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Cato and the Kochs: A Presignation Letter

March 5th, 2012 · 102 Comments

As you may have already heard, the Brothers Koch have mounted a campaign to take control of the Cato Institute, where I hang my hat. Now, I have a pretty fantastic day job, which basically consists of reading, writing, and speaking about whatever I find interesting in any given week. And I don’t generally subscribe to the popular caricature of the Kochs as supervillains.  For a lot of progressives, the Kochs now serve the same function as the Liberal Media does for conservatives: The shadowy elite cabal whose pernicious influence explains why your own common sense views aren’t universally embraced, as they otherwise would be by all right-thinking Americans. Obviously, I don’t buy that, and in any event, of all the ways wealthy people use money to influence politics, openly sponsoring ideological advocacy seems by far the least pernicious. So if this were ultimately just about an ego contest between the pretty-rich  guy (Cato President Ed Crane) and the insanely rich guy (megabillionaire Charles Koch), I’d be content to keep my head down and scribble away without too much regard for what the nameplate on the top-floor corner office reads. Nothing personal, Ed.

Unfortunately, it’s fairly clear already that rather more than that is afoot. As my colleague Jerry Taylor lays out over at Volokh Conspiracy, after years of benign neglect, the Kochs have suddenly decided to use their existing shares in the Institute to attempt to pack the board with loyalists, several of whom are straight-up GOP operatives. To give you an idea: They apparently nominated neocon blogger John “Hindrocket” Hindraker of PowerLine. There’s every indication that they (and their proxies on the board) think Cato would be more useful if it were integrated more tightly into the Koch portfolio of advocacy groups—Americans for Prosperity, etc.—for which it could serve as a source of intellectual ammunition in the ongoing struggle to defeat Barack Obama and the Democratic Party. Indeed, they’ve said as much, more or less verbatim, to the chair of Cato’s board. I don’t think it’s the end of democracy if people want to throw money at that cause, but I doubt Cato’s the right place to do it, and I know it’s not what I signed up for.

At a purely practical level, I write a lot about civil liberties issues where I’m often in agreement with Democrats and progressives. In my time here, I’ve invited Sen. Ron Wyden in to speak about government location tracking, been invited to testify on the Patriot Act by Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee, and written pieces for venues like The Nation and The American Prospect. That sort of thing gets a lot harder if we’re perceived as an overtly partisan shop.

More importantly, I can’t imagine being able to what I do unless I’m confident my work is being judged on the quality of the arguments it makes, not its political utility—or even, ultimately, ideological purity. Obviously Cato has an institutional viewpoint, and I wouldn’t have been hired in the first place if my views on the topics I write about weren’t pretty reliably libertarian. But when it comes down to specific issues and controversies, nobody tells me what to write. If my honest appraisal of the evidence on a particular question leads me to a conclusion that’s not “helpful” in the current media cycle’s partisan squabble, or that differs from either the “official” libertarian line, or from the views of my colleagues, I can write it without worrying that I’ll be summoned to the top floor to explain why I’m “off message.” That’s the essential difference between an analyst and an activist: I can promise readers that what appears under my name—whether I get it right or wrong—represents my sincere best effort to figure out what would be good policy, not an attempt to supply a political actor with a talking point.  If I couldn’t make that promise, I’d have no right to expect people to take my work seriously.

As I said, I’m in no great hurry to leave a job I enjoy a lot—so I’m glad this will probably take a while to play out either way.  But since I’m relatively young, and unencumbered by responsibility for a mortgage or kids, I figure I may as well say up front that if the Kochs win this one, I will. I’m not flattering myself that they’ll especially care; I’d just be saving their appointee the trouble of canning me down the road. But I suspect I wouldn’t be the only one looking for the door under the administration they seem to be envisioning, and my hope is that saying this publicly now might encourage someone in the Koch empire to reconsider whether they can win this particular prize without damaging it.

So, first, apologies to my colleagues for springing this on them in a blog post: I wanted it to be clear that I’m not doing this on the encouragement of Cato’s current leadership, and the easiest way to ensure that was not to tell them.

Second: I hereby tender my pre-resignation from Cato, effective if and when the Kochs take command.  I’ll be sad to go, if it comes to that, but sadder to see a proud institution lose its autonomy.

Tags: Personal · Washington, DC


       

 

102 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Koch vs. Cato Bibliography at Under Penalty of Catapult // Mar 5, 2012 at 2:41 pm

    […] Sanchez, “A Presignation Letter” (March 5, […]

  • 2 Got It // Mar 5, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    It’ll be readily accepted. Start looking for a job now.

  • 3 Michael Langley // Mar 5, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Sad to see money buying off our elections. With everything else going on, I see that we will descend into an elitist government, of, buy, and for the elitists. To hell with all us little guys, peons, or whatever you want to refer to as the losers in this fight!

  • 4 OldCon // Mar 5, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    Color me disappointed if the Koch’s are just going to stack Cato Institute with people like the Powerline guy, or the American Power fellow, Insta/Allahpundit, Ace of Spades who are just vehement liberal internationalists (democracy for all!). Although I agree with them on a lot of issues, they are in the end big government compassionate conservatives hellbent on turning the middle east into their model of democracy. It’ll be sad if the great material from the Cato Institute turns to low value muck. All that will be left will be Mises.

  • 5 K. Chen // Mar 5, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    It is sad. For my small part, your writing is part of what convinces me that libertarianism as a whole and Cato in particular is a vital part of the conversation. You’re a fantastic writer, so I’m sure you’ll land on your feet.

  • 6 Cato v Koch (from the sidelines) | Punditocracy // Mar 5, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    […] most interesting development today stems from a presignation letter from Cato fellow Julian Sanchez that says, among other things, that he will resign if the […]

  • 7 Plumplechook // Mar 5, 2012 at 6:41 pm

    Welcome to your petard, Cato, hope the view is at least interesting as you tumble through the air…

    As an institute you’ve spent nearly 40 years painting an intellectual gloss onto a political philosophy best summed up in a single line: “I’ve got mine, Jack, fuck off!”, and now that your own intellectual philosophy is being applied against you, you cry out for help. Permit me to play the worlds tinyiest violin for a moment…

    The one eternal political Truth that can be discerned from the span of human history , the rise and fall of empires, tyrannies, revolutions, and wars is: “Might Makes Right”. No human at any time in history has had any more freedom or liberty that the most powerful person near them has allowed. The Libertarian principle of a weak central state and magically rational markets is no more than a juvenile fantasy; it has never worked that way, ever in human history, certainly never once we progressed past hunter-gatherers.

