Today, I am reminded of why I am proud to be an American. After the tyrannical attack by the anti-freedom mob on Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich, Americans are rejecting the mob and the tyrants with a simple act of solidarity. Americans are letting Mozilla know that they reject their intolerance of freedom by uninstalling the Firefox browser. The negative feedback rate at the Mozilla site is at record numbers with the “Sad” feedback at 7,000 people per day – over a weekend. There was never even a bump of such feedback when the gay extremists were launching their mob attack against Mozilla. Twitter is on fire with hashtags such as #uninstallfirefox, #supporteich, #boycottmozilla and more.
The American People rejected these tactics when it was tried against Chik-Fil-A and against Duck Dynasty (by Cracker Barrel). They are rejecting it again, but this time they are starting to realize they have been invaded. The American people have been invaded by a group of thugs, mobsters and Chicago-style politicos who are using the personal destruction tools of Saul Alinsky. Alinsky wrote “Rules for Radicals”, dedicating it to Lucifer (!) and stated emphatically that the ends justify the means. In other words evil tactics are called for to achieve their goals (which are evil by the way). His goal was a collectivist society (socialist or fascist) with an arrogant elite at the top – built on false claims of equality, justice and a better society. The attack on Brendan Eich is right out of the Alinsky radical play book, literally.
* RULE 12: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)
Americans must stand up to these radical bullies. The attacks on their targets don’t work if the support system remains to help them weather the storm. These radicals are of a brand seen throughout history – tyrants. They seek not justice but injustice, not freedom but subservience to the state, not equality but an elite pecking order, not good but evil. Americans may be fearful of standing up to these radicals, but there will come a time when silence now will result in massive tyranny later. At that point, only a bloody and costly revolution will work. So we must use the tools of free speech, assembly, and religion protected by the U.S. Constitutionally limited government of our Forefathers to stand up now and drive these evil thugs back under the rocks from which they crawled. These radical collectivists have broken down our gates and invaded our keep, but they must realize they are surrounded by the villagers who outnumber them and reinforcements of freedom-fighters are arriving outside to sweep them back to the sewers. Join the freedom-fighters and sweep this anti-freedom mob away. Today it is a simple act: Tweet #uninstallfirefox after you have taken that easy step to remove the Firefox browser (or let it be otherwise known).
Another target of the Alinsky collectivists are “the Koch Brothers”, demonized for daring to do what others dare not: disagree with them and fight them on the battlefield of ideas. Those wanting to better understand why Charles Koch is fighting should look at his Opinion Piece in the Wall Street Journal recently and see what he is fight for and who is fighting against. This piece is more than about the Koch Brothers, it is the battle in which we know find ourselves. Let’s join him on the battlefield to win back our freedom! His piece is reproduced here.
I have devoted most of my life to understanding the principles that enable people to improve their lives. It is those principles—the principles of a free society—that have shaped my life, my family, our company and America itself.
Unfortunately, the fundamental concepts of dignity, respect, equality before the law and personal freedom are under attack by the nation’s own government. That’s why, if we want to restore a free society and create greater well-being and opportunity for all Americans, we have no choice but to fight for those principles. I have been doing so for more than 50 years, primarily through educational efforts. It was only in the past decade that I realized the need to also engage in the political process.
A truly free society is based on a vision of respect for people and what they value. In a truly free society, any business that disrespects its customers will fail, and deserves to do so. The same should be true of any government that disrespects its citizens. The central belief and fatal conceit of the current administration is that you are incapable of running your own life, but those in power are capable of running it for you. This is the essence of big government and collectivism.
More than 200 years ago, Thomas Jefferson warned that this could happen. “The natural progress of things,” Jefferson wrote, “is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground.” He knew that no government could possibly run citizens’ lives for the better. The more government tries to control, the greater the disaster, as shown by the current health-care debacle. Collectivists (those who stand for government control of the means of production and how people live their lives) promise heaven but deliver hell. For them, the promised end justifies the means.
Instead of encouraging free and open debate, collectivists strive to discredit and intimidate opponents. They engage in character assassination. (I should know, as the almost daily target of their attacks.) This is the approach that Arthur Schopenhauer described in the 19th century, that Saul Alinsky famously advocated in the 20th, and that so many despots have infamously practiced. Such tactics are the antithesis of what is required for a free society—and a telltale sign that the collectivists do not have good answers.
Rather than try to understand my vision for a free society or accurately report the facts about Koch Industries, our critics would have you believe we’re “un-American” and trying to “rig the system,” that we’re against “environmental protection” or eager to “end workplace safety standards.” These falsehoods remind me of the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s observation, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.” Here are some facts about my philosophy and our company:
Koch companies employ 60,000 Americans, who make many thousands of products that Americans want and need. According to government figures, our employees and the 143,000 additional American jobs they support generate nearly $11.7 billion in compensation and benefits. About one-third of our U.S.-based employees are union members.
Koch employees have earned well over 700 awards for environmental, health and safety excellence since 2009, many of them from the Environmental Protection Agency and Occupational Safety and Health Administration. EPA officials have commended us for our “commitment to a cleaner environment” and called us “a model for other companies.”
Our refineries have consistently ranked among the best in the nation for low per-barrel emissions. In 2012, our Total Case Incident Rate (an important safety measure) was 67% better than a Bureau of Labor Statistics average for peer industries. Even so, we have never rested on our laurels. We believe there is always room for innovation and improvement.
Far from trying to rig the system, I have spent decades opposing cronyism and all political favors, including mandates, subsidies and protective tariffs—even when we benefit from them. I believe that cronyism is nothing more than welfare for the rich and powerful, and should be abolished.
Koch Industries was the only major producer in the ethanol industry to argue for the demise of the ethanol tax credit in 2011. That government handout (which cost taxpayers billions) needlessly drove up food and fuel prices as well as other costs for consumers—many of whom were poor or otherwise disadvantaged. Now the mandate needs to go, so that consumers and the marketplace are the ones who decide the future of ethanol.
Instead of fostering a system that enables people to help themselves, America is now saddled with a system that destroys value, raises costs, hinders innovation and relegates millions of citizens to a life of poverty, dependency and hopelessness. This is what happens when elected officials believe that people’s lives are better run by politicians and regulators than by the people themselves. Those in power fail to see that more government means less liberty, and liberty is the essence of what it means to be American. Love of liberty is the American ideal.
If more businesses (and elected officials) were to embrace a vision of creating real value for people in a principled way, our nation would be far better off—not just today, but for generations to come. I’m dedicated to fighting for that vision. I’m convinced most Americans believe it’s worth fighting for, too.
Mr. Koch is chairman and CEO of Koch Industries.