly affected by the redevelopment be treated more fairly, more supportively and more respectfully than has yet been the case in projects of this nature across the country.
Greater Homewood Community Corporation
3503 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21218
PHONE: (410) 261-3519
FAX: (410) 261-3506
CONTACT: Lee Domeika, Volunteer Coordinator
Function of Organization/Site
:Strengthen neighborhoods in Greater Homewood through improving education, supporting youth development, and advancing economic development and community revitalization.
- Mentoring Youth
- Tutoring Adults and Children
- Special Events
- Neighborhood Clean-ups
Mayors Dixon/Rawlings-Blake oversaw the installation of global corporations operating all public agencies----
As someone who REALLY loves Baltimore----and likes the communities we have if only they were developed.....and as an academic tied to working at what Hopkins has to offer----
WE ALL KNOW HOPKINS HAS GAINED TOO MUCH CONTROL OVER DEVELOPMENT THAT IS NOT GOOD FOR 'ONE BALTIMORE'.
This is where the goals of the 1980s-1990s Master Plan for Baltimore starts to become clear-----ONE BALTIMORE to Wall Street Baltimore Development is a giant global corporate Hopkins campus taking all of city center moving Baltimore's city line to that city center. THIS IS ONE BALTIMORE AS A ONE WORLD US INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ZONE-----taking the form of a global CITY STATE.
There are not many people in Baltimore wanting THAT development goal and I will shout to all immigrants brought as students or labor---you don't want this kind of development either.
The next two Mayor's of Baltimore----Dixon and Rawlings-Blake called part of the O'MALLEY POLITICAL MACHINE----moved these DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS AND QUASI-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS from expanding Hopkins globally to handing all our public infrastructure to global corporations. So, O'Malley becomes Governor of Maryland telling these mayors how to privatize on grander scales.
Through Obama's terms of continuing these Wall Street Development Corporation control of all US city development we now have what is that global corporations----acting as a quasi-governmental entity itself----being what we knew all the time was A GLOBAL HEALTH CORPORATION. So, Obama now expands the Federal funding being directed at growing Hopkins into a global corporation by sending FEDERAL FUNDING FOR MEDICAL RESEARCH FACILITIES aimed right at mostly IVY LEAGUE universities having already been made CORPORATE R & D. Anyone who is a academic at universities through this Clinton/Schmoke----now Obama/Rawlings-Blake knows an entire middle-class was wiped out with this movement of corporations into our university research structure. What were once corporate R & D staff----from director scientists, to lab managers, to lab technicians---all earning a middle-class wage----now enfolded into universities---both private and public---with the staff being almost all students---undergrad and grad---with a director earning millions of dollars.
THIS IS THE BLOOMBERG UNIVERSITY---ONCE JOHNS HOPKINS AND THESE ARE THE WHITE 5% TO THE 1% THAT NEED TO GET OUT OF OUR BALTIMORE PUBLIC POLICY----
All of the Hopkins' development corporations listed above are working to install this giant global corporate campus that is HOPKINS AS CITY CENTER. The goal will have this city center filled with the 1% rich bringing their 2% uber rich controlling global corporate campus white collar and global factory operations.
Michael R. Bloomberg commits $350 million to Johns Hopkins for transformational academic initiative
New York Mayor believed first to give lifetime $1 billion to one U.S. higher education institution
Diversified Consumer ServicesCompany Overview of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Keep in mind----the transition of Hopkins from a small private college to a global corporation having corporations in all industries----was funded almost completely from Federal New Deal and War on Poverty----from misappropriation of all revenue coming to Baltimore for development----from taking control of all public agencies and moving those revenue to itself----during mostly CLINTON/BUSH/OBAMA.
Baltimore communities crumbling and in decay----citizens living third world lives-----complete stagnation of local economies----is what we get when DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS WERE INSTALLED.
Now, for many in Baltimore this is a race and class issue. It was fine early on to manipulate these funds if it did not harm city center. Today we see city center becoming a US International Economic Zone making everyone a colonial entity with no US Constitution, no US Rule of Law, no rights as citizens, with goals of taking these US cities to being INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC CITY STATES operating under a global corporate tribunal as they do in third world nations---and we see ALL CITIZENS IN BALTIMORE WAKING UP! Whether the 5% to to 1%---whether the working or middle-class---even the poor who have been treated with huge injustice need to think what Asian third world authoritarian 1% extreme wealth and extreme poverty looks like-----
THAT IS TO WHERE WALL STREET BALTIMORE DEVELOPMENT WAS TAKING US IN 1980s-1990s-----THE MASTER PLAN----and that is to where next decade's MOVING FORWARD has future DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS---like UnderArmour's SAGAMORE----will take us.
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health INSIDERS ON Board Members
Name (Connections)RelationshipsTitleAgeThere is no Company Insiders data available.Other Board Members on Board MembersName (Connections)RelationshipsType of Board MembersPrimary CompanyAge
Edward Ludwig 163 RelationshipsChairman of Advisory BoardAetna Inc.65
Robert Abernethy 84 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins University76
C. Sylvia Brown 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
George Bunting Jr.108 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardThe Abell Foundation, Inc.75
Richard Danziger 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
B. G. Dawkins 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Manual Dupkin II34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Howard Friedman 44 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardLanx Management, LLC50
William Flumenbaum 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Paul Gertman 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Robert Greene 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Donald Henderson 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Frank Hurley Ph.D.49 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardRRD International, LLC--
Carolyn Langfitt 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Adel Mahmoud M.D., Ph.D.92 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardInovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc.75
Thomas McCann 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
George Morrow 77 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardAlign Technology Inc.64
Morris Offit 115 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardOffit Capital Advisors LLC79
David Paton 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
David Rothkopf 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardGraham Holdings Company60
Katharine Russell 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Beth Seidenberg M.D.136 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardKleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers59
Huntington Sheldon Ph.D.75 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins University-
James Sprague 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Shale Stiller Esq.97 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardThe Johns Hopkins Hospital--
Adena Testa Esq.75 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins University--
Eleanor Trowbridge 34 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health--
Paul Diaz 73 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardKindred Healthcare Inc.54
Roger Lipitz 75 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins University--
Michael Bronfein CPA53 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardRemedi Seniorcare Holding Corporation60
Thomas DeRosa 60 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardWelltower Inc.58
Pamela Contag Ph.D.52 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardCobalt Technologies, Inc.59
Lenox Baker Jr., M.D. 124 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardJohns Hopkins University74
Christopher Jones 53 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardMotion Equity Partners S.A.S61
Douglass Given M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A.76 RelationshipsMember of Advisory BoardVivaldi Biosciences, Inc.64
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Company LookupMost Connected People on the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health BoardNameRelationships
Edward J. Ludwig 163 Relationships
Beth C. Seidenberg M.D.136 Relationships
Lenox D. Baker Jr., M.D. 124 Relationships
Morris Wolf Offit 115 Relationships
George L. Bunting Jr.108 RelationshipsSponsored Financial CommentariesSponsored Links
A BETTER BALTIMORE APPEARS TO START WITH A DOWN-SIZED JOHNS HOPKINS MINUS DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS WITH THEIR COMMUNITY ASSOCIATIONS----
This is a long article but does a good job summing the effects DEVELOPMENT CORPORATIONS as community development has left Baltimore. Johns Hopkins the abolitionist embracing social justice becomes Johns Hopkins----global slave trading bringing third world enslavement back to the US under US International Economic Zones under Trans Pacific Trade Pact and global corporate campuses/global factories.
