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Charles Koch’s Friendly Letter to Bernie Sanders Complicates Campaign 2016’s Effort to Make Us All Dumb

Common concerns over crony capitalism and criminal justice, different solutions, and a thinly veiled warning shot to Republicans

Last August, Jon Schwarz over at The Intercept wrote a piss-take about how if the dreaded Koch brothers* really cared about corporate welfare and criminal justice reform and intervention-skepticism, instead of just cynically using those issues to make their self-interested policy atrocities go down smoother, then they would be backing the democratic socialist Bernie Sanders. "The alternative to taking the Koch brothers at their word," Schwarz wrote, "is to conclude that all the stuff they say that progressives love is just a scam — that when it's time to get out their checkbooks to put people in office, the only thing they actually care about is whether those politicians will make them richer." 

This kind of binary gotcha game, in which there are forever only Doors #1 and #2, and politics always counts 100 times more than decades worth of philosophically based issue advocacy, is an almost-amusing attempt at enforcing tribal norms via cheap rhetorical entertainment. (Here's how easy it is: "The alternative to taking George Soros at his word about drug legalization, foreign policy overreach and the death penalty is to conclude that all the stuff he says that libertarians love is just a scam—or else he would have supported Ron Paul instead of Barack Obama.") Like almost everything about two-party presidential politics, such exercises are designed to erase ideological complications, sort people into clearly delineated camps, and make us all a little bit dumber.

Complicating such efforts today is a Washington Post op-ed from Charles Koch himself, in which he spends most of it exploring areas of commonality with—yes—Bernie Sanders. Excerpt:

FrontPage Mag respectfully disagrees. ||| FrontPage MagazineFrontPage MagazineThe senator is upset with a political and economic system that is often rigged to help the privileged few at the expense of everyone else, particularly the least advantaged. He believes that we have a two-tiered society that increasingly dooms millions of our fellow citizens to lives of poverty and hopelessness. He thinks many corporations seek and benefit from corporate welfare while ordinary citizens are denied opportunities and a level playing field.

I agree with him. […]

[T]he United States' next president must be willing to rethink decades of misguided policies enacted by both parties that are creating a permanent underclass.

Our criminal justice system, which is in dire need of reform, is another issue where the senator shares some of my concerns. Families and entire communities are being ripped apart by laws that unjustly destroy the lives of low-level and nonviolent offenders.

Koch goes on to explain how his policy solutions differ from those of Sanders ("History has proven that a bigger, more controlling, more complex and costlier federal government leaves the disadvantaged less likely to improve their lives"); points out that it's "results, not intentions” that matter, and closes with a passage that reads as much as anything else like a warning shot across the bow of Republicans:

When it comes to electing our next president, we should reward those candidates, Democrat or Republican, most committed to the principles of a free society. Those principles start with the right to live your life as you see fit as long as you don't infringe on the ability of others to do the same. They include equality before the law, free speech and free markets and treating people with dignity, respect and tolerance. In a society governed by such principles, people succeed by helping others improve their lives.

I don't expect to agree with every position a candidate holds, but all Americans deserve a president who, on balance, can demonstrate a commitment to a set of ideas and values that will lead to peace, civility and well-being rather than conflict, contempt and division. When such a candidate emerges, he or she will have my enthusiastic support.

Those last italics are mine, to underline the not-so-veiled slap at the remaining Republican field.

Now, this rhetorical olive branch hardly means that the Kochs are suddenly going to stop focusing their vast major-party-influencing efforts on the GOP, any more than George Soros will abandon the Democrats. (I have written on the commonalities between the opposing billionaires here and here.) But it does demonstrate anew that the strenuous effort to demonize them as ultra-conservatives are as reductionist and absurd as calling the Hungarian-born Soros a socialist.

