It's really good to see a publication that circulates in print and online put the Koch family in the spotlight in this weeks' cover story.
I've spent the past year researching the different tentacles of the Republican party and how the money flows, much of which I've reported here. But it never seems to slide into the mainstream. Until today, when Jane Mayer put it all together for New Yorker readers.
The only thing she missed was this: FreedomWorks is also a Koch enterprise. She started to go there, then backed off, but it's important to realize that both primary sources for teabagger funding come straight from the Koch family.
“Ideas don’t happen on their own,” Matt Kibbe, the president of FreedomWorks, a Tea Party advocacy group, told me. “Throughout history, ideas need patrons.” The Koch brothers, after helping to create Cato and Mercatus, concluded that think tanks alone were not enough to effect change. They needed a mechanism to deliver those ideas to the street, and to attract the public’s support. In 1984, David Koch and Richard Fink created yet another organization, and Kibbe joined them. The group, Citizens for a Sound Economy, seemed like a grassroots movement, but according to the Center for Public Integrity it was sponsored principally by the Kochs, who provided $7.9 million between 1986 and 1993.
Citizens for a Sound Economy was FreedomWorks' predecessor. All assets were merged together, and FreedomWorks emerged as the new entity. Whether or not Koch continues to fund FreedomWorks, it unquestionably was spawned with their money and intentions.
After you read it, share it with everyone you know, because really, billionaires shouldn't be confused with angry populists and racists like they are now.