During this CLINTON/BUSH/OBAMA ERA OF FAR-RIGHT 1% WALL STREET GLOBAL CORPORATE POWER----HOPKINS WENT FROM SMALL PRIVATE COLLEGE TO BUILDING A GLOBAL HUMAN CAPITAL LABOR TRANSPORT----SIMPLY CALLED THE SLAVE TRADE. This is the current state of BUILDING DENSITY in Baltimore as a US International Economic Zone---everyone in ---no one out of third world living and wage structure with Bloomberg University ---formerly Johns Hopkins.
Below you see the 2016 primary election race for the next Mayor of Baltimore-----and corruption and fraud in elections is what kept these very, very, very, very bad DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION structures in place.
CINDY WALSH FOR MAYOR OF BALTIMORE WAS NOT IMPLICATED IN THE PANAMA PAPERS AS I AM NOT TIED TO WALL STREET BALTIMORE DEVELOPMENT.
Hopkins of course embraced the Cordish family and has a MUSEUM OF LACROSSE paid for by Cordish.
Which Baltimore officials are implicated in the Panama Papers?
A major Baltimore political power broker has his capital in Mossack Fonseca's offshore tax havens. How many of Baltimore's candidates and elected officials have taken his dirty money?
April 8. 2016
Zachary Gallant is an editor-at-large for the Leveller
@ZACHARYGALLANTBaltimore, it may interest you to know that many of your local elected officials are implicated in the Panama Papers. The Cordish family, which is tied to the Baltimore City Housing Authority, Johns Hopkins, Loyola, the Harbor Endowment Foundation, and is a major contributor to Martin-Lauer Associates’ clients, has huge assets in Mossack Fonseca.
The Baltimore Brew reports that Cordish is a big donor to mayoral candidate Carl Stokes and a client of City Council candidate Eric Costello. And of course Cordish was also a major backer of Mayor Rawlings-Blake. Also, according to Luke Broadwater at the Baltimore Sun, Cordish-tied donors have given big to Elizabeth Embry’s campaign. So, that’s Elizabeth Embry, Carl Stokes, Eric Costello & Stephanie Rawlings-Blake whose campaign cash is tied to the offshore tax havens in the Panama Papers. And as Cordish is linked to Colleen Martin-Lauer, then the possibility is very real that Martin-Lauer clients get Cordish cash, which could implicate Marilyn and Nick Mosby, Pete Welch, Mary-Pat Clarke, Brandon Scott, Sharon Greene Middleton & Bill Cole.
Of course it’s not just Baltimore City officials taking Cordish money. Dave donates big nationally. Major Cordish family individual contributions have gone from John Kasich to Hillary Clinton (whose is also linked to other big shots implicated in the Panama Papers) and everywhere between, and of course nearly every Maryland congressperson gets Cordish corporate cash, as did President Obama and Lindsay Graham.
Corruption in Panama’s offshore tax havens links to corruption in Baltimore City, in Kiev, in Tbilisi, in Washington and Westminster. The release of this information is being managed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project.
'Johns Hopkins University and Hospital were created in 1873 by a $7,000,000 bequeathal (adjusted for inflation, that would be equivalent to over $137,000,000 today), split equally between the two, in the will of Quaker banker, financier and abolitionist Johns Hopkins. The Hopkins family, a dynasty of unbelievable plantation wealth, freed their slaves when Johns was 12 years old, out of a commitment to the Quaker faith. Despite this rejection of slavery, the house of Hopkins did not seem to suffer materially, as Johns died one of the wealthiest men in America at age 78. It is always possible to find fault after the fact with historical figures such as Hopkins, but his anti-racism was among the most impressive of his era, mandating as he did at his death that his hospital admit black patients, while leaving additional sums to care for the poor black former-slaves-cum-citizens of Baltimore and additionally leaving the funds for an orphanage for black children'.
First, Do No Harm? The Johns Hopkins System’s Toxic Legacy in Baltimore
A long-read of labor abuses, tax avoidance, back-channel political donations, shady development, human experimentation, and official non-apologies by Baltimore’s most powerful institution.
August 18. 2015
Zachary Gallant is an editor-at-large for the Leveller
The Johns Hopkins Campus
Johns Hopkins Hospital has for over a generation been considered one of the world’s preeminent hospitals, ranking as the USA’s top hospital in US News & World Report from 1991 to 2011, and again in 2013. The same publication has ranked Johns Hopkins University as one of America’s top 15 universities since 2008. The Hospital and University, though officially run separately, comprise the Johns Hopkins System, Baltimore City’s largest and ostensibly most important employer. On the macro level, Johns Hopkins has absolutely earned its world class reputation: Hopkins has some of the most brilliant minds from around the globe among its faculty, in the field of medicine, certainly, but also in politics at its School of Advanced International Studies in Washington DC, and in everything else, from literature to urban planning, back on its flagship Homewood Campus in Baltimore.
Walking up the perfectly manicured rolling lawns to the palatial Georgian red-brick facades and their spotless white columns, the white towers of this cathedral of knowledge shining in the sun, the majesty of Johns Hopkins as a center not just of thought but of power becomes clear. From the inside, the awesome power of the church remains an ideal analogy: austere, perfectly clean, high-ceilinged, and the stillness of arduous study gives an undisturbed moment to stare out the stained glass windows of the reading room and onto the forever-continuing campus.
Through the back of this building, the green hills continue to roll, lined by further red brick and white, seemingly-marble doorways. The students walking by look as though their only care in the world is the pursuit of knowledge, or at least a passing exam grade (it can be difficult to differentiate the two in this world). Those whose noses are not buried in their books on the cathedral steps are engaged in discussion with their classmates over theory or campus politics: it’s just as likely to overhear a critique of a professor as a debate on medical ethics as a discussion of who is sleeping with whom. The façade begins to crumble: this is definitely an American college campus.
Continuing along the red-brick path, one reaches The Hopkins Club, a squat, understated building of the same Georgian design, unremarkable from the outside but surrounded by a lush forest of vastly-differing greens, from grass to ivy to evergreen to oak. Entering the Hopkins Club, by invitation only, as it is the prestigious faculty-and-alumni-only meeting and dining place, the same attention to projecting power, control and majesty can be seen as in the first cathedral. Marble steps and iron railings lead you to a hallway along which stand marble statuary and at the end of which stand two impressive marble columns. Through these sits the dining room whose gleaming white walls are adorned with antique pictures of famous Hopkins alumni and, around the windows, drawn red velvet curtains. Of course this is just one of the Club’s many impressive rooms, but in this one, it can be noticed how the white of the walls and tablecloths matches the largely-monochromatic nature of the Club’s clientele, which is at stark odds with the majority-Black serving-and-cleaning staff (though their gloves are white).
We pause our tour here for two reasons. The first, because to continue on would not be to describe anything particularly new: more perfect lawns; more Georgian architecture; more solemn austerity in the face of awesome power and knowledge. The second reason, because the Hopkins Club, and the racial service of its minimum-wage black employees to its white upper-class membership, reminds us of the history of the Johns Hopkins system, and its place within Baltimore’s society, a history that is viewed by Hopkins and its supporters as thoroughly in the past.
