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Koch-Funded Group Finds That The Kochs Live In The 26th And 50th Least ‘Free’ States

Memo Pad Politics

Koch-Funded Group Finds That The Kochs Live In The 26th And 50th Least ‘Free’ States


You’d think that a study that found that North Dakota — which recently passed a law that could close its one abortion clinic and prohibit sex education — to be the state with the most “freedom” would have been funded by the American Irony Society. But the work was actually done by the Mercatus Institute, a libertarian think tank that has received more than $30 billion from the Koch brothers.

And while Mercatus is interested in “bridging the gap between academic ideas and real-world problems,” it doesn’t consider reproductive freedom a “real-world problem.”

Salon‘s Alex Pareene explains:

In fact, no issues specifically related to women’s rights are taken into account. Same-sex marriage is included, but not housing employment anti-discrimination rules. They do weigh “‘smoker protection’ in employment,” though. (I think they are in favor of laws barring companies from firing smokers. Isn’t that the government interfering with the employer’s freedoms?) There is also a list ranking the states in terms of friendliness to bachelor parties.

Here are the Mercatus rankings:

Screen Shot 2013-03-29 at 7.09.07 AM

Now, here comes the fun part. Where do Charles and David Koch live when not metaphorically lingering over us in the Muppet Show balcony, mocking us for wanting to “unfree” things like hoping to eventually retire and actually planning when and if to start a family?

According to Forbes, Charles Koch lives in Wichita, Kansas — number 26 on the list, down 12 since the last rankings. And David lives in New York City, which is located in the most “unfree” state in the union.

Thus an essential truth about American society: When it comes to freedom, it doesn’t matter where you live — or even what the laws are where you live — freedom comes from having the money to shape your reality. And in this way, the Kochs believe they are champions of “freedom,” when they are really hypocrites who wouldn’t want to live in the vision of the country they’re trying to create.


  1. TZToronto March 29, 2013

    It’s sad to think that this is even an issue in the “land of the free.”

    1. howdidisraelget200nukes March 29, 2013

      land of the free? if you want to see what freedom is, go to china. the u.s. is a penal colony and the wardens are the rich.

      1. Montana March 30, 2013

        Did you miss the sarcasm quotes around “land of the free”?

  2. howdidisraelget200nukes March 29, 2013

    30 BILLION? And no one thinks the rich should pay more taxes?

    the rich have turned the U.S. into a third world country. I hope you idiots out there that support Obama and his tax breaks for the rich, including himself, are happy that you elected a President who describes himself as “lazy” because soon the fate of detroit will be the same as that of the U.S.

    1. charleo1 March 29, 2013

      Actually, us, “idiots,” rejected the Plutocratic candidate, Mitt Romney.
      That did in fact, run on reducing the top tax rate for corporations, and
      multi-millionaires like himself. While claiming 47% of us, are lazy, jealous,
      louts, that believe the government owes us a living. So, can we assume
      you somehow, just got the two candidates mixed up, and actually voted for
      the one who said if we bailout GM, and Chrysler, Detroit is doomed?
      That’s okay. It wasn’t that close of a contest. But try to pay better attention
      next time.

      1. Independent1 March 30, 2013

        Charle, I’m not sure 200nukes has enough true understanding of any of the issues he or she has been posting on to give you an intelligent reply.

        1. charleo1 March 30, 2013

          Well, he sure seems to have gotten off on the wrong foot.
          But, he came to the right place to learn.

    2. S.J. Jolly March 30, 2013

      While Obama is far from perfect, and has delivered much less than promised, he was the best choice in both of his POTUS elections.

    3. neeceoooo March 30, 2013

      How old are you, 14

  3. charleo1 March 29, 2013

    I question the 30 billion number. The Kochs are rich. About 50 billion each,
    according to Forbes. But that still makes the 30 billion number seem incorrect.
    I’m going with a a type-o, and say it’s probably, 30 million.

    1. tobyspeeks March 30, 2013

      The Bros have personal wealth of 50 each. The 30 is from their PACs, their businesses and any other way they fund and over time, not one big donation. Don’t be fooled.

      1. charleo1 March 31, 2013

        I did a little checking. And found, that unfortunately, you’re 100%
        correct. 30 billion dollars. The Kochs must figure they have one
        hellava, payday coming, to invest that much. It’s outrageous.
        Then, claim if they have to pay an additional 2% in taxes, they’ll
        go out of business, and take all the jobs with them.

  4. jgsoliveira March 30, 2013

    Are they Jews?

    1. WhutHeSaid March 30, 2013

      What point, pray tell, could that possibly add to this discussion?

  5. Lovefacts March 30, 2013

    These rankings aren’t worth the print, airwaves, or bandweight given to them. They don’t measure any of the things that “we” want to know, like: women’s rights, reproductive rights, voting rights, gender rights, gay rights, the ability to be out of the closet and not worry about your job. But then the pollsters said they weren’t political so why ask the questions people really care about?

  6. howa4x March 30, 2013

    This is the oxymoronic philosophy of the libertarian movement, and their patrons. On one hand they want to be free of government regulations, especially environmental ones that affect the Koch bros interests, and on the other they want government to restrict the rights of people they don’t agree with. They are like the Catholic church who wants to ban abortions to get more payers to support them and the Koch’s want more semi slaves that will work for less than the minimum wage in hazardous conditions in the right to work for less states they are creating.

    1. charleo1 March 30, 2013

      It seems to me, you got it about right. There are those that look at
      environmental laws, as the government denying their freedom. In
      the Koch’s case, who deal in coal, coal fired electric plants, and
      chemical manufacturing, Every part per thousand of poisonous,
      by product, or waste, the government makes them take out of
      before it contaminates the air, land, or water, costs them money.
      As we might imagine, there is not a lot of people, not on their payroll
      out there lobbying, for allowing the Koch Enterprises to pollute more.
      So, they must couch their argument in ways that could make the
      average person see this as big government, running roughshod over
      the poor business person, just trying to make a living. And here’s the
      kicker. Costing consumers, more money as well. “These crazy tree huggers,
      and EPA bureaucrats.” They’ll say. It is literally a never ending battle to preserve
      a healthy world for the next generation, and of course, the one after that.

  7. I Zheet M'Drawz March 31, 2013

    That’s an awful lot of money being spent to curtail the freedoms of Americans while at the same time spouting they’re all about freedoms.
    I don’t buy anything they say (or sell) but the crowd that believes in their hoopla can’t comprehend anything more than they can fit on a bumper sticker.
    I’m not surprised though. Lots of stupid going around these days, seems infectious.

  8. Timothy Horrigan March 31, 2013

    I live near the Maine NH border: I see little if any evidence that Maine is signifcantly less free than NH.


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