    Thus the eternal tension in a modern democratic society like ours is ‘how to manage that Might so that all are fairly treated’. We chose a representative government that would, at least in theory, be responsive to all; the Cato institute, along with their other Koch puppet organizations, have spent vast sums and time to bending that representative government to serving the 0.1%, or more directly, serving the interests of our putative tyrants, the Koch brothers.

    Might makes Right. He who has the Gold makes the Rules.

    That’s all it is, for all the intellectual puffery that the Cato institute has produced, that’s all it ever boiled down to.

    And now that the mailed fist has shown itself to them, they’re at last being forced to confront that elemental truth.

  • 8 George Selgin // Mar 5, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    Pumplechook seems to think that opposing the war on drugs, foreign military intervention, and the elimination of all manner of corporate welfare–positions that, together at least, have been more prominently argued by Cato than by any other policy institute, are accurately summed up by “I’ve got mine” etc. and “might makes right.” Hell, with that feeble a brain I doubt he’s capable of playing a violin at all, tiny or otherwise.

    But the real point is that Julian Sanchez and his like-minded colleagues are very right to fear that an irreplaceable institution is on the verge of being destroyed, perhaps precisely because it alone stands for a philosophy that renders it perfectly immune to the ignorant salvos of the Pumplechooks of the world.

  • 9 b-psycho // Mar 5, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    Plumplechook: if you could “manage” the Might, then the ones holding it would by definition not be so mighty.

    There’s no sense in accepting their position, they have their own interests and they don’t line up with us. “representative democracy” is a myth, the state always has been and always will be little more than the formal expression of the ruling class.

  • 10 George Selgin // Mar 5, 2012 at 7:11 pm

    Please remove “the elimination of” in the first line above–my grammatical goof.

  • 11 La mano peluda contra el Cato Institute | Luis Figueroa CARPE DIEM // Mar 5, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    […] Cato and the Kocks: A Preresignation Letter. […]

  • 12 Jamie // Mar 5, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    Life would be a lot easier, Julian, if you had no principles.
    In any case, thinking people will agree about who loses credibility if and when Cato and Sanchez part ways.

  • 13 Rick Russell // Mar 5, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    I’m just impressed that you got through this note without citing Epistemic Closure (tm, Julian Sanchez, 2010, all rights reserved). If Cato is silenced, or worse turned into a GOP house organ, that will be a major blow to independent discourse.

  • 14 Simon_Jester // Mar 5, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    I’m going to be honest: I don’t think this is at all a surprise. An institute full of libertarians suddenly finds themselves targeted for a hostile takeover by a multi-billion dollar corporate juggernaut. Who’d have thought it could come to this?

    Well… anyone who’s been watching the centralization of corporate power that’s been taking place in America for the last thirty to forty years. *Everyone’s* being taken over by corporate juggernauts, it’s just that today is the Cato Institute’s turn.

    In individual cases, the Institute’s members may have opposed specific steps down this road, and I respect the right of any individual member to dissent from the coming takeover. But I don’t think the Institute *collectively* has a right to complain that society has now gone this far down the path.

    This takeover, and a thousand others like it, are the logical and predictable endpoint of deregulation and an economy ruled by high financial manipulations.

    The free market leads predictably to a handful of oligopolists in equilibrium with each other, who collectively own enough of the system to squash any changes they oppose, or silence any voices they don’t want heard. It doesn’t matter if they’re supervillains or not- simply by virtue of having eleven-figure fortunes they’ll take over the world by default, unless the state or the people consciously oppose them.

    Which, for the past generation, the Cato Institute has by and large been against. America is now the land of almost supremely free enterprise, and the enterprises know perfectly well what they want to do with that freedom: make themselves ‘too big to fail’ and create media machines like those of Murdoch and Koch to keep themselves in a position of comfort.

    Heck, if I had that kind of money, I just might do the same thing for myself. Those of us with tens of thousands in the bank are happy enough to spend hundreds buying ourselves a luxury purchase once in a while. Why should it surprise anyone that those with tens of billions would spend hundreds of millions to buy themselves a government, and the bought-and-paid-for intelligentsia they need to keep it in power?

  • 15 atheist // Mar 5, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    This is so darkly amusing. A bunch of toadies spend decades arguing that the rich ought to have total social power, and that anyone who is against this “doesn’t understand freedom”, or “doesn’t understand the constitution”, or is really a secret marxist traitor. Their arguments get popular with the wealthy and with the stupid public and the government institutes many of their ideas. And the toadies’ ideas do exactly what they were designed to do: the rich become much more powerful, and the poor become even weaker than before. Soon the ultra-rich are socially all-powerful and the rest of society can’t do jack about it.

    And with this accomplished, the ultra-rich decide that toadies with delusions of independence are just too damn annoying, and who can really blame them! These people are paid propagandists, but yet want to believe they are actually have “ideas” and “points of view”. Why the hell should big daddy Koch put up with that nonsense? Why not just treat these toadies like the two-dollar whores they really are? It’s so much tidier that way.

  • 16 PamelaDrew (@PamelaDrew) // Mar 5, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    Lucky you to have nabbed such a sweet gig, for however long the ride it bets the tar out of almost anything most folks do for a check with bonus points for ethics & income favorably paired.

    Cato hit my radar about 2005 , when social media was thriving in the absence of corporate attention. Once obscure think tanks & academic research & individual ideas began to occupy what had been the encyclopedia section of general reference. For the virtual realm it has helped facilitate an explosion in global knowledge simply through free communication.

    Cato has one of my favorite links of all time, gotta be seeded in 1,000+ places by now.

    James Bovard 1995 ADM Case Study In Corporate Welfare http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-241.html

    In it he explains how lobbying & subsidies cause taxpayers to spend $10 for every dollar of profit from corn syrup & $30 for every corn ethanol dollar “earned” by ADM.

    Since then subsidies have grown enormously & now the crops taxpayers pay for are privatized acres of Monsanto RoundUp Ready seed & its companion energy waste chemicals.

    These things don’t happen because government can’t function, they happen because they can be hidden, which brings me to the point of what looks to me like a fit d’accompli departure.