Johns Hopkins University and Hospital were created in 1873 by a $7,000,000 bequeathal (adjusted for inflation, that would be equivalent to over $137,000,000 today), split equally between the two, in the will of Quaker banker, financier and abolitionist Johns Hopkins. The Hopkins family, a dynasty of unbelievable plantation wealth, freed their slaves when Johns was 12 years old, out of a commitment to the Quaker faith. Despite this rejection of slavery, the house of Hopkins did not seem to suffer materially, as Johns died one of the wealthiest men in America at age 78. It is always possible to find fault after the fact with historical figures such as Hopkins, but his anti-racism was among the most impressive of his era, mandating as he did at his death that his hospital admit black patients, while leaving additional sums to care for the poor black former-slaves-cum-citizens of Baltimore and additionally leaving the funds for an orphanage for black children.
Johns Hopkins the man loved the Union under Abraham Lincoln, loved the state of Maryland, and loved the city of Baltimore. His commitment to the places he loved, and to the causes of abolitionism and equality, are clearly illustrated by his life’s work, and by what he left in death. The custodians of the institutions that bear his name claim to live up to his hopes and his legacy. Yet despite turning these institutions into world-renowned centers of science and knowledge, one wonders just how proud the man described by the University’s own newspaper as “an abolitionist before the word was even invented” would be.
Walking away from the Hopkins Club in any direction, a description, as already mentioned, is unnecessary. That is, until one reaches the very obvious end of the campus. The Johns Hopkins Campus Safety and Security website explains that on campus are deployed “55 full-time and 4 part-time Special Police Officers commissioned by the State with full arrest powers”. This keeps the members of the Hopkins community safe on-campus. But what it keeps them safe from becomes obvious when one notices that “Off-duty Baltimore City Police Officers are deployed on Charles Street/Charles Village and University Parkway areas”. The borders of campus are the dividing lines between the affluence and comfort of the Johns Hopkins community and the Baltimore community that lies just beyond it.
This form of campus bubble is certainly best illustrated by the Johns Hopkins University Homewood Campus through which we’ve just toured, but it is merely exemplary, not unique. The Johns Hopkins Hospital campus, from the Sheikh Zayed Tower to the Kennedy Krieger Institute (according to Hopkins: “While not officially part of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Kennedy Krieger Institute is a partner with which we share faculty, collaborate on research and send some patients for rehabilitation”) to the Bloomberg Children’s Center, is equally insulated, with its own Metro station, the campus taking up around 8 square city blocks, uninterrupted and never forced to make eye contact with the Baltimore residents in whose midst they work.
What is Johns Hopkins protecting itself from?
Well, based on 2013 statistics (and everything has gotten worse in 2015), Baltimore’s violent crime rate is nearly four times higher than the American average, it’s murder rate more than eight times the norm. 24% of Baltimore citizens live below the poverty line, the national average being only 14%. Insulated in this academic and professional bubble, not only are Hopkins students, professors, doctors and other faculty graciously detached from the plight of the community to which they claim to belong, but they are also blissfully unaware of their own role in the city’s sad fate.
The Decline of Baltimore’s Industry and a Sorry Replacement
In the 1950s, Bethlehem Steel, Baltimore’s economic engine, employed 35,000 people, the bulk of them members of United Steelworkers (formerly the Steel Workers Organizing Committee), earning decent pay and decent benefits. In 1971, the Bethlehem Steel’s Sparrows Point facility was America’s largest steel mill. In the decade that followed, though, global economic changes in the steel industry led to mass layoff, and by the end of the ’80s, Bethlehem Steel was providing Baltimore with only 8,000 jobs, and none of them with the kind of middle-class benefits and pay that had so long persisted.
As the jobs left, so did the residents, and Baltimore fell from nearly a million citizens down to 650,000, a third of the population fleeing to the suburbs in the half-century leading up to 1997. This process was in large part “white flight”, and as privileged white wealth left the city, so too did small businesses, dropping both manufacturing and retail jobs by nearly two-thirds in the same time period. At the same time, the city’s black population nearly doubled, but very few profitable businesses came with this population explosion. The 1990s saw the emergence for the first time of a real black middle class, and in Baltimore this middle class followed their white predecessors’ suit, leaving for the suburbs instead of building new wealth and jobs in the city.
By 2004, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 90% of all of Baltimore’s jobs were in the service sector. And according to a report by Washington’s Economic Policy Institute, 71% of the low-paid service jobs went to African-Americans, despite African-Americans making up only 59% of Baltimore’s population at the time. According to the Service Employees International Union (SEIU),
“Service industries such as hospitals, nursing homes, and tourism ha[ve] become the primary source of employment for poor and minority workers [in Baltimore]. Service jobs are largely characterized by low pay, high turnover rates, irregular or part-time schedules, lack of benefits, job insecurity, and lack of union representation. Few offer vocational training or skills-building opportunities for advancement. Low pay forces many service workers to work second jobs, increasing their weekly work hours to more than 60 in some cases. Also, many workplaces are located far from the neighborhoods where service workers live, adding to transportation and child care costs for working families.”
The proponents and stewards of the Hopkins system would argue that, despite their insulation, Hopkins, as the primary provider of these service jobs, is the major force turning the city around after Bethlehem Steel’s departure. And they have a good deal of data on their side: according to the State of Maryland’s own governmental count, Johns Hopkins is Baltimore City’s largest employer, employing 43,651 people when you combine the university and the medical facilities. That many jobs could turn around an entire state’s economy. Of those jobs, 14,585 went to Baltimore residents. The Hopkins system itself generates over $7 billion of revenue annually (nearly 4% of all business done in the state of Maryland) and brings in over $200 million in income (these numbers from 2004). This is huge money for a suffering city. In fact, last year Hopkins opened its new $1.1 billion healthcare facility in economically-depressed East Baltimore. Construction, by Hopkins’ own count, created 4,700 short-term jobs, in addition to the pre-existing 14,585. While only 280 of these jobs went to residents of the East Baltimore neighborhoods over which the new building would tower, a total of 1,000 short-term positions popped up for Baltimore City residents.
But as the SEIU explained in their 2004 publication “Putting Baltimore’s People First: Keys to Responsible Economic Development of Our City”, these jobs are not actually a boon to the city, though they may be a temporary boon to its people:
“As Baltimore struggles with a dwindling tax base, the City’s charitable institutions, and Hopkins in particular, generate an ever greater portion of overall income — and these institutions are exempt from taxes. Within Baltimore City alone, Hopkins Institutions own $505 million worth of tax-exempt property, according to current tax assessments [in the 11 intervening years that has increased dramatically]. Were these properties subject to taxation, Hopkins would have to pay $12 million a year in property taxes to the City. Instead, the burden of paying for schools and other services falls on the rest of Baltimore’s residents and businesses.”
In addition to this tax dodge, the SEIU report goes on to explain how Johns Hopkins’ jobs actually cost Baltimore and Maryland taxpayers enormous amounts of money. To summarize the numbers from the SEIU,
“A Hopkins Hospital environmental service worker who earns an annual income of $20,800 a year ($10/hour) while supporting two children, qualifies for the following public assistance programs: Maryland Child Care and Development Fund – $2,853.37; Federal CCDF expenditures – $8,222.12; Maryland Children’s Health Program – $498.00; Baltimore City public Schools Reduced Price Meal Program – $1,222.00; Women, Infants, and Children Program (if pregnant, nursing, or has an infant child) – $770.25.
