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Vogel and Parti report: "The Koch brothers' political operation has increasingly come to resemble its own political party - and later this month in San Diego, it will hold what amounts to its most ambitious convention to date."

David and Charles Koch's operation is increasingly resembling a political party. (illustration:
David and Charles Koch's operation is increasingly resembling a political party. (illustration:

Koch Brothers Expand Political Operation

By Kenneth P. Vogel, Tarini Parti, Politico

16 June 12


he Koch brothers' political operation has increasingly come to resemble its own political party - and later this month in San Diego, it will hold what amounts to its most ambitious convention to date.

Many of the dozens of rich conservative invitees are expected to write huge checks to a pool of cash distributed among Koch-approved groups, potentially boosting the Kochs' 2012 spending plan beyond their historic $395 million goal. And it's also a chance for the Kochs to show off their increasingly robust political machine, including a growing voter database project called Themis that played a major role in conservatives' recent efforts in Wisconsin and in which POLITICO has learned Koch operatives have discussed investing $20 million.

It's part of an ambitious expansion of the billionaire brothers' political operation that includes the recruitment of new donors and fundraisers into their network by a development team led by summit emcee Kevin Gentry, and their recent hiring of in-house political operative Marc Short to oversee the spending of funds raised at the summits.

The expansion is also reflected in Charles and David Kochs' bid to take over the libertarian Cato Institute as well as their operations steering cash to groups that aren't commonly thought of as Koch affiliated. The 60 Plus Association, American Energy Alliance, American Future Fund, Americans for Limited Government and National Right to Life have all received funds through the Koch donor network.

"They ask for support - and they get it because we all love our country and we have a different vision than do the liberals," said Stanley Hubbard, a Minnesota television station owner who has attended the Koch donor summits for years and plans to be in San Diego for this month's meeting. "I've gotten friends to be involved, and I think others have, too, so I would guess, yes, that's expanding."

Yet, even as Koch World has increasingly flexed its muscles in conservative politics, its inner sanctum - comprised of the brothers and their longtime right-hand man Richard Fink - has remained all but impenetrable to even big GOP players who want a piece of the Koch action or invitations to the summits, according to numerous operatives.

The specific location of the San Diego summit could not be determined. And a Koch spokesman declined to comment on details of the summit, which starts the weekend of June 23, or the brothers' political plans.

"The Koch groups are very complex in the way they do things. They're difficult to penetrate from the outside, which is smart," said one GOP operative who has worked with Koch-backed groups. "You often need a Sherpa."

That's what makes Gentry, Short and Tim Phillips so powerful. They came up together in the good-ol'-boy universe of Virginia GOP politics, and they're now the Kochs' liaisons to Washington's professional conservative class.

A number of sources with knowledge of Koch World - who did not want to speak publicly about it for fear of being cut out of the loop - said the trio carry with them the full confidence of the brothers and Fink, and the ability to make and execute decisions on their behalf, not to mention access to the mega-donors who make the network so potent.

The roles break down thusly: Phillips runs the Kochs' primary political vehicle Americans for Prosperity and Short oversees the spending of Koch network cash by other approved groups, some of which air among the sharpest attack ads against Democrats, and Gentry raises the Koch network's cash.

Gentry's fundraising appeals can strike an urgent tone, as was the case in a letter he sent to attendees of a 2008 Koch donor summit, warning that "our society faces dangerous and imminent threats." The letter, reported here for the first time, seemed to compare the Koch summit with the Continental Congress and asked, "Can a small but dedicated group of leaders make a difference?"

Gentry also leads a sort of informal network of fundraisers for top conservative think tanks and advocacy groups around the country, including The Heritage Foundation, Americans for Prosperity and the Texas Public Policy Foundation, POLITICO has learned.

In a weekly email to the network, Gentry passes along tips on donor prospecting and maintenance and cites best practices. For example, in a February email obtained by POLITICO, he shared advice from a Heritage fundraiser who suggested his group won the loyalty of a million-dollar donor who attended Koch summits by introducing him to big names who spoke at Heritage events, including Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Short, who attends the same church as Gentry, is by far the newest member of the inner circle, having been hired only last year to oversee the spending of Koch donor network cash by other groups. Previously, the Kochs had tasked a contractor named Sean Noble with the responsibility. Short - who most recently had worked with Koch-favorite Rep. Mike Pence, leading an unsuccessful effort to lure him into the presidential race - has been representing Koch World at the Karl Rove-conceived Weaver Terrace Group meetings where conservative groups coordinate ad spending.