    My world view is dominated by the flow of money, who it connects and what it buys and all the ideology takes a back seat to tons of carcinogens dumped & off shore tax havens enjoyed. The Koch Brothers are poster boys for corporate killing, toxic dumping, epic destruction of local ecosystems and now their money is polluting our elections but their vechicle for doing that has been seriously impaired by the new game that mature social media as an activist tool & last bastion of free speech has armed the public with.

    Like all folks who buy their way out of problems the dip stick Stratfor quality planners had no exit strategy, no back up plan for a viable challenge to their deep pockets & PAC powered clout. They were wrong.

    Now it’s scramble time with November elections ahead & their eyes on State & Local power because Romney-Obama is two sides of the same coin for Kochs & Banksters.

    Cato is the perfect answer and follows the tried & true model from the tobacco boys of buying a trusted name to hide behind.

    The Koch takeover will leverage the reputation & objectivity of Cato. They have a ready audience of independent & progressive followers that they can target with key issues so Cato credibility can be used to spin & sell seats for more toxic profits. Betcha a nickle you’ll love another job!

    Koch TRI only http://scorecard.goodguide.com/smart-search/one-word.tcl?query_string=KOCH&x=0&y=0

    http://sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Koch_Industries

  • 17 Brian // Mar 5, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    What a show of force by the far-left trolls…

  • 18 Dividist // Mar 6, 2012 at 12:33 am

    Well said. Well timed.

    It’s conventional wisdom in Silicon Valley that there cannot be a hostile takeover of a software firm because all the assets (engineers) walk out the door every night. This is actually not true about software companies if they also have an asset called “annual maintenance fees”.

    I expect this is more true of a think tank than a software company. I guess the question is whether there is still value to the Koch Brothers in the Cato Institute brand, even if it is a hollow shell. Or whether there are enough others at Cato are willing to take the same stand as you.

    Good luck.

  • 19 Patrick L // Mar 6, 2012 at 12:47 am

    Julian, has anyone been talking about seeking Lew Rockwell’s help over Rothbard’s missing shares? Has there been any communication over that issue?

    I realize that Rockwell is not exactly a great guy, but he represents a competing brand that’s growing in power within the movement. He might be the only hope for the institution.

  • 20 Battle For Control Of Cato Institute Reveals Conservative-Libertarian Divide // Mar 6, 2012 at 12:48 am

    […] apparent vision, Julian Sanchez, who has been writing on civil liberties issues at Cato for years, has already announce what he’ll do if they end up winning:  I can’t imagine being able to what I do unless I’m confident my work is being […]

  • 21 Plumplechook // Mar 6, 2012 at 12:51 am

    Per Brad DeLong:

    The Kochs’ point of view is simple: since William Niskanen’s death the shareholders’ agreement says that they own a majority of the shares of Cato, and it is their property with which they can do as they wish. It is hard to see how any true libertarian could possibly disagree, and seek to do anything other than to vindicate the Kochs’ liberty interest in what is their property.

  • 22 Julian Sanchez // Mar 6, 2012 at 1:11 am

    Pretty sure I’ve seen a couple of these comments verbatim on other posts or articles about this, implying that it’s not even off-the-cuff banality; someone actually thinks this tedious crap is worth cutting and pasting all over the Web.

  • 23 Jon Hendry // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:41 am

    Goddamn, that’s a nasty-ass suspended ceiling.

  • 24 Jamie // Mar 6, 2012 at 4:14 am

    As someone who is moving more away from libertarian thought as I get older, I can’t say I see this development as terribly surprising. Free men and free markets sounds lovely. The reality is empire building and feudal pissing matches.

    That said, I will be sad if Cato does fall, and one of the main reasons for that is that they have given Julian a platform. I have little time for a lot of their output, but Julian has been consistently principled, insightful, and most of all interesting.

    If the Kochs no longer have an interest in that, well, this is one more demonstration of the self-defenestration of the Republican party, and a great time for interesting analysts to find new digs. I hope it isn’t too painful of a transition.

  • 25 Adrian Ratnapala // Mar 6, 2012 at 5:06 am

    Some people have pointed out that this sort of takeover is the natural consequence of respecting private property. Indeed it is. But is anyone actually arguing that this takeover would be immoral (assuming of course that the facts of the lawsuit are as Koch’s claim).

    The libertarian argument is this: The J.S. and others like him will have their voice at some institution, somewhere, and deserve that because they are capable scholars and writers. What they do not deserve is to have a sheltered playground for a think-tank — unless the want to provide such a playground.

  • 26 Cato Koch Fight // Mar 6, 2012 at 7:34 am

    […] I’m not seeing anyone argue to the contrary. Not Julian Sanchez. Not any of the dozen-plus commentators that DeLong rounds up and consumes with “delicious […]

  • 27 Lawsuit Threatens Cato’s Independence - Spontaneous Order // Mar 6, 2012 at 7:55 am

    […] if the Kochs win, many Cato employees will probably quit further reducing its […]

  • 28 Attenti al Cato! » paferrobyday // Mar 6, 2012 at 8:49 am

    […] I fratelli Koch, milardiari e arciconservatori, stanno scalando il Cato Institute – il think thank libertarian più prestigioso d’America – per “armonizzarlo” alle altre fondazioni che foraggiano e renderlo più attento alle esigenze ideologico-elettorali dell’ala conservatrice del Grand Old Party. La cosa però non piace affatto a chi nel Cato lavora. Come Julian Sanchez che ha già messo in rete unaspecie di lettera di pre-dimissioni. […]

  • 29 Joe // Mar 6, 2012 at 8:56 am

    Love your choice of image from The Prisoner.

  • 30 ConnGator // Mar 6, 2012 at 10:49 am

    Ya, my $1000 yearly contribution will be stopped also if the Kochs win.

  • 31 Another ‘Fight’ for the ‘Right’ « The Last Of The Millenniums // Mar 6, 2012 at 11:14 am

    […] But I spotted this : ‘There’s every indication that they (and their proxies on the board) think Cato would be more useful if it were integrated more tightly into the Koch portfolio of advocacy groups—Americans for Prosperity, etc.—for which it could serve as a source of intellectual ammunition in the ongoing struggle to defeat Barack Obama and the Democratic Party. Indeed, they’ve said as much, more or less verbatim, to the chair of Cato’s board. I don’t think it’s the end of democracy if people want to throw money at that cause, but I doubt Cato’s the right place to do it, and I know it’s not what I signed up for’. From : http://www.juliansanchez.com/2012/03/05/cato-and-the-kochs-a-presignation-letter/ […]

  • 32 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 11:55 am

    I think you’re making a pre-judgement that’s way off base, but it’s your career. You appear to have fallen into an anti-Koch hysteria which has more to do with the Left’s successful anti-capitalist campaign than anything in reality.

