High Stakes In The Battle Over Cato

The battle over control of the Cato Institute may not be the kind of story that inflames a lot of passions, but the implications of a Koch brothers are serious enough that it should be.

Cato has specifically accused the Koch brothers of a partisan agenda in the shareholder suit. With Cato’s more devout libertarian positions it becomes clearer why the Koch brothers would want to change the direction of the think tank.

For instance, right now several Cato scholars are opposed to a rush to war with Iran even as Republicans loudly beat that war drum. As Robert Greenwald and Jesse Lava report, these independent voices at Cato serve a crucial function in our public policy dialogue, and this is especially true when dealing with issues of war and peace.

If partisans like the Koch brothers take control of Cato then the true libertarian voice of the right will likely evaporate. Cato scholarship is usually antiwar, pro civil liberties and anti-drug war. These positions often find common ground with progressives and result in sound bi-partisan compromise.

It’s the latest in an ongoing battle for control of the American political system. The Koch brothers have worked to systematically install governors in states like Wisconsin, Ohio and Michigan, pour millions of dark money in the electoral process and now take control of one of the intellectual flagships by the right.

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Koch Bros Sue For Control Of Cato Institute

Photo from Elmo H. Love via flickr.

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20 comments

LD B.
LD B.3 years ago

"The Koch brothers have worked to systematically install governors in states like Wisconsin, Ohio and Michigan ..."

And Pennsylvania, which seems to have gone unnoticed by many.

Neil A.
Neil A.3 years ago

No extreme political or any other group should be in control, it will lead to abuses of the majority.
The Koch's are only interested in pushing their own biased view & are able to because bthey have financial muscle(not moral muscle) help to trim or better cut it down by not buying their products/ BOYCOTT.

SeattleAnn S.
Ann S.3 years ago

Funny. Fight on Cato.

Ron B.
Ron B.3 years ago

The current worst of the worst. The Koch boys have had their evil, greedy fingers into all sorts of criminality for many years now.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mSgcw5tLenI

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W.3 years ago

Down with the Koch brothers!

Marilyn L.
Marilyn L.3 years ago

Kich Brothers are not acting alone, I sure would like to know whose ringing their bell. Their not smart enough to act alone.

Angela M.
Angela Mogin3 years ago

The fate of the Cato Institute will probably reflect the fate of the "moderate wing of the Republican Party." In their never ending pursuit of ever more power, their worship of the rich and their quest for protection from the laws that govern the rest of us, the extreme right wing has transformed a political party into their personal lobby. No dissent is allowed and anyone questioning the party line is quickly marginalized and then ostracized. It should not surprise anyone who has studied their tactics in the past, that the Koch Brothers and their fellow travellers would set their sites on undermining or destroying the Cato Institute. What they can't co-opt; they destroy.

William Eagle
Bill Eagle3 years ago

So the Koch brothers want to take over the Libertarian CATO institute. Since Citizens United or Democracy has been up for sale... why not CATO as well?

Patrick King
Patrick King3 years ago

This is the fight between real conservatives and a superstitious fringe who since 1968 have been trying to usurp the word, conservative, and turn it to their own purpose. Conservative means to conserve what works rather than employ untried, improbable, or absurd alternative options. There is nothing "conservative" about vastly increasing the population with children for whom no one wants to care. Supporting a prohibition drug tactic that has failed for 100 years is not conservative. Belief in entities for which there is no evidence is not a conservative trait. Conservative beliefs are real issues. The term "conservative" is not just a label anyone can use.

Juliet D.
judith sanders3 years ago

The public has been ignoring the Cato institute for a long time, don't see why that should change. In fact, if you pay any attention to any group with "heritage," "freedom," "family," or similar buzzwords in its title, you're probably a gullible nitwit.

"the true libertarian voice of the right will likely evaporate."
Yeah, I'll lose sleep over that.

"Cato scholarship is usually antiwar, pro civil liberties and anti-drug war. These positions often find common ground with progressives and result in sound bi-partisan compromise."
Give us one example of bi-partisan compromise on any of these issues in the past 3 years.......... ......... crickets chirp.