May 19, 2012

Koch Operative Steered $55 Million To Front Groups Airing Ads Against Democrats; Ads Assailed Candidates Over Abortion, 9/11, Medicare

Charles and David Koch, the billionaire owners of of Koch Industries, are known as big spenders when it comes to lobbying and influencing public policy. Now, a new document filed with the IRS reveals how the Koch political machine funneled over $54.5 million in previously undisclosed funds to a litany of front groups designed to smear Democrats.

The disclosure suggests that a very wide variety of Republican groups active in the last major election, from pro-life organizations that ran ads on abortion to shadowy fronts that aired partisan commercials with the infamous Ground Zero Mosque conspiracy, have been highly dependent on Koch money. The document also reveals that the Koch’s political network spent much more on electing the current Congress than previously known.

Sean Noble, a Republican consultant, was hired to help administer the Koch war chest. According to Politico, Noble was part of a group of GOP operatives who met regularly with Karl Rove’s Super PAC to target 120 House of Representatives races in 2010. The close coordination was pivotal in helping the Republican Party capture 63 seats in one of the biggest midterm election landslides in modern history.

Yesterday afternoon, bloggers Viveca Novak and Robert Maguire were the first to flag a tax form filed by an obscure Arizona-based foundation called the Center to Protect Patients’ Rights, noting the foundation gave huge amounts almost exclusively to conservative groups that use undisclosed nonprofits to air partisan ads. The Center acted as a pass-through to distribute $44,599,946 in grants in 2010, and $10,783,500 the year before. Novak and Maguire also reported that the Center’s tax forms were prepared by at least one employee of the DCI Group, a lobbying business.

Though the document does not reveal where the Center receives its funds, the tax forms available online from 2009 and 2010 indicate that Sean Noble, Koch’s campaign commercial operative, managed the foundation. Heather Higgins, a presenter at the infamous Koch mega-fundraisers, served on the board for part of 2009. The Center paid Noble’s firm a total of $350,000 a year in lobbying and “management services.” In turn, it appears, Noble played a significant role in fueling the most aggressive advertising campaign in the history of midterm elections.

Noble’s grant list features sponsors of the most hard-hitting partisan ads, including Americans for Job Security and the Club for Growth. Many of the Center’s grants, however, went to social conservative groups that clash with traditional libertarian values, particularly in terms of women’s health and foreign policy. Although the Koch brothers are eager to present themselves as small government libertarians, the grants suggest a different set of priorities.

Here are some of the groups that benefitted from the Center to Protect Patients’ Rights’ largess:

— The American Future Fund, which received $12,965,000 from the Center, ran ads that helped to defeat Democratic incumbents including John Spratt (D-SC), Mark Schauer (D-MI), Bobby Bright (D-AL), Chet Edwards (D-TX), Phil Hare (D-IL), Baron Hill (D-IN), and Travis Childers (D-MS). As we’ve noted, the group is also responsible for an ad campaign that hit Democrats for supporting a New York mosque at Ground Zero, allegedly built to honor the terrorists’ victory on 9/11. In reality, the ads misquoted the lawmakers, and the mosque in question was a planned community center headed by a cleric who has worked for the government, including the Bush administration, for years to promote peace.
— The 60 Plus Association, which received $11,625,000 from the Center, runs aggressive ads against Democrats in both the House and Senate. The group was set up as a Republican response to the AARP. In 2010, the 60 Plus Association blanketed the nation with ads that charged that Democrats had “betrayed” seniors by passing health reform and cut Medicare.

— The Susan B. Anthony List, which received $1,025,000 from the Center, ran ads in 2010 accusing Democrats of funding “overseas abortions” and passing a health care bill that “requires Americans” to finance abortions (a claim labeled false by experts). The group, which spent over $11 million two years ago, even ran pro-life attack ads against Democrats who oppose abortion rights. Other forced pregnancy groups financed by the Center include Nebraska Right to Life, Concerned Women 4 America, and Americans United for Life Action. Americans United for Life Action received $559,000.

— Though most Center-funded groups focused on federal elections, one group, Protect Your Vote Inc., which received $100,000, was set up to undermine efforts to draw fair congressional districts in Florida.

— The Fund also provided grants to a number of Tea Party advocacy groups, including the Tea Party Patriots, the Institute for Liberty, and Americans for Prosperity.

In all, Koch operative Sean Noble channeled grants to two dozen 501(c)4 nonprofits. As Stephen Colbert has covered, 501(c)4 nonprofits, which he refers to as “Spooky PACs,” can act like Super PACs — raising and spending unlimited corporate, union and individual contributions — but do not have to disclose a dime in terms of where the money is coming from.

The disclosure of Noble’s outfit is the biggest window we’ve seen recently into who purchased the current composition of Congress two years ago. Before this disclosure, the Koch network could only be tied to a few disclosed donations during the 2010 election: about $30-45 million reportedly raised by Americans for Prosperity, the attack-ad sponsoring Tea Party front founded by David Koch, over $2 million in contributions to political action committees through Koch PAC, and $1,050,450 in donations to the Republican Governors Association. The Center’s $55 million grant budget, raised possibly in connection to the Koch fundraisers — one of which Sean Noble and some of the wealthiest Republican billionaires in the country attended only months before the midterm elections — certainly raises the stakes in terms of calculating how much the current Republican Congress owe their current political fortunes to the Koch machine. From cutting the EPA to passing bills to undermine the Clean Air Act, Congress has handsomely rewarded the business interests of Koch Industries.

As I reported for ThinkProgress last year, David Koch visited Capitol Hill as Republican freshman were being sworn into Congress. He was a guest in the Speaker’s office on John Boehner’s first day on the job. I ran into him on his way out of the Capitol. Koch grinned as he told me that the Tea Party is composed of “just normal people like us.” A few moments later, I asked if the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision had helped him with electing the new Congress. He cringed at the question, picked up his cell phone, and walked away.

RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Koch Brothers Convene Ultra-Secret Billionaires Meeting To Raise Funds, Plot Strategy

  • Finn

    You should fix this blog so that when people share the link in Facebook or Google, it shows the headline, image and short intro, instead of the ungainly looking URL and nothing else.

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    • suzani

      And who do you think this “man that killed thousands of good Americans” is? Take a long hard look at your own government. We need to do some very serious housecleaning. Such as: disrupting avenues by which supremely selfish people like the Koch Brothers wield their influence, putting laws in place that stop the sifting away of taxpayer monies to Wall Street and make it absolutely illegal for the large banks to gamble with other people’s money — i.e., reinstate Glass Steagall, rethink the usefulness to the country of the Supreme Court and the Fed, and insist upon a news media that is not owned by large private corporations but performs an unbiased watchdog function, something that was not unheard of in the days before the great Ronald McDonald Reagan turned us all down the wrong path. “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.” Take a very jaundiced look at so-called “leaders” like the twerp from Texas who told everyone to go shopping while he rolled up his sleeves to clean up 9/11, an act that he probably knew a great deal more about than anyone has dared mention to date. This is the function of the entertainment society — to keep us docile and naive, if not stupid.

