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Quote of the Day (June 10, 2008)

June 10, 2008

Quotemarks"...Foundations are private, not public, institutions. They cannot function like governments. The responsibility of meeting the public interest is in the hands of government, not private foundations. Government has provided the tax exemption for charitable institutions in the belief that charitable activities can be better carried out by private organizations than by government itself. The government recognized, when it took this step, that there are many different kinds of charitable activities that may be carried out by many different types of organizations. The public interest is served not by each individual organization, but by the diversity of organizations and purposes that come into being as a result of the general encouragement provided by the tax exemption...."

-- Michael S. Joyce, "Letter to the Council on Foundations" (1984), from Giving Well, Doing Good: Reading for Thoughtful Philanthropists

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