Do You Hate the Koch Brothers?

Do you abhor and despise the control they allegedly exercise over the nature of political debate here in the United States? Are you afraid and worried that other similarly wealthy and powerful people/institutions could hijack political debate in a similar fashion?

Well then, you should be absolutely outraged by this:

Did You Hear the Koch Brothers Just Gave a Million Bucks to NPR to Cover Healthcare?

No, you didn’t hear about that Koch gift to NPR, because it never happened.

But now that I have your attention, let me ask you whether you heard that a different funder, who also has a strong agenda on healthcare, just gave $1.3 million to NPR to report on this topic?

No, you probably didn’t hear about that gift either, by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation—a grant that has caused zero controversy.

Come to think of it, I didn’t recall any controversy when RWJF gave National Public Radio $5.6 million to report on healthcare between 2008 and 2011, during a period when this was among the most politicized of all topics.

You’d think that somebody would at least have raised an eyebrow, given that RWJF is a strong proponent of the Affordable Care Act, as well as other healthcare policy positions on the progressive side of the spectrum.

God bless that foundation, if you ask me. But as a thought experiment, imagine if the Koch brothers had given the same amount of money to NPR to cover healthcare.

People would have gone nuts.

Yes. They would have. But since the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation–and not the Koch Brothers–are involved here, no one will care about this story. It’s just fascinating how we select our political villains, no?

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