  • sam3915

    The Nazi Koch brothers are paying for the Nazi takeover of America.

    • George Soros has a history linking him to Nazi activity as a child.

      Do your homework.

      • Xavier Onassis

        Soros was 14 years old in 1944. He was starving, like most people in Budapest, and received food for indicating where Jews lived from the SS. That does not make him a Nazi. Do you own homework.

        • And it makes sense to call the Koch bros. Nazis? What’s their connection?
          That’s the point.
          14 year olds who are Republicans get lots of media attention.

          • Tillotson

            Atta girl! Defend the massas by whatever the means.

            BTW, there is such a thing as NeoNazis and guess what? You, madam, belong to that party! And so do your masters. Oh, yes, and Grandpappy Bush too. Oops, my bad, I forgot it’s not polite to mention the name Bush in front of the NeoNazis. So sorry.

          • You sure make a lot of assumptions to come up with these insults.
            You assume wrong.
            Why do you feel compelled to insult me? I just asked a question.

          • Tillotson

            Let’s analyze those “assumptions” and see first, where they are coming from and second, if I’m wrong.

            You are hear defending the Kock bros. You are dragging Soros into the argument when he clearly has nothing to do with the Koch’s subversive and unpatriotic activity. You are calling Soros a Nazi. You are defending anything and everything that comes from the right.

            Where are the assumptions again? It is you who are telling us everything we need to know.

            As for the insults…oh, P U L E A S E…can you knock off the victimhoom complex already? It makes you look even more ridiculous and unintelligent and shows that you have no intelligent come up and no factual argument. Claiming victimhood is a cheap strawman designed to divert the tone of the discussion because you simply cannot defend your points with facts intelligently. If you don’t like that the, leave! You’ve been threatening to do that since the first post which, btw, was rather grotesque and insulting to everyone. You started it, madam, you finish it! And if you can’t take the heat, then, get the hell out of the kitchen. Trust me, nobody will miss you here.

          • I am comparing Soros and Koch Bros because they both give a lot of money to their respective causes. I did not call Soros a Nazi. I said that he had participated in Nazi activity when he was younger. The reason I mentioned that is because the Koch Bros were called Nazis. I didn’t bring that up.

            I’m sure I won’t be missed from this discussion. I am the only one on my side of things. And you don’t even care to know my side. You start with venom and close your ears.

          • Tillotson

            You can’t compare Soros who is a philanthropist to the Kocks who are Fascists buying your country, your politicians and your democracy right from under your nose with *your* help because you are all too brainwashed and stupid to tell the truth. Then, you (in your own words) stumble upon it, rather than try to learn something, all you do is troll like a dog chasing its own tail. Hopeless!

            And you are correct, neither you nor your even more ignorant alter ego, the vegan one, will be missed. So good bye and good riddance. Don’t let the door hit you on the ass on your way out.

          • LouiseM

            Why don’t you do your homework? The most that Soros has ever donated is $10 million in total, and it has NOT been to astroturfed political organizations created specifically to influence elections. Do you even know what Soros has done with his donations? NO! You just hear “Soros supports the Democrats,” and that’s all you hear. When do your own research? When will you do your own thinking?

            You are swallowing lies that are paid for by the Koch brothers, and doing it without even thinking about it. That would make you the equivalent of any citizen of a Fascist country who believes what the head Fascist leaders told them.

            Americans are supposed to be able to use teir brains to do their own thinking.

          • That’s pretty funny again, coming from someone whose ilk call the President of the United States a Nazi, among many other choicey things.

          • I never called Obama a Nazi.
            We are talking about Soros.

          • You never called Obama a Nazi…yet and on this blog anyway. However, your ilk call him a Nazi every chance they get. If you don’t want to be lumped in with the lot, you walk away from that madness and speak for yourself. Till then, you’re guilty by association.

            And, no! we are not talking about Soros, we are talking about the Kock bros. Dishonest as you are and putting those trolling skills to good use, you have derailed the entire threat by talking about Soros who clearly has nothing to do with what the Nazi Kocks are doing.

          • Tillotson

            No, *you* are talking about Soros, everyone else is talking about the Kock bros. You’re the only one trying to divert attention to their treachery, deceit and rampant corruption. Get your facts straight.

          • Jrleftfoot

            Why are we talking about Soros? Is he funding voter suppression initiatives?

          • Yes it does make sense to call them Nazis because that’s what they are. Contrary to what you Right Wing nutjobs choose to believe, Obama is not the Nazi, y’all are!

          • Explain WHY Republicans are NeoNazis. Educate us.

          • Oh, Luuuuuuuuuuucy…you gotta some esplainin to do…

            Us? Who would that “us” be? Are you speaking on behave of the Kock bros? The Republican Party? The Right Wing? Or the entire delusional lot?

            In case you haven’t noticed, *you* are the only one here you needs educating. Everyone else knows what your party is the NeoNazi Party. But just for shit and giggles, here we go:

            1. The Nazi doctrine was based mainly on the superiority of the Aryan race. Republicanism places more importance on Nationalism (the extreme form of this being Fascism).

            2. The Nazi party was based mostly on authoritarian, militaristic fascism same as today’s “Republican” Party.

            3. The fever pitched nationalism, rampant militarism and wars, the destruction and outlawing of labor unions, the curtailing of individual rights and liberties, the banning of books and certain arts that did not conform to the “norm”, the persecution and scapegoating of people for their religious beliefs and for their ethnicity, rampant propaganda while silencing opposing opinions, imprisonment without due process, are just a few of the things that the Nazis practiced while they were in power. Just like today’s “Republican” Party. While Nazis escapegoated the jews, “Republicans” escapegoat the Muslims and oddly adore the jews.

            4. The illustrious Prescott Bush, George “The Invisible” Bush’s grandpappy, banker to the Nazis.

            6. It is a well-known fact (except to “Republicans” that is) that Nazi émigrés were given CIA subsidies to build a far-right-wing power base in the U.S. These Nazis assumed prominent positions in the “Republican” Party’s “ethnic outreach committees.” (Would you like me to name them all?)

            7. The term Nazi is German and stems from Nationalsozialist. (Hate all the damn Mexicans and anyone who is not an “Exceptional Amerikan(tm)” like we Republicans are, ring a bell?)

            8. The party was founded out of the current of the far-right racist völkisch German nationalist movement and the violent anti-communist Freikorps paramilitary culture that fought against the uprisings of communist revolutionaries in post-World War I Germany. (Can we say Tea Party, boys and girls?)

            9. Nazi ideology denounced many political and economic ideologies and systems as being associated with “parasitical Jewry” – While today’s Amerikan “Republican” party holds the jewry as their masters and instead labels the poor, immigrants, Liberals, blacks and anyone and everyone they don’t like (except themselves) as “parasitical.”

