No Wonder the Koch Brothers Want No Interference from the Government

bloombergkochBloomberg has one whooper story. It seems the Koch Brothers made sales to Iran:

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.

In case you've been dead, the Koch Brothers are the uber-rich guys out to destroy your social security, health care and, oh yeah, government as we know it.

No wonder they hate regulations and government. Doesn't help when you're doing something probably illegal, like making sales to a government under sanctions for being a terrorist state.

Beyond getting into the international bribes business, a crime the Koch Brothers are assuredly not alone in (see this Frontline documentary on how common international business bribes are), we have them losing one of the biggest civil wrongful death suits:

In 1999, a Texas jury imposed a $296 million verdict on a Koch pipeline unit -- the largest compensatory damages judgment in a wrongful death case against a corporation in U.S. history. The jury found that the company’s negligence had led to a butane pipeline rupture that fueled an explosion that killed two teenagers.

The story was actually for Bloomberg Markets magazine, but some bloggers leaked the story and summarized Bloomberg's main points:

  • Koch Industries used the European offices of their subsidiary Koch-Glitsch to sell millions of dollars of petrochemical equipment to Iran in an apparent violation of the US-Iran trade embargo, as recently as 2007
  • Internal documents of Koch Industries prove that the company took elaborate steps to ensure that their US-employees weren't involved in the sales to Iran
  • While is not 100% certain at this point that Koch Industries did in fact violate US law, according to Bloomberg Markets Magazine, internal memos show for example that the details of the sales with Iran were meticulously checked by US lawyers of Koch Industries and coordinated with the lawyers in order to fully ensure that no visible involvement of US-citizens took place
  • Koch Industries paid bribes in six countries from 2002 to 2008 to win business in Africa, India and the Middle East, comparable to similar behaviour of German technology giant Siemens (Siemens subsequently had to pay a $ 1.6 billion fine!)
  • Koch Industries sacked a compliance officer in France in June 2009 who discovered the illegal bribes at Koch Industries subsidiary Koch-Glitsch
  • These revelations were made possible through newly discovered documents from two labour court cases in France
  • Bloomberg Markets reveals that former employees of Koch Industries harshly criticize the company for their internal practises and ethics
  • The story also covers in great detail over several pages earlier violations of Koch Industries: The company in the past "rigged prices with competitors, lied to regulators and repeatedly run afoul of environmental regulations, resulting in five criminal convictions since 1999 in the U.S. and Canada"

Earlier was another bombshell article on the Koch Brothers, by the New Yorker, showing a concerted effort to deny global warming in order to continue to pollute:

In a study released this spring, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst’s Political Economy Research Institute named Koch Industries one of the top ten air polluters in the United States. And Greenpeace issued a report identifying the company as a “kingpin of climate science denial.” The report showed that, from 2005 to 2008, the Kochs vastly outdid ExxonMobil in giving money to organizations fighting legislation related to climate change, underwriting a huge network of foundations, think tanks, and political front groups. Indeed, the brothers have funded opposition campaigns against so many Obama Administration policies—from health-care reform to the economic-stimulus program—that, in political circles, their ideological network is known as the Kochtopus.

Kochtopus Run Amok

Seems the Koch Brothers are the $$$ behind a host of crazy, nonsensical and cruel ideas, like destroying social security. You probably have been shaking your head for some time wondering how such insanity could get any traction when 99% of the American people don't want something. Now you know!   The Koch Brothers are a classic example of the 1% uber-rich and corresponding multinational corporations ruling the country. It's all because $$$ buys a lot of talk, a lot of corruption and a lot of politicians.

This is an ageless story of people, organizations creating glorified religions and philosophies to justify their own avarice and malicious greed. If you want to do something illegal, like rip off Indians producing oil, simply create a religion or a political philosophy. Then an argument comes down to religious fervor and belief. Obviously it's clear those Indian people had no right to the land anyway since it was a socialist agenda, a government gift, paid for with only tears.

Nice work if you can get it, creating custom philosophies, religious and even political movements to do whatever the hell you want to.

In a study released this spring, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst’s Political Economy Research Institute named Koch Industries one of the top ten air polluters in the United States. And Greenpeace issued a report identifying the company as a “kingpin of climate science denial.” The report showed that, from 2005 to 2008, the Kochs vastly outdid ExxonMobil in giving money to organizations fighting legislation related to climate change, underwriting a huge network of foundations, think tanks, and political front groups. Indeed, the brothers have funded opposition campaigns against so many Obama Administration policies—from health-care reform to the economic-stimulus program—that, in political circles, their ideological network is known as the Kochtopus.

Ya gotta hand it to Bloomberg, first they took on the Federal Reserve with a lawsuit all the way to the Supreme court, all to discover who the Fed lent money to, and now this.

Word is Koch Industries, with all of their financial might, are issuing denial statements at the ready. Oh yeah, all of that buzz about New Jersey governor Chris Christie running for the GOP presidential nomination? Seems the Koch Brothers are the masses wanting him to run for President.

Ya all, a Pulitzer for Bloomberg News.

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Comments

they put Madison Ave to shame

The Kochs are the poster-children “Brand Messengers” – as you put it “…creating glorified religions and philosophies to justify (and further) their own avarice and malicious greed.” That of course has included their starting the Tea Party, a clear example of misleading people to vote against their own self-interest via messaging, distraction, and sloganeering. And the failed Media enables such BS by parroting vs reporting, via “he said – he said”. Thanks Bloomberg News for being an outstanding exception.

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media manipulation

Right now on local news are "stories" being run in sync, claiming those bad trade deals will create jobs. Over and over again, economist analysts show they will not. Only an economic fiction paper claims they will and history shows, bad trade deals have lost millions of U.S. jobs.

We have a GOP candidate, Buddy Roemer, who is being completely blacked out in media and assuredly because he is not speaking those marching orders, those corporate lobbyist written "talking points".

Koch seem to have their fingers in political disaster after disaster. Yeah, Bloomberg is doing their job periodically, taking on some seriously monied and powerful.

So, of course their news isn't in basic cable, instead mealy mouthed corporate speak leaning CNBC is.

(get the picture?)

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