Like in the Fairy tale Sterntaler by the Brothers Grimm, Foundations reward good behavior with their grants (but only for those who are of the right mind).
|Distribution of money to further the agendas of the rich and powerful.|
A foundation funds a certain endeavor through grants. To the public they advertise the benefit of the work they finance, but in the end they are meant to bring the will of their founders into existence; "he who pays the piper calls the tune."
Financing of media and journalism
Funding of whole media organizations of any political spectrum, from foundations or any other special interest group can make it complicated to see genuine opinion, some opinions that would otherwise be present on the marketplace of ideas might be denied at all.
“big establishment foundations are likely to seek out "alternative" media that is more bark than bite, which they can rely on to ignore and dismiss sensitive topics like those mentioned above — and many more — as "irrelevant distractions" or "conspiracy theory" [...]
Recipients of funding will always protest that they are not swayed by any conflicts of interest and don't allow the sources of funding to affect their decisions, but whether or not these claims are actually true is already somewhat of a red herring. The more important question is, what sort of 'alternative' journalism garners the goodwill of the Ford Foundation corporate rogues gallery in the first place? Or the Rockefeller Foundation? Or Carnegie Foundation, Soros, and Schumann?
Judging by the journalism being offered (and not offered) by Nation magazine, FAIR, Pacifica, Progressive magazine, IPA, Mother Jones, Alternet, and other recipients of their funding, the big establishment foundations are successfully sponsoring the kind of "opposition" that the US ruling elite can tolerate and live with.”
Brian Salter 
To clarify what this means, an organization that is funded like this can produce with higher quality, have a studio for video production, more reporters on the ground, etc. - or does not experience pressure in financial terms, or much less so when it comes to that. In case of financial trouble, it can continue to publish content and/or produce broadcasts when it otherwise would have a difficult time to survive due to the lack of viable revenue streams.
Other organizations that do not receive such funding are thus not getting the same attention, since the lack of resources makes it hard/impossible to keep up with, or in case of financial problems, are eliminated faster, which is a kind of manipulation of the marketplace of alternative media through subsidies.
Conduit for CIA money
The US Senate Church Committee (1976) partially exposed the links between foundation funding and the CIA, while conspicuously skirting around 'the big three' - Rockefeller, Ford and Carnegie (emphasis added):
“"During the 1950s and 1960s, the CIA turned increasingly to covert action in the area of student and labor matters, cultural affairs, and community developments. ... The CIA subsidized, advised, and even helped develop "private" organizations that would compete with the communists around the world. ... [Many] were U.S.-based student, labor, cultural, or philanthropic organizations whose international activities the CIA subsidized. ...
"The philanthropic [CIA] fronts used prior to 1967 funded a seemingly limitless range of covert action programs affecting youth groups, labor unions, universities, publishing houses, and other private institutions in the United States and abroad. ... Support [was provided to, for instance] an international organization of veterans and an international foundation for developing countries [as well as] an organization of journalists and an international women's association. ... Agency funds were used to host foreign visitors [and] provide scholarships to an international cooperative training center at a United States university... The CIA assisted in the establishment in 1951 and the funding for over a decade of a research institute at a major American university. ...
"By 1967, when public disclosure of NSA [National Student Association]'s funding ... caused a major curtailment of these activities, interest in the major covert action efforts in these areas was already waning.
"There appear to be two reasons for this. First, there was considerable skepticism within the CIA as to the effectiveness of this approach. ... Richard Helms [explained], "The clandestine operator ... is trained to believe that you really can't count on the honesty of your agent to do exactly what you want or to report accurately unless you own him body and soul."
"Second, it became increasingly difficult to conceal the CIA funds that supported these activities as the scale of the operations grew. By fiscal year 1967, for example, over $3 million [$22.5 million in 2018] was budgeted for youth and student programs and $6 million [$45 million in 2018] for labor. Most of the funds were transmitted through legitimate or "devised" foundations -- that is, fictitious entities established by the CIA.