  • 33 Julian Sanchez // Mar 6, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    I’ll have to defer to your superior understanding of how the Kochs operate; obviously I couldn’t know anything about how they interact with DC activist and advocacy groups unless I heard it on MSNBC.

  • 34 Super Tuesday Linkfest! « Infinite Regress // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    […] ‘Presignation’ from Julian Sanchez (Julian Sanchez) Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Banking, Culture, News Finance, News, Thoughts […]

  • 35 Valerie Curl // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    I am truly sorry to learn that Cato may loose its independence to become just one more PR wing of the Koch Bros. While I’m not a libertarian, I enjoy some libertarian traits as I think many liberals/Democrats do. Nevertheless, I often found some of Cato’s policy ideas and research interesting and enlightening. If the Koch’s take over Cato, there will be one less source of research.

  • 36 pragmaticidealist // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    I’m not a libertarian but I read at least a half-dozen libertarian blogs, Daniel Larison being numero uno. I regularly receive new insights and valuable challenges to my worldview. God knows there are more than enough outlets for echoing talking points with the only individual stamp being the snark on the side. Best wishes to you and to Cato.

    PS: I enjoy your sense of humor as well.

  • 37 Pithlord // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    Obviously, the Kochs have whatever rights over Cato and its assets the shareholder agreement gives them. Equally obviously, Julian has the right to stop working there whenever he feels like it. Neither of these rights are the slightest bit controversial among anyone three standard deviations or less from the political median in the United States, so it is a bit odd that this is where the discussion is going.

  • 38 Koch Brothers Looking to Tame Cato Institute? « Scott Rhymer // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    […] is floating around in a few places, but I’m going straight to one of the insiders for it: Julian Sanchez reports that the Koch Brothers are moving to try and make the Cato Institute, a libertarian think […]

  • 39 kent // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    Larison? Libertarian??

    Hey Julian, best of luck to you. I lean left but/and appreciate your work very much.

  • 40 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    “I’ll have to defer to your superior understanding of how the Kochs operate; obviously I couldn’t know anything about how they interact with DC activist and advocacy groups unless I heard it on MSNBC.”

    Sounds like you think you might be screwing up, too. Touchy, touchy. Or is this just pure arrogance from someone who knows more than others, always? I apologize for questioning your wisdom.

  • 41 JL Dunn // Mar 6, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Without the non-partisan work of the Cato institute, I very much doubt I would be the Libertarian I am today. It was the anti-war, anti-(drug) war, and pro-liberty messaging that attracted me to a Cato via videos on Youtube. In the fragile time right after military service, I was very eager and open to new ideas, but if I would have sniffed any Birch pro-war, pro-Christian horseshit, I would have surely turned it off and found something more Socialist to catch my fancy. When you are a young person dissenting from the establishment, there are not many places to go: the socialists, or the libertarian camp. Cato was always a beacon for tough debates and lectures that stray far from Republican line, this was my attraction to non-anarchist libertarian thinking. The loss of the Cato institute to these fascists is frightening.

  • 42 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 3:18 pm

    “I am truly sorry to learn that Cato may loose its independence to become just one more PR wing of the Koch Bros. While I’m not a libertarian, I enjoy some libertarian traits as I think many liberals/Democrats do. Nevertheless, I often found some of Cato’s policy ideas and research interesting and enlightening. If the Koch’s take over Cato, there will be one less source of research.”

    Valerie, You’re taking his word that this is how CATO will be? I think you might want to do a little research, or least wait and see what happens. Julian, like the others who are obviously behind Crane are making accusations with no evidence to back it up — they are smearing the Kochs before anything has actually changed. This premature public display against the Kochs who have generously made it possible for some of these guys to make a living is despicable.

  • 43 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    “The loss of the Cato institute to these fascists is frightening.”

    Now, they are fascists? Uh, Julian, really, you might want to stop this before it gets out of control. I really do think you are making a big mistake, man, but whatever — you are the insider. I’m coming not from an inside DC track, but a general lifetrack that I’ve learned from — I see red flags, and you obviously don’t.

  • 44 Julian Sanchez // Mar 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Mike-
    I’m just saying, I was a Koch Fellow 12 years ago. The idea that my view of them is based on reports in a liberal press that just discovered them is sort of ridiculous.

  • 45 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    Julian, I didn’t say your view is based on reports in a liberal press — I do think that your perception of them and the takeover is over-reaction based on social pressure and politics.

    I mean, I’ve worked for people in industries who had a different perspective than I had, but we worked it out. The Koch brothers aren’t likely to come in all fascist like and make grand changes — I think you all are worried about perceptions and what people will think of you.

  • 46 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    and, you might want to call that commenter who said the Koch brothers are fascists. I also have to wonder — if you’ve had such a long relationship, why be concerned now?

  • 47 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    One more thing and I will leave you alone. What is the big concern about a change in focus to economic liberty? I understand the Left’s dismissal of concerns regarding economic liberty, but for someone who claims to have libertarian leanings, I don’t get why you wouldn’t welcome a focus on economic liberty in a time such as this. This stumps me when it comes to libertarians who prefer to stress the civil liberty side. Both are important, but why the resistance to economic liberty? I don’t think I’ve ever seen a post here from you regarding promotion of a free market.

  • 48 Gil // Mar 6, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    Is there anything to stop current Cato donors and scholars from moving down the street and setting up shop, with better founding documents, and carrying on as they like?

    I realize that the discontinuity will be annoying and disruptive, and a lot of infrastructure will have to be rebuilt. But, with the internet, it should be easier than it would have been in the past to connect with interested parties and inform people that this is the next phase of those who wanted to continue Cato as it had been.