            10. To maintain the purity and strength of the Aryan race, the Nazis sought to exterminate or impose exclusionary segregation upon “degenerate” and “asocial” groups that included: Jews, homosexuals, Romani, blacks, the physically and mentally handicapped, Jehovah’s Witnesses and political opponents. Of course, the Republican Party only seeks to exclude women, blacks, Mexicans, Muslims, the poor and anyone who doesn’t believe, “think” and look as they do.

            Should I stop now or do you want me to continue exposing your ilk for the Nazis that you are?

            Whether you see it or not, you’re the same shit with different flies.

          • Again, why do you have to call me shit?
            You don’t even know me.
            Most of what you say sounds like you are extremely brainwashed.
            You seem full of hatred for white people. Are you white?
            Republicans, Liberterians, Independents – none of these people are “neoNazis” and they don’t want the things that you describe. How do you get off on being such a hateful person? You need to look deep within yourself ; you are spewing hatred.
            How does this help America?

          • Oh, lord. The victimhood complex…~sigh~

            Not only do you have a problem with cognitive dissonance but also with reading comprehension. Rather than that stupid come back of yours claiming to be victimized (a Christian trait), why don’t you try to be honest and address my post? You asked for an explanation of how you were the Nazi Party, I gave it to you and you come back whining about being persecuted and shit. How much more dishonest can you get? Seriously, if you have no intelligent replay, all you have to do is shut up. I’ll get it, trust me, I’ll get it.

          • I love to see you honestly address the points made by the dissenter above instead of using a strawman argument to get out from addressing the issue. Truly dishonest and transparent.

          • The issue in this particular exchange is that Republicans, Tea Partyiers and Independents are being called neoNazis and I wanted to know what that meant. When I was “educated” as requested, I had to respectfully disagree. I know many people who fall into the Republican et al group and they are not the things that were described by “the dissenter”.

            If you only talk amongst yourselves, it seems like all you are doing is building up hatred for “others”.

            I have been honest and open so what do you want to know, Lola P?

          • Tillotson

            Independents are not being called Nazis, you Right Wingers (whatever name you choose to go by) are being rightfully called what for what you are. You’ve been given volumes to document that and you have nothing to say except whine and squirm out of your own words because you know it’s true. And you can’t be educated if they give you a new brain. Once you go down that path of brain destruction that you have taken, nothing can save you. Ask the Germans, they can tell you.

          • Tillotson

            Is that all you have to say/comment in reply to 2 pages explaining why you Republicans are the NeoNazi party? You requested that, remember? Whatssa matta, can’t handle the truth?

          • What do you want to know? I disagree that the people I know are NeoNazis.

          • You, Madam, asked how the Republicans were the same as the Nazis. You were given a couple of pages worth of comparisons/information to prove that claim and what do you do? Pick one word and start crying victimhood. When put on the spot, you have the gall to ask what we want to know. Seriously! You people are a joke and a menace not only to yourselves but the rest of society.

          • Tillotson

            Lost for words already? One intelligent reply and all you can do is whine. Pitiful!

          • CatKinNY

            Where in Dissenters colorful, but accurate, description of Nazism did you detect a “hatred of white people”? Do you think that Nazism is primarily abut the defense of white people, per chance? Do you think Jews are white people?

          • It was the #1 point – that Nazis believe in the superiority of the Aryan race.

          • CatKinNY

            Do you?

          • Duh, of course it does!

          • Please explain the difference between The superiority of the Aryan race and American Exceptionalism(tm).

          • Tillotson

            Lord! What would the Right Wingers ever do without strawman arguments?

            ~Palm to forehead~

          • Actually, you forgot the marriage of estate and corporations, the core of Fascism. Our Right Wing trolling friend here would be very hard pressed to deny that one, particularly, when she’s hearing defending and batting for her corporate massas, the Kock bros.

          • Tillotson

            Here, try this on for size. And remember just because you can’t or don’t want to see what you are doing, it doesn’t mean that you’re not doing it. And this is straight from your own government:

            Perhaps the best assessment of the use of destructive divisionism by fascist in the United States comes from a 1945 War department publication:

            “Three Ways to Spot U.S. Fascists.

            Fascists in America may differ slightly from fascists in other countries, but there are a number of attitudes and practices that they have in common. Following are three. Every person who has one of them is not necessarily a fascist. But he is in a mental state that lends itself to the acceptance of fascist aims.

            1.Pitting religion, racial, and economic groups against one another in order to break down the national unity is a device of the divide and conquer technique used by Hitler to gain power in Germany and in other countries. With slight variations, to suit local conditions, fascists everywhere have used this Hitler method. In many countries, anti-Semitism is a dominant devise of fascism. In the United States native fascists have often been anti-Catholic, anti-Jew, anti-Negro, anti-Labor and anti-foreign born. In South America native fascists use the same scapegoats except that they substitute anti-Protestantism for anti-Catholicism.

            Interwoven with the master race theory of fascism is a well planned hate campaign against minority races, religions, and other groups. To suit their particular needs and aims, fascists will use any one or a combination of such groups as a convenient scapegoat.

            2. Fascism cannot tolerate such religious and ethical concepts as the brotherhood of man. Fascists deny the need for international cooperation. These ideas contradict the fascist theory of the master race. The color, race, creed or nationality-have rights. International cooperation, as expressed in the Dumbarton Oaks proposals, run counter to the fascist program of war and world domination. Right now our native fascists are spreading anti-British, anti-Soviet, anti-French and anti-United nations propaganda.

            3. It is accurate to call a member of a communist party a communist. For short, he is often called a Red. Indiscriminate pinning of the label Red on people and proposals which one opposes is a common political device. It is a favorite trick of native as well as foreign fascists.

            Many fascists make the spurious claim that the world has but two choices—either fascism or communism and they label as communist everyone who refuses to support them. By attacking our free enterprise, capitalist democracy and by deny the effectiveness of our way of life they hope to trap many people.”

          • So I’m not a fascist.
            Thank you for that info.

          • Thank you for proving that all of you Right Wing whackadoodles are reading impaired. Must be all that homeschooling but people who can’t read themselves.

          • Tillotson

            Yes, you are a Fascist! You sure do have a problem with reading comprehension, I gather that English isn’t your first language but if it is, shame on you. No wonder you Right Wingers are in so much trouble and screwing up everything you touch. You can’t even read properly. Jaysus!

        • dont try to tell the repukes anything…..if the truth came up and smacked them in the face they still wouldnt believe it

      • Oh, yes…the demonization of George Soros by Fox News and its flock of zombies in the Right Wing.

      • CatKinNY

        George Soros’s parents placed him with a Hungarian man who passed him off as his nephew; this was done to keep him out of the camp where his parents were exterminated. The Hungarian worked for the Nazis, though not by choice, collecting the belongings of Jews who had been sent to the camps; sometimes he took Soros with him. What kind of moral depravity does it take to denigrate the final act of parents desperately trying to save their child from death in a concentration camp? And what kind of willful blindness does it take to read an article like this, detailing the spending by a pair of billionaire brothers, just two of many who are ponying up money at unprecedented levels to support an agenda that will give them further tax cuts and a license to pollute, and bring up Soros? Soros wants his taxes to be raised, for the good of the country; he’s honest enough to admit that when you have all the money, you need to pay all the taxes. The funding pouring into pro GOP Superpacs from less than 0.01% of the population to purchase legislators who will do their bidding should frighten every American; instead, half of us appear to be all too eager to get smoke blown up our asses in exchange for pandering about whatever narrow issue animates us the most. Are you really so out of touch with reality that you don’t know that the billionaires are virtually all backing the Republicans? You do your homework, but first, take a good look in the mirror.