But Koch World's expansion has raised hackles among critics in the conservative movement who see the Kochs and their operatives as secretive control freaks who don't always play well with others and are trying to leverage their cash to expand their influence.

"Koch has been angling for the last three or four years to consolidate more of the conservative movement within their network," said a conservative operative who has worked with donors in the Koch network. "That's why they do these seminars - to try to consolidate more big donors' money and direct it into their projects," said the operative, who asserted that groups that attend the summits become beholden to the Kochs, but also marveled at the effectiveness of the gatherings as a fundraising technique.

"Some of the donors believe giving to one source makes it easier for them instead of having to give to a dozen different places," said the operative, "and others just want to come out to hang with the billionaire brothers and be part of a very elite universe."

Koch Industries, the brothers' privately owned oil, chemical and household products company, has sponsored the summits twice a year since 2003 and they are where it all comes together in Koch World. The donors, like regulars Foster Friess and Rich DeVos and first-timers like Sheldon Adelson, are gently pressured to give while the invited operatives jockey to impress the Kochs and their donors with presentations on campaign and legislative strategy.

There's also a collection of A-list dignitaries that has in recent years included rising political stars like Eric Cantor, Chris Christie, Bob McDonnell and Rick Perry, talkers like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck - even Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Thomas.

Koch summit donors over the years have donated more than $120 million on their own to various federal candidates, committees and super PACs, according to an analysis of Federal Election Commission data, as well as numerous background interviews and confidential Koch documents reviewed by POLITICO.

But most of the cash raised at the Koch summits - typically in pledge sessions on the last day of the summit that have a revival-like feel - goes to nonprofit groups that do not disclose their donors. And the groups represented at recent conferences provide some hints as to the recipients. According to the documents reviewed by POLITICO and interviews, there are think tanks such as The Heritage Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute and The Federalist Society, as well as advocacy groups including the 60 Plus Association, National Right to Work, the Club for Growth and Americans for Prosperity.

The Kochs raised more than $150 million at their winter conference this year in Indian Wells, Calif., on top of $49 million at a summit a year earlier in Rancho Mirage, Calif.

There was one summit in between, in Beaver Creek, Colo., and even if donors only matched the lower tally, that would put the Koch network at about $250 million raised for the cycle. That means they're within striking distance of their $395 million goal, and could exceed it, given that sources said interest in the donor network has only increased since Democrats up to and including President Barack Obama have taken to targeting the Kochs as examples of the corrupting influence of big money in politics.

The attacks haven't bothered Koch network donors, asserted Hubbard, declaring, "All this nonsense over 'Well, they're oil people' - baloney! They will do the right thing for their country."

But at last year's summer conference, Gentry seemed to assure the donors they wouldn't catch flak for their donations. "There is anonymity that we can protect," he said in remarks that were surreptitiously recorded and leaked to Mother Jones.

Secrecy is the name of the game at the summits, much like at the Democracy Alliance gatherings of big liberal donors: Koch donors are required to wear name tags at all times, and security officers wearing gold lapel pins bearing Koch Industries' "K" logo, roamed the halls at last year's winter meeting, removing a POLITICO reporter under threat of arrest.

Attendees are warned not to "post updates or information about the meeting on blogs, social media such as Facebook and Twitter, or in traditional media articles," according to a packet distributed to participants at the June 2010 session that was obtained and posted by the liberal blog ThinkProgress. The summits had gone off without a peep of publicity until that packet, which included an invitation to the winter 2011 meeting in Rancho Mirage, Calif., leaked to The New York Times and ThinkProgress, paving the way for raucous protests outside the Rancho Mirage resort hosting the conference.

Attendees are expected to wear business casual attire for panels, according to a packet for an earlier meeting that was reviewed by POLITICO, but "For our evening meals, cocktail attire is appropriate for women. Men should wear a sport coat, though most forgo wearing a tie." Justice Thomas was the featured guest at one such dinner, while another included a menu of "shiitake mushroom and roasted vegetable strudel with goat cheese crema" and "tomato water poached halibut with heirloom tomato salad and mint couscous."

