Somewhere in La Mancha, in a place whose name I do not care to remember, a gentleman lived not long ago, one of those who has a lance and ancient shield on a shelf and keeps a skinny nag and a greyhound for racing.
–Opening of Don Quixote
The Koch brothers are at it again, according to an editorial in last Sunday’s NY Times:
“For the last few months, the Kochs and other big polluters have been spending heavily to fight incentives for renewable energy, which have been adopted by most states. They particularly dislike state laws that allow homeowners with solar panels to sell power they don’t need back to electric utilities. So they’ve been pushing legislatures to impose a surtax on this increasingly popular practice, hoping to make installing solar panels on houses less attractive.”
No, the Koch brothers bear no resemblance to Don Quixote, who lost his mind while reading novels of chivalry and set out to live an adventure out of the pages of the very books that pushed him over the edge. Don Quixote follows a moral code–even if it is antiquated and even if his misreading of every situation he finds himself in sometimes leads him to commit seemingly random acts of violence.
Or do they? How to explain such unfettered greed and swinishness? Surely they think themselves heroes, ready to destroy the world in the name of company profits. Surely they meet their own eyes in the mirror everyday and justify their own horrific deeds and intentions.
Are they absolutely bonkers? Do they mistake solar panels for enemy combatants?
I hate the thought of comparing the Koch brothers to Don Quixote. However, I’m sure those swindling siblings think solar panels are a force of evil. And here come the Kochs, lances raised, ready to fight in the name of a fair lady in distress. Only that pretty Dulcinea of Toboso is really Big Oil. And as they rush to her defense, they imagine all of the dollar signs they will accumulate in her honor. However, if you wrote a book about them, it wouldn’t be called Don Quixote, but Don Corleone.