And as importantly, the generosity toward Sanders from one of his biggest targets illustrates something that the dwindling number of partisan dead-enders cannot accept during the tribalist din of a presidential campaign: that it is possible, even probable, for individual Americans to find individual candidates from opposing parties to be the best in the field on certain important issues and the worst in the field on others, and that such collections of disparate judgments can make comparative evaluations challenging. Bernie Sanders is great on pot, lousy on higher education. Ted Cruz is decent on ethanol, indecent on subjecting Supreme Court nominees to a public vote because of gay marriage. Even the thoroughly awful Donald Trump makes a good point now and then.

The point of Olympic Year politics is to make you forget all of this. The point of living, as ever, lies elsewhere.

* David Koch is on the Board of Trustees of the Reason Foundation, the nonprofit that publishes Reason magazine and this website. Organizations connected with both brothers have donated money to the Foundation over the years.

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  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    This kind of binary gotcha game, in which there are forever only Doors #1 and #2, and politics always counts 100 times more than decades worth of philosophically based issue advocacy, is an almost-amusing attempt at enforcing tribal norms via cheap rhetorical entertainment.

    This is why you remain one of my favorite writers, Matt. I don't care what the rest of the commentariat says.

  • LynchPin1477||

    +1

  • todaytechspot||

    In our modern life various Today TechSpot and many technologies we are used, which helps to improve our life and easy going. Use of technology has a kind of the gift, which we can see in our society as well as our life also ...
    http://todaytechspot.com/

  • ||

    It's generally best to not care about what the rest of the commentariat says. Especially me.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Especially me.

    So then my takeaway is that I should really care care about what the rest of the commentariat says?

  • ||

    Don't not do the opposite of what I said not to do just because I did or didn't say it. Understand now?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    *looks around nervously*

    H...Hitler?

  • But Enough About Me||

    Yes!

  • LynchPin1477||

    How long before Salon claims that the Koch's are only being nice to Sanders to try and make him look bad to his base?

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    They're in the tank for Hillary, obviously.

  • Idle Hands||

    The comments on that piece should prove to be epic.

  • Idle Hands||

    "Consider America’s War on Poverty. Since its launch under President Lyndon Johnson in 1964, we have spent roughly $22 trillion, yet our poverty rate remains at 14.8 percent."

    Yes. And what would our poverty rate be if we hadn't spent that $22T? My guess is that it would be higher.
    Anyone taking his concern for the poor seriously should read Jane Mayer's book 'Dark Money'. He wants to continue the uneven playing field you are born into. He wants to destroy unions, all of them. He's for privatization of everything .
    He wants everyone to stand by themselves so you, as an individual, stand no chance against the coporations.

    At one point he had to improve his image an that is what this is. At that time he was advised to donate money to good causes, not because he believed in them but because it would make him look like a good guy. He runs the republican party, so tell me what they've done for the poor lately.
  • JW||

    My guess is that it would be higher.

    Ah yes, the non-falsifiable gubmint magic. If we'd only spent more of other people's money!

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    Just think how high unemployment would be without the stimulus! 33 million jobs created or saved!!!

  • Ship of Theseus||

    The real question is: What would have happened if the country had spent $44 trillion? What about $100 trillion? Maybe, we'd all be millionaires!

  • Suicidy||

    ONLY $100 trillion? You heartless bastard! We should be spending at least $ empty quintillion! PER YEAR! Then we would all have more money than Bloomberg.

  • The Other Libertarian||

    "Yes. And what would our poverty rate be if we hadn't spent that $22T? My guess is that it would be higher."

    I read that and wanted to say, "Um...no, it would be 14.8 percent....the rate it was before anything was spent. I thought we just established that part?"

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "tell me what they've done for the poor lately"

    School choice?

    No, wait, that hurts unions, doesn't it?

  • Mainer2||

    The aqueduct ?

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    Roads?

  • iVOTED4Kodos||

    Well that goes without saying

  • gaoxiaen||

    Autobahn, Dummkopf!

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    I understand he employs many orphans at his pollution factory. Also, as monocle-polishers and shoe-shine boys.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Don't misunderestimate shoe-shine boys.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeL8EYtbVw0

  • Suicidy||

    Baking free faggot cookies for them?