Aesthetics aside, the Koch summits are regarded as a holy grail of sorts for conservatives seeking cash for their initiatives. Decisions about who gets invited, and who doesn't, can lead to raw feelings, as Gentry learned firsthand at a dinner meeting of the Cato board, to which he had been appointed by the Kochs in their bid to wrest control of the libertarian think tank from a faction led by President Ed Crane.

"Kevin Gentry sitting over there has never once - never once! - invited me to one of the Koch donor events that he organizes for Charles!" Crane bellowed at Gentry, according to an account in the Washingtonian. "Nor has he invited anyone from Cato!" your social media marketing partner


A note of caution regarding our comment sections:

For months a stream of media reports have warned of coordinated propaganda efforts targeting political websites based in the U.S., particularly in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

It is also clear that we still have elements of the same activity in our article discussion forums at this time.

We have hosted and encouraged reader expression since the turn of the century. The comments of our readers are the most vibrant, best-used interactive feature at Reader Supported News. Accordingly, we are strongly resistant to interrupting those services.

It is, however, important to note that in all likelihood hardened operatives are attempting to shape the dialog our community seeks to engage in.

Adapt and overcome.

Marc Ash
Founder, Reader Supported News

+62 # universlman 2012-06-16 15:38
This conservative chest of $398M is but a small part of the billions of our middle-class taxes that our government has spent bailing-out many of the "large donors" to prevent a depression. It is no surprise that a portion of this money should be spent "helping" the same people get elected who agreed to make the gift in the first place. This is money that will not be spent on police, firefighters or teachers.
+6 # Paris 2012-06-18 12:28
Time to start a massive boycott of all Koch Industries. As Eddie Murphy said in TRADING PLACES, the best way to hurt rich people is to make them poor people.
+53 # brux 2012-06-16 20:28
Peoplel have to start seeing this as a "parasitic TAX".

This is a tax that the Kochs and others levy on all of us because they are insinuited in our economy in a "too big too fail" kind of way.

They can put any amount of money out there to pursue their political agenda, and they make all of us pay for it by having total control over their products - a certain percentage of the money we pay for their products gets taken against our will or without our informed consent and then put to undermining the government, ie. our democracy/republic.

This is a tax.

The government is owned by corporations and the corporations derive so much power from that they can increase prices against the people and the supply and demand market - do what they want - and corrupt the government.

It's just a private tax, and that is what they want the country to be - a private country - with no such thing as anything public.
+27 # Vegan_Girl 2012-06-17 04:38
Boycott their products! Please.
+82 # lotuslover 2012-06-16 21:56
So I guess Hillary was right. There really is a "vast right-wing conspiricy"!

If Teddy Roosevelt could break up the "Trusts" of the early 20th Century, why can't we break up the political power of these oligarchs?
+1 # brux 2012-06-17 00:29
The world is different now, the country is filled up and most people are dependent on this structure we have one way or the other … that is the basis of too big to fail … or too big to criticize as well. As is pointed out here by many both sides are participating in this, and that is OK in a way, it's reasonable to think the most successful and engaged people should have a larger say … it's just that our leaders lie down for any and everything, they are incapable of saying no.
+10 # hobbesian 2012-06-17 08:16
Obama will have to sue, on our behalf, the Kochs and those like Clarence Thomas - in the Supreme Court. Oh wait: the Supreme Court is already bought by the Kochs. So that won't work. So do we have to wait for them to be tried on their arrival at the gates of - um - the Republic - but it is still a "Kingdom", though - of Heaven. Long time before we get democratic results from "up" there (or maybe DOWN there). Rats! to the RATS etc.
+1 # Charlie Peters 2012-06-16 22:09
GOOGLE: Prop 87 (510) 537-1796

Bill Clinton, Al Gore & Senator Obama supported the California 2006 Prop. 87, a GMO corn ethanol welfare program.

Bill, Al, have changed opinion on the ethanol mandate, I wonder if Obama will make this the time for CHANGE?

