A free press is one of the foundations of a democracy. As we've noted earlier this month, the fact that the far-right Koch brothers are considering buying the Tribune Corporation's newspapers is ominous. The Kochs, whose father Fred was one of the founding fathers of the fringe John Birch Society, are known for their financial support of right wing causes and political candidates. They have apparently made the calculation that their resources might be well spent on buying up media outlets to spread their "free" market, plutocratic philosophy. Such newspapers as the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune and the Baltimore Sun would be bought up in the sale, giving the Kochs a major megaphone nearly equal to their right-wing comrade-in-arms Rupert "Aargh" Murdock.
There is genuine concern among the journalists who work at these papers that the Kochs will turn the papers into propaganda rags for their far-right agenda. Many at the Los Angeles Times have threatened to quit if the sale goes through. We hope it doesn't, not only for their sake but for the sake of the nation.