If you need more reasons why Occupy Wall Street supporters have taken to the streets, this documentary is loaded with them.
This documentary goes into the long history of political influence and funding Koch Industries and the Koch brothers have had and the effect of their lobbying through ALEC and lobbying firms.
Lee Fang, one of the people interviewed, is an investigative reporter with Think Progress. He has been investigating the “web of influence” of the Koch brothers on state and federal politicians. The film touches on the Koch role in everything from health care to energy policy.
The video is about 24 minutes but is well worth a watch. Below the video, you will see that I have transcribed some of the significant findings that this documentary uncovered about the Koch brothers.
- Koch hold 2 meetings a year attended by people who fund the right-wing movement and right-wing politicians. Attendees of Koch meetings are sworn to secrecy.
- Koch and their partners spent $40 million in the 2010 elections.
- Koch brothers essentially oppose everything since the New Deal.
- The Koch’s expect to spend more than $200 million dollars to defect Obama next year.
- They have created a web of influence that stretches from State Houses all the way to the halls of Congress.
- Koch brothers gave birth to the Tea Party. American for Prosperity was founded and funded by Kochs. They were the first to organize Tea Party rallies. When the Tea Party movement began they consistently denied that they were a part of it but eventually it became impossible to deny because you could just connect all the dots.
- They organized the “Hands off my Healthcare” movement.
- AFP has 33 state chapters.
- ALEC is another group that brings corporate lobbyists and conservative legislators to draft model laws. The anti-union laws passed represent model legislation by ALEC the fact of which they try to keep under wraps.
- At the ALEC meetings they vote on drafted legislation that then are used in State House legislation and eventually get passed into law but the lawmakers do not let that fact be known.
- The voter ID legislation passed throughout the states this year were based on an ALEC written preapproved bill. The legislations passed are constructed to restrict voting in by minorities, students, and the elderly.
- The Koch brothers are using their money to buy State elections. It is actually a lot cheaper to buy State elections than it is for the U.S. Congress.
- Since 1998 Greenpeace has traced over $50 million that Koch has sent to various front groups and think tanks in D.C. and around the country who have run various elements of a campaign against global warming policy or against the science of global warming.
- The think tank The Cato Institute was founded by Koch Industries. Cato Institute receives about 40% of their funding from fossil fuel industries.
- The Koch’s have spent upwards of $50 million since 2006 on lobbyists. They are now the largest funder of campaigns within the oil and gas sector exceeding Exxon, Chevron.
- In 2010 the Koch’s contributed to 62 of the 87 new members of Congress.
- After the 2010 election, David Koch was one of the first people to visit the newly elected Speaker Boehner’s office.
- Koch brothers are suspected of being responsible for a large amount of the speculation in the oil and gas market, which is a leading reason for high gas/oil prices.