Protesters, Leave Those Rich Koch Brothers Alone

Editorial: Conservative pair is wrong, but they have rights, too
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 1, 2011 1:45 PM CST
A shot of the protest, taken from a YouTube video.   (YouTube)

(Newser) – The protesters who rallied outside Charles and David Koch’s latest conservative pow-wow over the weekend were out of line, the LA Times argues in an editorial today. “We’re not sure the marchers were quite clear on the concepts of democracy and free speech,” the paper opines. Listen to their complaints and conspiracy theories about the Koch brothers, and you’ll be reminded of Glenn Beck’s loopy blackboard rants against George Soros. “Same problem, different billionaires.”

Money does indeed distort the political system, the paper argues, but from both sides. “What’s more, campaign donations from individuals—rich as well as poor—are a critical component of political expression, and thus of free speech.” The protesters decried Citizens United, but the Kochs were splashing money around well before that much-maligned ruling. “We’re no fans of the Kochs and their promotion of poisonous, self-defeating politics,” they conclude. “But we’ll defend their right to promote it.”

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