  • ||

    He wants everyone to stand by themselves so you, as an individual, stand no chance against the coporations.

    But if everyone "stands by themselves", there are no corporations. I know it's hard to believe, but this person *might* be an idiot. Just consider the possibility.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    He may look like an idiot and talk like an idiot but don't let that fool you. He really is an idiot.

  • ||

    You make that donation yet, 'plug?

  • Mainer2||

    The only way people can organize themselves is through government. No churches, charities, mutual aid societies, buying clubs, co-ops. Nope, it's socialism or you stand alone and naked before nature. Just common sense really.

  • ||

    " Nope, it's socialism or you stand alone and naked before nature. "

    And corporations. Somehow, they apparently survive the annihilation of coöperative actions to predate on everyone, as they would even now be doing to you if it weren't for the breaking its back to protect you.

  • DEATFBIRSECIA||

    "At one point he had to improve his image an that is what this is."

    Why, exactly did he have a need to improve his image? This is one of those taken-as-faith absurdities that underlie most of partisan thinking.

  • LynchPin1477||

    They were relatively unknown until recently. I don't remember when I first heard their names being invoked to explain all that is wrong with America, but it can't have been more than 10 years ago.

    Bu that just proves how conniving they are - they started improving their image decades before they had an image, in preparation for the day that they would be drug out of the shadows and into a world of hate!

  • The Other Libertarian||

    Just think how bad their image would have been if they didn't. I think it would be worse. /sarc

  • Princess Trigger||

    He really, really cares what the Little People think.
    He does.

  • some guy||

    He wants everyone to stand by themselves so you, as an individual, stand no chance against the coporations.

    But... who's forming the corporations?

    Thank you for delving into that cesspool for us Idle Hands. I hope you came out intact.

  • Juice||

    But... who's forming the corporations?

    Not people. We all know what corporations aren't.

  • ||

    Well ya see there's povertys created and then there are povertys saved.

    I think LBJs War On Poverty has definitely saved a lot of povertys.

  • Microaggressor||

    I mistakenly read the comments. I think I caught the stupid.

  • MJGreen - Docile Citizen||

    Laughing as the world burns. Horrible!

  • Mainer2||

    " all Americans deserve a president who, on balance, can demonstrate a commitment to a set of ideas and values that will lead to peace, civility and well-being rather than conflict, contempt and division."

    conflict, contempt and division ? I thought we just had 7 years of healing.

  • grrizzly||

    7 year of racial healing.

  • Curtisls701||

    It would have been better as "sexual healing."

    +1 for Marvin Gaye

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    Phenomenal musical talent. Got more goofy white dudes laid than any other humanbeing ever. I have employed his baby-making music to great effect on many an occasion.

    +1 Sexual Heal-er

  • LynchPin1477||

    Now I kind of want to see the Kock's back Sanders, just for the exploding heads it would create.

  • some guy||

    It would be glorious. The conspiracy theories alone would provide weeks of entertainment.

  • ||

    That might tip the nomination to that party's other viable candidate.

  • ATXChappy||

    It actually makes a lot of sense if you look at his platform. The only problem I have with Bernie is his economic literacy. Of course that is one YUGE problem. Oh, if only someone could get him to understand the crony capitalism and regulatory capture are the major causes of political/campaign corruption. And, that those two problems are the result of a big, powerful government. Oh, if only.

  • SimonD||

    Senator Sanders seems to have identified the disease correctly (cronyism) but promotes exactly the wrong treatment (more power and money to the same people who set up the crony system).

    It's like a doctor who has correctly noticed that there is a syphilis outbreak, so he demands that everyone have lots of unprotected sex as a treatment.... Yeah, that'll cure it.

    *sigh*

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    When it comes to electing our next president, we should reward those candidates, Democrat or Republican, most committed to the principles of a free society.

