The Libertarian Strategy of the Koch Brothers
09 August 2017 | Pago Pago, American Samoa
Richard Fink (not Rat Fink) is often introduced as the "grand strategist" of the Koch brothers. He spoke at a large periodic Koch brothers donor retreat on June 13, 2013. Fink is also on the board of director of Koch Industries and several of the Koch brother's think tanks/ political action arms. His talk that day was "The Long Term Strategy: Engaging the Middle Third." Little did all but one know that the secret, confidential meeting was being taped by that one, also secretively.
The thrust of Fink's talk was one third was already for them and their agenda, one third was irretrievably against both, and the problem was how to win over the middle third. But that is not as interesting as what Fink said along the way, after he explained, in the 2012 elections, they had lost the middle third. He said the "government slashing agenda" did not appeal to the middle third. "We want to decrease regulations. Why? It's because we can make more profit, okay? Yeah, and cut government spending so we don't have to pay so much taxes. There's truth in that." But he said the middle third was uncomfortable with positions that seemed "motivated by greed" he said.
What they needed to do was use the Koch network to persuade the middle third that "we're good people" by whatever means possible. He proposed, based on extensive research, that what the Koch network need to do was persuade the missing one third that the "intent" of economic libertarians was virtuous. "We've got to convince these people we mean well and that we are good people." If we can do that, he said, we "will drive this country. How? He should have been asked. Lie about it should have been his answer.
The answer he volunteered was the Koch network needed to reframe the way it stated its political goal, What was needed, he said was to "launch a movement for well-being." The improved pitch he explained was to argue free markets were the path to happiness and big government led to tyranny and fascism.
Free markets were simply the best path for human "well being."
The leaked tape appeared four days later on a blog and led to denials and an uproar.