If the Kochs want criminal justice reform, why are they funding tough-on-crime GOP candidates?


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They want the reform for the rich, not the slaves…


Ignoring the fact that the Koch Brothers are the type of libertarian where they think liberty means “everyone else does what I want them to do,” or, to quote Kim Stanley Robinson, “libertarians: anarchists who want police protection from their slaves”, even if they had any higher principles or beliefs, they’ll never put principles above profits.


is “criminal justice reform” an established expression with a specific meaning? I don’t follow US domestic policy closely, for me the term means mostly “changes to the jail system”


It would mean a system that tries to help rehabilitate someone who has a committed a crime instead of throw them in a hole and let them rot. however, when the Koch Brothers are involved, that indicates that the justice part should only apply if you make more than $200,000 a year. Anyone who makes less than that goes into a hole to rot.


It’s the sort of thing you can play with in English: oh sure, the Kochs want REFORM, it’s just not the kind of thing most of us mean by the term.

So yes, you understand the meaning of the general word, but when criminal+JUSTICE+reform are strung together like that, it’s meant to indicate a positive improvement, not just any change at all.


That’s right, it’s pretty vague. To some people “reform” might mean “hang them all.” To me, it was clear from the start the Koch version of reform meant “no liability for corporations.”


Sen. David Vitter, R-La.: The guy that poops in his man diaper and pays a prostitute to do the clean up job…

The Kock Bros. and the GOP must be proud.


Aren’t we now legally required to refer to the Koch Bros as “job creators”?


Only if we can add “freedom destroyers”.



I can’t say what I refer to them as due to being in polite company.


I never heard Kim Stanley Robinson’s take on it - I LOVE it! I also like Thom Hartmann’s “Libertarians are just Republicans who want to smoke dope and get laid.”


Their brand of reform has absolutely zero to do with getting non-violent offenders out of prison in a timely fashion, ending private prison operations (you can bet good money they’ve got a vested interest in this business, they fund ALEC, too) or reducing recidivism. The only thing they care about is their billions. So, to that end, when they use the word reform they’re only speaking to things they might be subject to, such as record-setting judgements against the family business for gross violations of environmental laws, or rather large settlements the family business might be forced to pay to the families of people their gross negligence has killed.


Yeah; technically it’s from the Mars trilogy, but given his own politics, I don’t doubt that that was from him speaking through the character for a moment.

Other good quotes regarding Libertarians that I’ve come across:

“One of the more pretentious political self-descriptions is “Libertarian.” People think it puts them above the fray. It sounds fashionable, and to the uninitiated, faintly dangerous. Actually, it’s just one more bullshit political philosophy.” - George Carlin

“He always pictured himself a libertarian, which to my way of thinking means “I want the liberty to grow rich and you can have the liberty to starve.” It’s easy to believe that no one should depend on society for help when you yourself happen not to need such help.” - Isaac Asimov on Robert A. Heinlein

“A simple-minded right-wing ideology ideally suited to those unable or unwilling to see past their own sociopathic self-regard.” - Iain Banks


Ian Banks hits closest to the mark. I consider it an ideology espoused by people with a very vested interest in the status quo who are already overly wealthy, or by people incapable of thinking an action through to a logical consequence (you know, like teenagers).


Of the libertarians I know, I’d say the majority are unwilling to think it through…which is even worse than being incapable.


Ditto. I used to moderate the Eclipe Phase forum, and we had a pair of True Believer AnCaps there. One was already wealthy (from inherited wealth) and kept making special pleading arguments. The other was a kid raised in a Tea Party household and had been conditioned to see any discussion as argument to be avoided.



but only one of them…


Ha! Thanks for the compliment!

As for “special pleading”, well, in one memorable argument, the statement was made that, of course a profit-seeking private judiciary would take the wrongful death cases of the penniless striking workers after being massacred. Why? Because! Reasons!