"A number of years ago, a fairly well-known economist I respect was consulting for a Fortune 500 company. Call the company "A." A wanted to merge with B and the federal government was putting roadblocks in the way. I favored, you probably won't be surprised to know, allowing A to merge with B. This economist, who knew I was on a roll at the time with the Wall Street Journal, writing 5 to 6 op/eds a year for them, asked me if I would write an op/ed for the Journal arguing that A should be allowed to merge with B. "Sure," I said. "And, in return," he said, "A is willing to pay you $2,500." For those of you who don't know, this is a multiple of the price that the Journal typically pays for op/eds, at least in my experience. "I'm guessing that you don't want me to tell the Journal that I'm being paid," I said. "That's right," he said, "there would be no point." "OK," I said, "then my answer is no.""Moral of the story (IMO at least), if a funder doesn't want you acknowledging them, it's a good sign that maybe you shouldn't take the money. Normally this is just a courtesy thing - to your readers so they know the context and to the people that are helping you to put food on your table! When it's something that funders want to be hush hush that should send up red flags, I think.
It doesn't mean the perspective is wrong at all. Given David's outline of events I'm sure I'd agree with him on the policy question. But I'd feel uncomfortable about taking the money too.