Your Curmudgeon is one of the few — it seems like the only — Republican bloggers on the sane side of The Controversy between evolution and creationism, so this may be the only blog of its kind where you will read this story. CBS is talking about David H. Koch, one of the Koch brothers who are known for their donations to conservative causes. He is also known as a global warming skeptic. Left-leaning commentators like to criticize him because, as Wikipedia says:
David Koch dislikes President Obama’s policies. “He’s the most radical president we’ve ever had as a nation… and has done more damage to the free enterprise system and long-term prosperity than any president we’ve ever had.” Koch believes that Obama’s father’s economic socialism explains what Koch views as Obama’s belief in “antibusiness, anti-free enterprise influences.” Koch believes Obama himself is a “hardcore socialist” who is “marvelous at pretending to be something other than that.”
But Koch is not easy to categorize. He donates substantial sums to cancer research and to numerous cultural charities. And, contrary to the usual stereotype of a right-wing billionaire that floats around the blogosphere, Koch is no creationist. Here are some excerpts from the CBS story, with bold font added by us:
An energy businessman is donating a record $35 million to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History to build a new dinosaur hall on the National Mall, the museum complex announced Thursday.
The donation by David H. Koch, the executive vice president of Koch Industries Inc. of Wichita, Kan., is the single largest gift in the museum’s 102-year history. The Smithsonian Board of Regents voted Monday to name the new dinosaur hall in Koch’s honor.
As you know, the Smithsonian is nothing like Ken Ham’s Creation Museum. In case you’re in doubt about Koch’s motives, get this:
In 2009, Koch gave the Smithsonian $15 million to build a new exhibit hall exploring human evolution over 6 million years. The museum’s Hall of Human Origins also was named in his honor, tying in with another area that interests Koch.
Here’s a link to the Hall of Human Origins. But Koch does have a controversial side. There’s this, for example:
Some groups have criticized the Koch brothers for funding efforts fighting legislation related to climate change. The University of Massachusetts at Amherst has listed Koch Industries among the nation’s top 10 air polluters.
Koch said he’s fascinated by the subject of climate change and believes the public should learn more about it. “There’s debate, of course, as to how much of the warming is caused by human activity vs. just the natural cycles in the climate fluctuations of the globe,” he said.
The story ends with this quote:
“I’m sorry but I have eclectic interests,” he said. “I give away a very large fraction of my income to support these worthy institutions, and I’m trying to help in the most important ways that I can to make the world a better place.”
So there you are. Were we to guess, we’d say that he won’t be supporting the Discoveroids. As for his other causes, they seem fine to us.
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