I support a waiver of the ethanol mandate, voluntary use of ethanol in my gas.

Federal ethanol policy increases Government motors oil use and Big oil profit.

It is reported that today California is using Brazil sugar cane ethanol at $0.16 per gal increase over using GMO corn fuel ethanol. In this game the cars and trucks get to pay and Big oil profits are the result that may be ready for change.

We do NOT support AB 523 or SB 1396 unless the ethanol mandate is changed to voluntary ethanol in our gas.

Folks that pay more at the pump for less from Cars, trucks, food, water & air need better, it is time.

The car tax of AB 118 Nunez is just a simple Big oil welfare program, AAA questioned the policy and some folks still agree.

AB 523 & SB 1326 are just a short put (waiver) from better results.

GOOGLE: Prop 87 (510) 537-1796
+57 # giraffee2012 2012-06-16 22:43
It is ODD their "meeting" will be in any part of California - a blue state with red pockets.

I blame the RATS (Roberts, Alito, Thomas, Scalia) for the power given to this "party" - and the crime starts with the RATS.

The Koch Bro (& company) were GIVEN this power to steal our democracy. Pounding on the Koch brothers does nothing (ZERO) because whatever they do is LEGAL - and the right to take over our democracy is through the fault of the RATS.

State by state they are funding GOP/TP governors to suppress votes, replace elected officials +++++ screw with the Diebold machines.

IF the Diebold machines are used in 11/2012 - there will be a GOP/TP W.H./ Congress and more of them added to the S.C.

WHERE DO WE GO? WHAT DO WE DO? Call every Democratic congress person and make the CLERK write down a few things. Examples are "support Bernie Sanders" to overturn Citizens United + NO DIEBOLD machines + you know the rest...
+10 # paulrevere 2012-06-17 10:28
Electronics anywhere in the voting process is a veritable license to steal that election.

HAVA came to be very quickly and was an orchestrated effort across America for implementation.

I had words with the proponents, left and right, of HAVA in '03-04 and they were like talking to electronic vote machine sales reason I got involved in '04.

'Purple fingers' indeed!
+2 # coach777b 2012-06-19 07:56
Please read "The Rise And Fall Of The Third Reich" and switch names of the leaders with the Koch/Repub/TP leaders of today. The story reads the same and you already know the ending.
+7 # grouchy 2012-06-16 23:37
Desmogblog art logo at the head of this piece is wonderful!!!
+28 # X Dane 2012-06-17 01:44
Canada is a much more enlightened country, they use paper ballots and hand count them by bi-partisan groups. Now that's what we need to demand. The machines are rigged.
+7 # paulrevere 2012-06-17 10:28
+16 # Professorjane Gilgun 2012-06-17 02:14
What's going to happen when the Koch brothers die? They can't buy immortality. I imagine they're trying. Wouldn't you love to get inside their small-minded brain? What in the world do they want? They already have more money and power than almost anyone in history. Don't they know the Jewish law--Love the lord your God with all your heart and mind and love your neighbor as yourself? That is where enduring power is. All else is chaff that blows away in the wind.
+4 # brux 2012-06-17 13:16
>> What's going to happen when the Koch brothers die?

I am sure they have children that are growing up way worse than they are
0 # X Dane 2012-06-19 15:26

I think their children will grow up cursing their name, when the climate change REALLY kicks in, for they are not just part of causing it. They are fighting anything we want to do to minimize or counter it. When they could make lots of money on developing renewable energy.
+11 # Vegan_Girl 2012-06-17 04:37
And they say we don't have money!

It is mind-boggling that they all this money they use for their reactionary agenda is taken from labor. Please boycott products of the Koch empire!

The irony here is, the more their agenda progresses, the more poverty and misery they create as they decimate the middle class, they are digging their own graves. Millions and millions if people, having nothing left to lose are either joining the emerging new alternative economy or the protest movements.

We need a true revolution of values, the kind that Martin Luther King was talking about.

I hope the Koch brothers will live long enough to see the utter failure of their operations and ideology.
+14 # NVNan 2012-06-17 11:31
Can someone please identify a number of the Koch products, so we can boycott them? Thanks
-7 # brux 2012-06-17 14:43
I hate the Kochs … but I have to admit when I heard that Brawny paper towels are under their domain it made me feel bad because they are the only paper towels I like.