  • 49 Julian Sanchez // Mar 6, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    So when I make a prediction about what direct Koch control would mean from a vantage point inside the affected institution, informed by a decade in DC libertarian circles, that’s hysterical speculation. But your elaborate theories about my psychological motivations are firmly grounded in the insights you extract from… reading my blog occasionally? Just so we’re clear on the conditions for having an informed opinion. I’ll be sure to tell Jerry Taylor he’s motivated by a desire to curry favor with lefties too; I’m sure he could use a good chuckle. On this theory, of course, it’s a mystery I’m working at Cato at all: I’m sure my liberal friends would be even more impressed if just went back to tech journalism or moved to EFF or something.

    Anyway, I’m all for economic liberty. Cato (along with many other institutions) writes a whole lot about that already. Go check out the Web site! But I don’t have any special expertise in that subject. I write about technology, civil liberties, and privacy—which are topics our finance guys don’t write a whole lot about, as it happens, and which I also think are important in a time such as this. I think it’s great that there’s a place where all these aspects of the libertarian philosophy can be articulated without regard to what it means for the short-term electoral prospects of either party. But hey, if you prefer the Koch vision of how Cato ought to function, you’re welcome to apply for my job should they prevail.

  • 50 Simon_Jester // Mar 6, 2012 at 9:31 pm

    Mr. Sanchez, I want to say that I *do* respect you, personally, for your position on the takeover. I regret my earlier tone.

    I am disappointed that this takeover is likely to happen to your institute, just as I am disappointed that it has happened to many others. The mainstream media suffer from it, too, as do many private organizations whose customary operations and methods don’t fit well with the powerful men who are buying them out.

    From my own corner, I am not surprised that something like this is happening to Cato, as it was already happening to many others. On some level I think it is in part the result of a collective… tactical error on the part of the libertarian intellectual stratum as a whole, but that doesn’t reflect uniformly on all libertarian intellectuals. And it certainly doesn’t reflect on you, given that your letter is all about your refusal to let it do so.

    Again, I respect that, and I apologize for my earlier tone. I hope you won’t need it, but if you do, I wish you luck in finding a better place from which to present your views on politics, society, and the rights of man.

  • 51 atheist // Mar 6, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    @Simon_Jester // Mar 6, 2012 at 9:31 pm

    On some level I think it is in part the result of a collective… tactical error on the part of the libertarian intellectual stratum as a whole, but that doesn’t reflect uniformly on all libertarian intellectuals.

    Oooh, you’re being threatened by the dastardly Koch COLLECTIVE are you? No, you’re just seeing how libertarianism actually works when put into action in the real world.

  • 52 MFarmer // Mar 6, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    “So when I make a prediction about what direct Koch control would mean from a vantage point inside the affected institution, informed by a decade in DC libertarian circles, that’s hysterical speculation. ”

    Don’t get hysterical. You just haven’t presented a very good case for your concerns, except your “insider” status. I hate to say this, but I doubt you really know the Koch brothers or their motivations any better than I do.

  • 53 K. Chen // Mar 7, 2012 at 12:06 am

    MFarmer, Julian (hopefully he doesn’t mind the first name basis here) can take care of himself but, you’re being a dick on his blog. You shouldn’t be a dick generally, and to your cyber-host specifically. Not that I expect you being called out as such will change your behavior, but at least the truth is stated, as it ought.

  • 54 MFarmer // Mar 7, 2012 at 12:17 am

    Well, it’s good you let Julian take care of himself. I merely said in my first post that I thought he was making a bad decision — Julian acted like the dick by framing me as a nobody watching MSNBC to get my opinions, while he is a wise insider who understands the esoteric dealings of DC. He has his finger on the Kochs’ pulse, you know.

  • 55 Drake McHugh // Mar 7, 2012 at 12:37 am

    Are you kidding me? Are you a college sophomore? You should resign now and skip the process. Your analysis and decision criteria is adolescent and not what we expect from folks at Cato. Grow up… study economics, history and the constitution. Then re-write this document.

  • 56 Julian Sanchez // Mar 7, 2012 at 1:20 am

    criteria are
    economics, history, and the Constitution
    rewrite

    There you go; run along now.

  • 57 When Libertarians Go to Work… « Corey Robin // Mar 7, 2012 at 1:39 am

    […] libertarian blogger Julian Sanchez announced that if the right-wing Koch brothers successfully take over the libertarian Cato Institute, where […]

  • 58 Thoughts on a Thinktank War | The New Student Union // Mar 7, 2012 at 3:05 am

    […] think I’d WANT to stick around a partisan propaganda farm?” on Friday, along with drafting a pre-resignation letter in the case that the Koch brothers assume control. On Sunday, Cato Vice President Gene Healy […]

  • 59 Travis Logan // Mar 7, 2012 at 11:58 am

    Great post as usual.

    I have a question for you: – Do you remember when Rupert Murdoch was about to buy WSJ and everyone was all hysterical, worried that he was going to turn it into this tabloid rag that pumped out unsophisticated conservative populist crap? Of course he would, he’s Rupert Murdoch the big bad Fox News guy. Meanwhile, a few years later, people barely even remember that flare up. It’s also the case, apparently, that his family is embarrassed of Fox News and that he himself is basically a political pragmatist centrist. Now, obviously the Koch bros are not centrists – but I bet that they are pragmatists. I also bet that they are not stupid enough to do what you’re worried they’ll do and what Ed Crane has explicitly said that they will do. My guess is that they care about issues just like you do. I think it’s unfair – and /not/ in some weird Randroidian way – to /assume/ that these guys are going to take Cato and turn it into a Fox News talking-point factory. That’s, obviously, just some kind-of-educated stabbing in the dark.

    But, anyway, do you have reason to believe that they are stupid enough to do what you’re worried they’ll do?

  • 60 First They Came for Russ Feingold, Then They Came for CATO | emptywheel // Mar 7, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    […] while I am fascinated by Corey Robin’s critique of Julian Sanchez’ presignation, When the Kochs wield their money at Cato, that’s hegemony. But when they do it in Wisconsin, […]

  • 61 Julian Sanchez // Mar 7, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    If you click through to the Jerry Taylor post at Volokh, I think that lays out a pretty strong circumstantial case based on what they’ve been up to re: the board and conversations with Bob Levy. Context is also important: The Kochs have been making donations to libertarian and conservative groups for decades, but the reason they’ve suddenly become a bugbear for the left is a pretty clear shift in strategy over the past few years from long-term efforts to shift the general intellectual climate to more direct, partisan political activism. So the timing also tends to support the view that this is about reorienting Cato to complement those efforts. There are other data points from private conversations I’m not going to recount here, beyond saying they all tend to confirm rather than assuage my concerns.

