If there can be such a thing as a typical American billionaire, David H. and Charles G. Koch do not fit that bill. They are not just among the richest Americans -- $100 billion and counting. They are deeply political libertarian industrialists.
As seems likely, if the Koch brothers, both individually and through Koch Industries, are making similar grants elsewhere, then the size and scope of their influence has been significantly underestimated.
As we reflect on this Labor Day, in the context of a world desperate for leadership on climate, let us show authentic gratitude to the American worker by vowing that we will do all we can to ensure that none of us has to choose between a pay check, our dignity and the safety of the planet.
We've seen how the Kochs have financially influenced the curriculum of colleges and universities. Allowing a pair of conservative billionaires to buy free press will only serve to advance their tea party ideology and take over our democracy.
Given the domination of our political system by big money in this post-Citizens United world, the question is whether it will be possible for the U.S. government to take the large-scale political actions that are necessary to address climate change.
What the Kochs want is to use their vast fortune to influence the political beliefs of people with a millionth their net worth, getting the middle class to buy into the notion that what's good for the rich is good for everyone.
Might this act of selling out have something to do with the fact that the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation serves as an underwriter of the George Washington Forum, which is the OU group hosting the speech?
Should the Republicans be confident that their spin on the price of driving will prevail? Or are they frenetically creating voter focus on a series of issues which may well, judo like, be turned against them?
Given this set of facts, the sheer reach of the Koch brothers in the movement to overturn health care reform is staggering. They have seeded and cultivated the very network of organizations that's now threatening to undo the most significant progressive reform in a generation.
We challenge the Koch brothers to engage in an honest debate. We challenge them to see the film and show one false claim. Generalizing about bias and false claims is easy; actually rebutting what we've documented is another matter.
The "Nastiest Show on Earth" otherwise known as the "Slimary Process" -- the prolonged and agonizing Republican primary to select a presidential candidate -- is already being called the dirtiest of all time by political pundits and voters alike.