Total Annual Costs to Taxpayers Per Worker:
On the other side of the wealth spectrum, according to coverage by In These Times, “the non-profit hospital reported a $145 million surplus last year,” with top earners like President Ron Peterson earning $1.9 million annually. And according to the Baltimore Sun “Edward Miller, CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine, made $729,297. He also gets paid separately for his position as dean of the School of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University [for which] Miller collected $1.4 million [in 2009]”. This is not unusual in the health care industry (former University of Maryland Medical System CEO Edmond F. Notebaert resigned in 2008 and left with a $7.8 million severance package) and this kind of compensation is justified by its recipients by the massive acquisitions performed under their tenure, or because of projects such as the $1.1 billion building erected in East Baltimore under Miller’s leadership. But President Peterson takes his paycheck out to his home in the peaceful suburbs of Bel Air, MD, thus avoiding any possible minimal “trickle down” into the economies of the urban neighborhoods near Johns Hopkins.
This incredible wealth flowing to executives and top doctors from what has been described as “a $6.5 billion integrated global health enterprise” (and that really only covers the medical part, not the University itself), contrasts starkly with the reality of those 14,585 Baltimore residents working in the Hopkins system, when Johns Hopkins refused to negotiate with the SEIU last year to pay its workers a $15 minimum wage, saying the total $3 million increase in payroll costs was unaffordable. Even some of Hopkins’ own physicians, like Dr. Benjamin Oldfield, have been “surprised they [Hopkins] haven’t gotten this one right yet,” as a medical institution should “know that financial insecurity leads to bad health outcomes.”
Since then, improvements have, at least ostensibly, been made. After significant pressure in the form of strikes by SEIU employees, Hopkins finally agreed on a $12/hour wage for union workers, still short of the desired $15/hour living wage, in 2014. However, Hopkins then imposed a new health insurance plan that costs workers $1,800/year, an expense greater than any gains made. This year, the non-specialized workers of the Johns Hopkins system will be even poorer than before.
Responding the outcry over this, Hopkins issued a statement officially avoiding the ethics of underpaying their staff and instead addressing non-Baltimore concerns of their status as a nationally- and globally-recognized health-care institution:
“Our patients and their families are always our first priority, so it is important they understand that the employees represented by SEIU1199 work primarily in service and maintenance jobs and are not involved in providing direct patient care.”
In a city as depressed and oppressed as Baltimore, these thousands of jobs have been seen by the city’s government as salvation. In actuality, those jobs are worse than simple stop-gap unskilled positions with no future: starting salaries earn Baltimore citizens poverty-line wages and below. So, if they are supporting a family, they qualify for $13,570 in subsidies per year. But as a non-profit institution, despite its billions in earnings, Hopkins pays no taxes and therefore does not even pay into the pot that its employees are forced to pool from. In their annual report in 2010, the University claimed to pay $175 million dollars in taxes and fees to the state of Maryland. However, $171 million of this was “state income taxes withheld from the earnings of its employees”, meaning that Hopkins itself, from its massive revenues, paid at maximum $4 million in taxes, not nearly enough to make up for what it costs.
Certainly, not each of the 14,585 Baltimore-resident workers is supporting two children, though most of them are supporting families of some kind. And not all of them earn a mere $10/hour, though some, in fact, earn less. So perhaps it costs taxpayers more like $10,000 annually to support each of Hopkins’ workers. This is definitely less costly than unemployment or other forms of subsidies for indigent and homeless citizens. But instead of saying, well, it’s better than nothing, it needs to be recognized that Hopkins could easily afford to pay all of their employees sufficient wages that they would not require the city and the state to pay millions of dollars to supplement a full-time worker’s meager income, especially on top of everything else the city ends up paying out towards Hopkins’ projects.
Now, nationwide, hospitals and universities are non-profit organizations and do not pay taxes. This is as true in Boston as it is in Baltimore. The difference, though, is that in Boston those organizations are merely a part of the city’s economy, not the vast majority of it. This means that a city like Boston, thriving and wealthy, can afford to forego the taxes from universities and hospitals because these institutions still bring business to the surrounding areas. Hopkins is so isolated within the city of Baltimore, and the city itself is so segregated, that the economic benefits that smaller businesses in Boston see from its health and education sectors are not mirrored in Baltimore.
Malcolm Gladwell recently sparked a heavy debate after decrying the foolishness of donating to Harvard, but at least those donations are made of an individual’s free will. If instead of milking the tax exemptions they enjoy at the expense of Baltimore and Maryland citizens, Johns Hopkins were taxed at Maryland’s going corporate tax rate of 8.25% on its $7.62 billion annual revenue, the taxes would come to $628,650,000 annually, or $12.5 billion over the past 2 decades, in addition to the $12-million-plus in annual property taxes cited by the SEIU. In effect, by saving Johns Hopkins the burden of paying for their own development, Maryland and Baltimore taxpayers have unknowingly put billions of dollars into Hopkins’ endowment, already the country’s 25th largest at $2.6 billion. If instead of investing in palatial campuses, manicured lawns, political lobbyists and private police forces, this money had gone into the city, it would have been more than enough to repair and upgrade every single one of the city’s failing public schools, fund addiction recovery programs for all the city’s addicts, renovate the crumbling public transit infrastructure, and invest in job training and housing assistance for the city’s unemployed and homeless.
Baltimore’s corporate tax structure is frequently decried in the news as wildly anti-business. While there is legitimacy to this claim, it is also compounded by the ease with which small businesses have been able to relocate mere miles away, just over the city limits in Baltimore County whose taxes are less than half of the City’s. Some Hopkins protectionists might suggest that to tax Johns Hopkins at a normal rate would be to drive them out. However, in addition to the difficulty it would cause in rebranding after Johns Hopkins has so thoroughly publicized its Baltimore connections, the Hopkins institutions are so inextricably linked to the city that to leave would be to forfeit billions of dollars of investment and in all likelihood bankrupt the system as a whole.
It is worth noting that non-profit tax code for so-called “charitable institutions” is not written in stone. In the 1980s, there was a movement across the country, from Vermont to Utah to California, to rescind the tax exemptions that non-profit hospitals enjoyed if those hospitals did not provide charitable services of a value equal to or greater than the amount of taxes they avoided. It was not successful everywhere. Under the leadership of then-Mayor Bernie Sanders, in 1988:
“The city of Burlington, Vermont assessed a $2.83 million property tax against the Medical Center Hospital of Vermont, a not-for-profit teaching hospital. The hospital responded by challenging the action in a civil court suit. The city argued that the hospital had ceased to be a charitable institution as the term was used in state statutes. The Vermont Superior Court found for the hospital, over-turning the assessment by the city and prohibiting collection of the tax. The court held that the hospital retained its charitable nature in spite of changes in the organization and the health care environment.”
However, in Utah, the court found differently.
“The argument was simple, said [the] chief deputy assessor of Utah County: ‘We think that they’re not really a charitable institution.’ The assessors define charitable care as something more than just community service; a hospital must also provide a certain amount of care to those who cannot pay for it.
The Utah Supreme Court backed the assessors in 1985, declaring unconsitutional [sic] the state law that guaranteed property tax exemptions for nonprofit hospitals. Voters, in turn, narrowly rejected a constitutional amendment to bar taxes on the hospitals in 1986.”
