Republican budget chairman Paul Ryan spoke at the Kochs’ pollutocrat strategy meeting

Last October, ThinkProgress helped break the story about secret political strategy meetings, convened by polluter billionaires Charles and David Koch of Koch Industries, to coordinate the funding and direction of the conservative movement.

TP has the scoop on the attendees in this cross-post.

Previous meetings have included Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia, top hedge fund managers like Cliff Asness, business executives, Republican strategists, and various other political operatives. Following the revelation of these meetings, a group of progressive organizations protested the most recent meeting in Rancho Mirage, California last weekend. ThinkProgress revealed a partial list of the attendees, including GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain, Americans for Prosperity officials like Alan Cobb, political consultant Michael Goldfarb, longtime lobbyist Nancy Pfotenhauer, and a number of donors, including Home Depot founder Ken Langone and billionaire heiress Diane Hendricks.

ThinkProgress has now learned of another attendee addressing the Koch meeting: House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI). Ryan’s office confirmed his attendance this afternoon to ThinkProgress. Ryan, who has a long record of flying off to junkets for groups of bankers like the Club for Growth, is pushing forward with radical cuts to Medicare and Social Security in his “Roadmap for America’s Future.” In line with Koch’s peculiar supply-side side ideology of soaking the the poor, Ryan’s budget idea also calls for increasing taxes on the middle class, while cutting them for the rich. Other Republican legislators were at the event, including Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA).

The Politico’s Ken Vogel, who was threatened with arrest by Koch’s security detail, noted that retired Sysco chief John Woodhouse and former Jack Abramoff associate Patrick Pizzella were at the event as well.

— A Think Progress cross-post.

8 Responses to Republican budget chairman Paul Ryan spoke at the Kochs’ pollutocrat strategy meeting

  1. Peter M says:

    What amazes me the most that over 40% of the American public believes what these vultures have to say- mostly poorer and less educated whites, who stand to lose the most from the plans of Koch and the republican party.

  2. Prokaryotes says:

    Think of the situation of Mr Koch’s very personal climate awaking moment.
    In a not to distant future the following could actually be documented – too.

    During the next killer heatwave, people in his age face extra trouble from heat exhaustion, over heating, body collapse, problems breathing etc.

    What will a Koch think and maybe speak out loud, once he faces his climate dawn moment?

    The bible tells us about the story of saulus who became paulus – people can change. And when you look at Mr Koch’s commitment to the “better good” and his generosity, when it comes to the dinosaurs for example.
    Or when he has public good named after himself.

    It surely would satisfy him more, once he acknowledges that he too can help the human race to prevent the greatest threat in the history of the earth. The greatest threat because of the unprecedented speed of emission in earth geological record.

    As things progress atm at one point or another his denial construct will collapse and with it his empire.

  3. Wit's End says:

    Not necessarily, Prokaryotes. David Koch had cancer, and never made the link between the carcinogenic emissions his corporations produce, and his life-threatening disease. Instead, he funded the David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT ( Typically, the emphasis is on research into high-tech treatment, not investigating the cause. There is no money to be made in detecting the source of cancer, and oodles and oodles to be made treating it through surgery and/or pharmaceuticals.

    Following is a sample from one of their programs, notably lacking any mention whatsoever of toxic chemicals in the environment, in food and water, or air pollution. Instead, the rise in cancer is attributed to longer life-spans, better detection, and personal choices like tobacco. It appears that even a brush with death isn’t enough to make David Koch reconsider his anti-regulatory paradigm and unshakeable but incredibly obtuse belief that a free-market will solve all ills. Lucky for him he has enough money and health insurance to afford the best treatment, and to make a pact with the devil to buy off his guilt. Here are excerpts from the website, but there are many more examples:

    “Cancer, which has been predominantly a disease of industrialized nations, is rapidly encroaching on the developing world as people live longer and diagnostic technology improves. Cancer now kills more people in developing countries than HIV, tuberculosis and malaria combined, according to the World Health Organization….