        • From everything I see (leave Fox News out of it; that is your knee-jerk reaction) Soros is the puppetmaster and people on this site are apparently under his spell.
          Oh you’re not? Well guess what, I am not under a Koch spell either.
          A lot of the comments on this comment thread amount to childish name-calling. You are right whoever said I should leave this site because it isn’t too enlightening at this point.

          • If you leave Fox News (your messiah) out of this there won’t be a conversation since you would have no place to draw your propaganda and talking talking points. I doubt you’ll grasp the irony in that. Soros is no puppetmaster but you can’t tell the difference between that and, ironically, your own puppet masters, the Kock brothers. Every word in that post is a talking point from FAUX, a LOL tinfoil conspiracy, lies, propaganda, denial and fear. Even more ironically is the fact that you actually lift the language used by the left and apply to our own propaganda having no idea what you are doing. So sad that it has boiled down to this.

            You keep threatening to leave yet you keep coming back. As for this site not being enlightening…lol…no wonder, you’re putting your hand over your eyes so you can’t see the sun and declaring that alas! there isn’t one. The desire for enlightenment has to come from you. You see what you want to see. The truth is uncomfortable and challenging and you reject it. One day soon, you’ll wake up under the boot of the very regime you espouse and then, you’ll wonder how you (and the rest of us) got there. In your case, of course, you’ll blame the liburals for it.

          • If you leave FAUX NOISE out, where would you get your talking points from? He he he…

        • Here’s an article about $100 million George Soros gave to the Democratic Alliance:

          He just happens to be on YOUR side of the fence so it’s ok.
          I get it. Do you?

          • CatKinNY

            Are you joking? Are you really so disinterested in and oblivious to reality that you post an article that clearly states that George Soros cut a check for $1 million to the Democratic Alliance and write that it was $100 million? Do yourself a favor, bubble dweller; read the article you shared carefully, then scroll down to the post by ‘skylights’, open that media matters link and compare the differences in the amount of money being collected by Dems and the GOP. If there is the slightest bit of honesty in you, you’ll be shocked at just how outgunned the Democrats are, all courtesy of a small number of donors. If you have a brain in your head, you’ll ask yourself why these extremely wealthy people are doing this, and wonder if their best interests really coincide with yours? If you conclude that they are all doing it out of sweetness and light and that they want what’s best for you, or the country, you’ll have proven that you don’t, in fact, have a brain in your head. Good luck with venturing out of the bubble; it’ll be scary at first, but reality is infinitely preferrable to where you’ve been living.

          • Let me start by saying I hate that you are drawing me into this.
            But here is cut and paste from the article:
            The news was greeted with a major sigh of relief in Democratic circles: philanthropist George Soros had decided to open his checkbook — to the tune of $2 million — to several liberal outside groups, the leading edge of what is expected to be $100 million in spending by the Democracy Alliance, a group of major Democratic donors.

            Good night.

          • CatKinNY

            Kathryn, I am drawing you into this because you seem to be a polite young person (and because you spell your name like my long gone, beloved grandmother); the fact that you are polite and capable of admitting error means that you have not been thoroughly brain washed yet. I would ask you, for your own sake, as well as that of the country, to be honest with yourself about how you made that particular error. Was it pure bias on your part alone that lead you to glance at that article and manufacture out of whole cloth what was in it to fit your world view?, or were you told what it said by another source which you trust but obviously should not?

            I noticed when you first brought up Soros, your accusations of Nazi ties were vague, for which I give you credit – most such attacks are quite specific and viscious. Do some research, using only sources that would be recognized as valid by both sides of the aisle, like real newspapers that print retractions when they make mistakes, or TV news magazines like 60 Minutes that do the same, and then ask yourself why some people want you to believe that he was practically a member of Hitler Youth? George Soros is one man; if you open that link from Media Matters, you’ll find that he is seriously outnumbered. Again, I ask you to question exactly what it is that all those billionaires want. Some of them want to outlaw abortion, some of them want women and minorities to go back to second class citizen status, some of them want the freedom to pollute (thereby socializing the cost of doing business while privatizing the profits); all of them want to destroy unions and shirk taxes. We now live in a country where 400 individuals have more wealth than do the bottom 150 million; the next time you cross a river on a bridge, ask yourself if you could have gotten from one bank to the other on a tax cut.

            Working people have not had a raise in 40 years. All the profits from gains in productivity have gone to the top; it didn’t used to be that way – the rising tide used to lift all boats. This loss of income gain by the vast majority has been offset, and masked, by the universal conversion to the two income household (even though small children are better off with mom than in day care), cheaper food thanks to factory farming (though the pollution from such operations are enormously destructive – Perdue is turning the Chesapeake into a dead zone as I type), and cheap manufactured goods from third world sweatshops (we look at all the gadgets we have in our homes and mistake them for the kind of wealth that equals real security and think we have a higher standard of living than did our parents – we don’t). These ‘gains’ are more than offset by the skyrocketing costs of healthcare, education and housing. Globalization has of course played a role in this, but it didn’t need to be this extreme. Germany and the Scandinavian countries, for instance, are not anything like as unequal in terms of income, and they score much higher than does the US on all measures of well being, and much lower on political corruption. This is now, thanks to the outsized influence of money in politics, a third world plutocracy masquerading as a democracy, with an enormous military where the major news outlets are all owned by a half dozen huge corporations, and a frightened, impoverished population ripe for manipulation, whose civil liberties have been eroded by the rise of an enormous internal spying aparatus. Fascism thrives in such an atmosphere, and the comparisons to Nazi Germany are apt. Stop buying what the billionaires are trying to sell you and open your eyes. Cat

          • Thank you for your response.
            I am not a young person and I was a Liberal.
            I have had my eyes opened by reading many different articles. I do not shy away from liberal friends and discussions.
            However, I have a different opinion about ALL of this now that I am older. I am a businesswoman who has been hurt by this Obama economy and I am working hard to turn things around. I don’t see any sense in most of the socialist agenda. I do pine for the olden days because then we had polite public discourse and could actually find compromise. I hope those days will return.
            I just find the hostile rhetoric indefensible and appreciate that you were civil. It’s a much better way to operate.

