Yes, this is like shooting fish in a rain barrel, as Reason TV discovered when it began asking protesters in Los Angeles why the Koch brothers shouldn’t be allowed to buy the Los Angeles Times. Zach Weissmueller finds that either the protesters couldn’t articulate any clear reason why the Kochs would be bad owners, or believe (erroneously) that the Kochs are hard-right activists (they’re actually libertarians). But the best explanation — by which I mean the most stunningly hypocritical — comes at about the 50-second mark, as one protester explains that it’s all about tolerating other points of view. As long as they’re reliably liberal, of course.
No, I am not joking:
PROTESTER: We’re at a point in our history where we need to be a little more open-minded. Um, a little bit more liberal on views all across the board.
WEISSMUELLER: [The] Kochs self-describe as libertarian, and they fund a lot of groups that are against the drug war. The LA Times came out against Prop 19, which would have legalized marijuana in LA, and they’ve pushed anti-dispensary measures. Are you worried that in some sense they would push the LA Times to the left on those kind of issues?
PROTESTER: Um, I believe that regardless of their views, it’s not what the general populace needs.
Aaaaaand there you have the core of the protest. These people aren’t interested in becoming more open-minded. They want to control speech in order to allow the general populace only those points of view they need … in the opinion of the protesters.
I have no idea whether the Kochs will get the Tribune Company, or if they even really want it. The hue and cry over just the notion that the Kochs might own a major newspaper has been in itself a very enlightening experience about the nature of the Tolerance Lords in American society.