    This line puts me in mind of something I heard this morning-- I'm not sure why... but a question was being asked about the current Apple legal debacle-- how a dusty old 1789 law could possibly apply to a cell phone.

    *sigh*

    It's the wrong question to ask. Many of the things going on in this country in 1789 and earlier are explicitly designed to protect us from an overreaching government and have nothing to do with the state of technology. Those things are there to help us "commit ourselves to the principles of a free society".

  • JW||

    None of the above 2016!

  • ||

    No, dude. I'm telling you: Warty/Nicole 2016. This time, why not the worst?

  • B. Woodrow Chippenhaus||

    I'm writing in Yellowstone Supervolcano.

  • iVOTED4Kodos||

    Cthulu 2016:
    Why settle for lesser evils?
    All Equal in Madness
    No More Years
    #NoLivesMatter
    Vote for the Elder Party
    At least he admits he's Evil
    Vote for Real Change
    No Hope All Change

    I'm seriously debating changing my vote from Gary Johnson.

  • iVOTED4Kodos||

    (wrong thread, sorry.) But W/N would still be way worse. At least under the mighty Dread Lord we could serve tyranny and evil with some dignity

  • Suicidy||

    Not sue if I should trust you. I'm more of a Kang guy.

  • gaoxiaen||

    Just use Kim Jong-Il's old campaign slogan. "There will be absolutely no change!" After all, he got 100% of the vote.

  • JW||

    Considering what is already running, they really aren't the worst.

    I mean, don't get me wrong, they're terrible and they smell like bad cheese left out in the sun, but they're not the horrible thing of nightmares this election is.

  • ||

    they're not the horrible thing of nightmares

    Go ask Nicole about hats or opera and then see if you want to revise that statement.

  • JW||

    That's just silly.

    [walks over, asks of hats and opera...]

    [Screams, gouges out eyes, throws himself in front of nearest speeding bus.]

  • ||

    [dusts off hands]

  • ||

    I rest my case. By the way, what was the last opera you saw?

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    The last opera I saw was Moulan Rouge.

  • SimonD||

    ...still better than Princess Felony.

  • SimonD||

    oh, and the last opera I saw was a pair of them: Pagliacci and Cavalleria Rusticana

    (it was a long time ago)

  • Princess Trigger||

    Only SMOD will deliver what we so richly deserve.

  • But Enough About Me||

    Only SMOD will deliver what we so richly deserve.

    Nonsense!

    There's always this.

    Hmmmm. I wonder if us Canucks could get a Canadian version of this going...

  • The Other Libertarian||

    The NoLivesMatter bumper sticker almost got me.

  • iVOTED4Kodos||

    Why settle for lesser evils?
    All Equal in Madness
    No More Years
    #NoLivesMatter
    Vote for the Elder Party
    At least he admits he's Evil
    Vote for Real Change
    No Hope All Change

    I'm seriously debating changing my vote from Gary Johnson.

  • Animal||

    You misspelled Zod.

    Kneel before Zod!

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Warty/Nicole 2016? We're gonna get so #grammered

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "Ted Cruz is...indecent on subjecting Supreme Court nominees to a public vote because of gay marriage"

    Cruz has suggested that U.S. Supreme Court justices be subject to retention elections just like judges in many states (like that conservative hellhole, California). Every few years, the voters vote yes or no on continuing a particular judge in office. If the voters say no, a new judge is appointed.

    Are retention elections wrong when the states do them? Is it good for the states, but bad at the federal level? Such issues need to be discussed, not just waved away.

  • brokencycle||

    Quite honestly, I think elections of judges are a terrible idea. The democratic process already gives us two branches of government who have no interest in protecting our rights. Why should we take away the only branch that occasionally stands up for them?