I can do without anything else they make but leave me my Brawny paper towels! :-(
+1 # X Dane 2012-06-19 15:37
I used them before and liked them, I switched to Bounty, and they are every bit as good. So you CAN switch brux.
+1 # X Dane 2012-06-19 15:35
I only know of Brawny paper towels,and I never buy them. but I would love which other products to boycott.
0 # X Dane 2012-06-19 15:32
Vegan Girl

Unfortunately, they don't need us. It's not like in Henry Ford's time. He wanted to pay his workers enough so they could afford to buy his products.

Koch Bros. can sell their products all over the world, so "frankly my dear they don't give a damn."
-48 # brucbaker 2012-06-17 04:40
I have REAL question. When are you RSS guys gonna investigate the corruption in the Obama Administration, especially the Harry Reid blocking of bills, the Democrat corruption, and the Media bias for being in the tank for the left, who can do no wrong, and for attacking the right, that suddenly is leveling the playing field? Seriously, this same bunch of attacks, as soon as the right is equal in money and power to the left is so one sided, even someone who is blind and deaf can see and hear what is going on...
-15 # paulrevere 2012-06-17 10:30
Apparently 'blind and deaf' is what is needed to maintain the status quo.
+21 # Professorjane Gilgun 2012-06-17 13:01
Where do you get your facts? Why not look at unemployment figures and the fall of income of the middle class? It's better to base your thinking on something specific. I hate to tell you this, but you sound like you believe what you hear on Fox news.
-10 # jimattrell 2012-06-17 13:17
The facts as published by the CBO show quite clearly that income levels had risen dramatically at all levels (the rich had the best increase) in the last 20 years but the middle class has lost the most in terms of average annual income and net worth in the last four years.
+23 # Professorjane Gilgun 2012-06-17 13:04
I wonder when Fox News is going to be fair and balanced. I wonder when super-rich conservatives will stop wanting more money and more power. You won't see that on Fox News or out of the mouths of Glenn Beck and that other paid shill Limbaugh.
It's a great freedom to think for yourself. You should try it sometime. Start with basing your thoughts on facts.
+2 # noitall 2012-06-19 18:38
Isn't it amazing how people's world view is SO different? This guy sees the media being all for the left (in spite of the fact that its owned by 6 rich white guys) and "attacking the right"..."level ing the playing field", I guess he's referring to the billions being thrown at our elections. Amazing. My suggestion to you brucbaker is do NOT watch any more Fox Noise. Sad really.
+1 # cordleycoit 2012-06-17 05:04
Eather you are part of the pad or you are not in the game. This where American politics get good, the end game where someone forgets to follow the bouncing ball and then some yells fire. And we all go home to our card board boxes.
+21 # sapereaudeprime 2012-06-17 06:28
These circumstances resemble ever more closely the pattern of events in the Weimar Republic in 1931. If we are to avoid becoming the minions of a fascist dictatorship, we must bring the Koch brothers and their reactionary billionaire cronies to trial for treason, publicly execute the leaders and put the rest in solitary confinement for life. Their confiscated wealth will help pay down the national debt, which is, after all, only money owed by most Americans to a minority of Americans.
-50 # jimattrell 2012-06-17 07:36
Thank goodness these American Patriots are willing to put up their hard earned cash to combat the Obama Hollywood, Union Corporate and Rock Star crowd $Billions and save our middle class from six years of Harry Ried and Democrat rule worsened by one empty suit Barry Obama.
+7 # paulrevere 2012-06-17 10:31
Faux Snooooooooozzzz zze.
+2 # noitall 2012-06-19 18:40
Middle class? Where you been jimattrell? the middle class is gone. "hard earned cash"?? Those guys aren't out picking berries, they're out there picking your pocket and apparently, in your case, your brain.
+27 # Kootenay Coyote 2012-06-17 07:50
& Hitler’s grasp at power was supported vigorously by the likes of the heads of Krupp von Bohlen, Bosch, I.G. Farben, & the United Steel Works. They have no country but self-interest.
+14 # Anarchist 23 2012-06-17 15:01
Quoting Kootenay Coyote:
& Hitler’s grasp at power was supported vigorously by the likes of the heads of Krupp von Bohlen, Bosch, I.G. Farben, & the United Steel Works. They have no country but self-interest.

