Thursday, February 3, 2011

Mob Rules

When the Koch brothers hosted their own little conservative convention in a posh Palm Springs resort last week, it had all the atmosphere of that scene in The Godfather where the Five Families met to divvy up New York. And if you were an outsider, you were stalked and harassed.

Inside the resort at the beginning of the conference, “there was an atmosphere almost of paranoia,” said Gary Ferdman, a Common Cause official.

Ferdman had reservations at the resort and stayed there Thursday and Friday night. He said he was told Saturday that his lunch reservations at the resort restaurant had been canceled and was urged to check out and leave promptly by a member of Koch’s large security detail.

Security manned every doorway and stairwell near the ballrooms where Koch events were held, and threatened to jail this POLITICO reporter while he waited in line at the resort’s cafe, after he stopped by a Koch conference registration table.

The resort grounds were “closed for a private function,” the resort’s head of security, James Foster told POLITICO, ushering the reporter outside, where private security guards, wearing gold lapel pins bearing Koch’s “K” logo, threatened “a citizen’s arrest” and a “night in the Riverside County jail” if the reporter continued asking questions and taking photographs.

The purpose of the super-secret meeting of rich right-wingers was to plan their strategy for bringing back smaller government and more freedoms.

HT to Steve Benen.