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Koch Brothers Interested in Buying Sun Sentinel; Five Other Billionaires Who Could Scoop Up the Paper

Over the weekend, liberal media types coast to coast suffered jags of anxiety after the New York Times reported that Charles and David Koch -- AKA the billionaire Jagger and Richards of the Tea Party agenda -- are eyeing a new shiny toy: the troubled Tribune Co., the parent behind eight of the country's top newspapers. The sticker price is estimated at $623 million. The portfolio includes a significant line-up of dailies, including the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Baltimore Sun, and South Florida's very own, recently Pulitzer'd Sun Sentinel.

There are good reasons the Kochs are interested in getting into the dead-tree media game. For one, with $115 billion in revenue coming in annually from their manufacturing company, the Brothers Koch can afford to toss some of those Monopoly bills into a money-bleeder without sweating much.

But the main reason is that the Kochs bang the drum hard for far-right libertarian causes, the brand of ideas that supporters say are constantly getting short-changed or sandbagged by the mainstream. Don't like what the newspaper says? Buy the newspaper. That sets the stage for a question: If the Kochs do scoop up the Sun Sentinel in the next year, will the paper become a libertarian megaphone?

Or, the paper could go to another bidder. Here are some ideas of South Floridians possibly in the market for their own daily.

Jeffrey Loria

This one is obvious, but not because Loria necessarily has the pocket change to pick up a newspaper free and clear. What does he have? Probably the worst public image in South Florida next to the bearded dictator of a certain island nation. With your likability in the trash, the only way out is to construct a counternarrative, and Loria needs more than an Erector Set PR quickie; he's going to have to build a fucking Shangri-La of personal renown. Luckily, the Sun Sentinel's sports columnists aren't above giving the occasional prose lap dance to hometown figures who deserve a more critical raking, i.e. Dan Marino.

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Kyle Swenson
Contact: Kyle Swenson

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