Rupert Murdoch and David Koch Collude Against Wisconsin Workers
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The Economic Policy Institute released a study showing that when benefits and pay packages are taken together as a whole, public employees earn less than comparably educated private-sector workers. None of those facts stopped Moore from framing the debate as a fight over benefits, which he claimed public employees scarfed up at a 50-percent higher level than those in the private sector.
When delivering the goods for those speaking fees coughed up by AFP, Moore may be apt to throw a little more red meat, engaging a cause almost as close to David Koch's heart as union-bashing -- that of climate-change denial. (Remember, Koch's billions originate in the the oil and natural gas industries; Koch Industries has some 4,000 miles of pipeline in Wisconsin alone. And buried in the bill, according to the blog, Gin and Tacos, is a provision that would allow the no-bid sell-off of public utilities, such as those that produce energy.) At the 2009 RightOnline conference in Pittsburgh, Moore told the cheering crowd he thought global warming was "the greatest hoax of the last 100 years." He went on to say that the agenda to hold the line on climate change was "not just evil, but…contrary to the free-market system that made this country great."
Journalist or Handsomely Paid Activist? You Decide
Moore's career has, in large part, been shaped from the beginning by the fortunes of Charles and David Koch. After getting his masters from George Mason University, at which Koch funds the Mercatus Institute, a free-market economic think-tank, Moore became a fellow at the Koch-funded Heritage Foundation, and later at the Cato Institute. From there, he became the founding president of the Club for Growth, which, coincidentally, put out a pro-Walker ad last week about the showdown with public employees in Wisconsin. (Moore was ousted from the club in 2004, and replaced with Pat Toomey, who is now the junior U.S. senator from Pennsylvania.) Moore also served on senior economist of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee under then-Chairman Dick Armey, R-Tex., who now chairs the astroturf group FreedomWorks, which was founded with Koch money.
When Rupert Murdoch added the Wall Street Journal to his holdings in 2007, he became the titular boss of Moore, one of David Koch's favorite sons. Perhaps it works like one of those royal marriages of yore. With those bonds, the lord of right-wing media cemented, perhaps, his standing in the realm of the man who would be king of the world.tea
(Hat tip to CBS News Online's Stephanie Condon for the Gin and Tacos item.)
Adele M. Stan is AlterNet's Washington bureau chief.