11:11 am:

Hey, waiting for the panel to begin. Bob Reich is ill and won’t be attending.

Had a pre-panel meet with bloggers from a variety of sites and Van Jones, Bob Edgar of Common Cause and Lee Feng of ThinkProgress.

The thrust of the meeting and today is about first bringing together our Progressive community then coalescing around actions we can all power and support.

The sentiment is that this is a deceptively vital defining moment in American History and democracy.

11:29 am
Lee Feng: Fred Koch started this movement stealthily with other industrialists, founded the Birch Society and backed Goldwater to run in 1960. Handed the business to his sons, Charles and David, aka The Koch Bros.

The groups that filed briefs with SCOTUS are nearly all funded by or aligned directly with The Kochs, including Justice Thomas and Scalia.

Example of how the Kochs work in secret, only donated $5,000 against a Dem Congresswoman, Betsy Markey, but financed Tea Partiers to yell at her in townhalls and dishonest tv ads, actually and secretly spending nearly $1 million that was hidden from view and presented as “grass roots” democracy.

11:35 am
Erwin Chemerinsky – The Citizens United ruling only became legit because Justice O’Connor, who didn’t agree was relaxed by Alito.

States can adopt laws that corporations can’t spend money in campaigns without approval of shareholders.

11:44 am
Van Jones – After suffering assassinations, the deaths of hundreds of thousands in Vietnam, 40 years later, we finally came back. But now it’s at risk.

50% of Chicago unemployed. Why are we more focused on unemployment instead of employment, in terms of concrete action.

Applauds TP for raising the issue of liberty, we can’t live on a national plantation run by the Koch Bros.

America had aparthied before people stood up in and fought for equality.

The only thing that can defeat organized money power is organized people power.

If you’re not sure which side will win, look at Egypt. When a tyranny fails, it’s a failure of control. When a democracy fails, it’s a failure of imagination.

12:02 pm
Question Time

Q: It’s easy to talk about hope but what action are we taking to get something done?

Van Jones:

There is a growing amount of people out there who are ready to tale action.

Bob Edgar:

Common Cause is on a national campaign, going around America to let them know what is going on and that there are things they can do.

Erwin Chemerinsky:
One big unaddressed issue is ignorance, who knows who the Kochs are outside this room?

Q: Environmental activism takes funds, what can be done to help continue the fight?

Van Jones – There is a proposal for a Green Bank, to invest in green efforts.

Q: Limiting corps that get fed funding just as fed workers are prohibited?

Bob Edgar – Common Cause does support this and will presenting specific opportunities for citizens.

Example, CC helped bring election reform to several state elections, specifically in CT, over 80% of candidates took no outside financing from lobbyists.

Edgar Chemerinsky:
Remedy CItizens United, federal, state and local legislation.

2:11 pm

Some photos – video later

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This has probably been posted, but a good long piece about the Kochs in The New Yorker:



That is a great read and worth re-posting, Cher.


Article on the MSNBC site by Michael Isakoff about the rally the first bit made me wonder if there was any mixing of the two groups. Nah, that wouldn’t be ethical, would it?

An early version of this article incorrectly reported that the sponsors of the event, Charles and David Koch, had rented the entire hotel where the event was being held and arranged for tight security. A Koch spokesman said that two other events were being held at the hotel at the same time, including a conference of federal judges.



Thanks for that link, bito. No–no mixing of federal judges and the Kochs. 🙄


Cher, “Someone” 😉 has uploaded some vids to the Planets Twitter account from the rally.


Bito– I’m just learning to use the twitter site, but found this on the Planet account:

After Lobbying To Kill The Stimulus, Koch Meeting Attendees Guarded By Police Saved By Stimulus http://t.co/Syfm9oz via @thinkprogress #Koch

Great Tweet!


Yeah, Cher, I saw that on the #koch tag and retweeted it to ours. I was never big about the whole twit thing, but things like the rally Tunisia and Egypt it has been valuable on updates.

There was the back of a red-headed girl in one of the videos, any clues who that may have been?


That wasn’t me! BUT– even I had to look twice to be sure. Same color hair, but that’s all. 🙂

I haven’t seen any pics of me there, but I DID spot C’Lady for a second on one of the vids!


Good video report on the rally from RTAmerica!



The report is 662 pages long so give me an idea of what you would want to see reported back. I am sure there is alot I can skim over but if you give me an idea what you would want to see reported back, the skimming would go much better. Oh and that Bito Bito Bito on the instant message was a mistake, I was not yelling for you LOL. I kept hitting enter on accident.


Sue, I was just looking at the conclusions, maybe that may be a good place to use as a post, ya think?


Love the Van Jones line about Egypt.

And then the pictures of that riot gear brought it all home.

By the way, Mubarak increasingly stacked parliament with top-tiered businessmen and industrialists, often becoming ministers and such.

It’s a Koch’s wet dream. [totally intended]


Hey Kalima

Looks like a good turnout. Loved the sign we don’t like your koch and bull story LOL


Hi Sue, it certainly does, the news of arrests amazes me, what did these people do?


Hi Sue and Kalima – it was entirely purposeful. Code Pink and another group I never quite identified, had trained to BE arrested as non-violent civil disobedience. They walked onto the property into the lines of sheriffs and police in order to GET arrested. We all pitched in $$$ for bail, but they, unlike Operation Rescue, took great pains to do no harm to the police and did not lie down forcing the cops to pick them up and risking the backs of the police in question. It was very KIND in its message – I WILL trespass on your sanctum. I WILL NOT do harm along the way. I was very touched by it all. I know the old lefties (I’m one of them) would not have been so pacific, but it did seem appropriate – a “pick your fights” kind of thing.

Still and all – going to jail is never fun. You cannot be totally certain that the law, rather than some irate judge’s personal peeve, will prevail. It takes guts to be arrested, I don’t care what. I imagine – hope – they got out on OR, but we helped throw money into the bail kitty just in case.

Tip of the iceberg here – this was a large rally against the Tea Party funders, and I bet they did not quite know what hit them. They are sooooo comfy there under their rock. Sunshine is NEVER welcome in those quarters!

Cher – I’m IN one of the videos? Well, good luck to ya figuring out who’s who!. One hint – I am NOT the bear – nor is Cher nor AdLib. The bear was very unnerving because it was so realistic and the bear suit wearer NEVER broke character even when, for about an hour, it got quite warm. It was quite impressive and rather moving in a way most sorts of costumes are not.

Overall, a very good day for democracy.


Hi CL! I saw you in this video for a sec! —


Those cops sure look like they mean business, I wonder how much the Koch’s payed their bosses?

Bloody rich wimps.