  • 62 Watcher // Mar 7, 2012 at 2:07 pm

    Or maybe the timing has to do with pressure from Crane to annul the former shareholder agreement at a snap board meeting. And maybe it has to do with upholding the rule of law and an old contract.

    Plus, a simple understanding of core capabilities and comparative advantage suggest it would be incredibly foolish to try and shift Cato from an intellectually rigorous defendent of libertarian policies to an activist arm of the Republican party.

    Understanding the reason for the timing of this lawsuit is important; and understanding who is forcing the Koch’s hand when they have offered to negotiate and come to some reasonable compromise paints this “take-over” in a much less “hostile” light.

  • 63 atheist // Mar 7, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Well, it’s not an impossible situation. Maybe Julian could form a union with the rest of the Cato-ites. Call it “Propagandists’ Local 1″, or something similar.

  • 64 Travis Logan // Mar 7, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    I’ve always thought that the obsession over “rule of law” within libertarian circles felt like a symptom of autism or something – a weird tick that is accepted from an economics professor or even an accountant, but not usually from a CEO or public figure.

    My guess is that this really is not about enforcing the rules here, it’s about control of the biggest and best libertarian prize at a time when Ron Paul and the Tea Party are not just being laughed off the stage. Frankly, it’s understandable considering all they’ve done for the movement. Also, when I was a Cato intern I remember Ed Crane openly bragging to us about winning the power struggle with the Kochs. Kind of thoughtless, but nobody’s perfect.

    The bottom line is, I’m not really assuming sinister motives are at the core of this, unless this is a Crane vs. Koch personal vendetta, in which case this is an out-of-control nightmare.

    Thanks for weighing in, Julian. I wish Boaz and Pilon would address this issue directly, as well.

  • 65 Collective Conscious » Cato & the Kochs // Mar 7, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    […] lib­er­tar­ian blog­ger Julian Sanchez announced that if the right-​​wing Koch broth­ers suc­cess­fully take over the lib­er­tar­ian Cato […]

  • 66 What About ol’ Murray Rothbard? « Gucci Little Piggy // Mar 7, 2012 at 3:03 pm

    […] two arguments are being made.  One current Cato scholar, Julian Sanchez, has tendered a pre-resignation in the event that the Kochs win the case.  That is the argument – one […]

  • 67 Making an ideological omelette | Psychopolitik // Mar 7, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    […] Because of the above, current employees like Julian Sanchez are writing that if the Kochs win, they quit. […]

  • 68 More Details on the Increasinly Bitter Koch/Cato Lawsuit and Feud - Hit & Run : Reason Magazine // Mar 7, 2012 at 3:08 pm

    […] of Cato Executive Vice President David Boaz, (Reason.com columnist) Gene Healy, (former Reasoner) Julian Sanchez, (former Reason intern) Jonathan Blanks, Jason Kuznicki, and Justin Logan. Other broadly […]

  • 69 atheist // Mar 7, 2012 at 3:20 pm

    @Pithlord // Mar 6, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    Obviously, the Kochs have whatever rights over Cato and its assets the shareholder agreement gives them. Equally obviously, Julian has the right to stop working there whenever he feels like it. Neither of these rights are the slightest bit controversial among anyone three standard deviations or less from the political median in the United States, so it is a bit odd that this is where the discussion is going.

    Good point.

    The reason the discussion is going in that direction is that the Cato-ites, being libertarians, believe on a bone-deep level that the laws that apply to the little people will never apply to them. Charles Koch is showing them that they’re wrong, that they are in fact little people as well. This offends them.

  • 70 Libertarian Hypocrisy? | Bleeding Heart Libertarians // Mar 7, 2012 at 4:07 pm

    […] Sanchez’s preresignation over the Kochtopus-Cato Kerfluffel has caused some commentators to gleefully point out the […]

  • 71 Rob Kampia // Mar 7, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    As a major donor to Cato, it pains me to see the Koch/Cato dispute in the news and on the “InterWebs.” For what it’s worth, I received the following email message from the Charles Koch Institute. (I’m not endorsing their message — just providing it as an FYI.)

    From: Roberts, Katey [mailto:Katey.Roberts@charleskochinstitute.org]
    Sent: Tuesday, March 06, 2012 9:12 PM
    To: Roberts, Katey
    Subject: Statement on the shareholders’ agreement with Cato

    Hello,

    The following email went out to our program participants and alumni today, and I wanted to make sure that you had the opportunity to review this communication. Please feel free to share it, and please feel free to reach out to me with any questions you may have.

    Katey Roberts
    Charles Koch Institute
    703 875 1600

    Thank you for bringing your inquiries forward regarding the shareholders’ agreement with Cato. We’d like to take this opportunity to respond and provide some additional context. Please continue to let us know what questions you have from here.

    Since the time of its founding, when the original Charles Koch Foundation changed its name to the Cato Institute, Cato has been envisioned as a committed force to advance free societies. Shortly after the renaming of the Charles Koch Foundation to Cato Institute, affirmative steps were taken to convert Cato from a non-stock corporation to a stock based corporation. That was done intentionally, not by accident. It was done because Charles, as principal donor and founder of the Charles Koch Foundation and Cato, wanted to keep oversight of Cato in the hands of a few shareholders who could be relied on to maintain the original intent and vision for the organization, even if the composition of the board changed over time. That was and is the reason for the restrictions on the shareholders’ ability to transfer Cato stock to other people; and each shareholder agreed to be bound by the terms of the shareholders’ agreement. Cato has been operating under this structure for more than 35 years.

    As active donors contributing tens of millions to Cato, Charles Koch and David Koch want to see it fulfill this mission well into the future. This disagreement over the shareholders’ agreement, donor intent, and the actions of Cato’s leaders that are inconsistent with the organization’s principles does nothing to change that.

    Why now for such a dispute?

    We can all agree that the timing is extremely unfortunate and that at this critical time our efforts should be directed to advancing the principles that allow a free society to prosper. And Charles Koch and David Koch went to great lengths to avoid this dispute. Their efforts were numerous, sincere, and went literally up to the last minute.