    There is a particularly urgent need for more research into the types of cancer most common in India, including head and neck cancer (often the result of tobacco use) and cervical cancer, which are not as prevalent in the West, says Raina.

    In India, about a million new cases are diagnosed every year, and that number is projected to triple in the next 20 years. Efforts are now under way in India to make cancer research a priority — an endeavor that is getting a boost from a new program at MIT’s David H. Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research…

    …“As an entrepreneur whose company is pursuing cancer research, I am acutely aware of the need to augment cancer research in the country at a basic scientific level,” says Mazumdar-Shaw. “If we are to develop new onco-therapies for Indian patients, we must create a strong research ethos amongst the medical and scientific communities engaged in the area of cancer.”

    Cancer cases in developing nations now make up more than 50 percent of the global total, compared to 15 percent in 1970, according to the World Health Organization. There are several reasons for that, says Sudhir Borgonha GM ’01, CEO of Translational Medicine India, which runs clinical trials in India. Cancer diagnostic technology is becoming more accessible in India, and the population is becoming more aware of the need for early screening, which leads to more diagnoses.

    Advances in combating infectious diseases like malaria have also contributed to higher cancer rates. “As people live longer, you’re going to see a lot more diseases that you didn’t see before, when people were dying younger of things like TB and malaria,” says Borgonha, who is not involved in the new program.”

  4. Mike Roddy says:

    Prokaryotes, I’ve got to agree with Wit’s End here. In order to have an epiphany, you must first be human.

  5. Dano says:

    Prokaryotes is actually describing what happens to normal people. Rich people can insulate themselves from extremes. That is the whole point.



  6. Steve says:

    “Rich Guys have Rights Too”. The LA Times (which is sometimes considered centrist or even a little left of centre) published an editorial on Feb 1 criticizing people who demonstrated at Koch’s California shindig for the carbon elites. “Rich Guys have rights too”. The comments from readers on the web page reveals an alarming number of people who agree with the editorial and support the Koch Bros. I think a lot of these commenter’s are paid hacks who work in Koch Industry PR offices. This is just another aspect of the Koch Bros. drive to pervert democracy. If that is not the case then judging by the comments the level of ignorance in the general population is alarming. Maybe its the tea baggers.

    As far the LA Times is concerned, is it stretch to imagine hanky panky between Sam Zell , the owner of the bankrupt Tribune company and Koch Bros?,0,6858366.story

  7. Prokaryotes says:

    Well, saulus had an altered state after an accident which in theory altered his brain-god module. This guy here, well idk probably a hopeless case of fail. But who knows, maybe he just needs the right recipe to get him to go clean tech (once he learns that he can make a lot of money with clean tech).

    Anyway in the real world he will probably end up behind bars once day for all the tinkering with the civilization security. At one point people will demand his head, simple as that. Just like Mubarak, after 30 years the right moment comes and voila, gone is the foe.

  8. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Actually I think that the Kochs have access to a mystical document, discovered by a farmer in Nubia, stuffed inside the mummified remains of a sacred camel, buried in the ruins of a long-forgotten pyramid. This is the legendary (some say ‘apocryphal’) ‘Gospel of Hamish of Nazareth’, Jesus’ little known ‘Elder Brother’. It contains the true distillation of the proper message our Father in Heaven has for the planet. As Hamish observes, ‘The meek shall inherit nothing’ because the earth belongs to the rich, given them by God in acknowledgement of their moral rectitude. While Jesus wasted his time with poor losers, Hamish was much smarter, cavorting with the money-changers and souvenir sellers at the Temple, and charging what the market would bear during the loaves and fishes shortages. He was not a little annoyed when his mate, Matthew, the tax-collector, defected to his little brother, and a nice tax avoidance scam fell through. You see, the Kochtopus, like ‘The Family’ are only doing God’s work, in protecting the rich from that envious, hydra-headed beast, the rabble.