Most people who know anything about Rick Perry know he’s a friend to the fossil fuel industry. For 14 years, he was the Republican governor of Texas, a state that contains one-third of the nation’s oil reserves and is home to oil giants ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil and Valero Energy.
The billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch get a lot of press coverage about their vast, conservative political spending network that helps elect right-wing officials at the federal, state and local levels and advocates for policies that increase the profits of their fossil fuel and manufacturing conglomerate,
Since neurosurgeon and former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson was sworn in as secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development on March 2, we’ve barely heard a peep from him. Is it because he’s adjusting to his new position, for which he has no relevant experience? Probably. Is it because, as his surrogate said, that he’s not qualified to run a federal agency? Could be that, too.
As the Trump administration advances discriminatory policy, bigoted authors and activists are giving speeches along the college circuit, facilitated by right-wing nonprofits. It’s important for members of the university community to know which organizations are making this possible, and who funds them. It may prove effective for student dissenters to address AEI, YAF and Glittering Steel in their campaigns against racist speakers.
Among the most extreme Trump devotees are the neo-Nazis and the neo-Confederates, groups that often overlap. Throughout a campaign launched on the racist fallacy that Mexicans are rapists and rooted in the erasure of Muslims from America, Trump earned the enthusiastic support of former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke, neo-Nazis like Richard Spencer, and Breitbart News.
If Trump and Congress repeal Obamacare’s individual mandate and subsidies while leaving insurance market reforms in place, 32 million Americans, many of whom are Medicaid recipients, will lose their health coverage over the next 10 years.
Few would have predicted Donald Trump’s stellar relationship with far-right Christians. But now that he’s won them over, benefited from their political support, and amassed a White House featuring many evangelical conservatives, LGBT protections, abortion rights, and public school funding are on the line.
Billionaire Betsy DeVos, Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Education, is clearly one of the worst cabinet picks. Her nomination to lead public education may seem curious, as DeVos has never worked in public education and supports diverting public funds to pay for kids to attend private, religious schools. Advocacy groups, Democratic politicians and ethics experts have shot up red flags in recent days, strongly opposing DeVos’ nomination.
Since 1980, the family foundations of billionaire industrialist Charles Koch have gifted roughly $200 million to U.S. colleges and universities, largely to promote libertarian, free-market economics programs around the nation.
At Florida State University, the initial memorandum of understanding between the Charles Koch Foundation (CKF) and the school’s economics department gave the foundation control over hiring decisions and the curriculum.
One Koch-funded program is advocating cutthroat economics to grade school students, even sacrificing lives for profits. Anti-tax industrialist billionaires like Charles and David Koch stand to gain a lot by financing higher education programs tailored to their ideologies.