Don't forget Fritz Thyssen who also supported the up and coming Nazis and who deposited money in Prescott Bush's bank-the one which was closed for 'trading with the enemy' The enemy is inside the gates now! for example -Wisconsin! This is what your state looks like on Koch!
-25 # marstob 2012-06-17 08:28
This was a mind-boggling article on the wealthy for a year ago the Koch brothers name was not known to the general public. The power of money, when accumulated, has no boundaries - no limits as to what it can do. After the 2008 Democrats win, with the Soros backing and unknown others, the 2012 election is shaping up to be a whose-whose and this time the Republicans obviously have a war chest brimming over. Along with money, I hope these powerful entities will use their intelligence and connections to ensure the hopes and dreams of the middle and lower classes.
+7 # AKPatriot 2012-06-18 07:46
The average donation to the Obama/Biden Campaign in 2007-2008 was $64.45. This from millions of Hopeful voters. Not $64.45 Million average from a handful of millionaires.
+16 # wwway 2012-06-17 08:59
Koch efforts in Wisconsin paid off so now it's worth their investment.
Democracy is a process that ensures that the people get the government they deserve.
What is so frightful is that the wealthy private sector has been successful in their effort to blame labor for everything as an excuse to pay less for it. So as the private sector has lost wages it's been easy to pit private sector workers with public sector workers. I guess it's easier to blame public sector workers for the misery of the private. Trouble is, when the private sector sides with the corporations and wealthy they also submit to their own demise. They've given permission to themselves to be surfs.
+32 # Don Thomann 2012-06-17 09:42
The first time the inhabitants of this country realized they were being privatized for personal gain they armed the Great American Revolution!

The second time they realized that fellow human beings were still being privatized for personal gain we fought the civil war and declared the emancipation of all slaves!

What will happen when the American people FINALLY realize that the biggest treat to this nation is not Al Qaeda but rather sits in the halls of congress actively plotting to undo that revolution by RE-privatizing America for the personal gain of the Koch brothers and their like, and enlisting Bain Capital to do so???
+17 # paulrevere 2012-06-17 10:40
Well stated Don Thomann!
+5 # pamitty 2012-06-17 17:42
You have got that right! THe rich and powerful are addicted to getting richer and more powerful. They have more money than they could ever start to use.
The rest of us are lucky to get jobs that pay more than minimum wage.
There are lots of people who realize it and some are getting mobilized like Move ON, Rebuild the American dream, and others.
I'm afraid its too little too late. S
So many faux newz zombies full of jingoisms out there.
+7 # Doll 2012-06-17 09:50
Remember in the movie, "Brewster's Millions", Richard Pryer found that the best way to get rid of a lot of money in a hurry was to get involved in politics (his None of the above campaign). It worked for him.

One can only hope. I hope they loose their shirts.
+24 # Vardoz 2012-06-17 11:32
Just vote for Obama. No president, not even Roosevelt could change the game from top to bottom in one term! Ask yourself why big money is throwing billions to Mitt. Why the right wing Supreme Court created Citizens United. Because they want to help Main St so much? Come on people - Obama screwed up but would you rather have the Ryan plan and his side kick Boehner who said " NO JOBS SO BE IT" The billionaire racists, women hating gang - the Rove puppet and loser from MA - the rich brat who beat up gays and put on a state troopers uniform and pretendeed to be real just so he could give people a hard time? You really want this scum bag as president? You want the guy who wants to deregulate the clean air act and college loans and privative everything so corporations tax our tax money with no accountability. You want the guy who will suck Main St dry sos the rich can stay rich? Norquist hasn't told us whois paying for those huge tax cuts & the tens of billion for the military per week- It's the 99%!
+18 # reiverpacific 2012-06-17 12:11
"They ask for support - and they get it because we all love our country and we have a different vision than do the liberals," .
Funny, the Mussolini Fascists, Nazis, Francoistas and all other totalitarian regimes, claimed to "love their countries" and wave their flags from on high too -as a prelude to enslavement and subjugation of all populist collective and individual rights to maintain a corrupt and top-down status-quo. Sound familiarly close to home yet?
And before anybody throws up the extremes of the left they were at least originally trying to save their nations from the massed and corrupt right, or a hierarchal monarchy and eventually became corrupted too but their motives were different (no excuse I know).
Which just goes to prove that ABSOLUTE power corrupts ABSOLUTELY, and why informed dissent and opposition to any attempt to monopolize the sociopolitical discourse, thereby eliminating the word "discourse" altogether must be maintained and fought for at all costs with solidarity at grassroots firmly established by whatever means is left to us.
-29 # 2012-06-17 12:23
If i am reading this article correctly, it is okay for George Soros to financially back the progressive movement, but it is not okay for the Koch brothers to back the conservative movement. How does that work?
+6 # reiverpacific 2012-06-18 11:39
If i am reading this article correctly, it is okay for George Soros to financially back the progressive movement, but it is not okay for the Koch brothers to back the conservative movement. How does that work?

