The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller

Charles Koch fights back

Photo of Larry Kudlow
Larry Kudlow
Host, "The Kudlow Report"

Is it too farfetched to connect the dots between a brilliant Wall Street Journal op-ed <http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303978304579475860515021286>  by Charles Koch, the chairman and CEO of Koch Industries, and the continued sluggish recovery in jobs, business investment, and the overall economy? I don’t think so.

In his piece, Mr. Koch seems to make a plea for a big dose of free-market capitalism. He argues, “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.”

Charles Koch and his brother David have been vilified by the left for fighting hard to get political candidates with free-market points of view elected. Protected by U.S. Senate rules against libel, Democratic Majority Leader Harry Reid has called the Kochs virtually every name in the book — including “un-American.” But now the Kochs are fighting back. And I hope they do more of it.

Charles Koch’s op-ed reveals a consistency of thought. He writes, “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 concludes that the current batch of administration policies “destroys value, raises costs, hinders innovation and relegates millions of citizens to a life of poverty, dependency and hopelessness.”

This is strong stuff. And spot on.

Think of Obamacare as the ultimate central-planning, collectivist, big-government approach. The government is mandating what health-care insurance to buy, and taxing you if you don’t buy it. You may lose your favorite doctor or hospital or insurance plan, all while job hiring and work effort are undermined. These intellectual eggheads tell you what you can and cannot do, and where you can and cannot do it. And they prescribe a multi-trillion-dollar government expansion of spending and taxing while they’re at it.

The good news here is that Obamacare is incredibly unpopular. The bad news is that it’s going to be incredibly difficult to rewrite or replace this law.

But Mr. Koch’s big fear is that collectivism can’t and won’t stop with Obamacare. He has a point. The Obama machine continues to roll out poverty-trap incentives, paying people not to work. Obama’s EPA is aiming to obliterate the entire coal industry and all the blue-collar workers in it. The president can’t even give the okay to the Keystone pipeline, which is favored by all but the far-Left environmental radicals. Obama’s National Labor Relations Board now wants to unionize college football players. Our corporate tax rates are the highest in the world. And the entire IRS tax system is so corrupt and complex, it has become a major hindrance to growth. I could go on and on.