"The use of philanthropic organizations was a convenient way to pass funds, in that large amounts could be transferred rapidly, and in a form that need not alert unwitting officers of the recipient organizations to their source. In addition, foundation grants bestowed upon the recipient the apparent "blessing" of the foundation. The funding pattern involved a mixture of bona fide charitable foundations, devised foundations and funds, [CIA] "front men" drawn from a list of America's most prominent citizens, and lawyers representing undisclosed clients.
"The CIA's intrusion into the foundation field in the 1960s can only be described as massive. Excluding grants from the "Big Three" -- Ford, Rockefeller, and Carnegie -- of the 700 grants over $10,000 given by 164 other foundations during the period 1963-1966, at least 108 involved partial or complete CIA funding. More importantly, CIA funding was involved in nearly half the grants the non-"Big Three" foundations made during this period in the field of international activities. In the same period more than one-third of the grants awarded by non-"Big Three" in the physical, life and social sciences also involved CIA funds.
"Bona fide foundations, rather than those controlled by the CIA, were considered the best and most plausible kind of funding cover for certain kinds of operations. A 1966 CIA study explained the use of legitimate foundations was the most effective way of concealing the CIA's hand as well as reassuring members of funded organizations that the organization was in fact supported by private funds."”
The Church Committee 
Examples on Wikispooks
|"How the Banker Run Foundations are Shaping the World - Norman Dodd Reece" - G. Edward Griffin interviews Norman Dodd, who was the congressional Director of Research for the Reece Committee, 1953-1954.|
- Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
- Open Society Foundations
- Koch family foundations
- The Ford Foundation
- Rockefeller Foundation
- Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
|Charles Koch Foundation||money-granting foundation to select purposes|
|Koch family foundations||a group of closely connected money-granting foundations to select purposes|
|Open Society Foundations||“The conventional view, shared by many on the left, is that socialism collapsed in eastern Europe because of its systemic weaknesses and the political elite's failure to build popular support. That may be partly true, but Soros's role was crucial. From 1979, he distributed $3m a year to dissidents including Poland's Solidarity movement, Charter 77 in Czechoslovakia and Andrei Sakharov in the Soviet Union. In 1984, he founded his first Open Society Institute in Hungary and pumped millions of dollars into opposition movements and independent media. Ostensibly aimed at building up a "civil society", these initiatives were designed to weaken the existing political structures and pave the way for eastern Europe's eventual colonisation by global capital. Soros now claims, with characteristic immodesty, that he was responsible for the "Americanisation"; of eastern Europe. ...
The Yugoslavs remained stubbornly resistant [to the sponsored free market revolution in Eastern Europe] and repeatedly returned Slobodan Milosevic's unreformed Socialist Party to government. Soros was equal to the challenge. From 1991, his Open Society Institute channelled more than $100m to the coffers of the anti-Milosevic opposition, funding political parties, publishing houses and "independent"; media such as Radio B92, the plucky little student radio station of western mythology which was in reality bankrolled by one of the world's richest men on behalf of the world's most powerful nation. With Slobo finally toppled in 2000 in a coup d'etat financed, planned and executed in Washington, all that was left was to cart the ex-Yugoslav leader to the Hague tribunal, co-financed by Soros along with those other custodians of human rights Time Warner Corporation and Disney. He faced charges of crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide, based in the main on the largely anecdotal evidence of (you've guessed it) Human Rights Watch. ...The sad conclusion is...that....Soros deems a society “open” not if it respects human rights and basic freedoms, but if it is “open” for him and his associates to make money....He thus copied a pattern he has deployed to great effect over the whole of eastern Europe: of advocating “shock therapy” and “economic reform”, then swooping in with his associates to buy valuable state assets at knock-down prices.”
- http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/05/289545.shtml saved at Archive.org saved at Archive.is
- April 1976, report of the Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities (Church Committee), pp. 182-183.