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    ^This

  • ||

    Because judges don't represent the People. They represent the Law. Just as senators properly do not represent the People, but the States rather. See how well popular elections did for that. There was plenty of reason the Architects made all these fine distinctions, and plenty of expounding at the time. Much of it still survives in written form. So yes, it's a bad idea all the way down. But bear in mind that in some local governments, the distinctions are explicitly erased and so it's hard to say what makes sense. Like many towns where the mayors take on a bunch of legislative powers while their executive function is reduced but not completely eradicated so that the position becomes fair comical, or like county judges in some states where their responsibilities are MOSTLY executive, with judicial functions only coming up now and then.

  • Suicidy||

    Just get Judge Dredd. I have it on good authority that he IS the law.

  • Lord Rollingpin||

    'Because judges don't represent the People. They represent the Law.'
    Sounds nice but what happens when the law becomes what the judges decide it is.
    People might as well vote on the judges, it just cuts out voting for people who vote on the judges.

  • Mainer2||

    "Democrats and Republicans have too often favored policies and regulations that pick winners and losers. This helps perpetuate a cycle of control, dependency, cronyism and poverty in the United States."

    I agree with this whole heartedly. Except for electric cars, the government should definitely support those. And solar energy, we need to subsidize that. And wind, of course. But no other subsidies. Except trains.

  • Dr. Fronkensteen||

    +1 keep government out of Medicare.

  • some guy||

    And banks, but not the evil ones. Also, housing for poor people. Oh, and don't forget healthcare. I mean, we need that to survive, right?

  • Mainer2||

    Forgot schools. Oh, and school lunches. How would children get fed if the government doesn't do it ?

  • Sevo||

    Social Security? Can't lose that, right?

  • Terc||

    And crutches. After government breaks our legs, how will we walk?

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    I think you meant to say, "after the center-right reactionaries break our delicate snowflake selves with their racist, shitlord cis-gendered teabaggery, how will we walk?"

  • jjjjj||

    The difference between libertarians and Sanders (and progressives) is that libertarians think government should be out of the business of picking winners and losers. Sanders just wants the government to pick different winners and losers (or more specifically, give everyone a participation trophy).

  • Suicidy||

    And you know those trophies will see their cost necessarily skyrocket under his participation plan.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    Those last italics are mine, to underline the not-so-veiled slap at the remaining Republican field.

    Republican field? It's a slap at both the Republicans and the Democrats!

  • Matt Welch||

    Democrats were not about to get Koch support this campaign, unless I am misjudging the universe.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    The Koch Brothers should support some liberty-friendly Democrats, just for the heads that'll explode.

  • EMD||

    Ron Wyden!

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    Not sure they make those anymore...

  • some guy||

    Is that Charles Koch in the first picture? He looks like a kindly old Grampa. Hard to believe he is the most evil man in the world.

  • JW||

    He's watching the orphans being processed in his personal abattoir. That never gets old.

  • some guy||

    "Haha! Did you hear the little crippled one squeak at the last second? Ha!" ::wipes tear from eye::

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    That's demented/hilarious.

  • toolkien||

    Now, this rhetorical olive branch hardly means that the Kochs are suddenly going to stop focusing their vast major-party-influencing efforts on the GOP, any more than George Soros will abandon the Democrats.

    -----------

    Perhaps, while he didn't get into major details, there's nothing rhetorical about recognizing the effects of nearly 100 years of corpora-fascism has had on the citizens of the US. If you need a comparison and contrast, look no further than the Buffetts - pere and fils.....

  • Azathoth!!||

    Binary gotcha game?

    The irrational hatred of the two-party system clouds the minds of so many, Matt being no exception.

    It is very much binary.

    Individualism vs Collectivism.

    All manner of good things can be talked about under either--but under a collectivist mindset there comes a point where there is only one good thing--the good of the collective.

    And we have seen, repeatedly, what that looks like.

    Soros is lying. And Koch is telling the truth.

    The good things that progressives and Koch appear to agree about are actually possible by going down the individualist path. They are not possible when going down the collectivist path--but this doesn't stop collectivist advocates from using the rhetoric of liberty against liberty.

