It’s time to end the divide.
We want to have an open conversation about removing barriers to opportunity and progress. Our aim is to replace America’s two-tiered, winner-take-all system with one free and open society where all can win.
Our cause: the freedom to flourish.
To millions of Americans, the words “Koch brothers” and “political activism” go hand-in-hand. And for good reason.
At Koch Industries, we are unapologetic advocates for the principles of a free and open society. These include integrity, responsibility, innovation, respect, tolerance, humility, equality before the law, free speech and exchange, and mutual benefit. We apply these principles across Koch companies every day. We believe they have been critical to our success.
Sadly, decades of misguided policies have eroded these basic values, creating a two-tiered society that gives unfair advantages to the financially privileged and politically connected few. America today is failing our most vulnerable and holding people back from reaching their extraordinary potential.
The way we see it, a free and open society is one that provides opportunity for everyone. That’s why we continuously strive to advance these fundamental principles.
Ineffective, stifle growth, destroy jobs
Three ways we’re fighting for you.
Koch supports many causes that promote equal justice and a free and open society. Our advocacy, activism and educational efforts focus on three basic categories.
Tearing down barriers to opportunity.
From prisons to start-ups to schools, many existing laws and policies stack the deck against ordinary Americans and their families.
Unfair and unjustly harsh sentences for low-level and non-violent offenders are destroying lives and families. Reforming our justice system can reduce poverty by as much as 30%, dramatically improving both safety and quality of life throughout society.
Pay-to-work licenses required by local, state and federal governments for hundreds of occupations have restricted the creation of nearly three million jobs and inhibited entrepreneurship, harming low-income individuals and communities the most.
Yet another barrier is a broken educational system that too often puts special interests first and students second. Educating young minds is essential to well-being and progress.
Ending special treatment for the politically connected.
We oppose all forms of corporate welfare – even if it benefits us. From cash payments to anti-competitive restrictions to privileged tax breaks, today’s economy is increasingly burdened by unfair government policies, most of which are baked into our system, making them impossible to avoid. At Koch, we actively advocate against corporate welfare while continuing to play by the current rules – whatever they are and whether they help us or hurt us.
In a free and fair economy, the success or failure of any business should come from the value of the products or services it offers – not from government handouts or bailouts paid for by taxpayers. Yet today, this is precisely how our government politicians pick winners and losers. Doing so impedes innovation and progress and moves us all further away from a society of mutual benefit.
Instead of stifling progress, we encourage Americans to embrace “permissionless innovation” – the idea that new technologies and business models should be allowed to develop unhindered if they pose no serious harm.
Protecting and defending free expression.
Koch promotes individual freedom, including freedom of expression and inquiry. Free speech is critical for a free flow of ideas, which leads to discovery, innovation, progress and growth. We work every day to protect our free society.
While free speech may seem as American as apple pie, the threat to it is real. For a society to progress, history shows us that we must feel free to have open conversations with those whom we disagree with in order to find common ground, learn from each other and innovate.
Free speech and a culture of humility and toleration allow us to engage, through civil debate, people with whom we disagree. We must try to help and learn from one another, rather than hurt and silence each other.
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