Sunday, June 18, 2017

Jane Mayer: What Happened When PBS Aired a Documentary about the Koch Brothers | Diane Ravitch's blog

Jane Mayer: What Happened When PBS Aired a Documentary about the Koch Brothers | Diane Ravitch's blog:

Jane Mayer: What Happened When PBS Aired a Documentary about the Koch Brothers

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Jane Mayer, author of “Dark Money” and other exposes of the power of big money, wrote an article In 2013 for the New Yorker about the difficulty that NYC’s PBS station encountered when it agreed to run a documentary that focused on David Koch and other super-rich who live in a luxury high rise apartment building on Park Avenue.
PBS gets so little public funding that it depends on the gifts from fabulously wealthy people. Can PBS afford to bite the hand that funds it?
“Park Avenue” includes a multifaceted portrait of the Koch brothers, telling the history of their family company and chronicling their many donations to universities and think tanks. It features comments from allies like Tim Phillips, the president of the Kochs’ main advocacy group, Americans for Prosperity, and from activists in the Tea Party, including Representative Michele Bachmann, of Minnesota, who share the Kochs’ opposition to high taxes and regulation. (It also contains a few quotes from me; in 2010, I wrote an article about the Kochs for this magazine, noting that they were funding much of the opposition to President Barack Obama by quietly subsidizing an array of advocacy groups.)”
“A large part of the film, however, subjects the Kochs to tough scrutiny. “Nobody’s money talks louder than David Koch’s,” the narrator, Gibney, says, describing him as a “right-wing oil tycoon” whose company had to pay what was then “the largest civil penalty in the E.P.A.’s history” for its role in more than thirty oil spills in 2000. At one point, a former doorman—Jane Mayer: What Happened When PBS Aired a Documentary about the Koch Brothers | Diane Ravitch's blog:
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