    They do this continuously. And, when caught, simply alter the definition.

    Too many libertarians fail to grasp that the so-called 'socially liberal' positions that exist within libertarianism are not 'social' at all, and their liberality comes not from the left, but from liberty itself.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    All manner of good things can be talked about under either--but under a collectivist mindset there comes a point where there is only one good thing--the good of the collective.

    Common good before individual good?

  • Azathoth!!||


    Common good before individual good?

    No such thing as 'common' good. Never met a 'common'. I've met individuals though.

    'Common good' is the illusion created when numerous individuals find something to be good at the same time.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    Umm, that was a quote from point 24 of the Nazi Party Platform.

  • Suicidy||

    The only way to stop collectivism is to reduce the number of collectivists. Now factor that into any potential solution.

  • Sevo||

    "The irrational hatred of the two-party system clouds the minds of so many, Matt being no exception."

    Uh, why didn't you explain why this is true, rather than launch on a non-sequitur?
    Compare and contrast Rs and Ds, with reference to "Individualism vs Collectivism."

  • Azathoth!!||

    I have, before, in other posts, lost to the winds of the archives.

    But I'll give it a shot--

    The deep disgust with the misrule we currently suffer under and their purported 'binary' nature(stated doublethinkfully while insisting that they are the same) causes some to ignore any things that do actually appear to be binary opposites for fear of falling into the binary they despise.

    Does that work?

  • Ceci n'est pas un woodchipper||

    No, not really. Dumb it down for us public school graduates, would you? Are you saying that the hatred engendered by the two-party system is irrational, or are you saying that hating the two-party system is an irrational act? In other words, are you saying that there's no rational reason to hate the two-party system, or are you saying that the two-party system causes people to become irrational?

    Let's just start there and we'll move on to the rest once this first bit's taken care of.

  • Azathoth!!||

    In this case, I'm suggesting that the hatred of the two party system--while it may be justified--has taken some to an irrational state.

    In that irrational state they seek non-binariness as a good in and of itself and frequently demand it be applied in situations where something's binary nature is clear.

  • Sevo||

    "In that irrational state they seek non-binariness as a good in and of itself and frequently demand it be applied in situations where something's binary nature is clear."

    So any connection with the 2-party system is, at best, peripheral.

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    Behold, the libertarian circular fireing squad!

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    Saw mispellingz. Typing on iphone so fack it.

  • Sevo||

    "Common concerns over crony capitalism and criminal justice, different solutions,"

    I beg to differ:
    Koch offers plausible solutions, Sanders offers feel-good signals, along with reduced freedom; nary a solution in sight.

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    Sevo, you haven't been paying attention. All we have to do is tax all wealthy* people 90% and get rid of the kerperayshunz and do away with the First Amendment, then everyone will be rich and the world will be perfect.

    *Wealthy in this context means anyone earning over $25,000 per year.

  • Mindyourbusiness||

    Could we possibly get a 'Draft Charles Koch' movement going? If he stuck by his philosophical guns he'd be infinitely better than the current stars of this election shitshow.

  • Bill Dalasio||

    Draft?! If he were to accede to having his service being demanded by the collective against his will, he'd hardly be sticking to his philosophical guns now, would he?

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    David Koch ran for VP on the LP ticket in 1980.

  • Homple||

    I don't expect to agree with every position a candidate holds, but all Americans deserve a president who, on balance, can demonstrate a commitment to a set of ideas and values that will lead to peace, civility and well-being rather than conflict, contempt and division. When such a candidate emerges, he or she will have my enthusiastic support.

    Such a candidate will have my enthusiastic support as well. I will even hold the bridle of the unicorn as he or she dismounts.

  • rogerfgay||

    Article went well up to the last three paragraphs.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    "Son of Nazi Benefactor Supports Bernie Sanders"

  • ant1sthenes||

    Like almost everything about two-party presidential politics, such exercises are designed to erase ideological complications, sort people into clearly delineated camps, and make us all a little bit dumber.

