Business Impact

POLITICO: The Koch Intelligence Agency

November 18, 2015

Another must read, revealing story from Ken Vogel on the Kochs is out this morning, shining light on the Kochs’ “secretive operation that conducts surveillance and intelligence gathering on its liberal opponents.”

The Koch network claims to use their “secretive” “intelligence” group as an operation that’s “cloak and dagger – like the CIA” to fight back against groups on the left — groups like American Bridge.

If the Kochs are so desperate that they’re trying to plant spies and maliciously infiltrate groups like American Bridge, our strategy of exposing their motivation in spending hundreds of millions to advance their self-enriching agenda and elect their puppet candidates must be working.

Kochs To Kids: We Don’t Care If You Want To Go Outside And Play

November 13, 2015

Longtime polluters and climate change deniers, the Koch brothers’ list of infractions against our planet grows daily. Over the years, Koch Industries has seen employees charged with felonies and accumulated more than $90 million in fines and settlements from environmental violations. So now, logically, Koch Industries is joining an environmental legal battle against… children. Yes, you read that right.

According to MSNBC,

The unusual case began back in August when a group of “youth plaintiffs” (ages 8 to 19) sued the federal government, arguing that weak action on climate change is a violation of their right to life, liberty and property. They demanded that President Obama act more swiftly to slash the emissions that cause global warming. They sued for themselves but also for “future generations,” a group whose “guardian” is listed as James Hansen, the former chief climate scientist for NASA.

On Thursday, representatives of ExxonMobil, BP, Shell, Koch Industries, and hundreds of […]

Will Koch Pollution Force 2016 GOP Convention To Relocate?

November 12, 2015

When the GOP gathers at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena for the 2016 Republican National Convention next July, it’ll encounter extensive Koch contamination — and not just within its own Koch-infested party infrastructure, because Charles and David Koch are similarly responsible for the algal blooms wreaking havoc on the waters of Lake Erie.

Destructive fertilizer runoff has over the years produced economically and environmentally devastating algal blooms on the lake’s surface — and, according to The Plain Dealer, last summer’s was the worst yet.

The algal bloom was found to be slightly larger than the former record-holder from 2011, as well as the 2014 bloom that polluted the drinking water in Toledo and forced the shutdown of the city’s water-treatment system for three days.

This summer’s bloom forced several private beaches to close and damaged tourism and sports fishing, as well. The USEPA estimates that the blooms are responsible for $64 million in losses per […]

Koch Crony On Pharma Bro’s 4,000% Drug Price Increase: NBD

September 24, 2015

Earlier this week, “pharma bro” Martin Shkreli made news when his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals, raised prices on a life-saving drug byroughly 4,000 percent. Shkreli’s decision to raise the cost of Daraprim, a prescription used primarily by HIV patients, from $13.50 per pill to $750 per pill, has caused public outcry. At the same time, Koch crony and former Americans for Prosperity Vice President Phil Kerpen argued against prescription price controls in an Idaho Press-Tribune op-ed:

Health insurance premiums are rising because of Obamacare. And there is still one year left of the assorted reinsurance programs designed to mask premium increases, suggesting next year’s jumps will be even more eye-popping.

The damage done by applying price controls to prescription drugs will be catastrophic. 

Kerpen is now president of American Commitment, which received 87 percent of its funding from Koch organizations between 2011 and 2013. Along with AFP, Kerpen also previously worked for Koch […]

Kochs’ Greed Takes 500 American Jobs Overseas

September 15, 2015

The Koch brothers’ greed comes with a high price: 500 Americans will see their jobs at General Electric shipped overseas due to the Kochs’ Export-Import Bank takedown. Without the support of the Ex-Im, GE announced it must resort to outsourcing in order to keep a competitive edge.

According to the Wall Street Journal,

For months, GE has said that the failure to reauthorize the export financing agency, which congressional Republicans have singled out as an example of corporate welfare, would force the company to move jobs overseas or risk losing contracts for turbines, power projects and other industrial equipment.

Executives say that the company is bidding on $11 billion worth of projects, mostly in developing nations, and that bids won’t be entertained if they aren’t sponsored by an export credit agency. GE said, for example, that 80% of the gas turbines have been sold to countries where export credit agency sponsorship […]

Schooling The Kochs On Their Role In Hurricane Katrina’s Devastation

September 2, 2015

Bridge Project last week released a report exploring the Koch brothers’ role leading up to and in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina — and exposing the Kochs’ previously examined contributions to the damage and opportunistic advocacy that willfully took advantage of the impacted region’s residents.

