Fred Koch, the former patriarch of the ultra-wealthy Koch family, was known for the time he spent in the early days of the USSR and came back with a deep hatred of anything resembling socialism. But a new book reveals that he had close connections to another fascist totalitarian ruler – and was a much bigger fan of his ideas.
Dark Money, an upcoming publication by the New Yorker‘s Jane Mayer, details how Fred Koch’s company “provided engineering plans and began overseeing construction of a massive oil refinery near Hamburg, which would become a component of the Nazi war machine, supplying fuel for German warplanes.” The refinery, the third-largest in the Third Reich, was personally approved by Adolf Hitler himself.
The book also reveals that Koch was so infatuated with Nazi ideology that he hired a “fervent Nazi” to nanny his children, Charles and David Koch, the boys who would grow up to be the oligarchs that are using their father’s fossil fuel fortune to subjugate our political system and instill free-market fascism in our nation, privatizing our public institutions so they can be sold back to us piecemeal. To do so, they have created an extensive political network, using their father’s billions to buy their way into elections and using “nonprofit” agencies like the American Legislative Council (ALEC) that literally write legislation, which are then pushed through state-houses by the Republican politicians they’ve bought.
They’ve also set up an extensive surveillance network to spy on progressive organizations working to protect our public programs and keep corporations from writing the rules at the expense of the American citizen. Their childhood Nazi indoctrination goes a long way to explaining their outrageous hatred for all things government, socialistic, and democratic. The influence of Nazi Germany can be found in their business practices and efforts to subvert the American political system; it is more critical than ever that progressives succeed in this election and hold back the tide of free-market fascism.
Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.