The Toxic Empire of the Koch Brothers Oligarchy

Posted: September 25, 2014 in News and politics
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I am gleaning this information from multiple sources. However most of what you will see in the this first section was suggested to me by an article in the Rolling Stone magazine entitled “Inside the Koch Brothers Toxic Empire” by Tim Dickinson.

Each Koch brother is worth approximately 40 billion. Koch-affiliated organizations raised some $400 million during the 2012 election, and aim to spend another $290 million to elect Republicans in this year’s midterms. So far in this cycle alone, Koch-backed entities have bought 44,000 political ads to boost Republican efforts to take back the Senate. Here are some examples of why it is so important to them to keep the GOP in power.

Koch is now a key player in the fracking boom that’s pushing the United States past Saudi Arabia as the world’s top oil producer, even as it’s endangering America’s groundwater. In 2012, a Koch subsidiary opened a pipeline capable of carrying 250,000 barrels a day of fracked crude from South Texas to Corpus Christi, where the company owns a refinery complex, and it has announced plans to further expand its Texas pipeline operations. In a recent acquisition, Koch bought Frac-Chem, a top provider of hydraulic fracturing chemicals to drillers. Thanks to the Bush administration’s anti-regulatory­ agenda – which Koch Industries helped craft – Frac-Chem’s chemical cocktails, injected deep under the nation’s aquifers, are almost entirely exempt from the Safe Drinking Water Act. And why would they bother, if, as they claim, there is nothing to worry about! According to them, fire coming out of faucets in the areas of tracking is coincidental and nothing to do with them. Livestock has been found dead, fish in ponds floating lifeless, but it has nothing to do with fracking! So then why did they spend so much money and time to exempt themselves from the Safe Drinking Water Act. Legislation that was put in place to protect us from this exact type of activity.

Here is another example, the Koch brothers own the richest – but also the dirtiest and most carbon-polluting – oil deposits in North America: the tar sands of Alberta. The company’s Pine Bend refinery, near St. Paul, Minnesota, processes nearly a quarter of the Canadian bitumen exported to the United States – which, in turn, has created for Koch Industries a lucrative sideline in petcoke exports. Denser, dirtier and cheaper than coal, petcoke is the dregs of tar-sands refining. U.S. coal plants are largely forbidden from burning petcoke, but it can be profitably shipped to countries with lax pollution laws like Mexico and China. One of the firm’s subsidiaries, Koch Carbon, is expanding its Chicago terminal operations to receive up to 11 million tons of petcoke for global export. So it is illegal for use in the USA because we don’t want to contribute to the worlds pollution any more than we have to, but all right to sell it to the rest of the world out of an American port? That, my friends, is the perfect example of the definition of “oxymoron”! I have been accused of defending President Obama too much of the time. Of course most of my readers would prefer I never did! So what! I only did that when people started up with the birth nonsense, what color suit he wore, doctored pics depicting him and wife in every derogatory way possible. So sue me for wanting better healthcare and my social security I paid in since I was thirteen. So here is one of the things I do not like. President Obama is on a big anti pollution and climate change crusade. However he lets people who can buy votes sell pollution for profit and lets them use our infrastructure to do it! You have to set your boots down on one side of the barb wire or the other and dig in your heels. Can’t blame Obama for everything, well the same goes for the GOP. Of course their slice of blame pie is a really big sloppy piece!

Charles Koch, the 78-year-old CEO and chairman of the board of Koch Industries presents himself as a man of moral clarity and high integrity. “The role of business is to produce products and services in a way that makes people’s lives better,” he said recently. “It cannot do so if it is injuring people and harming the environment in the process.” I’ll bet after he repeated that bullshit three or four times, he actually believed it. Another example if you will. A company called Universal Oil Products invented a way to crack the heavy crude oil into the usable fuels and chemicals for plastic, etc. It made the process at the refinery faster and far cheaper. Fred Koch teamed up with a former engineer from Universal and copied their cracking engineering almost exactly, with only one or two small differences, then set out to under sell them. Universal eventually took them to court for intellectual piracy and tied up the operation. So undaunted, Fred Koch just went to Stalin who was financing his communistic agenda and the cold war with their oil fields. Their oil, it turned out, was even harder to refine than American oil. So Fred supplied Stalin and the USSR with all the cracking expertise and equipment the country needed to crank up its petroleum industry and helped to directly finance our biggest and most dangerous enemy! They have a word for that, and I don’t need to tell you what that word is. But money shoved in the right pocket allows you to pretty much do whatever you want, even collaborate with the enemy.

So one last thing. Almost all the ads you see denying climate change come out of the coffers of the Koch brothers. This fact alone should tell you two things right away. First, they are one of the top three polluters in North America so it behooves them to deny that man is effecting any climate change. And two, you don’t spend millions upon untold millions to convince someone of something that does not exist. The summit to discuss climate change at the United Nations recently was one of the highest in attendence ever. The protest event outside demanding something be done about climate change was one of the largest in history. Not only that, the same day, world wide, 2,646 other events took place in 162 countries. Cleaning up the environment cost money. The Koch brothers can’t have that even though currently they take in 115 billion in annual revenue and want to double that in the next ten years. We need to get them and their ilk out of politics. Well they should get to vote, scream and yell like the rest of us, but their money should be unwelcome in politics. Every politician for a specific office should have the exact same amount of money available to them to run for office. Any ads must come from that fund, not the Koch brothers deep pockets.

Comments
  1. James Mahon says:

    Back in the day, I dated a lady who’s father ran drugs from Mexico to California successfully long enough to get rich. Anyway, she said he had told her he now had “f**k you money.”

    From a class I took entitled “Environment Economics,” Oil was discussed. The idea of running out was basically down played as they said that when another technology came along that was cheaper than oil, than oil would no longer be used for energy production. They also said that a great deal of oil was still in capped wells as it was too expensive to bring up with current technology. This was in the late 1980’s so technology has been improved since then. Is the tech fracking? I don’t know if shale oil was what they, the Profs, were talking about.

    Concerning pollution, we hear arguments from both sides saying “no problem,” or “huge problem.” It just depends on what you want to hear concerning which side you believe. I do seem to lean towards pollution being a problem in spite of the “no problem” side. However, I also think the EPA causes more problems than they cure.

    Just a couple of random thoughts that appeared in my pea brain from your blog….

  2. John Love says:

    As far as the EPA Jim. As you know I was in the smog program for years. I was even an inspector for a while. I hated the smog people always sending undercover cars with the weirdest things disconnected, plugged up or just ripped off. You had to be certified in all automotive areas that had to do with engine, computer, or fuel systems. Plus you had to be a Master Mech to be certified Gold Shield and on and on. They inspected to make sure you had all the updated scanners and tools do the job correctly. Seems like I was always going to school, expensive schools by the way. However we have way more cars than we did in the 80’s but the air is five times cleaner. We rarely get a “red” day. As a matter of fact I don’t remember the last one. So, there is bad, but we breath better and live longer, so how do you rate the bad. Smog is not so prevalent in Idaho, but SoCal, the sunsets are pretty seen through the polluted atmosphere, but I could do without.

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