How do we fight illuminati like this?

This article in the New Yorker

Exposes a pair of billionaire brothers who are basically bankrolling political extremism. They pretty much paid for the Tea Partys, and now have pretty much bought what is supposed to be a public university." If seems like they manage to not do anything that’s technically illegal, but clearly they are trying to use their money to spread their ideology and control society. How should progressives fight this?

Firstly, you should read something other than the New Yorker.

So you’re not so far behind the times and feel the indignation and need to ‘fight’ something. What the Koch brothers do with their family wealth has been known for many, many years and is hardly a secret.

Secondly, when you come up with a plan please come back on the Board and post so the rest of us can get some ideas about what to do about George Soros and ACORN.

Oh wait, ACORN uses our tax money to advance their agenda…not their own. Never mind.

Not any more. Where have you been?

Let me guess … I should read Faux news instead. LOL

Yeah, I’m sure it’s “no secret” that’s why the article is titled “Covert” and why people are afraid to go on record about them, being “underground.”

And George Soros is a patriot trying to IMPROVE america and make it better, not just trying to use it to hurt poor people and make himself richer.

This thread is for progressives go sell your BS elsewhere.

Do the brothers use the 17/23 concurrence?

OP to tu quoque in one. Nice.

With all due respect, this progressive must point out that you cannot enforce that the thread is “for progressives”. It’s on “Great Debates”, but also it will attract just simple opposition contradiction.



Not tu quoque.

If Action X, practiced by Actor A, is called “patriotism,” and Action X practiced by Actor B is called “trying to control society,” this is potentially the fallacy of equivocation.

There is a fallacy called tu quoque, a special case of the ad hominem fallacy. Tu quoque happens when an accusation is rebutted with some variant of, “Well, you do it too.”

I know this is kind of a subtle distinction, but in order to discover if the tu quoque fallacy is in play, you must ask yourself, “What is the inference to be drawn by bringing up the conduct of the speaker?” If it’s merely that the speaker is bad, or hypocritical, then you have identified a tu quoque fallacy. But here, there is no such inference: as the OP acknowledges himself, the true complaint is not a wealthy person spending money to encourage social or legal change. The true complaint is that the change being sought is conservative (or as the OP puts it, “…trying to use it to hurt poor people and make himself richer.”)

So in debate terms, the onus now falls to the OP to draw a principled distinction between Soros and the Koches.

Note however that **IdahoMauleMan **(whose post it is I was making light of) has not disputed the lack of ethics or reprehensibility or whatever of the Kochs. He merely said “It’s old news, besides your guy does it too”. There was no defense of Soros or mention of patriotism at that point.

Yeah, I know, my post came after TheFacts’s one which is … yeah. I swear to Aïsha I had it typed sooner, I just went back and forth on whether I should suggest we setup a Fallacy Bingo in GD or not for a while, before figuring it wasn’t that funny.
It just goes to show that snark’s all about timing.

Actually, I hadn’t thought of calling them Illuminati. That might help. Hey, are they in fact Bilderbergers?

Well, I agree that IdahoMuleMan’s post is not a shining example of persuasive debate either, but a charitable reader may discern a gleam of an actual rebuttal in it. It would have helped his case to more clearly identify his attack on equivocation (if, indeed, that is what he intended to do).

But as you say, snark has its own rules, and only rarely do they intersect with those of the rhetors.

Posters, (even Original Posters) do not control who will participate in threads.

Telling another poster to “sell. . . BS” is inappropriate in Great Debates.

This thread seems much more suited to The BBQ Pit than to Great Debates. I will give you an opportunity to post an actual thesis to debate. If one is not forthcoming, I will move the thread for you.
[/Moderating ]

Agreed. And well-played, sir. Very well played.

No, here was the point behind my snark…

  1. I read something in the New Yorker that cast a libertarian in a poor light. Which is a tautalogical truism, of course. As Hendrik Hertzberg would confirm.

