Get sick, get well
Hang around a ink well
Ring bell, hard to tell
If anything is goin' to sell
-- Bob Dylan

Friday, June 15, 2012

Koch Bros. summits dominate the right-wing movement

Koch summits are regarded as a holy grail of sorts for conservatives seeking cash for their initiatives, blogs Kenneth Vogel at Politico. The Koch Bros. raise hundreds of millions for right-wing groups and individuals at these summits and the money is leveraged to take over existing organizations like the libertarian Cato Institute.Writes Vogel:
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.
Among other groups receiving money directly or indirectly from the Koch Bros. summits, according to Vogel, are: 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 policy implications for education are enormous as the brothers work through groups like ALEC to promote privatization, school vouchers, and other market "reforms" in the public sector.

The next Koch summit is scheduled later this month in San Diego.

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