    The disagreement over the shareholders’ agreement has been going on for years with Charles Koch and David Koch receiving several proposals from Cato’s officers to dissolve the agreement. Charles and David consistently declined these proposals because they feel the shareholder structure is important to preserve donor intent. At the unfortunate passing of one of the four shareholders, Bill Niskanen, some issues came to the forefront with discussions about how his shares should rightfully be disposed.

    Charles Koch and David Koch, mindful of how this dispute could be a distraction to Cato and its mission at this critical time, sought to resolve the issue, or alternatively, to table the issue for a year or longer.
    · They proposed a standstill agreement to delay any discussion on the shareholders agreement, and to delay any shareholder meetings and maintain the current board of directors, for one year or longer.
    · They proposed third party mediation.
    · They proposed alternative corporate structures for the other side to consider.

    All of these efforts were rejected, and Cato’s other shareholder demanded that a shareholders’ meeting be held on March 1 where a new party (Ms. Washburn – Bill Niskanen’s widow) would be named a shareholder and new directors would be named.

    The court action, filed immediately before the shareholders’ meeting, was a last resort to ask the court for help in confirming the meaning of the governing documents and the shareholders’ agreement.

    What do the Kochs hope to accomplish?

    As you may have read, Charles Koch said recently, “We support Cato and its work. We are not acting in a partisan manner, we seek no ‘takeover,’ and this is not a hostile action.” He added, “We want to ensure that Cato stays true to its fundamental principles of individual liberty, free markets, and peace into the future, and that it not be subject to the personal preferences of individual officers or directors.”

    Charles and David are absolutely committed to libertarian principles and the libertarian issues Cato works on. They merely want the integrity of the shares, the original structure that all parties agreed to, upheld and for Cato’s officers and directors to act in a manner consistent with the principles the organization was founded on. As you know, a key principle of libertarianism is recognizing and respecting the rule of law. The founders of the Cato Institute reached an agreement and agreed to be bound by it. And that is what Charles Koch and David Koch are seeking here – that the parties stand by what they voluntarily agreed to when they founded Cato.

    When former President George Bush said, “I’ve abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system,” we all know how disastrous the consequences were for free markets and the economy. Principles are not what you abandon in difficult times. Rather they serve as the foundation for action in challenging times. And like President Bush, if Cato’s leaders are willing to abandon a key libertarian principle – adhering to voluntary agreements – when they feel it’s convenient, the organization has lost its way as an advocate of these principles. Cato can’t save libertarian principles by its leaders abandoning its principles any more than President Bush could save the free market by abandoning free market principles.

    Charles Koch and David Koch believe in Cato, its mission, and its principles. As champions of the rule of law, voluntary agreements, and property rights, Charles and David believe that upholding the shareholder agreement is crucial to protecting Cato’s principled mission in the future from the path of the Ford Foundation, Pew, and others that have strayed when they deviated from their founding principles. For Cato to do otherwise would represent a violation of the fundamental principles it was founded on.

    We will be in touch with future updates as we have new information. In the meantime, please feel free to reach out to us with any questions you may have, and please know that we are always here and available to help you.

  • 72 Meet The Lobbyists Helping Charles Koch Take Over The Cato Institute And Turn It Into Another Koch Front - Republic Report // Mar 7, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    […] Koch Industries employees to the Cato board. Julian Sanchez, a Cato writer on technology issues, is threatening to leave the Institute if the Koch brothers are successful in their partisan take […]

  • 73 Aaron B. Brown // Mar 7, 2012 at 4:43 pm

    Always encouraging to see the corporate plutocrats and pseudo-conservatives eating their young, thereby ensuring they will have no future. Keep it up boys, with each passing generation you find fewer and fewer women willing to breed with you as well, so barring the reinstatement of slavery, which I know some of you are working very hard to revive, very soon you and your kind will go extinct entirely. Such is the nature of evolution, which I know many of you like to deny, but your rejection of the tenets of that process does not exclude you from the consequences of your own actions.

    History has proven again and again that you will lose, and in the process ultimately lose everything. It’s only a question of when now, and how much damage can you do to humanity in the interim.

    I raise a glass in toast to your inevitable destruction. Cheers :)

  • 74 Long Live the Google Cache! at Under Penalty of Catapult // Mar 7, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    […] (And even Cato. If we can’t trust the Kochs not to summon scholars to the top floor, as Julian Sanchez puts it, why can we trust Crane and the existing board not to call scholars upstairs? It’s not like […]

  • 75 SIV // Mar 7, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    Just quit now and spare us the drama Julie.

  • 76 Rovinose cadute dal pero » Ocasapiens - Blog - Repubblica.it // Mar 7, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    […] Julian Sanchez s’è portato avanti e ha già scritto la lettera di dimissioni, mentre “Classically Liberal” che ha iniziato a bloggare pochi mesi fa proprio […]

  • 77 Making an ideological omelette « The Jefferson Tree // Mar 7, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    […] Because of the above, current employees like Julian Sanchez are writing that if the Kochs win, they quit. […]

  • 78 PhysicistDave // Mar 8, 2012 at 6:08 am

    Well, Julian, you and I had a little dustup four years ago when you expressed your disdain for ordinary, middle-class, Heartland Americans who supported Ron Paul.

    And now you’re whining because you may lose your cozy little perch in DC.

    Poor boy.

    Dave Miller in Sacramento

  • 79 On Cato, Libertarians, Freedom, And Social Democracy | Alas, a Blog // Mar 8, 2012 at 11:11 am

    […] anticipation of losing his freedom to write what he wants to if Koch takes over, libertarian Julian Sanchez has “presigned” from his Cato job (and he made it extra badass illustrating it with a photo of The Prisoner): As I […]

  • 80 Travis Logan // Mar 8, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    More speculation of this being a personal thing between Crane and the Kochs -http://bigthink.com/ideas/more-on-the-fight-over-the-cato-institute?page=all

  • 81 Pithlord // Mar 9, 2012 at 12:12 am

    Lots of resentful paleoliberals and paleolibertarians out there.

