Why is Koch Industries’ Americans For Prosperity Running on Empty Tour Scared of Missoula?

by jhwygirl

Koch Industries-funded Americans For Prosperity’s Running on Empty Tour is coming to town, and they’re clearly afraid of Missoula.

They’re so afraid of the liberals here in this little ol’ university town of Missoula Montana that they’ve removed Karl Tyler Chevrolet from its event’s calendar for the tour, replacing it with “TBD”.

Missoula is the only stop in Montana with a location yet to be determined.

The Running on Empty Tour stops here Friday at noon.

Supermontanareporter John S. Adams had a piece in Sunday’s Great Falls Tribune that provides some background on Americans For Prosperity and the main thrust of its Running on Empty Tour:

Kyla Wiens, an energy advocate for the Montana Environmental Information Center, said the driving force behind AFP is one of the nation’s wealthiest energy companies working to preserve its profits.

AFP was founded in 2004 by billionaire Charles Koch, of Koch Industries. Forbes magazine listed Koch Industries No. 2 on its list of America’s largest companies in 2009 with revenues toping $100 billion. The company made its fortune in diversified companies involved in oil refining, minerals, commodities trading, and others.

According to the New York Times, AFP’s budget surged from $7 million in 2007 to $40 million in 2010, an election year.

Wiens says AFP’s claim — that “illegal” offshore drilling moratoriums, the canceling of oil and gas leases on public lands and the Endangered Species Act are driving up gas prices — is false.

“They are just wrong and they are lying intentionally,” Wiens says. “This is just false rhetoric from the Koch brothers’ group that is funded by industry and is working to protect big oil’s profits.”

For the local connection, it’s good to find out that Scott Sales (a long-time favorite ’round these parts) is president of the Montana chapter of Americans For Prosperity Foundation. That shouldn’t be much of a surprise – Scott Sales has long been a corporate apologist who defended tax cheats while a state legislator.

What’s really surprising is that Scott Sales is apparently one of the last people on earth who will still champion the free market.

Yep – that’s right. Supermontanareporter John. S. Adams grabs a quote from Scott Sales championing the free market for the oil industry:

Sales says the free market, not government regulation, will bring energy prices down.

“That’s the beauty of the free market. If there’s a lot of something, it means you’re going to have fewer dollars chasing more product. Conversely, if you have supply restrictions, you have more dollars chasing fewer commodities,” Sales says.

Hilarious. Free market is impeded by regulation. Not subsidy.

Scott Sales, still the idiot we always knew he was.

I’m hearing rumours of a counter-protests for Koch & Co. when they hit Missoula.

I guess that’s if they hit Missoula, given that Americans For Prosperity and Scott Sales seem pretty scared to even let Missoula and Montana know where it is they’re going to be stopping.

And you know what, if I had to guess, maybe they’ll be stopping to refuel here at a Holiday Station. Why? Because Holiday Station gets its fuel from the Canadian Tar Sands, and it’s refined in Canada by Flint Hill Resources.

Who owns Flint Hill Resources?

Flint Hill Resources is wholly owned by Koch Industries.

When I get info on the Missoula welcoming party for Koch/Americans For Prosperity/Scott Sales Tour, I’ll let ya’all know.

(a hat tip to @KirsteninMT for the Holiday Station info – big THANKS to her for that!)

  1. JC

    Sales was on KUFM last night for the interview about the tour.

    Listen to the interview here, starting at the 11:55 mark.

    [audio src="http://www.mtpr.org/audio/EveningNewsHQ/2011-08-15/EveningNewsHQ_17-29.mp3" /]

  2. Pronghorn

    Interesting. I noticed that all the other Montana sites (listed in today’s Missoulian ad, I think) seemed to be parks, with the exception of Msla, which was a supportive private business. My take on it was the same–looks like they’re reticent to use a truly public space. I always have to wonder about businesses that are willing to alienate customers by taking political stands–Tyler Chevrolet hosting this farce, Bitterroot Motors displaying Champ & Rehberg campaign signs, for example. Is it because they are monopolies in our small town and can afford to thumb their noses at potential customers?

  3. JC

    Sales opens up his remarks on KUFM with a white lie about gas prices. He says that gas prices have doubled under Obama. What he neglects to say is that U.S. gas prices peaked under Bush at $4.12/gallon 3 months before the election, and crashing to $1.61/gal by the month after the election.

    Pure propaganda, through and through. Sally Mauk keeps trying to pin Sales down, but he just weasels and lies his way through it.

