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Koch Executives Speak Out on Wisconsin. The Koch Brothers will not back down
Naitonal Review ^ | 02/25/2011 | Robert Costa

Posted on 02/25/2011 7:28:23 AM PST by SeekAndFind

Madison, Wis. — Earlier this week, a blogger impersonating industrialist David Koch spoke with Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, who is attempting to pass a budget-repair bill. The conversation between Walker and the poseur, which was recorded, has received heavy media attention and turned the national spotlight onto the political activities of Koch Industries, a private, Wichita-based company with diverse holdings.

In interviews with National Review Online, Koch executives responded to the incident and pledged to “not stop” supporting free-enterprise initiatives, even as opponents attempt to sully the Koch name and the groups that brothers David and Charles Koch, the company’s co-owners, support. They also noted that David Koch and the governor have never met or spoken.

“With the Left trying to intimidate the Koch brothers to back off of their support for freedom and signaling to others that this is what happens if you oppose the administration and its allies, we have no choice but to continue to fight,” says Richard Fink, the executive vice president of Koch Industries. “We will not step back at all. We firmly believe that economic freedom has benefited the overwhelming majority of society, including workers, who earn higher wages when you have open and free markets. When government grows as it has with the Bush and Obama administrations, that is what destroys prosperity.”

Koch executives are not happy about the use of David Koch’s name by the blogger. “It was a fraudulent call,” says Mark Holden, the general counsel for Koch Industries. “There are serious fiscal issues at play in Wisconsin. Yet our opponents are interjecting us falsely into this story. But our Wisconsin story is about bringing and keeping good manufacturing jobs in the state. It is disturbing that when a blogger calls using the Koch name, it is used as an opportunity to attack the company.”

Fink tells us that he does not see the Walker prank as an isolated act. “This is not just left-wing bloggers,” he says. “This is part of an orchestrated campaign that has been going on for many months. It involves the Obama administration, the Center for American Progress, aligned left-wing groups, and their friends in the media. This is just the latest salvo in their attacks on the Koch brothers and Koch Industries. But it is an escalation — they’re now bringing in some labor groups, which they have not done before. We expect this to be part of an ongoing effort against [Koch Industries] as the 2012 presidential campaign approaches.”

Koch Industries has numerous businesses in Wisconsin, from Georgia-Pacific paper mills to coal and shipping companies. Approximately 3,000 people are directly employed by the company in the state, and 8,000 more indirectly. Koch executives say free-market principles and their desire to spur job creation are what drive any political actions or statements they make.

Americans for Prosperity, a political-advocacy group founded by Fink, the Koch brothers, and Jay Humphries, has been actively involved in Madison and supportive of Walker’s efforts. “We are not directing that,” Fink says. “They are staff-driven. They are out there trying to bring fiscal responsibility back to Wisconsin. Do we support them? Yes, we do, but we are not involved with their day-to-day activities. They are out there doing their best trying to make a difference. It is good to have them on the ground, in the battle, trying to help out.”

“We support Governor Walker, along with numerous other governors, who are trying to deal with the fiscal crises in their states,” Fink says. We have not been involved with the Walker bill, but we do support governors who want to take on the special interests. It is clear Scott Walker is trying to do the right thing for Wisconsin. With numerous employees and operations there, we have a stake in the fiscal health of that state.”

“We don’t try to have a high profile,” Fink chuckles. “We are not secretive, but we are private. It is the Left that is giving us a higher profile. Charles Koch has been at this for 50 years and David has been involved with [philanthropy] for decades. I have been at this for 39 years, 35 of them with Charles. This is a big part of our life’s work. We are not going to stop.”

As Koch Industries moves forward, both executives say, its leaders will be undeterred by criticism and remain involved in various business and political projects. “This campaign against Koch Industries has been going on for over a year,” Holden says. “Charles and David Koch are not going to be silenced. They are principled men and we have a principled company.”

— Robert Costa is a political reporter for National Review.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; US: Wisconsin
KEYWORDS: kochbrothers; wisconsin; wisconsinshowdown

1 posted on 02/25/2011 7:28:26 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind

Well, I’m glad they bon’t. :)


2 posted on 02/25/2011 7:29:11 AM PST by RexBeach (There is no such thing as a good tax.- Winston Churchill)
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To: SeekAndFind

Please correct your headline to read will ‘not’ back down.


3 posted on 02/25/2011 7:29:21 AM PST by thethirddegree (Islam is a vile, barbaric, perverted, depraved,seditious cult invented by a murdering pedophile)
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To: thethirddegree

I have sent a message to the Mods to do this. Sorry for the typo ( there is no facility for correcting typos in your post in FR when you hit submit ).


4 posted on 02/25/2011 7:31:28 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
We will bot back down!!!

This could be hugh and series.

5 posted on 02/25/2011 7:34:01 AM PST by thefactor (yes, as a matter of fact, i DID only read the excerpt)
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To: SeekAndFind

they own coal companies in Wisconsin? Pretty remarkable feat unless they somehow process it there. There are no fossil fuel deposits in the state...


6 posted on 02/25/2011 7:34:24 AM PST by stefanbatory (Insert witty tagline here)
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To: SeekAndFind

Bo retreat, bo surrebder!


7 posted on 02/25/2011 7:34:48 AM PST by JRios1968 (Laz would hit it!)
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To: SeekAndFind

We should get the AFLCIO to help us organize a rally and call for folks to get a “little bloody” until John R. writes in a way for us to correct our own idiotic misteaks.... uh, I mean mistakes ;^)


8 posted on 02/25/2011 7:36:02 AM PST by WhyisaTexasgirlinPA (Green Bay Packers - SuperBowl 45 champs)
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To: SeekAndFind
Koch Executives Speak Out on Wisconsin. The Koch Brothers will not back down.