Tax codes are state by state and city by city, and in certain cases, such as Utah, the movement worked out to everyone’s benefit:
“The key factor in the [Utah hospital system] deal reached last fall was an agreement that hospitals would have to provide charity care in excess of the taxes it would otherwise pay, according to hospital executives, legislative leaders and local officials.”
And it’s not just Hospitals whose non-profit statuses are questionable. In 2013, the city of Princeton, New Jersey brought a similar lawsuit against Princeton University, and the Mayor of Providence, Rhode Island suggested willingness to do the same against Brown University while the Mayor of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania sued the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, with even The Wall Street Journal lauding these efforts, saying:
“The conflict isn’t going away. In June, a state tax court judge said the case [against Princeton] had merit and refused the school’s request to dismiss the case… There is certainly something to be said for schools being accountable to students and parents. But a relentless focus on expansion and profit can diminish the importance of teaching and learning. Either way, this trend isn’t going away, and residents and local business owners in university towns may no longer be willing to buy the line colleges are selling.”
It is unclear exactly how much charity care the Hopkins system provides. What is clear is that, if a similar agreement were reached between Baltimore and Hopkins as was between Utah and Intermountain, it would cost Hopkins nowhere near the billions in taxes that they have avoided through their nonprofit loophole and, as will be shown, certainly pales in comparison to the amount of care that became necessary through their toxic developmental methods.
And this might be a good time to talk about that construction project that brought the city 1000 jobs.
Hopkins as Developer
Slum clearance area with Johns Hopkins Hospital in the background, Source: Citizens’ Planning and Housing Association (CPHA) Collection. Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Hopkins’ recent expansion in 2001 came with a supposed makeover in its treatment of the city. East Baltimore Development Inc., known throughout the city as EBDI, was created under the tenure of then-Mayor Martin O’Malley and led by Johns Hopkins as the largest urban redevelopment project in America. Hopkins was to build a giant biotechnology park and a series of housing complexes for students and faculty. In so doing, however, it also was to raze 750 existing homes and remove over 600 Baltimore residents by force. According to Maryland-based The Daily Record,
“East Baltimore Development Inc. has spent $6.4 million per acre since 2002 to revitalize a largely vacant chunk of inner city bounded on three sides by slum and blight. The money has gone to buy homes, demolish buildings, relocate residents and build underground infrastructure for water, sewer, state-of-the-art fiber-optic and electrical systems. Of the $564.7 million tab so far, $212.6 million has come from the cash-strapped … governments.”
Despite publicly-stated goals of bringing Baltimore’s people up with the jobs coming with EBDI, $212.6 million seems a steep price to pay for a project that benefits students and other non-Baltimore-residents at obviously great cost to Baltimore’s actual, long-time community. The Daily Record goes on to call the initiative itself a failure, as, after a decade, only one of the biotech buildings was completed and barely any of the housing complexes were even begun. However, this should not be particularly surprising, according to Mint Press News:
“This is not a one-off event. Johns Hopkins’ expansion has been instrumental in the slumification and gentrification of neighborhoods surrounding its property for decades. The university buys properties, including homes in areas where it plans to expand up to 60 to 80 years in advance of redevelopment, and allows those neighborhoods to socially and economically wither away until it can buy up even more property at fire sale prices.
As Johns Hopkins is one of the city’s most economically powerful institutions, the local government and real estate developers respond in kind by divesting resources and allowing those areas to rot, rather than investing in redevelopment plans that could revitalize communities.”
To prove this point, a key text on Hopkins development practices is Marisela Gomez’s Race, Class, Power and Organizing in East Baltimore. Gomez was a key organizer for Save Middle East Action Committee, or SMEAC, the organization responsible for the protests that significantly increased what Hopkins and EBDI were forced to pay in reparations to those East Baltimore residents pushed out of their homes. Gomez’s book shows just how long Hopkins’ developmental practices at the expense of Baltimore’s poor black communities has been going on. Synopsized by Dax-Devlon Ross:
“in the early 1950s … 1,100 families living on 39 acres west of the hospital were informed that their community was being cleared. Like the current project, that community was 90 percent black and largely poor. It was sold as a landmark project that would result in a beautified neighborhood that included the first new housing for blacks in the city’s history. The city demolished residences and businesses and cleared the land, only to allow it to sit undeveloped for the next four years.
When work did start up again, plans had changed: 100 percent of the development would belong to the Hopkins community. No new homes would be built for black residents. Local activist groups protested the change to no avail. The completed development contained housing for students and staff, a shopping center, a hotel and a medical office building. A fence arose around its perimeter, making it impossible for local residents to walk the very streets they’d once lived on.
Thirty years later a Hopkins-led group called the Historic East Baltimore Community Action Coalition (HEBCAC) leveraged $34 million in federal financing from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to rebuild homes in Middle East. Under the plan, Hopkins would buy properties from residents and sell them to HEBCAC for $1. HEBCAC would then fix the properties up and sell them to residents in exchange for their old ones, which would then be torn down. HEBCAC’s leaders believed this process would facilitate a smooth transition from blight to brighter days. In six years the program built fewer than 50 homes and the neighborhood vacancy rate doubled. By late 2000, HEBCAC’s executive director conceded that he had miscalculated the rate of disinvestment in the community. It was just a few months after HEBCAC’s admission that Middle East residents opened the Baltimore Sun and read that Hopkins would be spearheading a new type of renewal experiment in their neighborhood [this is a reference to EBDI]. This time around, the entire neighborhood would be leveled and rebuilt. Everybody had to go.”
When it happened again in the early 2000s, it was under the guise of EBDI and supposedly in partnership with the community. However, the money originally offered as reparations for wipe out the homes of East Baltimore’s residents was a pittance. Through SMEAC’s efforts upped those reparations in some cases as much as ten-fold, but it was not enough. SMEAC disbanded in 2010 and in their wake, many activist organizations popped up. According to one of them, Community Housing and Relocation Work Group, “In the Minority Inclusion Agreement signed in April 2002, EBDI and its founders promised 8,000 new jobs and the establishment of a community reinvestment fund. As of today, both of these promises have been broken and thousands of lives have been changed for the worse.” The work group cites one specific, horrific failure to prove their point:
“EBDI displaced [Lucille] Gorham from her longtime home and placed in a house that was not fit for her needs. EBDI promised to repair her home, but never fulfilled their promise. She lived in miserable conditions…
‘Despite a home inspection paid for by EBDI on Nov. 9, 2005, the stove stopped working, followed by the microwave, the washing machine and the hot water heater. The house was infested with rodents. Rotting floor boards gave way to holes in two places on the first floor, and the enclosed front porch ceiling gushed with water whenever it rained.’”
According to the article and post-SMEAC community activists, these conditions resulted in Ms. Gorham’s death.
