It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
The Koch brothers' donor retreats are notoriously secretive affairs, but after my publishing of several hours of audio from their 2014 summer confab, the network began to bring select journalists behind its closed doors. With strings attached. Six media outlets gained access this year under the condition of not disclosing donor identities, while the Kochs enlisted hotel security staff and police officers to intimidate this reporter from exercising her First Amendment rights.
As Koch grand strategist Richard Fink sat in the Glo Lounge of the posh Renaissance Esmeralda Indian Wells resort in Palm Springs on Thursday, I heard his communications staff report to him that Fredreka Schouten of USA Today was "prepped." Sure enough, just hours later, at 5 AM on Jan. 29, her piece went live on the USA Today site: "Koch brothers' new group will take on poverty, education."
Out of the blue in the fall of 2010, a blogger asked Jane Mayer, a writer with The New Yorker, how she felt about the private investigator who was digging into her background. Ms. Mayer thought the idea was a joke, she said this week. At a Christmas party a few months later, she ran into a former reporter who had been asked about helping with an investigation into another reporter on behalf of two conservative billionaires.
“The reporter had written a story they disliked,” Ms. Mayer recounts in “Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right,” out this month from Doubleday. Her acquaintance told her, “‘It occurred to me afterward that the reporter they wanted to investigate might be you.’”
Ms. Mayer began to take the rumored investigation seriously when she heard from her New Yorker editor that she was going to be accused — falsely — of plagiarism, stealing the work of other writers. A dossier of her supposed plagiarism had been provided to reporters at The New York Post and The Daily Caller, but the smears collapsed when the writers who were the purported victims made statements saying that it was nonsense, and that there had been no plagiarism whatsoever. Indeed, as one noted, Ms. Mayer had plainly credited his writing — though this was not mentioned in the bill of particulars that was passed around.
There was more. Ms. Mayer would learn that these same dark forces had dug into a friend from her college years, with some notion of using the friend’s later problems against her. “I’m 60,” Ms. Mayer noted. “That was a long time ago.”
Who was behind this?
Figuring that out took three years, Ms. Mayer said, and she writes that she traced it to a “boiler room” operation involving several people who have worked closely with Koch business concerns.
Two other Washington figures identified by Ms. Mayer in the operation, Philip Ellender, who heads Koch’s government affairs arm, and Nancy Pfotenhauer, who has served as president of a nonprofit advocacy group funded by the Kochs, did not respond to messages requesting comment.
BTW did you see the warning China gave Soros against selling short the Yuan? No repeat of the English pound....
In a strange twist to the China-Soros tale, the chief of China's National Bureau of Statistics, Wang Baoan, was among the officials talking up the yuan in the wake of Soros' comments.
On Tuesday, Wang gave a speech saying that there was "no basis for long-term yuan depreciation." Just hours later, it was announced that he had been detained in a corruption investigation.