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Charles Koch Fights Back: Not with character assassination, but a formula for liberty
National Review ^ | 04/05/2014 | Larry Kudlow

Posted on 04/05/2014 8:56:20 AM PDT by SeekAndFind

Is it too farfetched to connect the dots between a brilliant Wall Street Journal op-ed by Charles Koch, the chairman and CEO of Koch Industries, and the continued sluggish recovery in jobs, business investment, and the overall economy? I don’t think so.

In his piece, Mr. Koch seems to make a plea for a big dose of free-market capitalism. He argues, “The central belief and fatal conceit of the current administration is that you are incapable of running your own life, but those in power are capable of running it for you. This is the essence of big government and collectivism.”

Charles Koch and his brother David have been vilified by the left for fighting hard to get political candidates with free-market points of view elected. Protected by U.S. Senate rules against libel, Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid has called the Kochs virtually every name in the book — including “un-American.” But now the Kochs are fighting back. And I hope they do more of it.

Charles Koch’s op-ed reveals a consistency of thought. He writes, “I have spent decades opposing cronyism and all political favors, including mandates, subsidies and protective tariffs — even when we benefit from them. I believe that cronyism is nothing more than welfare for the rich and powerful, and should be abolished.”

Koch concludes that the current batch of administration policies “destroys value, raises costs, hinders innovation and relegates millions of citizens to a life of poverty, dependency and hopelessness.”

This is strong stuff. And spot on.

Think of Obamacare as the ultimate central-planning, collectivist, big-government approach. The government is mandating what health-care insurance to buy, and taxing you if you don’t buy it. You may lose your favorite doctor or hospital or insurance plan, all while job hiring and work effort are undermined. These intellectual eggheads tell you what you can and cannot do, and where you can and cannot do it. And they prescribe a multi-trillion-dollar government expansion of spending and taxing while they’re at it.

The good news here is that Obamacare is incredibly unpopular. The bad news is that it’s going to be incredibly difficult to rewrite or replace this law.

But Mr. Koch’s big fear is that collectivism can’t and won’t stop with Obamacare. He has a point. The Obama machine continues to roll out poverty-trap incentives, paying people not to work. Obama’s EPA is aiming to obliterate the entire coal industry and all the blue-collar workers in it. The president can’t even give the okay to the Keystone pipeline, which is favored by all but the far-Left environmental radicals. Obama’s National Labor Relations Board now wants to unionize college football players. Our corporate tax rates are the highest in the world. And the entire IRS tax system is so corrupt and complex, it has become a major hindrance to growth. I could go on and on.

So why is it surprising that the economic recovery is happening at only half the rate of a normal expansion? Sure, there was some decent news in the March jobs report. But it took nearly five years for private jobs to regain the peak reached in January 2008. In fact, this jobs recovery is the slowest on record since the Labor Department started tracking the data in 1939. And we are at least 5 million jobs below potential.

I don’t want to be too pessimistic. The March employment report of 192,000 new jobs is at least keeping pace with the monthly changes of recent years, sluggish as that may be. And there was good news with a lengthening private workweek and a big jump in the small-business household-employment report.

However, wages were flat in March, and only 2.1 percent higher than a year ago. And the so-called U-6 labor-impairment unemployment rate — which includes people who have jobs they don’t like — is stuck at a high 12.7 percent. A full 10.5 million Americans are unemployed, and 7.4 million are working part time.

One huge reason for the tepid jobs recovery is that long-term business investment in new plants, equipment, warehouses, office buildings, and so forth remains very soft. Only recently, in last year’s fourth quarter, did so-called cap-ex get back to its prior peak of early 2008.

High taxes are causing firms to deploy profits overseas. The president keeps bashing business with the threat of even higher taxes and regulations. And no one knows what Obamacare regulatory costs are ultimately going to be.

So with the economy only crawling toward recovery, the solution is not character assassination or more government collectivism. Mr. Charles Koch has it exactly right: We need more liberty and freedom to restore American values and economic prosperity. Politicians and regulators can’t do it. Only hard-working and innovative people can.

So let’s let them do it.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: charleskoch; kochbrothers; kudlow; larrykudlow; liberty; obama

1 posted on 04/05/2014 8:56:20 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

A Republican presidential candidate whose platform states that he or she will spend the next four years proposing the repeal of unconstitutional laws that infringe on our freedom would be formidable.

2 posted on 04/05/2014 9:10:17 AM PDT by Inwoodian
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To: SeekAndFind

“... a formula for liberty ...”

Sell it, Larry, sell it!

3 posted on 04/05/2014 9:20:41 AM PDT by shove_it (my real nickname is Otter)
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To: Inwoodian

So true! Too bad the GOP will offer nothing of the kind.

4 posted on 04/05/2014 9:23:01 AM PDT by uncitizen (Impeach the Communist Already!)
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To: SeekAndFind
We need thousands of Kochs to step forward in order to restore America's philosophical foundations of liberty--foundations which were articulated in the Declaration of Independence, and the resulting Constitution (written structure) for a form of self-government whose delegated powers were defined, separated, limited, and checked and balanced, and, according to its Framers, could only be altered by the provisions of that document.