Outright eviction or relocation is far from the only way Hopkins’ expansion has harmed Baltimore’s communities. Back in 2007, this journalist was told by a former Black Panther and present-day reverend and community activist the story of Johns Hopkins’ toxic East Baltimore construction projects in the 1960s and ‘70s. Glass particles and asbestos that filled the air from the demolition of old homes had caused scarring in the residents’ lungs. When it came to the Hopkins administration’s attention that this construction had caused astronomical rises in asthma and cancer rates in the local black community, those administrators tried to literally sweep the issue under the rug, by giving the residents each a handheld vacuum to clean the carcinogenic particulates out of the air and calling it even. While no medical records or articles have been found to confirm this story, Glenn Ross, who Baltimore City Paper awarded the title of Baltimore’s Best Community Activist in 2001, gives support to the claim:
“These houses were built in the ‘20s, they were built with plaster, with horsehair, asbestos, lead, other contaminants. When they tore this building down, they left all this stuff right on this area. When they started tearing down blocks of houses years ago, they didn’t do anything with it. So that means that that whole block of houses that was demolished, all that soil was contaminated. Children played on it. Most of them were small streets, so that was the rear of people’s houses. What’s at the rear of peoples’ houses? Their yard, it’s where you hang your clothes in, it’s where your pets are, it’s where your kitchen door is, where people’s bathrooms are. So that means all this dust is coming into the homes and people are [mumbled, likely “inhaling it”].”
Outside of Mr. Ross, there is indeed little to be found on the subject of glass particulate inhalation, and certainly no apology, yet again, from Johns Hopkins.
It would be not simply outrageous but also blatantly wrong to say that Hopkins benefits from the death and mistreatment of Baltimore’s citizens. No, it seems to the observer that Hopkins has simply become so preoccupied with expansion and rankings that it lost sight of its foundation as an institution dedicated to the common good. What’s more, due to the departure of the major employers that once made up the city’s economy, Baltimore City finds itself so psychologically dependent on the jobs created by the Hopkins system, despite the evidence that those jobs benefit neither the city nor its citizens, that no one in a position of power will willingly call the institution on any wrongdoing. In an echo chamber like this, it would be easy for those within the system, even those responsible for such villainy, to view themselves as the heroes. But how did it come to this? The answer is a sad mix of money and politics, and the loyalty bred by the combination of the two.
The Money and Influence Trail of Hopkins’ Dominance of Baltimore City
Then-Governor Martin O’Malley at a press conference on the progress of Hopkins’ “job creation” in 2013. Source: Photo collections from the Office of the Maryland Governor, managed by the Maryland State Archives. Creative Commons license CC BY 2.0
Finding data on where Hopkins development money is being funneled is incredibly difficult. In addition to the old practice of major businesses having their employees make donations and then reimbursing those donations in unspecified “bonuses”, Maryland politics has long been haunted by a corrupt precursor to Citizens United known as “the LLC loophole”: Maryland law forbids individuals and businesses from donating more than $4000 to a single candidate in an election cycle. However, before this year this rule could be easily circumvented by opening an infinite number of limited liability corporations (LLCs) or other corporate entities and using each of these to donate the $4000 maximum to one’s candidate of choice. In one case, a single developer used LLCs to donate over $250,000 to a series of candidates in a 2-year election. Maryland wisely closed this loophole in 2015, but problematically this does not stop a Johns Hopkins development project from doing similar things.
Johns Hopkins development projects are massive enterprises, pulling in multiple different firms to undertake different parts of the project, and each of these firms can donate $4000 per candidate, as can the subcontractors they employ. On the other hand, the Hopkins system gets to keep their hands clean, rarely if ever contributing directly to political campaigns. So, for example, the developers involved in constructing the new Hopkins bio-tech park can donate thousands and thousands of dollars to a single candidate, as they did to newly-reformed former-Hopkins-critic City Councilman Carl Stokes, without that money looking like it came from the Hopkins system. The same applies to City Council President Jack Young, whose campaign coffers are being filled by some of those same Hopkins-affiliated developers in the run-up to his mayoral campaign. This seems more than coincidental, as Marisela Gomez, SMEAC activist and author of the aforementioned monograph,
“said in an interview that she was one of the appointed members of the board that was to be overseen by City Council members Bernard “Jack” Young and Paula Johnson Branch, who represented Middle East at the time. But Young and Branch apparently dropped the ball. Gomez said she kept calling City Hall, asking when the board would meet, “but it never met. I kept thinking, what’s going on?”
In Stokes’ case, this money coincides with an utter cessation of public positions regarding Johns Hopkins: In January 2015, Stokes, who had previously described the EBDI project as a “land grab,” said of the whole project:
“The community feels that the project’s a failure, and I don’t think it will improve any more in the next three years than it has in the past 15. You go over there, you’ll see new development that [master developer] Forest City has built, new development that the state of Maryland has built, new development that Johns Hopkins has built. You don’t see housing and dog parks for the community.”
He has since then, after taking campaign money directly from Forest City and other affiliated developers, been uncharacteristically quiet. There’s no better way of changing a politician’s mind than with a little campaign cash, yet the money itself cannot be linked to the Hopkins system.
A similar case is Beatty Development Group, whose projects are often linked to Johns Hopkins, such as the recently-begun 327 thousand square foot development project that includes new Johns Hopkins University student housing. Campaign finance reports show that Beatty has donated significant capital to City Councilmembers William “Pete” Welch, Warren Branch, Jim Kraft, Helen Holton, City Council Vice President Ed Reisinger, as well as Stokes and Young again, and over $16,000 to Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. Johns Hopkins never had to spend a dime, publicly.
In addition to the direct payoffs, there are other important links between the Hopkins system and the Baltimore and Maryland legislatures. Maryland State Representative Maggie Macintosh, chair of the House Environmental Matters Committee, is herself a Johns Hopkins lobbyist. There are, however, very few lobbyists so powerful and so connected to the Hopkins system as Van Scoyoc Associates, a bipartisan Washington, D.C. lobbying firm that makes sure that Johns Hopkins’ interests are taken into consideration on the national level, and that Hopkins is one of the go-to institutions for major federal research grants. To this effect, Johns Hopkins pays Van Scoyoc somewhere around $300,000 annually, according to federal lobbying-and-campaign-contribution database OpenSecrets. The already close relationship between the Hopkins system and Baltimore City’s government became outright perverse when, on top of more than $1 million in fees paid to Van Scoyoc by Baltimore City since Martin O’Malley first hired the firm in 2000, the City hired Van Scoyoc Associates as their own full-time lobbyist in November 2014, removing all barriers between Hopkins lobbying and Baltimore’s government.
There are very few elected officials in Baltimore who stand against Hopkins. The bonds of campaign contributions are the bonds of complicity: when you’re earning money for supporting a multi-million-dollar project, you’re very quick to defend the project’s merits. But the reasons for support are not always economic: City Councilman Bill Henry earned his bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and served on the board of the Johns Hopkins Society of Black Alumni, while Councilwoman Helen Holton sits on the Johns Hopkins University Alumni Council. Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke was a Johns Hopkins University professor, and before that an administrator at the Hospital’s School of Medicine. The bonds of loyalty, of having spent one’s formative educational young adulthood indoctrinated in the glories of Johns Hopkins, these are stronger bonds even than campaign donations.
Johns Hopkins itself uses the cutesy “Johns Hopkins <3 Baltimore” on their medical website, while O’Malley called Hopkins “a world-class institution that has done so much for Baltimore and Maryland” upon joining the University as a visiting professor and additionally called it “our place of healing”. In fact, the strongest criticisms of Hopkins’ projects from Baltimore’s elected officials, coming from Nathaniel McFadden, State Senator from the district worst-effected by eviction and environmental factors, are so weak as to be little more than lip service to the effected community: “‘We don’t want to stop the train. We want to slow it down and get on board.’” Meanwhile, current Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake calls Hopkins’ redevelopment work “awe-inspiring”.