    You know what other two parties wanted to sort people into camps?

  • EMD||

    Survivor: Blood vs. Water?

  • coloraDOOM||

    Not OT. As my lunch was ending, I walked to the gas station near work for some soda. I noticed an article on the cover of rolling stone about the "koch's fight against solar!!!1" of course I didn't buy it. Or read it. I guess I know nothing. Anyone with more free time than myself should investigate.

  • Ron||

    Huff and puff is also all over that article. the comment section reveals the lack of scientific and real world knowledge of its admirers. Or else they just hate the golden goose of capitalism that has lifted the world's peoples from serfdom wherever its been allowed to thrive.

    why would people allow themselves to be subjected to distant leaders?

  • geo1113||

    I saw RS at the dentist's office yesterday. He is a pretty conservative guy. So I asked him why he had subversive literature at the office. I said there is Rolling Stone with an article about the Kochs. He said I get sent all kinds of stuff. His name is Bernard, but I waited until after he replaced a filling to ask him if he was feeling the "Bern",

  • Sevo||

    "but I waited until after he replaced a filling to ask him if he was feeling the "Bern","

    Smart human!

  • EMD||

    When is RS getting sued by UVA?

  • CatoTheChipper||

    Essentially the article is about the political competition between the "Solar Choice" and the "Smart Solar" amendments to the Florida constitution.

    The greenies support "Solar Choice" because it will forbid utilities from discriminating against small-scale solar installations in terms of price, access, and terms.

    The industry and ALEC supports "Smart Solar" because it "establishes a right under Florida’s constitution for consumers to own or lease solar equipment installed on their property to generate electricity for their own use. State and Local Governments shall retain their abilities to protect consumer rights and public health and safety, and to ensure that consumers who do not choose to install solar are not required to subsidize the cost of backup power and electric grid access to those who do.”

    The key phrase in the "Smart Solar" is that non-solar consumers are not required to subsidize the cost of backup power and grid access.

    If the utility industry is not able to discriminate between large-scale conventional power and small-scale solar power sources in terms of price, access, and terms, it must pass along the much higher costs of incorporating numerous small-scale solar power producers (and backup power users on hot and cloudy days and nights) to non-solar consumers.

  • CatoTheChipper||

    The RS article advocates "Solar Choice" because the writer is enthralled by wonders of solar power, utterly ignorant of large scale electricity generation, transmission, and distribution, and openly hostile to investor-owned utilities. The identification of the "Smart Solar" campaign with Koch is just another pathetic example of the intellectual bankruptcy of the progressive movement. Unfortunately, however, it works very well in propaganda.

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  • jimshier||

    I'm a big fan of the Koch brothers. Here's what I don't get; he says he will support the candidate he describes, when he finds them. He had the perfect candidate in the race and his name is Senator Rand Paul.

  • coloraDOOM||

    Not in the race

  • Rockabilly||

    Bernie Sanders is wrong about the Koch brothers: They’re even more dangerous than he thinks

    http://www.salon.com/2015/08/2.....he_thinks/

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    I'm asserting that the previous comment should in no way be interpreted as anything other than sarcasm.

  • z0phi3l||

    That article made absolutely no sense, which is pretty common for a lefty org like Salon

  • Suicidy||

    The author of that piece is the poster child for my plan to euthanize all the progressives.

  • J2Hess||

    It's just the same empty "concern" for working people that everybody voices before going back to push policies that line their pockets on the theory that eventually workers will benefit. Koch probably had someone write it for him; it's such boilerplate he needn't raise his own pinky at all.

    What I don't get is why Matt thinks there's any "there" there.

  • Frankjasper1||

    What policies might those be?