Because Soros does not wish to enslave anybody but spread the money around (remember "Tax me more"?). The Koch's "Americans for Prosperity" (For some -the elites -my insert) is about cheap labour, subjugation of all dissent and collective bargaining AND basic human rights. If you can't see that, you must enjoy bein' a fink for the power-brokers.
+2 # Anarchist 23 2012-06-17 14:59
brucbaker-are you the infamous troll from Georgetown usually posting under bruce fox or some such? Your rants are so familiar!
-12 # 2012-06-17 16:32
Do you mean to say that there is more than one intelligent person on this site?
+3 # reiverpacific 2012-06-18 11:44
Do you mean to say that there is more than one intelligent person on this site?

That's a real intelligent comment! Totally without subject, predicate, discussion or conclusion.
You must be Fox-Limbaugh-Be ck-Bush (a.k.a. -by me- "Dimwits") -smart or debate -challenged.
By their pointlessness shall ye know them.
+3 # kellyannvarbel 2012-06-17 17:13
Is this not a prime example of how the government is run not by the democrats or the republicans - but by those that control the MONEY??? Wake Up People/Sheople - those that really control the government are those that control the money! Obama/Bush - they are both just puppets - call them Diversions! - to keep your eye off the real Controllers of this country!
+3 # HerbR 2012-06-17 18:23
What more evidence do we need about the true nature of the battle at the heart of our politics ? Votes or Dollars ? Wealth or popular power ? It's again as plain as a sunny day in Spring.
-2 # KittatinyHawk 2012-06-17 19:45
Government is not alone to blame for what is going on today....It took the whole USA to fall asleep at the wheel or not care about anything but 'Stuff" Tired of blame theories...if you do not like it Change it esp the authors of these articles...they could help change America instead of writing instigating propaganda..ins tead they write this, for what reason because they think You are going to actually do something. Have anyone here actually organized anything yet...I doubt it.
0 # noitall 2012-06-19 18:47
Kittatinyhawk, I understand your frustration. You suggest that things CAN be "changed" through the old processes. The problem with the Koch ilk is that they have replaced those abilities that were available to all of us to help guide this country in its pursuit of liberty and happiness to a cash-led system that trumps everything. They have bought all these so-called leaders and nullified the rest. And yes, Americans are asleep and dumb all over and a little ugly on the side, but still don't deserve the end offered by Koch.
+6 # She Cee 2012-06-17 20:45
Since it's obvious that the Koch brothers are intent on controlling the world, why don't they just put up $10 billion or however many billions are needed, and get it over with? They have no loyalty even to their own and their puppets will get done in with the rest of us once they get what they want.
The whales are watching and they don't like what they see.
PS To those of you who think the press is liberal I ask, what pipe have you been smoking?
+2 # charsjcca 2012-06-18 15:07
If you think that boycotting one energy conglomerate will accomplish the goal of reducing Koch Industries to bit player on the international scene I would suggest that you do not know how this industry operates. Either you boycott all or you waste time and resources. That mean a change in lifestyle for Americans and friends around the world.
+1 # noitall 2012-06-19 18:49
"Waaaaa, don't make me give up my Brawny towels" JEZUZ!!

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