The Yes Men and their friends have been stepping up an all-fronts attack on the Koch brothers for their funding of conservative political causes. Among other creative assaults this week, the Yes Men launched a mock website to humiliate Koch-owned Peabody Coal, and, on Wednesday night, a “guerrilla drive-in” movie in New York’s esteemed Lincoln Center, where one of the buildings has recently been renamed after David H. Koch.
After this week, the weapons against the Koch brothers now include, Justin Bieber inhalers, free movies, giant stickers, popcorn, comedy, and all manner of media stunts.
On Monday, a Utah judge threw out a lawsuit from the Koch brothers against the Yes Men. But within days, the relentless anti-corporate pranksters were back at it their game with Coal Cares, a parody website offering free inhalers for kids suffering from asthma as a result of Peabody Coal, a Koch-owned energy company.
Organized by the Brave New Foundation, the Guerrilla Drive-In event culminated in a “guerilla rebranding” of the Koch Theatre at Lincoln Center.
On Wednesday night, a diverse crowd of more than 500 New Yorkers gathered at Martin Luther King High School behind Lincoln Center in preparation for a “Guerrilla Drive-In,” a satirical urban take on the drive-in movie. The rowdy event was designed to shine a spotlight on the now infamous Koch Brothers and their efforts to cover up their far right wing, anti-environment, anti-union agenda by donating large sums of money to New York City cultural institutions.
Director Robert Greenwald’s opening gambit in what he pledges will be a year-long effort to publicize the Koch brothers‘ political efforts drew about 500 protesters to Lincoln Center in New York last night, ending with an unauthorized “rebranding” of the Center’s David H. Koch Theater with the caption “…I’m the Tea Party’s wallet”
The David H. Koch Theater was the site of the NYC Ballet Spring gala and a bit of guerrilla theater Wednesday. Shortly after 8 p.m., the activist group Brave New Foundation and comic kindred spirit Rev. Billy held a “rebranding” of the theater while a black-tie crowd that included Sarah Jessica Parker was inside to see Brecht’s “The Seven Deadly Sins.”
For years, billionaire brothers David and Charles Koch flew under the radar as they financed right-wing campaigns and extreme conservative think tanks to overturn financial regulations, corporate rules, environmental standards, workers’ rights and the entire litany of “evils” on the radical right agenda.
But their cover was blown in a New Yorker article last year and further shredded when their connections to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) and his attack on public service workers and workers’ rights were exposed.
In a new Internet video produced by a grassroots liberal watchdog group, three senior citizens do their best Michael Moore impersonations outside the front gate of David H. Koch’s oceanfront mansion, as one speaks into the driveway intercom and asks to speak with Koch to confront the libertarian billionaire about his views on privatizing Social Security.
Then, also in great Michael Moore tradition, the three are asked to leave the property by, presumably, one of Koch’s household employees, as a police cruiser drives by outside the gate.
Supporters received an email today announcing a “Guerrilla Drive In” somewhere in Manhattan next week. “What will the action entail?” says the email (forwarded by a recipient to me). “It’s all tightly under wraps for the next few days – but it’ll involve a free short movie and free popcorn.”
The liberal guerrilla video group Brave New Foundation on Wednesday began what it says will be a prolonged political attack against the industrialist Koch family, which has become synonymous with the anti-Obama conservative movement.
The campaign marks yet another step toward conspicuousness for a family whose political activity was largely in the shadows until last year, when a New Yorker article outlined the support David H. Koch and his brother Charles ave given to various conservative research institutes and groups, including some associated with the Tea Party movement.
When an independent, Democratic fund-raising group was launched last week by former White House aides Bill Burton and Sean Sweeney, one of the reasons for going outside the traditional finance system was to counter the flow of funds flowing to like conservative orgs — including money coming from the Koch Brothers.
When it comes to the suddenly infamous Koch brothers, there’s one thing the conservative Weekly Standard and liberal filmmaker Robert Greenwald can agree on: The Kochs, Charles and David, have been a boon to the American political left.