Greatest Threat to Democracy: The Oligarchs

While there is no doubt that the many attempts to create political systems based upon Marx’s ideas have in most places been a dismal failure, his economic theory and understandings of the workings of capitalism are sound and as relevant today as they were in his time.     Centralization (fewer and fewer firms) and concentration of capital:  as individual capitalists (e.g., see Rolling Stone by Tim Dickinson, like the Koch brothers  accumulate more and more capital, the result is increasing concentration into fewer and fewer hands.  This is not only about the absolute amount of money they control.  It is also about the power that results from the absolute amount of capital under their control (e.g., concentration).  For example, they fund a host of extremist political organizations (e.g., Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Partners, James Madison Institute, The Federalist Society, CATO Institute).   The Kochs have purchased the current Republican majority.See Lenny Zeskind’s (recipient of the MacArthur award), article ( about the Koch affiliations with the extreme right.  Every time I walk pass  the Lincoln Center home of the American Ballet (The David Koch Theatre), I imagine that the gay dancers are either blissfully ignorant of dancing under the banner of the far right.  Or perhaps they are fully engaged  in the most disturbing ways:  I think of Visconti’s film, the Damned.  I think of the Nazi SA and Ernst Rohm.  See the recent Huffington Post piece on their anti-gay agenda.   I think of my first visit to the Holocaust museum, just after it opened in Washington, D.C.  We were all given cards with brief bios describing a victim.  I drew the card of a young gay artist and dancer, killed in Holland.

Next week, the Kochs will convene the oligarchs in Palm Springs California, to plot the purchase of the next election.  See list of  attendees at the 2011 retreat.

In 2008, David Koch, donated 100m to for the renovation of the theatre, which now bears his name.    Is it possible that as the extreme right continues to shift the center of U.S. politics to the right, that one day these same dancers will be pleading for their lives?

David Koch at Lincoln Center

Make sure you read the full account of Koch empire:


How is it that we can altogether erase the memory of the U.S. Senator, Rand Paul’s association with the right-wing John Birch Society? See Lenny Zeskind’s Huffington Post piece on Paul’s association with the far right.

U.S. Senator, Rand Paul

Lenny Zeskind (see his book, Blood and Politics) has long argued that the center has shifted so far to the right that we no longer recognize the fox in the henhouse.   See recent NY Times piece on Paul’s nefarious connections with the far right.