One of Saul Alinsky’s “Twelve Rules for Radicals” taught the political left to “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” That is what they have done with the Koch brothers and their willingness to support a handful of conservative organizations. Meanwhile left-wing billionaires Tom Steyer and the Soros-funded Democracy Alliance threaten to drown whatever contributions the Koch’s have made in a torrent of spending. Many expect Steyer’s alone to spend two to three times as much as the Koch brothers in the next few months.
This past weekend in Chicago, Steyer, who has pledged to spend $50 million alone, met with fellow travelers in the swanky Ritz Carlton Chicago to plot their political giving over the next few months. According the Nation, the Democracy Alliance has given nearly half a billion dollars to progressive groups over the past few years without a peep from those who loudly condemn “big money” in politics. Ironically, one of the speakers at the conference was New York Mayor Bill de Blasio who addressed the issue of “income inequity” in his speech to the billionaires who are pushing the very policies that have decimated the middle class and contributed to income inequity.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has spent much of the past few months condemning the Koch brothers, saying it is “un-American is when shadowy billionaires pour unlimited money into our democracy to rig the system.” But that is exactly what Steyer and the Democracy Alliance is doing.
Just this week, the Koch-obsessed Reid blamed the brothers for the House Republicans’ failure at passing an extension of unemployment benefits. Not only has Reid not condemned Steyer, he personally traveled to California to attend a fundraiser at his estate. Steyer’s checkbook has achieved a veto over the Keystone Pipeline. His political advisor Chris Lahane said “If we’re collectively going to put $100 million into this cycle, how much … depends on Keystone.” A few days later, the president delayed the project again.
Rather than denounce these tactics, the White House has given approval to them. They sent the president’s political hand Valerie Jarrett to brief the Democracy Alliance donors. So much for condemning “big money” and extortion.
Human Events’ Neil McCabe tried to get answers. What is the difference between a Koch brother contribution and a Steyer contribution? Not surprisingly, Reid’s office would not return calls. Neither would Common Cause or People for the American Way. Hypocrisy and politics go hand-in-hand but its not often that you see such hypocrisy in such stark terms. If “big money” in politics is bad, isn’t all “big money” bad? Not under the Rules for Radicals, which is the most dominant philosophy of the modern Democratic Party.
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