Piling on the Mises/LRC People

Sunday, September 26, 2004
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I find this whole thing to be comical yet worthy of attention, stupid yet interesting. Thanks to Kinsella for outing it on the LRC blog.

What I cannot fathom is the attacks on the Mises Institute, coming from someone associated with Cato, a think tank whose Big Government funders dictate its course of action, support, and policy prescriptions. Uh oh, then there’s Cato not advocating the eradication of Head Start, but the IMPROVEMENT thereof……a sort of “decentralization” of welfare!……oh the pain, as Dr. Smith would say.

Oh yeah…..that old cliche about the coffee calling the pot black……

For those that wonder, and ask, why the libertarian “in-fighting,” well, the attacks come from the PC libertarians unto those principled libertarians that refuse to bend to politically correct pressures. But then again, when you are a Washington D.C. think tank, funded by the likes of Koch, Lambe and Sarah Scaife foundations, you must keep low people in high places very happy. (Oops, more info available online here. Warning: not all of theis lefty’s info is good, but, a good place to start following the funding trail.)

More on the funding trail.

And more.

And, oh goodness, Tom Palmer must’ve forgotten about Rupert Murdoch?? Or the fact that, ahem, Dick Armey and Cato are big supporters of one another?

Announcing Murdoch’s arrival on its board, Cato praised him as “a strong advocate of the free market” and quoted his stirring words: “I start from a simple principle. In every area of economic activity in which competition is attainable, it is much to be preferred to monopoly.”

While they’re fond of lauding the “free market,” Murdoch and other U.S. broadcasters are heavily reliant on government aid. Holding frequency licenses worth fortunes, they’re now receiving free slices of a digital spectrum valued at up to $70 billion. Likewise, cable TV conglomerates — with Malone’s TCI in the lead — continue to expand under the protection of federal regulations that place severe limits on the power of municipalities to charge franchise fees for use of public rights-of-way. The contradiction doesn’t seem to bother the Cato Institute at all.

Why should it? Cato, centered in the heart of the regulatory world, was open arms to receive the benefits of Murdoch: acquaintances, money, connections, money, and…….money. Also:

In their recent book “No Mercy: How Conservative Think Tanks and Foundations Changed America’s Social Agenda,” legal scholars Jean Stefancic and Richard Delgado describe a shift in Cato’s patron base over the years. Cato’s main philanthropic backing had come from the right-wing [no, not "right wing," it's social-democrat-Republican] Koch, Lambe and Sarah Scaife foundations. But today, Cato “receives most of its financial support from entrepreneurs, securities and commodities traders, and corporations such as oil and gas companies, Federal Express, and Philip Morris that abhor government regulation.”

No, in fact, they love regulation that benefits them, and Cato has to please its benefactors.

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