          • CatKinNY

            Sorry about cutting decades off your age! I hope you are not offended. When, exactly, were you a liberal? I’m guessing that you switched by 1980, at the latest. You state that you read many different articles, but your post about Soros proved that to be untrue; other than the fact that he is a Democratic donor, everything you said about him was factually wrong and could not have been believed by someone who gets their news from a variety of legitimate news sources. I knew that BEFORE I went to your Facebook page, where I learned that Sarah Palin, Andrew Breitbart, and Rick Perry are people whom you admire, and that Townhall is where you get your news and opinions. You have still failed to answer my question about why you posted a Washington Post article that said exactly the opposite of what you were asserting, or to in any way address the lopsidedness of support by the extremely wealthy for the GOP.

            Small business people are in an odd position in all of this. A business like yours has benefitted greatly from the changes that have occured over the past 40 years. You no longer have to pay any full time employees that you may have a living wage, since no skills are required, beyond basic literacy (paid for by tax dollars in public schools); nor do you have to provide any benefits, since no one is competing for unskilled labor. Any skilled work, like accounting, can be farmed out cheaply to India and largely done by software. The promotional items that seem to be the largest sector of your business are a vast improvement over their counterparts from 1972, thanks to technological innovations and cheap foriegn labor. The benefits accrued by businesses are starting to turn into liabilities now, as fewer and fewer people have enough money to buy your goods and services. Your business, like everyone elses, is suffering from a lack of demand. You lack demand because the larger companies that order those cute little alarm clocks that fit in your wallet (emblazoned with the company logo!) lack customers, not confidence. The financial meltdown, which occured on George Bush’s watch, was the most severe since the Great Depression, and wiped out huge amounts of wealth at every level of society the world over. Those in the financial sector got a bailout, also courtesy of GW Bush, and they’re doing just fine, thank you very much. The rest of us got a stimulus that was too small, (and every progressive economist said it was before it went into effect) due to Republican obstruction, and 1/3 of that stimulus was tax cuts. It ran out just as the economy was starting to pick up. The states had taken their share of stimulus dollars and used them to fill holes in their budgets (Rick Perry too), which resulted from decreased revenue following the loss of private sector jobs; when the stimulus ended, they began massive layoffs. More private sector jobs have been created than public sector jobs lost, or unemployment would not be lower than it was three years ago. If this country hands the White House and congress to the Republicans in the fall, we’ll be rewarding the very people who wrecked the place and then took up positions in snipers nests and shot at the poor slobs trying to clean up the mess. Mitch McConnell should be hung for treason. To make the failure of the president your number one priority at a time of such crisis is nothing short of treason.

            What you, and every body on your side, have utterly failed to face in all of this is that the American middle class, whose expansion and consumerism fueled the great post war economic expansion, has been left behind. You need customers, and yet you are advocating policies that are shrinking your customer base. You remember that world; somewhere, deep down, you’re wondering how the rich got so rich and why the middle class is on the skids. Tax policy that favors the rich has a lot to do with it, and legislation that protects already existing big business from start ups does most of the rest. Here’s a simple question I’d like you to answer. What generates more economic activity: a billionaire buying a $100,000 watch, or a thousand people buying refrigerators?

          • Thank you for your thoughts.
            What I think is interesting is that you conclude that I want to return to Bush-era policies and I don’t.

            You also did an interesting analysis of my business but you forgot to mention that promo products are fueled by new ventures and there are no new ventures. Is that also due to Bush and Republicans? When do we get to give Obama some credit.

            I believe that people are not moving forward because of the extreme uncertainty in the economic environment, the rising prices of fuel and food, the increasing regulations and long-term unemployment problems. Not to mention the entitlement reform that we need to do in order to be able to get Social Security when we are old. I also believe that there are no plans on the table by the current administration to fix any of this. In fact, I consider Obama the obstructionist. But this thread started with the Koch bros so I won’t even go there.

            I think we need a change and I have liked some of the plans I have heard from “the other side”. They are facing the future head-on. We will just have to see what happens in November.

            I am checking out of this site. Thanks again for the conversation.

          • CatKinNY

            I felt duty bound to remind you that the financial meltdown and the bailout happened under Bush, because a lot of folks on the right have completely forgotton that second point and are acting like the first point doesn’t mean anything. New ventures are hard to start when banks, who just a few years ago gave loans to anything with a pulse (I am still waiting for the story to break of ‘the poodle who bought a house’, cause you know it happened), are now refusing to lend. Unemployment can most certainly be blamed on the Republicans, who have blocked every effort to do a jobs bill that would have gone to work on our antiquaited infrastructure, a long term problem that needs fixing, period. All I’ve heard from the other side are plans to defund the FDA, the EPA, cancel the Affordable Care Act (because we wouldn’t want to do anything to try to riegn in health care costs), decimate Medicaire and food stamps (this will actually kill a lot of poor people, so I’ll give it points for being an effective cost saver), and give more tax breaks to the top (because those Bush tax cuts sure did induce the ‘job creators’ to create jobs! oh, wait…) and increase the budget defecit in order to provide those tax cuts. Social Security is a goner in Paul Ryan’s ‘marvelous’ budget’, as is Medicare, FYI. Mitt Romney thinks Russia is our biggest foriegn policy problem; he literally doesn’t know what century this is. Yeah, that’s facing the future, head somewhere that can’t be said in polite company. If you get what you think you want, you’ll be appalled. Thanks for refusing to answer any of the questions I’ve asked you; you’ve confirmed all my assumptions.

          • Thanks, Cat.
            Again, I do not support Bush so some of this was talking to the choir.
            And as far as the housing crises, I would firmly put the blame for that on the Democrats who wanted to be sure that people who couldn’t afford houses could buy houses. They forced the banks to accept bad loans.

            Where I am most worried about the economy is the tax bomb that will hit us if Obama is reelected. Estimates are that there will be a 25% increase in taxes for middle class. How does that help anything?

            Your info on Mitt is based only on MSM propaganda. I happen to have heard him on many occasions and he is a far better person for the job than Obama ever could be.
            And don’t forget, bigger government is not the solution to every problem. I don’t for a minute believe that Republicans will “decimate Medicare and food stamps”, oh come on, even Romney has disputed this tale of woes.
            The bottom line is that we disagree deeply on a philosophical basis. We both want the same things but just see different solutions.

          • CatKinNY

            The Community Reinvestment Act was indeed Democratic legislation, designed to force banks with FDIC protection to lend in the communities they served, thereby ending the practice of redlining (whereby banks didn’t make loans in poor neighborhoods, guaranteeing that ownership of homes and commercial property was limited to well heeled outside investors). The problem with blaming it for the subprime crisis is that it was enacted in 1977 (and rejiggered and weakened by a Republican congress in 1995), leaving that argument available only to morons and liars (oh, and the GOP removed most entities from falling under its purview in 2004). Mortgage companies, like Countrwide, were never subject to the CRA, and they were responsible for 50% of all subprime mortgages; a further 30% of subprimes were issued by bank affiliates not subject to federal lending regulations.

