You won’t be surprised to learn that the libertarian Koch said…exactly the opposite. What he was pointing out as a “monstrous measure” was the amount of spending, particularly government spending on among other things military endeavors, that goes into the GDP that might not be a great representation of the growth of our economy.

The body of the story makes clear what Koch was saying, but the headline is horrendous.

Conservative billionaire Charles Koch is predicting average American incomes of $100,000 annually in roughly a decade if government is scaled back and regulations are scrapped.

One way to get there? Building and using more bombs, he jokingly told about 450 donors to the political network he backs.

“I think we can have growth rates in excess of 4%. When I’m talking about growth rates, I’m not talking about that GDP, which counts poison gas the same as it counts penicillin,” the 79-year-old industrialist said, veering off his prepared remarks. “What a monstrous measure this is. If we make more bombs, the GDP goes up — particularly if we explode them.”

His audience laughed, clearly getting the joke.

“Maybe we make more bombs,” he said, trailing off. “I’m just kidding. I won’t go there.”

Elsewhere, the Kochs have been written up for encouraging other rich people and business owners to eschew taxpayer subsidies, which seems like a pretty honorable thing to do, but is nonetheless documented by journalists with a heavy emphasis on the environment in which the message is delivered, the people receiving it, and what wine they might be drinking. So, the exact opposite of an Obama fundraiser, where the message is we should give a lot more welfare to businesses that meet the president’s approval, and the press mostly ignores the opulent environment in which this self-interested, income-inequality-perpetuating nonsense is hawked. The Koch philosophy on that last bit. All Republicans should be singing from this hymnal instead of standing up for ethanol and sugar subsidies.

It’s that class distinction that Koch has made the focus of seminars at the luxurious resort. “In my view, we’re heading toward a two-tiered society, a society that is destroying opportunities for the disadvantaged and creating welfare for the rich,” Koch said. “Misguided policies are a creating a permanent underclass, crippling our economy and corrupting the business community—present company excepted, of course. But what this is doing, then, is turning more and more Americans against what they mistakenly believe is free enterprise.”

Then he said “Maybe we should bomb the underclass.” No, he didn’t, but why not make it the headline?

Update: The headline has been changed to “Charles Koch Mocks Common Measure of Prosperity.” Screenshot of earlier version is below.

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