Throughout American politics there are several subjects, from Social Security to farm subsidies to race, which have been called “The Third Rail”, meaning, quite simply, you touch it and you die.
In Baltimore, that third rail is Hopkins. Criticism of Johns Hopkins, in any form, be it low wages or gentrifying development projects, is viewed as biting the hand that feeds Baltimore. Any attack on Hopkins is not simply an attack on unethical development and tax avoidance, it is an attack on education, on public health, and above all on jobs. For this reason, Baltimore’s politicians treat Hopkins with a timid deference that permits the institution to run amok in East Baltimore while continuing to wear the mantle of the city’s savior.
It is this slavish bond between the city’s power players and the Hopkins system that perpetuates and maintains the toxic relationship that facilitates the coordination between Hopkins police and city police, Hopkins development and city development. Just how close? Well, according to that same 2011 Daily Record report,
“Although two members of the Baltimore City Council sit on EBDI’s board as nonvoting members, the nonprofit is not audited or overseen by City Hall in any formal way. City Comptroller Joan Pratt has no fiscal oversight over EBDI because of its nonprofit status. … Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said … she sees no need for [a public] audit. ‘I don’t think a public audit is anything to run from, but I am sure in accordance with regulations for them as a 501c3 that their financial books have been audited as regularly as they should be,’ the mayor said. … The mayor approves the hiring of EBDI’s CEO as a matter of protocol… [T]he city’s housing commissioner and a nonvoting member of the EBDI board, receives monthly reports from EBDI on the project’s progress but discards them after reading them… [C]ity officials are in ‘regular communication’ with EBDI. City Council President Bernard C. ‘’Jack’ Young held hearings in April 2009 about EBDI’s minority hiring and relocation practices. But he and the two council members who now represent the area said they knew next to nothing about the project’s public funding when interviewed last fall. … EBDI … is not legally required to make [its internal audits] public because of its nonprofit status.”
The Council gets to know how Hopkins plans to develop the City, but not how much public money they spend on that development. They get to approve the hiring of developmental leadership but have absolutely zero control over their actions. This connection is treated more like a heads up to Baltimore, allowing them to know what Hopkins plans to do so that the city government can coordinate its own developmental plans accordingly. In fact, Glenn Ross talked about this planning back in 2008, before the new $1.1 billion dollar construction had even begun:
“I saw how they [City Hall] talked about moving the “drug culture” people, taking resources out of the community, because 20 years down the road there’s another development plan coming. So I say, poor neighborhoods are created [speaker’s emphasis]. … The biotech science park area, where they relocated hundreds of families… This was another neighborhood that was allowed to decay.”
If you’ve got 74 minutes available to learn what “environmental racism” means, you’d do well to watch Glenn’s 2008 Toxic Tour of the city, from whence these quotes originate. However, the highlights as they apply to Hopkins feature here:
“when people in East Baltimore talk about Johns Hopkins, we think of one Johns Hopkins. [But] there’s five Johns Hopkins, with different themes, different boards, and neither one of them knows what each others doing. So what’s happening is, each institution is buying up whatever available property they can acquire, without sitting down and looking at the damage that they’re doing to the community.”
After describing four different low-income public housing neighborhoods in a row whose residents have all been relocated over a period of only a few months, Mr. Ross explains:
“What’s happening there is, Hopkins wants their students to live closer to their campus, so they’re gonna displace a lot of low-income families, to turn these housing units into housing for Hopkins people… All those houses, all those streets that you see to your left, will be demolished.”
In the video, it is an obviously massive area, and in a few short years, Glenn was right: they were all destroyed.
“Now, if you look at how many homeless people we have here in Baltimore, just look at all these vacant houses. Some of these houses have been vacant for 20 or 30 years… But you see, as they buy up each house, the properties depreciate, so you see there’s only a few families living in this area. But there’s a future development plan also, to tear all these houses out. This is the second phase of the biotech science park.”
So, with all this power and influence, we come back to the question: What is Johns Hopkins Protecting Itself From?
The answer, in summation, is that Johns Hopkins, with its firmly secured borders patrolled by city police and university security alike, is protecting itself from the Baltimore that it helped create, the poverty and illness and hopelessness that turns into desperation, nihilism, violence and death. The structured tax avoidance, segregation and underhanded development of the Johns Hopkins system is in large part responsible for the poverty that has enveloped the Baltimore that exists just over Hopkins’ borders, the poverty that begets the violence that necessitated the Baltimore Uprisings. But perhaps what’s worst is that the rhetoric that surrounds Johns Hopkins can allow for no criticism and therefore no administrative and political change to their devastating approach to their coexistence with, or more to the point their existence within, Baltimore City.
Hippocratic Hypocrisy: Scientific Contributions at Baltimore’s Expense
Regardless of politics and economics, Johns Hopkins is a hospital, and a hospital is an inherently good institution aimed at the renewal and maintenance of health. This is most certainly the goal upon which Johns Hopkins Hospital was founded, and its achievements globally towards human health are undeniable. Yet in the name of the greater global good, Johns Hopkins has sometimes done great evil to the people of Baltimore.
A human immortal cell line is one of the most important tools in biological research: an infinitely reproducible series of human cells allowing for consistent testing. Johns Hopkins is responsible for the first successful cloning of human cells and thereby the first human immortal cell line, HeLa. HeLa has been widely used across the globe for “research into cancer, AIDS, the effects of radiation and toxic substances, gene mapping, and countless other scientific pursuits”. HeLa is a shortened version of Henrietta Lacks, the black Baltimore woman who was, unknown to her, treated with a radium rod in her cervix, and 2 radium plaques placed on her skin, for a cervical tumor. Additionally, unknown to her, her cells, taken in this procedure, became the subject of incredible research by Hopkins, the HeLa line. As the Henrietta Lacks Foundation puts it: “Henrietta was a poor black tobacco farmer whose cancer cells, taken without her knowledge, became one of the most important tools in medicine, with damaging consequences for her family who today can’t afford access to the health care advances their mother’s cells helped make possible.” Johns Hopkins saved countless lives, by ignoring the value of Henrietta Lacks’.
Henrietta Lacks’ human immortal cell line, Credit: Anne Weston, LRI, CRUK. Wellcome Images. Creative Commons license: CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
At the same time as Lacks’ maltreatment, Hopkins was engaged in further radium experimentation, and further stretching of the boundaries of medical ethics.
“Between 1948 and 1954, funded by the federal government, researchers at the Johns Hopkins Hospital inserted radium rods into the noses of 582 Baltimore, Maryland schoolchildren as an alternative to adenoidectomy.” It’s a case of impressively unethical medical experimentation, and none of those affected were informed that the experiment was taking place, nor were they provided with follow-up care. In fact, after a follow-up study in 1995 on the long-term health effects to those who received the treatment found a cancer rate 62% higher than normal, the decision was made not to alert those affected. One of the victims blames the treatments for her “six miscarriages, a pituitary tumor and other health problems,” while another “appeared on a Baltimore medical television show as a success story. But by age 20, she had lost all her teeth. She also suffers from Graves’ disease, a thyroid condition. Her identical twin, who didn’t have the treatment, has a full set of teeth and no Graves’ disease, even though the pair of sisters have both suffered from gall bladder and other health problems at the same time.”