            You didn’t bring them up, so I will. The Government Regulated Entities, Fanny and Freddie, had increased lending to more poor people, starting in the 90’s. What’s never mentioned in the ‘blame F&F’ conversation so popular in Republican circles is the performance of those loans, because they outperformed the loans issued to the middle class, with lower default rates. F&F had higher standards for the issuance of loans than did their private market counterparts, and they dominated the market up to 2003, at which point their percentage of the market fell precipitously, because the market was out of the kind of good customers that heavily regulated entities like F&F could lend to. Enter Countrywide, Ameriquest and other vampire entities completely outside of any kind of regulation, add in Wall
            Street greed eager to find vehicles that would yield high rates of return
            in a low Prime Rate world and voila, the debacle. F&F never issued a
            single subprime loan; they were prevented from doing so by being subject to
            tight federal regulation. They got into trouble the same way that all the
            other big banks did: by buying high yield CDO’s.

            In 1982, Reagan signed the Garn-St Germain Act, which legalized ARMS for
            the first time.
            In 1995, HUD issues a target goal of 42% as the % of loans to be issued to
            people below the median income level to F&F
            In 1999, Clinton signed Gramm-Leach-Bliley, which repealed Glass-Steagall,
            tearing down the walls between commercial banking, private banking and
            insurance (no GLB, no AIG).
            In 2000, The Commodities Futures Modernization Act (thank you, Phil Gramm)
            removed all regulation from the derivatives market, as well as removing
            curbs to speculation in commodities futures for things like oil and corn.
            Prior to this, you had to have some tangential relationship to the
            commodity in question and a theoretical ability to physically warehouse
            your purchase to bid on it, so airlines or home heating oil companies could
            bid on oil futures, but hedge funds couldn’t. How’s that working out for
            In 2001, interest rates were cut from 6.5% to 1% by Greenspan, with the
            blessing of GWB, to stimulate the economy.
            In 2004, the SEC relaxed the net capital rule, which allowed banks to
            greatly increase their risk by buying far more than they had money to cover
            if the bets din’t pay off. Enter AIG, which insured the bets, thereby
            increasing the appetite for more.
            In 2005, HUD orders F&F to issue 52% of loans to lower than median income

            What we see here is an orgy of deregulation leading up to the financial
            crisis. To state that it was caused by the Democrats forcing banks to make
            bad loans is to live in an alternate universe. In the first place, while
            Dems had the WH in 95 when F&F were first ordered to give loans to people
            below the median income level, GOP controlled congress; by 2005, when F&F
            were ordered to increase to 52% the % of loans going to lower income folks,
            the GOP controlled everything. Mortgage companies and bank affiliates, not
            subject to ANY kind of federal regulation, issued 80% of the bad loans, and
            they did it by coaching applicants through the process and showing them how
            and where to lie. They did this even to customers who qualified for 30
            year fixed rates because they were more profitable up front to the loan
            originators, commanding higher fees because they were riskier. They did
            this because they knew they could sell the loans in total to Wall Street;
            the fact that they were not required to retain any portion of the bad loan
            incentivized this behavior. Part of the Consumer Financial Protection
            Bureau contained in Dodd-Frank would require issuers to hold on to a small
            portion of every loan they issue to discourage this behavior; the
            Republicans have fought the establishment of the CFPB tooth and nail, and
            yet it’s all the Democrats fault? The fact that you think that the entire
            financial meltdown can be laid at the feet of Democratic lawmakers handing
            out goodies to poor people is not a reflection of a difference in
            philosophies. It’s a difference in IQ and work ethic. I’ll let you sort
            out how much of your ignorance you wish to ascribe respectively to
            stupidity and laziness.

            If the Bush tax cuts are allowed to expire, there will be an increase in
            income tax of between 2% and 5% for those making less than 250K/yr, which
            you have chosen to read as 25%. The payroll tax holiday is another matter
            entirely, and that will eventually end no matter who’s POTUS.

            MSM propaganda? So, all the newspapers, including the Murdoch owned
            WSJ, and news networks, with their legions of reporters and researchers get
            it wrong, while Townhall and Breitbart get it right? That meets the
            clinical definition of paranoia. Why don’t you order a Tshirt from your
            own company that says “Give Me Lithium, or Give Me Death”. Your friends
            will get the joke.

            You may not believe that the Republicans are planning to decimate food
            stamps and Medicaid, but the Catholic Bishops (whom I’m sure you love for
            all the trouble they are causing Obama over the affordable Health Care Act)
            believe it. They issued a statement condemning the Ryan budget for what it
            will do to the poor; don’t be surprised if he’s barred from recieving
            communion. And even you must have heard of the vouchers he want’s to issue
            the elderly instead of Medicare. How do you think the average 85 yo is
            going to make out in the private health insurance market when they show up
            with their vouchers?

            Don’t bother to respond. I don’t want any more fact free reports from the
            bubble. They’re a bore, and too time consuming to refute, and you’re not
            interested in learning anything anyway. Bye bye.

          • Jrleftfoot

            In the words of the immortal Talking Heads,”stop making sense.”Rightwingers aren`t listening because their tinfoil headgear is interfering with their aural faculties.

          • CatKinNY

            It gave me great pleasure to know that someone besides that self satisfied, information free jerk read my post. Thank you. She really sent me into high gear when she blamed the financial meltdown on Democrats and poor people.

          • You wear me out with your rationalizing.
            And ultimately, you couldn’t help but be rude yourself.
            Your condescending manner will win over nobody but those who already agree with you.
            In your world, no lib has ever made a mistake.
            It is a very narrow view and one that is shrinking every day. It must drive you nuts!

          • CatKinNY

            My narrow view is that you should have the factual information straight before you make a fool of yourself repeating someone elses opinion. You made a wildly inaccurate, totally partisan statement about what caused the financial meltdown, and that’s actually really important, because whether we put some controls on what is legal on Wall Street or not depends on how we vote. Wall Street pays a lot of taxes where I live; they don’t pay a dime in your neck of the woods, so why are you overlooking their central role in what happened? Is it because it feels good to blame Democrats and poor people (while ignoring the role of all those entrepreneurial house flippers)? How did those unqualified buyers get loan approval if the person at the lending institution was doing their job? Was there some Democratic politician with a gun to their head saying “Don’t check the accuracy of the info on that app; don’t check and see if that house is worth the asking price.”? Your stunningly stupid and ignorant statement depends on this ridiculous scenario being true. The litany of ugly facts in my previous post contains plenty of blame to go around; Bill Clinton signed two of the worst pieces of Republican crafted legislation (GLB & CFMA) ; he should have vetoed them. The inescapable fact however, is that the GOP has been in control of things more than the Dems have over the last 30 years. You guys are running around pointing out that Obama’s been in charege for 31/2 years; well, that cuts both ways – 12 years of a Democrat in the WH vs 20 years of Republican rule.