A full-page free enterprise message back in the 1980's, sponsored by Stedman Corporation featured the following cartoon, along with a warning of the dangers of government spending and debt to America's freedom and prosperity.

Back then, a few businessmen across the nation were sounding alarms, but neither the public nor the politicians heeded the warnings.

In Texas, there was Eddie Chiles, of The Western Company and owner of the Texas Rangers. An advocate for less federal government intrusion, Chiles was also known for his 1970's radio commentaries. His trade-mark was, "I'm Eddie Chiles, and I'm mad as hell." In Illinois, there was James R. Evans, businessman and author of "America's Choice: Twilight's Last Gleaming or Dawn's Early Light?"

In North Carolina, there was W. David Stedman, also urging his fellow business leaders, employees and public against the growth of government spending and debt and pleading for a return to the ideas of the American Declaration and Constitution. The cartoon below contains the ideas of both, for, with permission, another famous Chiles remark was incorporated into the Stedman cartoon. The Stedman ad series culminated in a 1987 292-page book on America's founding principles ("Our Ageless Constitution") and is now available again here

How sad that these three great Americans, and others of their day, were not heeded, for their message is as true today as it was in the 1980's. Cartoon - Spending

5 posted on 04/05/2014 9:37:02 AM PDT by loveliberty2
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To: SeekAndFind

But we must fear the Koch brothers, for they are not true conservatives but rather libertarians.

Isn’t that right our true blue conservative freepers?

6 posted on 04/05/2014 10:09:02 AM PDT by Yardstick
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To: Yardstick
I'll take Mr. Koch's prescription for liberty every day and twice on Sunday.
7 posted on 04/05/2014 10:11:32 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Rip it out by the roots.)
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To: SeekAndFind

Koch is great on financial issues, but he is also pro-sodomite “marriage”. :(

I wonder what he will do if he gets too much sway over the “conservative” movement when social issues are discussed.

8 posted on 04/05/2014 10:34:49 AM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: SoFloFreeper

You wouldn’t recognize a political ally if he or she bit you on the ass.

9 posted on 04/05/2014 10:44:28 AM PDT by Lurker (Violence is rarely the answer. But when it is it is the only answer.)
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To: Lurker

Yeah, I acknowledged his strength regarding fiscal issues.

I guess I can’t express concern over social issues because he or she is an ally on fiscal ones, eh?

That doesn’t quite work, does it?

10 posted on 04/05/2014 10:48:10 AM PDT by SoFloFreeper
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To: Yardstick

Burn the heretics! (Hey, who’s got the marshmallows?)

11 posted on 04/05/2014 11:05:17 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: Slings and Arrows
weiners, not needed.

12 posted on 04/05/2014 11:23:35 AM PDT by skinkinthegrass (The end move in politics is always to pick up a gun..0'Caligula / 0'Reid / 0'Pelosi)
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To: skinkinthegrass

I’d say he’s already burned.

13 posted on 04/05/2014 11:36:47 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows (Richard Warman censors free speech.)
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To: SoFloFreeper

The size and scope of the federal government exacerbates the immorality in society. Evil won’t go away with a smaller federal government. However it is simply foolish to believe that any conservative leader can change Washington. It must be dismantled and that’s what Koch puts his money behind.

14 posted on 04/05/2014 1:18:45 PM PDT by palmer (There's someone in my lead but it's not me)
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To: loveliberty2

15 posted on 04/05/2014 2:02:10 PM PDT by 4Liberty (Optimal institutions - optimal economy.)
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To: SeekAndFind

bump for later reference

16 posted on 04/05/2014 3:08:11 PM PDT by Senator_Blutarski
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To: palmer; Inwoodian
"I am not among those who fear the people. They...are our dependence for continued freedom. And to preserve their independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and liberty, or profusion and servitude. If we run into such debts, as that we must be taxed in our meat and in our drink, in our necessaries and our comforts, in our labors and our amusements, for our callings and our creeds...our people...must come to labor sixteen hours in the twenty-four, give the earnings of fifteen of these to the government for their debts and daily expenses; and the sixteenth being insufficient to afford us bread, we must live, as they (the British) now do, on oatmeal and potatoes; have no time to think, no means of calling the mismanagers to account; but be glad to obtain subsistence by hiring ourselves to rivet their chains on the necks of our fellow-sufferers....This example reads to us the salutary lesson that private fortunes are destroyed by public, as well as by private extravagance.
And this is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from the principle in one instance, becomes a precedent for a second; that second for a third; and so on, till the bulk of society is reduced to be mere automatons of misery, to have no sensibilities left but for sinning and suffering. Then begins, indeed, the 'bellum omnium in omnia,' which some philosophers...have mistaken for the natural, instead of the abusive, state of man. And the fore-horse of this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression."
- Thomas Jefferson

"I deem [this one of] the essential principles of our government and consequently [one] which ought to shape its administration:... The honest payment of our debts and sacred preservation of the public faith." --Thomas Jefferson: 1st Inaugural, 1801. ME 3:322

"I sincerely believe... that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity under the name of funding is but swindling futurity on a large scale." --Thomas Jefferson to John Taylor, 1816. ME 15:23

17 posted on 04/05/2014 4:39:43 PM PDT by loveliberty2
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