The Left’s war on Koch Industries seems to be winding down, with just a half-hearted jab here and there, mostly repeating long-discredited claims. Over at ThinkProgress, cub reporter Lee Fang was taken off the Koch beat for a while after his contango fiasco. But Fang returned today with a rehash of a smear against Congressman Mike Pompeo, who represents the Kansas district where Koch’s headquarters are located. The gist of Fang’s piece, which mostly regurgitates one he did in September 2010, is that Pompeo is Koch’s creature in Congress.
We have already dealt with ThinkProgress’s attacks on Pompeo here, and I won’t repeat any of that lengthy post. However, there is at least one falsehood in Fang’s piece that we have not previously addressed:
Not only was Koch Pompeo’s largest contributor, but Pompeo had gained a public profile using two local Koch front groups, had been personally endorsed by Charles Koch, and Pompeo’s oil business has a financial partnership with Koch’s subsidiary in Brazil.
This sentence in today’s article contains no links, but it obviously refers to Fang’s own September 2010 hit job, in which he wrote:
Pompeo still relies on Koch for his private wealth. After the sale of Thayer, Pompeo became the President of Sentry International, a business specializing in the manufacture and sale of equipment used in oilfields. Sentry International is a partner to Koch Industries through its Brazilian subsidiary, GTF Representacoes & Consultoria.
Note that today Fang claims that GTF, a Portuguese company, is a subsidiary of Koch Industries, while in September he said it was a subsidiary of Sentry. (The syntax is ambigous, but the link goes to a page on Sentry’s web site that tells the reader where he can buy Sentry products in Latin America.) In fact, nearly every word Fang wrote on this topic in both posts was false.
Pompeo does not have an “oil business,” as Fang wrote today. As Fang acknowledged in September, Pompeo was formerly President of Sentry, which manufactures pumps and other equipment for use in the oil and gas industry. Moreover, Pompeo no longer has any connection to Sentry, so Fang’s claim that “Pompeo still relies on Koch for his private wealth” would be false even if there were some substantial connection between Sentry and Koch Industries.
But there isn’t. Fang says that “Pompeo’s oil business [Sentry] has a financial partnership with Koch’s subsidiary in Brazil,” and again that “Sentry International is a partner to Koch Industries through its Brazilian subsidiary.” These statements are total fabrications. In fact, GTF is a Brazilian manufacturers’ representative. It represents a variety of manufacturers, including two Koch entities and Sentry. There is no evidence that it is anyone’s subsidiary; Fang just made that up. If you translate GTF’s main web page, this is what it says:
For over twenty years, the GTF Representation and Consulting Ltd. operates in the provision of technical and commercial consultancy, helping and guiding their clients in the implementation of projects for large industries, through the representation of manufacturers of equipment, materials and systems facing the petrochemical industry in general. read more
The companies represented by the GTF have Quality Certifications and are set among the most important suppliers of equipment for implementation of projects for large industries, national and international, and are trained to meet the large demands. read more
The GTF, through its principals, is able to provide equipment for companies in the chemical, petrochemical, pulp and oil industry. These are some of the products listed in our portfolio. read more
We provide technical consulting and commercial firms for the chemical, petrochemical, pulp and oil industry in the following segments. read more
The GTF has with its customers a relationship of transparency and ethics in providing its services, and these are the bases of its development, recognition and market growth. read more
The companies represented by the GTF have Quality Certifications and are set among the most important suppliers of equipment for implementation of projects for large industries, national and international, and are trained to meet the large demands.
KOCH HEAT TRANSFER LP
• National Representative to market players, high heat efficiency of thermal exchange (Twisted Tubes Heat Exange), heat exchangers, high-pressure closing “Breech Lock” exchangers “Hairpin”.
JOHN ZINK COMPANY, LLC
• Representative for the Northeast to market Torches (Flare), incinerators, and burners for furnaces and boilers.
• Representative in Brazil for the sale of oil to Lift Pumps (Pumps “hobby horse”) Mud Pumps (sludge injection pumps) and rigs and drilling in parts of Earth.
SAO CAETANO Boilers
• Representative for the Northeast for marketing Industrial Equipment Chemical, Petrochemical, Pulp and oil industry.
So Koch and Sentry–with which Congressman Pompeo no longer has any affiliation–are not “partners” and do not have a “financial partnership.” Rather, they happen to use the same manufacturers’ representative in Brazil.
The problem with getting your information from web sites like ThinkProgress is that their writers–Lee Fang is a good example–don’t know anything about business, are not intelligent, are too lazy to try to understand the matters about which they write, and are paid to fabricate smears rather than report accurately. ThinkProgress, like so many liberal web sites and institutions, preys on the ignorant.