A crucial component of the Koch brothers’ involvement was their effort to advance policies to make flood insurance unaffordable to anyone but the most affluent — like them. As the Huffington Post reported:

The Bridge Project also details an unsuccessful Koch-backed legislative effort to oppose a bill that was intended to promote recovery by limiting premiums for flood insurance. The Homeowners Flood Insurance Affordability Act sought to place a limit on rate increases for people at higher risk of being affected by hurricanes and other damaging storms.

The Koch-funded conservative advocacy group Americans for Prosperity and other conservative organizations signed a letter in February 2014 urging GOP lawmakers to oppose […]

Kochs: ☀🔌👎,💸👍

September 1, 2015

Today, the Florida Supreme Court begins hearing oral arguments on the solar power ballot initiative. Leading the charge against the initiative that would give homeowners the right to choose solar power are — you guessed it — the Koch brothers. Koch-backed groups 60 Plus Association, the National Black Chamber of Commerce, and Americans for Prosperity have all been working against the expansion of solar and pushing for more regulations in the state.

Today’s hearing is a reminder that despite their claims of wanting less government interference, the billionaire brothers are more than willing to push more regulations if it helps their bottom line. 

Read more of our coverage on the Kochs’ hypocritical opposition to solar power, particularly in Florida.  

In The Shadows: Kochs’ Hypocritical Attacks On Solar Power

Today, the Obama administration is rolling out new solar power executive actions. The National Journal reports that the White House is working with the private sector […]

Koch Industries’ History Of Selling Millions Worth Of Oil Equipment To Iran

July 14, 2015

One after another the Republican presidential candidates have come out condemning the Obama administration’s historic deal with Iran today. But two of the GOP field’s top backers might not agree with them.

In a damning report, Bloomberg digs in to the Koch brothers’ business engagements with Iran. Koch Industries flouted laws put into place in 1995 by President Clinton that barred U.S.-Iran trading and sold petrochemical equipment to the Middle Eastern country.

According to Bloomberg,

A Bloomberg Markets investigation has found that Koch Industries — in addition to being involved in improper payments to win business in Africa, India and the Middle East — has sold millions of dollars of petrochemical equipment to Iran, a country the U.S. identifies as a sponsor of global terrorism.

The company’s products helped build a methanol plant for Zagros Petrochemical Co., a unit of Iran’s state-owned National Iranian Petrochemical Co., the documents show. The facility, in the coastal city of Bandar Assaluyeh, is […]

Koch Industries’ Plant Closure Will Leave Most Workers Unemployed

May 11, 2015

Most of the workers at a shuttering Georgia-Pacific plant are facing unemployment at the end of the year due to Koch Industries most recent cuts. Koch subsidiary, Georgia-Pacific, announced the closure of its Dixie Plant in Parchment, Michigan on Friday. The Kochs’ move is a devastating loss to the city as it was the last remaining paper producer in the town nick-named “Paper City” for the many paper companies it once was home to. Parchment Mayor Rob Heasley said he was shocked by the move since he believed the plant was doing well.

The impending closure is a stark reminder — while the Koch brothers gear up to spend nearly $900 million picking a conservative Republican and try to buy the White House, they have a long history of destroying livelihoods and families. The historic closing is just the Kochs’ latest maneuver to increase Georgia-Pacific’s profits. In Michigan, the Kochs’ Americans for Prosperity is 

Through their decades in business and politics, Charles and David Koch have honed their methods for rigging the system in their favor, both through their national operations and activities. Their history in Florida is indicative of this overall multifaceted strategy, which includes lobbying and raising funds for politicians, using their advocacy network to sway public policy, and leveraging financial donations to universities to buy professors that promote their worldview. Time and time again, the Koch brothers’ self-interested actions proved to be beneficial to their bottom line at the expense of hardworking Floridians.

One key aspect of the Kochs’ strategy was cultivating relationships with high-profile Florida politicians who were sympathetic to their message. Senator and likely GOP presidential candidate Marco Rubio was the only U.S. Senator to receive a 100 percent score from Koch-group Americans for Prosperity in 2013. In that same year, Sen. Rubio was the keynote speaker at […]

Paid for by American Bridge 21st Century Foundation