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What's the meanest thing you can say to a liberal?

February 1, 2011 |  2:36 pm


Q: What's the meanest thing you can say to a liberal?

A: That they're acting like Glenn Beck.

Nevertheless, the editorial board went there Tuesday in an editorial entitled "Rich guys have rights too,"  comparing those who protested Sunday against the Koch brothers, who donate millions to conservative political causes, to Glenn Beck's unfavorable commentary about George Soros, who donates to progressive causes.

"Same problem, different billionaires," writes the board. They continue:

Money does indeed distort our political system, but few of those who complain about it acknowledge that political spending cuts both ways. Activists on Sunday were angry at the Koch brothers for spending $1 million on a failed campaign to overturn California's law to curb greenhouse gases, but they didn't seem bothered about the millions spent on the other side by California venture capitalists with investments in clean-energy startups. If you're going to raise a fuss about political spending, it would be more honest to cast a spotlight on it even when the money comes from people you agree with. What's more, campaign donations from individuals -- rich as well as poor -- are a critical component of political expression, and thus of free speech.

This outraged a good amount of readers.

"MoveOn and its allied groups have every right to expose the Koch Brothers, for what they are - two billionaire brothers, who through their funding of the Tea Party Movement, are on a campaign to buy the government. The public has the right to know who is bribing whom, and which Congressmen are receiving secret funds from the Koch Brothers and other corporate interests. MoveOn is doing the job that the Los Angeles Times is not.

So "Rich Guys Have Rights." Yeah, they sure do. They can buy politicians and judges. They can bribe the media. They can flood the airwaves with fraudulent advertising - all because they have money. This is exactly what is happening thanks to the Citizens United decisions. The argument presented by the Los Angeles Times reminds me of the slogan George Orwell's Animal Farm. Everyone has rights, but rich guys have more rights than any one else." --mnyegele

"All those people protesting the Kochs have the right to free speech too.  I know that the LA Times has a leftist reputation so you feel the need to do this every once in awhile, but if you've got info about leftist billionaires corrupting politics why not just print it rather than climbing up on a phony free speech high horse and chastising people who are also exercising their right to free speech." --dbmcvey

"LA times. Your attempt at balance is LAME! The Koch Bros are a pox on the middle class. They are John Birchers who could care less about the average American. They will not be satisfied until ALL government regulation is abolished and all people are firmly restrained under their boot. They are poster boys for the new gilded age.  They accept ZERO restrictions on their economic activities. They are anti-American. Their ideal of good government is strikingly similar to the corporate fascism embraced in Italy during the second world war. Can we expect an editorial soon rehabilitating the image of Benito Mussolini? Yes "Rich guys have rights" but does that right include subverting government for their own ends?" --clearville

Yeah… Perhaps the readers didn't get to the last paragraph. Just two sentences:

We're no fans of the Kochs and their promotion of poisonous, self-dealing politics. But we'll defend their right to promote it.


Rich guys have rights too

Mouthing off in America

-- Alexandra Le Tellier

Photo: Protesters fill the corner of Bob Hope and Rancho Las Palmas on Sunday in Rancho Mirage, Calif., as they march against a conservative strategy meeting hosted by brothers Charles and David Koch. Credit: Crystal Chatham, The Desert Sun / AP Photo

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