  4. mr benson

    I don’t believe MEIC anymore than I believe AFP. And what the hell is an “energy advocate”? The guy on tv hawking some 5 hour product?

    • I’m a huge fan of MEIC. They are one of the few environmental organization providing non-partisan information and lobbying at the legislature.

      As opposed to another org that raises tons of money and endorses candidates. Very little advocacy, but a very popular org.

      MEIC, Northern Plains Resource Council? Money well spent for environmental advocates concerned with policy.

      I kinda think JSA’s article got edited..it does seem to be missing something there.

  5. wonder how much the koch brothers pay people to show up and “salt” the crowd. there can’t be enough people stupid enough to believe that deregulation is the answer.

    saudis control 53% of the world’s oil. they set the world market price of crude. the rest of the market follows suit. any moron knows this.

    15 people showed up last week at the “rally” in jacksonville florida.

    when gas prices spiked to 4.14 under herr bush’s somnolent shift at the economic switch board of the country, 60 minutes visited the saudi oil minister. this video should dispel all notion that we can control prices by simply tinkering with government controls.

    • saudis control 53% of the world’s oil. they set the world market price of crude. the rest of the market follows suit. any moron knows this.

      You’d think – but Scott Sales and AFP goes on and on repeating the lie.

      In reality, here in the west and mid-west – and Canada – profits soar on oil and gas, save for the inability to refine everything – this the need for the pipelines.

      The refineries here in Montana and N. and S. Dakota? They’re operating with huge huge profits given they’re operating at maximum capacity.

      The Middle East can and always will control the prices. Until we break our dependency on oil – any oil – Canadian oil, Alaskan oil, Wyoming oil, Texas Oil, British oil – we’re going to continue to be at the mercy of Saudi Arabia.

      Canada provides the U.S. with 25% of our oil. They’re right next door and friendly as hell. How has that even impacted price? Ever?

      Scott Sales doesn’t have an answer for that.

  6. if the unholy alliance between Koch Brothers and the GOP tea party doesn’t at least make you a little uncomfortable maybe you could practice “the crazy look” too……..

    michelle has nailed the new look of the GOP…..

  7. Pogo Possum

    FYI The Running On Empty Tour has been moved to Bonner Park the last I heard.

    On behalf of my many former neighbors, friends and old classmates in rural central and eastern Montana who are profiting from the expanding oil production, I can say I much prefer the Koch brothers to George Soros.

    As for Pronghorn’s crack about Karl Tyler and Bitterroot Motors, these locally owned business are exceptionally generous donors to many of Missoula’s most appreciated non profit organizations including greatly needed social service charitable organizations, educational facilities and fine arts programs. They both deserve a big thank you, not ridicule.

  8. They have a right to be afraid of the Liberal lunatics in Missoula. Take it from a voice of experience. Missoula Liberals have zero tolerance for Conservative values and will probably resort to a London style protest against the tour.

    They would be safer stopping in Billings, Bozeman or Kalispell.

    • Nothings funnier than a right wing nut job paranoid of protesters exercising their first amendment rights.
      . I wouldn’t worry about it andy. judging by the pathetic turnouts at these corporate sponsored shams, if there is a counter protest they will most likely be laughing too hard at anyone dumb enough to believe anything scott sales has to say, to pose a threat.

    • JC

      You conservative wingnuts got any tolerance for liberal values? Didn’t think so.

      You can whip up a frenzy all you want about how you think people are going to react to the tour. But the “London style protest” wasn’t against any penny-ante rag-tag group of sign-wielding astro-turfers. It was against a system that has failed a majority of the population.

      How long till you tea partiers raise up in arms to inflict some second amendment remedies on America?

      Fling epithets and raise nightmare scenarios all you want Hammond. Americans of all stripes have their rights to their fear, and a majority will come to fear you and what you represent. It’s already beginning to happen.

      London was all about the poor protesting the state. You seems to wish a battle between left and right. You looking for a civil war, eh, Andy? Looking for a reason to secede, like your likely presidential nominee? Just keep tearing the country apart and see where it gets you.

  9. Ingemar Johansson

    Yeah, I’m a giver.

  10. Bill O'Connell, aka Rimrock

    At least “No” Sales has a job now!

    I haven’t looked over to see how much hay his other venture, Cottonwood Custom Haying put up this year. Certainly not thousands of tons. Maybe not even thousands of bales!
    Prosperity, eh…?

  1. 1 Koch & Co. at Bonner Park Friday, Tea WILL Be Served « 4&20 blackbirds

    […] since yesterday’s post on Koch Industries-funded Americans for Prosperity’s “Running on Empty” Tour […]

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