  • sofiyathomas0225||

    my friend's sister-in-law makes $85 hourly on the internet . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21785 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site....
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    ➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.Wage90.com

  • sofiyathomas0225||

    my friend's sister-in-law makes $85 hourly on the internet . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21785 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site....
    Clik this link in Your Browser

    ➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.Wage90.com

  • sofiyathomas0225||

    my friend's sister-in-law makes $85 hourly on the internet . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21785 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site....
    Clik this link in Your Browser

    ➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.Wage90.com

  • sofiyathomas0225||

    my friend's sister-in-law makes $85 hourly on the internet . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21785 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site....
    Clik this link in Your Browser

    ➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.Wage90.com

  • prathohabu||

    A­f­ter be­­­­in­­g fir­­ed from my old job 5 months ago, i've had luck to learn about this great company online that was a lifesaver for me... They offer online home-based w0rk. My last month payment after working with them for 5 months was 12000 bucks... Great thi­ng ab­out it wa­s th­at only requirement for the job is basic typing and reliable int­ernet...If you th­ink this co­uld b­e for you th­en find o­ut more he­re…....awd............

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  • endytaylor789@gmail.com||

    my friend's sister-in-law makes $85 hourly on the internet . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21785 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site....
    Clik this link in Your Browser

    ➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.Wage90.com

  • Abu Nudnik||

    She doesn't and you're a liar.

  • endytaylor789@gmail.com||

    my friend's sister-in-law makes $85 hourly on the internet . She has been without a job for ten months but last month her paycheck was $21785 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at this web-site....
    Clik this link in Your Browser

    ➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤➤ http://www.Wage90.com

  • Abu Nudnik||

    She doesn't and you're a liar.

  • Abu Nudnik||

    Where there is a kindly society that helps people on fixed incomes, and where that society does not impose punitive taxes on economic success, the gap between rich and poor must always increase. It is a sign of health.

  • Abu Nudnik||

    REASON! I get this is libertarian but when post after post is spam come-ons, no one can read the posts!

  • josh||

    actually, it can be argued that the most effective government program ever designed isn't even in the budget. it's all the money, time, and energy that the gop and dems have spent to make you think the other side is evil....not just wrong, but evil. that there really is only door 1 and door 2.

    i mean, how many people honestly believe that there's really a ravine somewhere were representatives from the gop throw old people off an actual cliff? and that doesn't count the ones who think it's true figuratively speaking. of course, there's also the complementary conservative paranoia too.

  • Suicidy||

    Most of the readers of Salon, HuffPo, Rolling Stone, etc.. Those induhviduals are pretty goddamn stupid.

  • andythomas1233||

    My friend's ex-wife makes $86 /hour on the internet . She has been fired for 5 months but last month her income was $21442 just working on the internet for a few hours. look at here...

    [][][][][][][] http://www.Wage90.com

  • lisasmith1258||

    just before I looked at the bank draft 4 $4970 , I accept ...that...my father in law was like they say actualie making money in there spare time from their laptop. . there great aunt had bean doing this for less than thirteen months and at present paid the mortgage on there condo and purchased a brand new Volkswagen Golf GTI . check out here....

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  • Brandon Bechtel||

    "it is possible, even probable, for individual Americans to find individual candidates from opposing parties to be the best in the field on certain important issues and the worst in the field on others"

    This is the #1 reason why a central authority is so bad for society. Instead of choosing the best solution for each of us as individuals, every day, with our dollars, we are forced to make unnecessary compromises between one service provided by the government and another, such as healthcare and security, or energy and our infrastructure. We should have a society where the best person to serve us our healthcare can do so, and the best person to build our roads can do so. It shouldn't be a compromise that comes down to a binary choice we can only make once every four years.

  • lorianderson003||

    ....$....Just before I looked at the paycheck that said $6914 , I didnt believe that my mom in-law really bringing in money in their spare time from their computer. . there neighbour had bean doing this for only six months and resently paid for the mortgage on there place and bourt a top of the range Saab 99 Turbo . look at this site....

    Clik this link in Your Browser..

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  • Satoku||

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  • fletch92131||

    I'd vote for David Koch right now; he has enough libertarian ideas to make sense for all, particularly the poor and unemployed

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