Ian Tuttle explores for National Review Online the campus crusade against the Koch brothers.

According to UnKoch My Campus (UKMC), a group of “students and activists” dedicated to exposing “the Kochs and their vast network of front groups,” the brothers have donated to more than 300 colleges since 2005. Kelly Riddell of the Washington Times estimated the total amount at $68 million as of 2013. UKMC alleges that these donations are intended “to undermine the issues many students today care about: environmental protection, worker’s rights, healthcare expansion, and quality public education, to name just a few.”

Supposedly in the interest of “accountability,” UKMC has been using open-records laws to intimidate professors and administrators involved in any academic work associated with Koch donations. …

… This is UKMC’s m.o. “File [an] Open Record Request to connect the missing pieces in your research and get the documentation needed to PROVE undue Koch influence if it exists,” UKMC advises in its “Campus Organizer’s Guide,” which also dedicates several pages to listing groups such as the American Enterprise Institute, the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation, and the American Legislative Exchange Council that are “part of the Koch-funded climate denial efforts.” …

… Those on the right wing of the political spectrum will find little objectionable in free-marketers trying to create space on college campuses for their perspective. The dominance of left-leaning thinkers — in almost every discipline, not just economics — on American campuses has been a fact for more than 50 years. If UKMC were actually in favor of “academic freedom,” as it purports, shouldn’t that mean encouraging the free and vigorous exchange of conflicting ideas? Shouldn’t a socialist be able to read Milton Friedman?

But even if UKMC does not accept the fact of liberal hegemony in academia, its sanctimonious mission to guarantee “accountability, transparency, and academic freedom” rings hollow, given that its sole target is the Kochs — who are far from the only politically motivated donors to institutions of higher learning.

Democratic mega-donor Tom Steyer is responsible for the TomKat Center for Sustainable Energy at Stanford, which expressly aims to influence energy policy. The Center cost Steyer $40 million.

In 2012, George Soros’s Open Society Foundations gave a grant to MIT’s “DREAMtech, a joint project of the MIT Media Lab’s Center for Civic Media and the United We DREAM Network (UWD), to provide support for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy implementation,” President Obama’s executive amnesty of dubious constitutionality. In 2014, a donation to the Media Lab was used to bring Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson to campus to help chronicle police violence. Mckesson is hardly an unbiased observer. According to Kelly Riddell, Soros’s OSF gave $26.4 million to universities in 2013 alone.