Wednesday, April 11, 2018
What Does Charles Koch Want?
By Justin Raimondo
Charles Koch wants to be liked. Denounced by Senator Harry Reid as the reincarnation of the 19th century robber barons, demonised by the left as a symbol of heartless greed, a despoiler of the environment, and the financier of all things reactionary, the Kansas billionaire has embarked on a campaign to remake his image and redeem the family name. While the well-financed network of political action groups and thinktanks he generously supports are still working on behalf of his libertarian beliefs, Charles is determined to prove that he’s a Good Samaritan as well as a political ideologue: the list of good works stretches from agitating for criminal justice reform to giving generously to the arts and sciences, ramping up his contributions by many millions of dollars.
And to take the edge off his public image, he told an interviewer that he no longer considers himself a libertarian – an appellation far too angular for his remade persona. He now says he’s a “classical liberal.” While the left characterises Koch – it’s Charles who’s the political one, while brother David is much less ideological – as the George Soros of the right, the Washington Post reports that the Koch network is now open to working with Democrats “in areas where they agree.” One major area where they definitely agree is immigration: the Koch-run Cato Institute has been pushing a highly liberal open borders policy, and the hostility of the Koch network to President Donald Trump has been undisguised.
Indeed, what might be described as Koch’s “left turn” is in large part seemingly motivated by the rise of Trump and Trumpism within the Republican party – a party once devoted to free trade (or, in reality, the managed trade of Nafta and the TPP) has now turned to the bete noir of the libertarians: tariffs! The various Koch outfits – Cato, the Mercatus Center, Freedomworks, Concerned Veterans of America, Americans for Prosperity – have been vigorously denouncing the “trade wars are good” line of the administration, and with the network spending as much as $400 million in the 2018 election year cycle, they pose a considerable threat to the Trumpified GOP. As the Post reported: “’We’re not going to sit back and wait, as we have in the past,’ said James Davis, a senior official at the network who oversees communications. ‘We’ve also pulled punches in a lot of places where we didn’t want to upset folks that we were going to be working with on other issues. … So we’re going to have to come out and hold Republicans and Democrats accountable.’”
Read the rest here.
at 12:01 AM