Rupert Murdoch and Koch Brothers "Piggish, Slippery Billionaires," Border Rancher Says
Last year, when we were reporting "Badlands" and "Cowboy Down," two stories about life and death in Cochise County, on the southeastern border of Arizona and Mexico, we had the privilege of interviewing cattle rancher Rich Winkler.
|Billionaire brothers don't sit well with one pissed-off border rancher|
Winkler and his wife Mary have a spread at the base of the forbidding Peloncillo Mountains on the Arizona/New Mexico line, about 20 miles north of the Mexico border. It's a few miles from where Geronimo, the Indian warrior, surrendered in 1886.
He is a retired Superior Court judge who expressed in no uncertain terms how fed up he was (and is) by the failure of the federal government to do much about the dozens of undocumented immigrants that were funneling through his expansive property each week.
"There are [drug] scouts watching us, seeing where we are and what we're doing, and we don't want them to think we're an issue," he told us.
"The brazenness is what gets me. The illegals trample our land, leave their garbage behind, smuggle their poison in, and change the way we live our lives."
So it might make sense that all that federal-government-illegal-alien hating would translate to a Tea Party nativist affiliation.
Nope. The guy actually is a first-rate thinker.
Winkler is kind enough to send us his sporadically published, but always interesting Rodeo Roundup, a quirky mix of political essays, poems and other musings (mostly by him).
Winkler had this to say in a recent op-ed essay entitled, "Raise Taxes on the Rich:"
"All the moaning by politicians that government is bankrupt amounts to red herring hokum. It is a distraction used by Republicans while they destroy unions, the middle-class, and their social programs like Medicare and Social Security, and while shoveling more of the wealth to the very rich.
"The ones behind the whole thing are, you guessed it, the Koch brothers and Rupert Murdoch, three of our most piggish, slippery billionaires. These people don't have a charitable bone in their body. The reason governments have no money is because the very wealthy don't pay their fair share of taxes, period! It is good old-fashioned, selfish, American greed, as usual."
The Koch brothers, in case you've never heard of them, are the right-wing billionaire owners of a Kansas-based energy and consumer products conglomerate -- the second-largest privately held company in the nation.
Among other causes, the brothers have funneled millions of dollars to those who oppose the notion that our climate is changing (the global warming thing), and have been powerful behind-the-scenes players in the current Wisconsin union-busting drama.
Rich Winkler may not feel too soft and fuzzy about how his family's life has been turned topsy-turvy by undocumented immigrants who continue to trample through his property on their way to wherever.
But he sure does love his country, and his recent thoughts about rich folks resonate with us.