            Just look at the past few weeks. JP Morgan Chase admits they lost 2
            billion on a dumb bet – Jamie Dimon’s language, not mine (and 2 billion in
            this case is WS speak for at least 4 billion). He’s the smartest, most
            competant guy on the street, by all accounts. He’s spent the last two
            years, and millions of dollars, lobbying against Dodd Frank and railing
            against the Obama administration. Now, even he admits that some regulation
            might be a good idea. The Facebook IPO is emblematic of what’s wrong. The
            connected wealthy insiders got to buy in cheap before it went public, when
            it was offered to you and me at an outrageously inflated price. Enough of
            us were sufficiently gullible to let the wealthy double their initial
            ‘investment’ and get out by the closing bell, leaving us holding this bag
            of shit. Let the lawsuits begin. The game is rigged on every level, and
            the billionaires want it to stay that way. The GOP has the support of the
            billionaires, and anyone who doesn’t ask themselves why they are supporting
            the agenda of people who can buy them and sell them a million times over is
            an idiot. Follow the money, KV, follow the money.

          • Jrleftfoot

            You are not worn out by “rationalizing” ,but by your exhausting efforts to dispute facts with preconceptrions.

          • you consider obama an obstructionist??????????????????wow. he has bent over backwards to appease gop to his detriment. the repukes have filibustered more since obama became president than ever before. where do you get off saying that?

          • love your style!!!!! what i dont understand is why in the world would people be voting for the same exact policies that got us into this shape in the first place. no woman should be voting gop. no people who make less than $200,000 should be voting gop. i just cannot understand how people can vote gop unless its because they hate obama cause hes black. i hate to say that but its the only thing that explains why they would vote gop.

          • CatKinNY

            Thanks Jane! The GOP knows it’s got a huge, and ultimately fatal, problem with it’s message, which is why it has spent the last 40 years doing it’s dardest to frighten poor white people with propaganda that was taken right out of ‘Mein Kampf’. Hitler once observed “How fortunate for leaders that men don’t think. Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.” In our own Civil War,how did the planter class get the cracker class to march to war to protect an institution which destroyed their own wages? They lied to them.

          • CatKinNY

            One more thing: there is no socialist agenda, not on Barack Obama’s part. Go ahead and try to prove me wrong. You’ll have to use verifiable facts, not the opinions of Dennis Prager and Ann Coulter.

          • Tillotson

            You should clarify that there is no Socialist agenda for the working class. The Socialist or rather Communist agenda for the elites is very much alive and well and in full implementation.

          • CatKinNY

            Hello, Till. You are absolutey correct, but I decided I’d start small. Baby steps will do for now. I don’t actually expect an answer.

          • Tillotson

            You’re very patient and courageous. Hats off to you.

          • CatKinNY

            I have run out of patience; see snarky kiss off above!

          • When arguing with a Right Winger, please keep two words in mind: cognitive dissonance. Everything will fall into place from that.

          • CatKinNY

            Cognitive dissonance effects most of us, but it’s not all that difficult to get someone who is arguing in good faith to reexamine what they are saying. Kathryn initially doubled down (I know this because I recieved the email that contained the message that she subsequently edited out here), but then, without promting, did as asked, read the article and changed her position. I am hopeful that she is giving some thought as to how she came to pull such a howler. You are correct that there is a great deal more of it on the right than on the left today. That is the result of a deliberate strategy implemented in earnest more than 50 years ago. I believe that understanding the historical roots of something is integral to the ability to understand the thing itself, so I’ll bore you with a brief bit of history.

            Back in the 60’s, the conservative movement was bifurcated into the crack pot wing, as exemplified by the John Birch Society (met with universal scorn), and the serious philosophical wing, as exemplified by public intellectuals like Bill Buckley, who enjoyed universal respect and a lot of airtime. Both wings were agreed that they were losing the public argument (and had been since the 30’s). They attributed this loss, in part, to the fact that Democrats were usually able to bolster their public positions by mining the research being done in academia, in a time when academic accomplishment and research were widely admired and respected (how quaint that sounds now!). The campus unrest of the 60’s gave them the ammo they needed to undermine the respect for intellectual attainment amongst those who were not well educated, but more important, they tapped the resentment of industrialists in a way that hadn’t been seen since they lost their great battle for ownership of the country to FDR. Using the checkbooks of people like Koch Sr and Scaife(both members of the crack pot wing), the intellectuals set up think tanks to manufacture counterarguments and talking points, incorporating some crack pot elements as demanded by their paymasters. Their success has been stunning, particularly in the last 15 years since the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine, which demanded that both sides of an argument be presented when editorializing on the public airwaves. The abandonment of journalistic standards that require the correction of factual errors by Fox News and others of it ilk (those tiny letters scrolling so fast you can’t read them don’t count) has led us to where we are today, a country with two versions of reality. It all comes down to that basic dictum: follow the money.

            It’s always worth trying to get people to look at the motives of those who are investing vast sums to influence them in a voting booth. Some of them will at least come away a little skeptical, and of that group, some will actually decide that they want their news straight, and that can only be to everyone’s benefit. This country is dying for an honest debate between liberals and conservatives about what we should do going forward. Until we can stop the wholesale purchase of politicians by special interests, it will remain impossible. Pointing out who is doing the purchasing remains a worthwhile endeavor in the mean time. I will get off my soapbox now. Have a good day.

          • You can make that analysis but they can’t. The problem with the Right Wing is genetic, from an enlarged amygdala that causes them to be & cowards more susceptible to fearmongering and propaganda to who knows what other genetic defects that cause the collective madness that they’re so inflicted with. I give you a lot of credit for trying. You have a talent that I lack.

          • vega388

            Liberalism is a mental disorder butt brain.

          • Sullivan Dan

            And that gem of wisdom proves it. ROFL!

          • What a brilliant statement! You’ve just vindicated Right Wingers all over the land and proven your superior IQ.

          • Tillotson

            Sadly, science has proven time and again, that it is you Right Wingers who are genetically predisposed to mental illness. But keep wiping shit out of your ass, the more you do that the more you show yourselves for the mental retards you are.

          • vega388

            Hey mental miget, did you know liberalism is a real mental disorder? Go get a few brain cells.

          • The irony is that you are the only one demonstrating symptoms of Mental Dwarfism.

          • Tillotson

            Dude, compared to you, an ant is a genius.

          • Tillotson

            Dishonesty is a way of life for these folks. How else could they justify what they support and espouse in good conscience?

          • Here’s what I see as tragic. Instead of acknowledging that both parties are corrupt and on the take and making fools out of each and every single one of us, you set out to prove that the other side is just as bad as yours. Apparently, in your deluded world, two wrongs make a right. Your blind partisanship does not allow you to see how your party (closely followed by the Democrats) are bringing the country down the path of Fascism. Again, when we’re there, you’ll just turn around it and blame it all on the big bad liburals. Sad…no tragic that such ignorance, brainwashing and idiocy are allowing the most evil of individuals to enslave us all with your consent and support.

          • Jrleftfoot

            Yes, we do get it.Soros is on the side of democracy and fairness.The Koch brothers are on the side of corpo-fascist domination of the masses through the suppression of voting and massive Himmler-like disinformation campaigns.

      • Tillotson

        So does Prescott Bush and he can’t even use the excuse that he was a child when he was serving as Hitler/the Nazis bankster. But I bet FAUX NOISE won’t tell you that, will they? If someone is in no position to criticize anyone that would be the Republicans/Neo Nazis for they have more skeletons in their closet than Arlington National Cemetery.