  2. Shock and indignation follows. A call to action must be made, and immediately. This is an outrage.

  3. Of course, what the Koch’s due with their money has been known for decades.

[Snark #1 coming] So are you outraged only now, since you read it in the latest New Yorker? Millions of people have been aware of this for a long time. Why outrage only now?

Are your behaviors and mood controlled that much by a single publication? That implies if an editor, or a particular columnist, has an agenda to promote…and a particular time and place to promote it (say, just before an election or an important vote in Congress) they can easily pull your strings - and the strings of those like you - by printing something in a magazine. Even though it’s already been known for a long time.

  1. Leaving aside the point of environmental regulation for the moment, since it involves externalities, I find it humurous on its face (but I’m sure I’m the only one on the SDMB) that someone feels the need to ‘fight’ a group that is expending resources to encourage the limited role of government.

That is, they are spending their own money to promote the idea of more personal freedom. What exactly do the indignant progressives feel the need to ‘fight’ for? To have more of their lives controlled by government officials?

But let’s leave that aside for now, since that’s a deeper political discussion often covered in other threads.

  1. [Snark #2 coming…] And yes, the Soros/ACORN comment was pretty much as you say. With a special little topper at the end, since ACORN’s antics are often held up by more conservative elements as the Koch-equivalent bane of their existence. But unlike the Kochs, who are spending their own money, ACORN (until recently) had signficant funding from the public purse.

You guys are both way off.

The OP isn’t directly criticizing Koch Brothers, nor is IdahoMauleMan drawing that sort of comparison. So what resulted was damn lot of imputing. It seems the correct thing to do would have been to ASK the OP for clarification of his beliefs BEFORE assigning a pre-set to them.

The OP specifically says what they are doing isn’t illegal, nor does he suggest it should be. The way I read it is that the OP finds this particular tactic highly effective–billionaires using their money to manipulate a grass roots conservative movement. With this in mind, he/she is curious to consider how the progressive movement might counter this. Should billionaire liberals dupe the gullible working class? Should they develop a propaganda machine in the form of a news organization? Or perhaps they should send the DOJ after political opponents, maybe use the special prosecutor.

In other words, lots to discuss without getting all bitchy.

The Koch brother’s, as far as I understand*, are spending their own money to [successfully?] push a conservative/libertarian agenda. The end goal being to elect conservative/libertarian politicians who will enact conservative/libertarian policies.

Someone who doesn’t want those policies would thus have to fight to prevent it, or as Palin would say, “Lock and load.”

It shouldn’t surprise you to hear that there is a portion of Americans that would prefer a progressive platform and are fighting to achieve that goal.

The question posed in the OP is thus: how does the liberal/progressive movement counteract this conservative/libertarian push?

To answer your rebuttal, killing ACORN required a guy pretending to be a journalist, fake some footage, dress up in a pimp costume, and steeling some underpants.

Essentially, after the last election some conservative/libertarians read an article in [insert conservative/libertarian publication] about how ACORN successfully got poor urban blacks to vote {for Obama}. This caused outrage and the question was asked, “how do we fight this.” There answer was James O’Keefe.

*I hadn’t heard of them until now.

I’d just like to point out that I had nothing to do with this.

Thanks. :slight_smile:

Hate laws. If it’s pointedly untrue, and the people spreading it are aware, if it’s targeted at a specific demographic, it’s hate speech, and a crime. Even just identifying it as such, would go a long way. Put the focus on the 'hate’ful part of what they are doing. Would they continue to walk a fine line? Without a doubt, but much of what’s out there, (birthers, he’s a muslim crowd), would be silenced. And rightly so.

It’s what keeps Anne Coulter choosing her words more carefully, when she’s in Canada.

It should be illegal to spread hate, in my opinion.


It should be illegal for someone to say, “Barack Obama was born in Kenya, and he’s a Muslim?”

ACORN helped to empower the downtrodden. The Koch Brothers help those who do the trodding. Its not quite that simple, but close enough for rock and roll.

Wait, these billionaire brothers are RWs. Aren’t the Illuminati LWs fnord? The originals were (for their time).