How about suing that idiot in Buffalo who impersonated one of them. Will they at least do that?

9 posted on 02/25/2011 7:36:55 AM PST by K-Stater
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To: K-Stater

Well, you don’t have Halliburton and Cheney to kick around anymore... better find another big conglomerate Villain. And no, it’s not Soros.


10 posted on 02/25/2011 7:38:24 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: K-Stater

RE: How about suing that idiot in Buffalo who impersonated one of them. Will they at least do that?


Not worth the time of busy men who are earning a living and providing jobs for thousands of Americans.

Think about it, what if you won? How much money would you expect from this small time jerk who has too much time in his hands?


11 posted on 02/25/2011 7:40:39 AM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: stefanbatory

Koch bought C. Reiss Coal Company of Sheboygan in 1986. Reiss (pronounced Rice) is a major coal brokerage and dock operator.
The company moves several million tons of coal and pet coke to Great Lakes industry every year.


12 posted on 02/25/2011 7:44:16 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (Go Hawks !)
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To: SeekAndFind
Approximately 3,000 people are directly employed by the company in the state, and 8,000 more indirectly.
I wonder if those 11,000 people are paying dues. If they're non union there go their dues and thus the angst. That's a chunk of change.
13 posted on 02/25/2011 7:46:23 AM PST by philman_36 (Pride breakfasted with plenty, dined with poverty, and supped with infamy. Benjamin Franklin)
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To: philman_36

I can guarantee that not a single employee carries a union card.


14 posted on 02/25/2011 7:47:51 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (Go Hawks !)
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To: SeekAndFind

I think the most telling fact to come out of the crank call is this. Governor Walker does not know that the poseur is a fake. The governor does not know Mr Koch well enough to know his voice on the phone, and I thought that they were big buddies.


15 posted on 02/25/2011 7:56:02 AM PST by runninglips (government debt = slavery of the masses)
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To: SeekAndFind

Rats consider the Koch brothers to be members of the “evil greedy corporation” but the mass murderer neo-Nazi George Soros is a wonderful philanthropist and promoter of “social justice”.

Dirty Rats...


16 posted on 02/25/2011 7:57:19 AM PST by Soothesayer (smallpox is not a person)
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To: SeekAndFind

It isn’t about the money he could or could not pay, but for pennies out of their wealth they could make this guys life a “legal living hell” for a few years, now that would be fun...


17 posted on 02/25/2011 7:59:45 AM PST by BubbaJunebug
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To: SeekAndFind

tell me how come these guys did not file legal action against the hoaxing guy. Stealing the idenity and getting caught most be a good tactic.


18 posted on 02/25/2011 7:59:45 AM PST by q_an_a (a)
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To: SeekAndFind
One more thing...if those 11,000 jobs are non union it shows the other workers in the local areas and in the State overall that they can get non union jobs and still get good wages.
That scares the daylights out of unions too as others won't join or current members will seek to break away.

Local joke...
This is a union...
This is half a union...Pipe Fitters Local Union No. 195

19 posted on 02/25/2011 7:59:59 AM PST by philman_36 (Pride breakfasted with plenty, dined with poverty, and supped with infamy. Benjamin Franklin)
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To: SeekAndFind

These are Hank Reardens of our times!


20 posted on 02/25/2011 8:00:54 AM PST by parisa
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
I can guarantee that not a single employee carries a union card.
I love it!
See reply #19.
21 posted on 02/25/2011 8:02:41 AM PST by philman_36 (Pride breakfasted with plenty, dined with poverty, and supped with infamy. Benjamin Franklin)
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To: parisa

Check out “Market Based Management.”


22 posted on 02/25/2011 8:03:56 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (Go Hawks !)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

http://maroonedinmarin.blogspot.com/2011/02/democrat-supporting-labor-unions-lead.html


23 posted on 02/25/2011 8:07:10 AM PST by stratman1969
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
It will allow the Koch Brothers to buy or contract to operate state−owned heating, cooling, and power plants in Wisconsin without a solicitation of bids. SECTION 44. 16.896 of the statutes is created to read: 16.896 Sale or contractual operation of state−owned heating, cooling, and power plants. (1) Notwithstanding ss. 13.48 (14) (am) and 16.705 (1), the department may sell any state−owned heating, cooling, and power plant or may contract with a private entity for the operation of any such plant, with or without solicitation of bids, for any amount that the department determines to be in the best interest of the state. Notwithstanding ss. 196.49 and 196.80, no approval or certification of the public service commission is necessary for a public utility to purchase, or contract for the operation of, such a plant, and any such purchase is considered to be in the public interest and to comply with the criteria for certification of a project under s. 196.49 (3) (b).
24 posted on 02/25/2011 8:42:01 AM PST by Yollopoliuhqui (consciousness is a heads up display)
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To: Yollopoliuhqui

is this a new bill in the W legislature ?


25 posted on 02/25/2011 9:23:09 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (Go Hawks !)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks

probably supply Wisconsin Electric then to all their Power plants on the lake...


26 posted on 02/25/2011 11:41:28 AM PST by stefanbatory (Insert witty tagline here)
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To: stefanbatory
They're on PRB coal.
The Reiss docks handle eastern coal.
27 posted on 02/25/2011 12:56:44 PM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (Go Hawks !)
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