      • Dar

        Just remember kathy liberalism is a real mental disorder!

        • This coming from someone who is on short leave from a Right Wing mental institution. LOL!

        • Tillotson

          Poor, poor “Kathy” – the troll has to resource to multiple fake accounts in order to boost her bruised ego and give the appearance that it has support. Sad indeed. Still, you talk about mental illness. If that ain’t the perfect example of a mental disorder, I dunno what is.

      • Jrleftfoot

        Nazi activity as a child? What a sad , stupid statement.

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  • What about George Soros?

    • skylights

      The money George Soros has given to Democratic causes pales in comparison to the mountains of money the Kochs have dumped on Republicans. But the Kochs are just the tip of the iceberg of billionaire Republicans like John Olin and Richard Mellon Scaife who fund the conservative movement, who are listed here:

    • Tillotson

      The Egyptians are wrong, Denial is a river in the US.

      • You know, it was fun taking over your thread.
        I learned a lot about the liberal mentality.
        You guys are in big trouble.

        • Yes, we’re familiar with Right Wing trolling. That’s what y’all learn to do with astroturfing for 25 cents a post. Sad statement about you, ain’t it?

          BTW, you “other” persona, the vegan one, great touch! Your god must be so pleased with your dishonest and ignorance.

    • Yeah, what about George Soros? Why don’t you tell us?

    • Obsessed there a wee bit with George Soros, eh? FAUX Noise has done an outstanding job of brainwashing you.

  • Don’t know how I got to this site but it makes me puke. Let’s everybody put their head in the sand and blame the Koch Brothers for the demise of our once great country. I say THANK YOU that they are willing to spend money to try to penetrate the Mainstream Media bias that suppresses the truth.

    • Tillotson

      The perfect example of why this country is in the mess it’s in, cognitive dissonance at its best.

      PS: I puked too when I read your comment. But it’s your country, feel free to f*ck it up any which way you want. Pretty soon, you too will be in a reservation and calling the Kock Bros. massas, just like the Natives your ancestors stole the country from.

    • When you’ve been fed a steady diet of Right Wing bullshit, puking is the normal reaction to the truth. It’s like going to detox or waking up with a hangover after a night of heavy drinking.

      • I read everything. Do you ever really listen or read anything from the Right Wing?
        Give me an example.

        • You have to be kidding right? Reading anything from the Right Wing like the World Nut Daily, FAUX NOISE and FAUX Nation, Badbreath’s blog, Rush Limbaugh, the Washington Post. Give me a break! Only someone with a single-digit IQ, completely brainwashed and with a death wish would ever read/listen to that shit. Anyone who values their intellect will steer as far and clear of that vile propaganda as possible lest they run of the risk of being pulled to the dark side themselves.

    • Hey, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

  • Spending nearly $55 million to divide the social foundation of the country is self-interest on steroids. This is precisely why such investigative work and reporting is necessary because those with such extreme self-interest find every possible avenue to hide their intentions. If they truly were considering the sick utilitarian approach of fighting for what is best for the majority of people, while those who slip through the cracks until death are largely viewed as irrelevant, then they would work from that platform in a transparent manner. Working in the shadows automatically draws suspicion. We all realize the Koch boys are only interested in their continued wealth through exploitation of the environment, of people, and of governments. Their monetary infiltration of our political system is an example of the influence they have exerted effectively as these two people are not elected officials. Their influence has not been won through any democratic process, of which our country is founded upon. Without investigative reporting based on supporting facts and exposure of such criminal activity, that activity would continue without notice. As an Independent, I would feel the same outrage should reports surface concerning the Democratic party; however, most deleterious political activities damaging the American society, i.e.deeply rooting divisiveness, do involve those representing the Republican party. It is becoming increasing clear to me the Republican party is incapable of honesty and integrity and it is a scary proposition to have a group of this nature running our governments at all levels.

    • Groty1

      >>Their influence has not been won through any democratic process, of which our country is founded upon.<<

      Wrong. Every time someone buys a product or service the Koch's produce, the buyer is voting with his dollars. Voluntary trade is the most democratic process there can be. If others did not see value in the goods and services they provide, the buyers would go elsewhere and the Koch's would be out of business. As it is, they are able to employ around 50,000 people domestically and another 15,000 outside of the U.S. All with good salaries, healthcare, penion plans, etc. Further, because the Koch's provide so much value that others want/need, they have created not livelihoods for tens of thoudsand of employees, but also wealth for themselves which enables them to donate hundreds of millions to charity – including funding hospitals and medical research. Some of the research they fund will likely eventually lead to medical breakthroughs that will improve all of our lives.

      • And what part of that gives them the right to have more political influence in Congress than any other citizen?

        That’s right, none of it. We’re supposed to be a Republic, not an oligarchy or aristocracy.

      • Javahouse

        I don’t “vote” for Koch’s politics, which fights against every “good” you attribute to them, every time I wipe myself with GP toilet paper. That’s such a foolish statement.

        • You wipe with toilet paper and not corn husks? I’ll be…

      • lmao kock never pays the taxes they should. and trust me they dont give a damn about poor people…and no they dont all have good salaries……….are you working for them? probably

      • muldoonicus

        You have the sound of a shill. One would have to consider how good the jobs are, how well paid they may be, etc. Congruent to the policy they are pushing on the rest of America, then, if their job, pay, healthcare are so rosy, why do they put this millions into destroying it for the rest of the country. Are You saying they have an elite system for themselves?

  • Tillotson

    Yeah, the Kock brothers are big spenders of the money they steal from the citizens of this country.

  • The Kock brothers are the cancer killing this country. It’s time to start building some guillotines.

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  • vega388


    • Surely, you can provide proof of that, right Einstein? Oh, never mind, *you* are the proof of that which you claim. ROFL!

    • Tillotson

      And here is poor, poor “Kathy” with another persona. How sad!

  • When I read this article, I remembered something I had read last year, but it took me a little while to locate it. Undoubtedly Koch has enough money to influence our elections under the current campaign finance system. Unfortunately just voting in Democrats doesn’t eliminate the influence of money though. This article illustrates that purchasing power in and influence over our government is of 1st priority to ultra wealthy. Please visit

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  • Tillotson

    Yes, I bet it was a hoot. Now, you can waddle back to FAUX Nation and tell them all about it, how you trolled a libural threat with 3 different accounts and beat them all because you’re so smart. I can hear it all the way from here now. Cheering yourself up, you and your other fake accounts. You lie to yourselves and believe your own lies. Talk about a mental illness.

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  • tiredofdiscourse

    These men have purchased the republican party. That should make everyone angry. The new GOP is not American.

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  • The Youtube video the Koch brothers tried to get banned,as Wikipedia have thanks to Jimmy Wales!

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  • Heather Mash

    What can we do to prevent Corporations and Billionaires from controlling and destroying our democracy? H.

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