The Koch Brothers are the greatest threat to our American way of life that has ever existed. They pour millions into political campaigns to support libertarian causes (libertarianism, of course, being the root of all true evil). They dominate our election cycle. Everything that has gone wrong for the last hundred years is their fault. Why, they probably …
… wait, what?
OpenSecrets.org tallied the top donors in federal elections between 1989 and 2014. Koch Industries — privately owned by the Evil Koch Bros — is on the list, to be sure, but doesn’t appear until the 59th slot, with $18 million in donations, 90 percent of which went to Republicans.
So who occupies the 58 spots ahead of the Evil Koch Bros? Six of the top 10 are … wait for it … unions. They gave more than $278 million, with most of it going to Democrats.
These are familiar names: AFSCME ($60.6 million), NEA ($53.5 million), IBEW ($44.4 million), UAW ($41.6 million), Carpenters & Joiners ($39.2 million) and SEIU ($38.3 million).
Three of the remaining four slots in the top 10 were taken by AT&T ($56.4 million), National Association of Realtors ($51.2 million) and Goldman Sachs ($44.8 million).
So, if money is the measure of evil in American politics and the Evil Koch Bros only come in 59th, who is really the most evil donor ever?
Turns out it’s Act Blue, with just short of $100 million in contributions during its lifetime, which only started in 2004, 15 years after the Evil Koch Bros in the OpenSecrets.org compilation.
Actually, that massively understates Act Blue’s impact. They’ve raised over $400 million for Democratic candidates. $100 million is their direct contribution.
All 16 of the top campaign donors are either Democrat or neutral. The Koch Brothers gave 90% of their money to Republicans. But that’s actually more even-handed than #1 Act Blue (100% to Democrats), #2 AFCSME (99%), #4 NEA (96%), #7 IBEW (99%), #8 UAW (100%), #9 Carpenter and Joiners (91%), #11 SEIU (98%), #12 AFT (100%) … you get the picture. All unions, all donating almost entirely to Democrats.
And just in case you think the Republicans are the party of Wall Street and the financial crisis: Goldman Sachs gave 44% of their money to Democrats, the realtors gave 47% to Democrats, JP Morgan gave 51%, Citigroup 50%. Wall Street really doesn’t care who’s in power and why should they? They get bailed out either way.
These facts, of course, will not change the opinion of the Koch-knockers. They have convinced themselves that big money is destroying our country … as long as it’s Republican big money. You see, you have to scale up. All that money going to liberal causes is good. All the money going to conservative causes is bad because it only takes a second to turn someone aside from the true and nobel path of liberalism.
How else can you explain what just happened in Tennessee? The workers at a new VW plant rejected union membership despite aggressive pushes from UAW and the political class. Most of the union workers signed cards when union reps were looming over them, demanding their signatures. But given an anonymous vote — one that union-bolstered Democrats would dearly love to take away — they voted against it.
What else can that mean but that the Koch monsters’ money goes further? That a single penny of conservative funding can undo millions in liberal funding?
We are at a delicate stage in the ascent to liberal utopia. We’ve already taken missteps — Obamcare, Dodd-Frank, the stimulus, alternative energy … really everything the Democrats have ever put their hands to. But if we can just shut up the opposition for a few minutes and turn the entire board of big campaign contributors blue, we’ll achieve paradise.