Don't worry, I'll get to it.
If you've been following David and Charles Koch the last few years, and more and more Americans have, you've heard an odd note creeping into their notably few public utterances, that of the victim.
Here's Charles, mewling about criticism from David Axelrod:
It's frightening because you don't know what they're going to do. They have tremendous power. They can destroy just about anybody, whether you are totally innocent or not.And David, frightened that their $100 billion won't buy enough safety if people keep saying bad things about them:
"Criticism can stimulate a lot of anger and dislike toward us. So there's a huge security concern."But a closer parsing of their utterances reveals less a fear of torches and pitchforks than a quivering blob of hurt fee fees. Again, Charles:
"Instead of encouraging free and open debate, collectivists strive to discredit and intimidate opponents. They engage in character assassination. (I should know, as the almost daily target of their attacks.)"And:
"We’ve been called every name under the sun. And some of this stuff is ridiculous."Even Liz Koch (Mrs. David) feels unduly put-upon:
“I’m so hopeful that there will be something, SOMETHING in the world out there besides ‘Evil Koch Brothers.’ Jesus H., I’m sick of it.”Singing along to the Coasters, they moan, "Why's everybody always pickin' on me?"
We're just poor, misunderstood bazillionaires trying to save the country from communism and the tryanny of statism. Why do people say these bad things about us?
Well, Charles, David, Mrs. David, I'll take a crack at it.
Why do people call you bad names? Maybe it's because you're like, you know, evil.
Yeah, I know. Not the answer you were hoping for, and one which I can only assume will engender a fresh chorus of "Woe is us!" from our poor little rich boys.
"Evil? How can you SAY that? We provide jobs! We pay for opera houses! My goodness, David's trying to cure all the cancer our companies are causing! How can you call us EVIL?"
Point taken. "Evil" is one heck of a power-packed adjective, one reserved for the most heinous acts and individuals. Heck, not even every serial killer gets the appellation. Better chow down on a victim or two if you want to make the cut.
Just to make sure we're not hyperbolizing, let's go to the very acmes of evil, as noted in a recent Facebook survey.
What do these Champions of Evil all have in common? Silly question, I know. They killed people! Lots and lots and lots of people. Whether for reasons of pure ideology or practical politics, the scores that allowed them to enter their initials in the Evil Hall of Fame were in the millions. Surely the Koch brothers can't touch that.
I mean, their formaldehyde-laced plywood may knock off a few tens of thousands, the effluvium from their factories and refineries is sure to boost cancer rates, but does that qualify them for the genocide big leagues?
Probably not. But Charles and David have a special advantage in their race to the top (or bottom, if you have a soul): they've been spending tens of millions of dollars to prevent the government of the most powerful nation on earth from acting on the greatest threat to human survival.
Through their cut-out organizations like Cato and Heritage, their academia incursions like the Mercatus Center, their phony front groups and astroturf shock troops, even the "David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins" at your Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, the Kochs have spent tens of millions of dollars generating almost the entire oeuvre of climate denialism.
Every argument you hear parroted by TV pundits and Republican politicians, every "teach the controversy" soft denial, every "healthy debate," every sunny-side concession a la "but think of the expanded growing areas," every single one is a work for hire, paid for in entirety by David and Charles Koch.
And that denialism, that "taught controversy," is what gives the Republican caucuses in the House and Senate, themselves beneficiaries of nearly a quarter-billion dollars in Koch money, the constituencies that are sure the settled science of global climate change is anything but, allowing them to block any government action to stem this genocidal juggernaut.
Oh, my god. He used the g-word.
Yeah. I did. We are talking evil here, and top-tier evil at that, and genocide seems to be the ultimate membership card to that club. The E ticket, as it were.
And global climate change is going to kill millions. A hundred million, to be precise.
Hoo boy, here comes that hyperbole again, huh?
No, that's a conservative estimate. And it's not "hundreds of years from now." It's a conservative estimate of deaths from climate change by 2030. That's sixteen years from now, for those who can't add.
Those math-challenged do NOT include Charles and David Koch, both MIT-trained engineers. They know that climate change is real, and man-made, and genocidal. They simply don't care.
Because doing something about it 1) would cut into their profits and 2) would mean government doing something, the Original Sin according to the warped and evil ideology inculcated in them by their warped and evil (and racist, but that's another story) father, Fred Koch.
So they are more than willing to sacrifice those 100 million people, for both pure ideology and practical, dollars and sense power.
So, while some may say I've gone too far in lumping them in the All Time Evil Club, I can only paraphrase my mentor, Forrest Gump, in the hopes that the true impact of their actions and decisions are understood in their proper context.
Evil is as evil does. And they do it like the pros.