  • 82 Save Cato: Preserving a Voice in the Wilderness « Hegemonic Obsessions // Mar 9, 2012 at 9:55 am

    […] true.  Daniel Foster at National Review Online questions my colleague Julian Sanchez when he says he will resign rather than remain at a Koch-dominated Cato.  Foster implores Julian to “wait-and-see” whether or not things will change if the Kochs do […]

  • 83 Club Troppo » Libertarians vs the Kochtopus // Mar 10, 2012 at 10:46 pm

    […] the Kochs for financial support and Charles Koch is one of the think tank’s founders.But as Cato research fellow Julian Sanchez writes: "after years of benign neglect, the Kochs have suddenly decided to use their existing […]

  • 84 Tony Westover // Mar 15, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out.

    You don’t make any kind of legitimate argument here. Your argument is akin to the Progressive Academia mantra that the power of ideas is attribute to the people who present them, not to the pillars of the ideas itself. I don’t have any tolerance for that nonsense. Good riddance.

  • 85 John Quiggin » KBU // Mar 16, 2012 at 3:20 am

    […] a credible claim to independence, this is a big problem. Not everyone is in a position to write a presignation letter like that of Julian Sanchez, but the alternative of staying on is not particularly attractive […]

  • 86 Invisible Backhand // Mar 16, 2012 at 10:37 am

    “…Cato is, among other things, a place that had something called the Project on Social Security Privatization, which it renamed the Project on Social Security Choice when it turned out that “privatization” polled badly — and tried to purge its records, to make it look as if they had never used the word privatization.”

    http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/05/powerline-at-cato/

  • 87 “I wouldn’t have been hired in the first place…” « - Invisible Backhand - // Mar 16, 2012 at 10:54 am

    […] http://www.juliansanchez.com/2012/03/05/cato-and-the-kochs-a-presignation-letter/ Share this:TwitterMoreRedditFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  • 88 John Mashey // Mar 17, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    One of the side-effects of writing Fake science, fakexperts, funny finances, free of tax was noticing the frequent presence of certain thinktanks in the Tobacco Archives, not just SEPP or Heartland.

    p.39 shows Philip Morris funding of thinktanks, by years, from 1991 to 2001 (when that particular source dries up). Of the 39 listed, CATRO was #3 after WLF and ATR.

    pp.40-41 gives examples of what thinktanks did for PM.

    We now know that Heartland still gets $$ from tobacco companies. Does anyone know if CATO still does?

  • 89 Gene Healy » Archive » It’s Pretty Simple // Mar 18, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    […] out against the Koch takeover are so loyal to—or so afraid of—Crane that they’ll put their jobs at risk to spare him early retirement (at 68). Let’s suppose that Cato has been utterly, […]

  • 90 white collar crime kills // Mar 18, 2012 at 11:43 pm

    There’s very little “the left”, and too many people misuse the term “capitalism” (solid indicator of a con playing a libertarian, or a young ignorant person who labels himself an “anarchist” etc)
    Conservatives are working hard to kill off true productivity, whether “capitalist” or “anti capitalist” (which ITRW non sequitur, and is used by victims of anti-anti-koch hysteria).

  • 91 Vacation Response Roundup // Mar 19, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    […] my post on the Cato/Koch fight stressed my substantive concerns about how it appears, on the basis of what […]

  • 92 Left Forum, Mark Weisbrot, etc. - Dollars & Sense Blog // Mar 22, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    […] interesting blog post by Corey Robin, about the irony of the Cato Institute’s Julian Sanchez announcing that he will resign from Cato if the Koch brothers are successful in taking full control of it.  […]

  • 93 The Kochs, Cato, and Miscalculation // Mar 30, 2012 at 11:00 am

    […] and leadership across various blogs and outlets (e.g., Jerry Taylor, Gene Healy, Jason Kuznicki, Julian Sanchez, Jonathan Blanks, Justin Logan, Trevor Burris, Michael Cannon). There has been lots of commentary […]

  • 94 Welcome to KochvCato.com « Koch v. Cato // Apr 5, 2012 at 10:40 am

    […] we could find to make our case for an independent Institute. Catoites’ responses—look here, here, here, here, and here for early examples— were unplanned, spontaneous, widespread, and, as far as […]

  • 95 Muddy Rotbarf // Apr 16, 2012 at 6:02 am

    Libertards in head on collision with real world capitalism! ..Serious slapstick.

    He who pays the piper calls the tune. There could be nothing more Libertarian.

  • 96 The Most Subtle Danger to Cato from a Koch Takeover: A Guest Post by Ted Galen Carpenter | Koch v. Cato // Apr 24, 2012 at 10:21 am

    […] and Cato’s current board of directors.  Several of my Cato colleagues have offered their own views about the damage that a Koch takeover would cause the organization.  The most prominent concern is […]

  • 97 Nothing left to lose « AbsurdBeats // Jul 7, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    […] was kicked off by the critique one of us—Corey Robin—offered of libertarian Julian Sanchez’s presignation letter to Cato, in which Sanchez inadvertently revealed the reality of workplace coercion.  […]

  • 98 Suspect you will be quitting? Pre-resign | Bitter Goodbyes // Jul 10, 2012 at 6:34 am

    […] are some pretty bitter words. Read the whole letter here. Your ads will be inserted here byEasy Ads.Please go to the plugin admin page to paste your ad […]

  • 99 PE Westlake // Aug 5, 2012 at 6:08 am

    “That sort of thing gets a lot harder if we’re perceived as an overtly partisan shop.”

    Can’t get anything past those wiz kids at Cato, eh?

    [facepalm]

  • 100 Thoughts on a Thinktank War (Alex Biles) « ( iN ) // Aug 27, 2012 at 1:31 am

    […] think I’d WANT to stick around a partisan propaganda farm?” on Friday, along with drafting a pre-resignation letter in the case that the Koch brothers assume control. On Sunday, Cato vice president Gene […]

  • 101 Balloon Juice » Blog Archive » Other people, they have to work // Oct 2, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    […] Julian Sanchez of Cato says he’ll quit if the Kochpaclyapse comes to fruition, admitting that it’s easy for him to lose his j-o-b temporarily since he doesn’t have kids or a mortgage. Corey Robin makes a smart point about what this says about libertarians attitudes towards FREEDOM: […]

  • 102 K. Kaprow // Jun 16, 2013 at 7:36 am

    Julian’s work at Reason a decade ago prompted me to finally let my long-held subscription to that increasingly anarchistic rag expire, so I have to thank him for that. To alter a line from Ronnie Reagan, “I didn’t leave libertarianism. Libertarianism left me.” I suspect the same is true for many people.

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