Johns Hopkins released an official non-apology in a press release after a 2010 book on the life of Henrietta Lacks:
“Johns Hopkins Medicine sincerely acknowledges the contribution to advances in biomedical research made possible by Henrietta Lacks and HeLa cells. It’s important to note that at the time the cells were taken from Mrs. Lacks’ tissue, the practice of obtaining informed consent from cell or tissue donors was essentially unknown among academic medical centers. Sixty years ago, there was no established practice of seeking permission to take tissue for scientific research purposes. The laboratory that received Mrs. Lacks’s cells had arranged many years earlier to obtain such cells from any patient diagnosed with cervical cancer as a way to learn more about a serious disease that took the lives of so many. Johns Hopkins never patented HeLa cells, nor did it sell them commercially or benefit in a direct financial way. Today, Johns Hopkins and other research-based medical centers consistently obtain consent from those asked to donate tissue or cells for scientific research.”
No such non-apology was forthcoming on the case of the adenoidectomy radium, but it seems safe to assume that the response would be similar. In fact, such non-apologies have continued all the way to modern Hopkins human experimentation. In the 1990s, Hopkins partner institution The Kennedy Krieger Institute performed a lead-paint-based experiment on Baltimore’s children in which they:
“enticed [children] into living in lead-tainted housing and subjected to a research program which intentionally exposed them to lead poisoning in order for the extent of the contamination of these children’s blood to be used by scientific researchers to assess the success of lead paint or lead dust abatement measures,”
“[Kennedy Krieger] selected children and their parents who were predominantly from a lower economic strata and minorities, [using] these children as known guinea pigs in these contaminated houses to complete this study.”
A lawsuit was brought against Kennedy Krieger, accusing them of
“negligence, fraud, battery and violating the state’s consumer protection act, alleging that children who participated in the study served as “canaries in the mines” … “These children’s health was put at risk in order to develop low-cost abatement measures that would help all children, the landlords, and the general public as well.”
The experiment was performed in the interest of public health, attempting to inform public housing policy with the best possible data. However, as is too often the case with Hopkins, this data was collected outside the boundaries of medical ethics, or indeed of morality, taking their toll on the bodies and minds of the next generation of Baltimore citizens, starting in their infancy.
In a 96-page ruling, Maryland’s highest court compared the study to Nazi experimentation and the Tuskegee syphilis experiment. Two legal scholars described the ruling:
“The court’s remand focused on 3 main issues: (1) informed consent, declaring that parents cannot give consent for their children to enroll in ‘non-therapeutic’ research; (2) a duty to warn because of the ‘special relationship’ between the researchers and participants; and (3) the inadequacies of the institutional review board’s review, referring to the Johns Hopkins institutional review board as ‘in-house organs’ who were not ‘as sufficiently concerned with ethicality of the experiments they review as they are with the success of the experiment.’”
However, in classic Hopkins non-apology style, a follow-up journal article was written and released by Johns Hopkins Hospital lead counsel (and Vice President) Joanne Pollack, that sought to discredit the judgment and defend and explain the contextual need for the study, declaring:
“the record before the court was overwhelmingly incomplete. Notwithstanding this limited record, however, the court came to the conclusion that the study was flawed and placed children at risk for lead poisoning. What, in fact, was flawed was both the court’s analysis and its rush to judgment on a thin record.”
The Johns Hopkins system seems constitutionally incapable of apologizing for their crimes against Baltimore’s poor and minority citizens. Even within a broader defense of the public health benefits of the work, a simple apology for the uninformed or nonconsensual methods used would symbolize an interest in avoiding the continuation of such crimes in the future, but none have been forthcoming.
In the aftermath of these unapologetic lapses in medical ethics, rumors of further experimentation on Baltimore’s black citizens abound. Certain black activists for economic and racial justice claim with absolute confidence that Johns Hopkins doctors implanted the long-term sub-dural contraceptive Norplant in hundreds of black women without their knowledge or consent. No evidence of this crime, heinous if true, has been found during the course of research for this article. In fact, quite the opposite. What has been found was that “[a]s one element of Baltimore’s effort to combat its high rate of teenage pregnancy, the Baltimore City Health Department added the implantable contraceptive Norplant to the array of services offered at one of its school-based health centers in early 1993”. Nothing in this was non-consensual or uninformed.
The fact that such rumors are rampant, however, in the face of Hopkins’ actual wrongdoing in the recent past, is in no way surprising. The progress and breakthroughs that have made Hopkins a world-renowned institution of learning and medicine have come at the cost of countless black lives, and hundreds more mangled black bodies, courtesy of the city of Baltimore. As Glenn Ross puts it, “Johns Hopkins is the biggest recycler in the state of Maryland. They recycle people. They recycle us. And they literally make us sick.”
These are certainly not Johns Hopkins’ only lapses. The Hospital system is being sued by 774 Guatemalans over an experiment in the 1940s and 50s where Hopkins doctors, at the behest of the United States government, infected Guatemalans with Syphilis, Gonorrhea, and other STDs in what could be described as a vicious colonial version of the Tuskegee Experiment. And in a similar act of gross humanitarian negligence to the radium experiments, Hospital administrators chose to withhold a report on Black Lung from the effected miners of Pennsylvania, thereby preventing them from receiving proper care and treatment. But these are relatively small acts of deviousness in an otherwise prestigious, world-class even, humanitarian record.
This record, however, is built upon a toxic foundation of decades of disastrous trauma to Baltimore’s urban poor. The Hippocratic Oath, frequently synopsized with the phrase “First, Do No Harm,” is about more than simply patient care (for which Johns Hopkins is, again, world-renowned). It is a foundational institutional philosophy for the entire medical profession, a duty of which the Johns Hopkins system has been wildly derelict in its taxpayer-funded Baltimore home.
Johns Hopkins’ political influence is so deeply correlated to the primary factors that sparked the Baltimore Uprising – poverty, disease, education, policing and politics – that it would not be a stretch to call Hopkins a direct cause of the city’s strife. The two could have risen together, Baltimore and Hopkins, as a symbiosis, instead of the parasitic relationship that exists. If there is such a thing as a welfare leech, Johns Hopkins is the exemplar, sucking Baltimore’s poor communities dry as it grows like a cancer upon the City.
It doesn’t have to be this way. A change in Hopkins’ governance, an alteration to institutional priorities from expansion to enlightenment, from legal tax avoidance to community engagement, and from historical amnesia to responsible recovery, it could be more than the simple avoidance of harm and could truly do good for the city, not just well for its Board.
History shows that Johns Hopkins is unlikely to do this of its own accord. In this case, as in Utah, Baltimore’s politicians, and Maryland’s as a whole, must break Hopkins’s death grip on the city and legislate them into goodness, removing their tax breaks until they have repaid the billions they have taken from the city, and thereafter until their charitable works make up for the damage they have done. The city cannot do it alone: Hopkins would simply threaten to leave for more appealing tax codes in surrounding Baltimore County. With a concerted effort throughout the state of Maryland, however, the Hopkins system could be made to finally show its <3 for Baltimore by living up to the ideals it represents, doing actual good and allowing Baltimore’s poor and oppressed to truly rise up. Johns Hopkins did not first, nor even second, do no harm, and the institution has a responsibility to now, after the Baltimore Uprisings have laid bare Hopkins’ impact on the city, remedy the harm it has done.