Why do capitalists finance the NGO sector?

Submitted by Crn Blok on October 29, 2013

Before answering this question, it’s important to underline that the entire NGO sector is one big machinery for an immense turnover of money. A great amount of the cash flow on global level passes through the channels of the NGO sector, through various grantmaking foundations, charitable programs and corporate money for donations. If we follow the capitalist logic, where in the allocation of resources, part of the money goes to production costs, other part to investing in new production and a third part goes to capitalists in the form of profits, then financing the NGO sector is contrary to the capitalist logic, because it’s “unrecoverable expenses”, which are most avoided in every company’s policy.

Then why would capitalists voluntarily give away part of their profits in order to finance other organizations? Propaganda says: because they’re philanthropists and they care for the community. Of course, every reasonable person knows that there is no such thing as a philanthropist capitalist and that no capitalist, since he lives and gets rich off of the blood and sweat of the miserable wage workers, cannot possibly mean any good to the community.

The answer is, the financing of the NGO sector has nothing to do with donating or philanthropy, but it is simply a way to strengthen the position of the business sector and to help it secure more future profits. In other words, financing the NGOs is an investment, and all financiers expect income from their investments. That income doesn’t come back to capitalists directly as profits, but in long term, it brings bigger and more secure profits for the big capitalists, which is how the NGO sector (promoting the “values” of today’s society) helps keep capitalism alive. When a corporation finances an NGO who fights for democratization and for economic liberties (as so many NGOs in Macedonia do), it will help the NGO to become an influential player who will then help push the process of “democratization” of society, meaning deregulation of economy, meaning smaller control over the production, the monopolies, workers’ rights etc, which finally means bigger wealth for the big capitalists and even bigger misery for the working class.

This is just one example; the same applies to financing other types of “political” NGOs, which, at the end of the day, will thank their financier by increasing his already immense wealth, by worsening the position of workers even more and by strengthening capitalism who puts them in that position in the first place.