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Who are Citizens for a Sound Economy???

With the defeat of Measure 30 here in Oregon, Citizens for a Sound Economy, which claims credit on it's web site www.cse.org for blocking tax measures in Alabama and Oregon, moves on to Washington State and Governor Locke's proposal for a tax increase. As one of those who voted for the defeated Measure 30, I wonder, who are these anti-tax campaigners from Washington D.C.??
With the defeat of Measure 30 here in Oregon, Citizens for a Sound Economy, which claims credit on it's web site www.cse.org for blocking tax measures in Alabama and Oregon, moves on to Washington State and Governor Locke's proposal for a tax increase. As one of those who voted for the defeated Measure 30, I wonder, who are these anti-tax campaigners from Washington D.C.??

Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) was founded in 1984 by J. M. Humphries, and Charles and David Koch to oppose any taxation not security related, and promote free market policies in Washington D.C. Perhaps you have heard of Charles and David Koch of Koch Industries. In early 2000, the company had a 97 count indictment against them for knowingly dumping 91 metric tons of the carcinogen Benzene into the atmosphere, then lying to cover it up. Koch Industries was a large contributor to the Bush campaign, and when the current administration took office, they found the counts dropped for a settlement on a charge of 'falsifying documents.'

Searching CSE's web site for the name 'David Koch' turned up an interesting manifesto of the organization. On this page,  http://www.cse.org/newsroom/press_template.php?press_id=91, we find paragraphs stating high goals of helping the American people better themselves by fighting the burden of government. Within this, we find comments such as: "We believe history has convincingly demonstrated that, while governments have often exploited or redistributed the wealth and creative genius of individuals, they have rarely if ever successfully guided the economic or technological advancement of their people." And: "We believe this century has seen the rise of an illusion that governments are, by themselves, capable of offering the governed goods or services for the betterment of all. They are not. Governments are capable of offering nothing except through coercion or confiscation. For every dollar given by government to an individual, more than a dollar, and some measure of freedom, is taken by government from some other individual."

Such a manifesto outlines a thinly veiled anarchism. But this is not the anarchism of youngsters at marches and rallies downtown, this is the anarchism of major corporations trying to tie the hands of government oversight and pressing for more open market economies.

Who's guiding CSE today? The Board of Directors are co-chaired by former House Majority leader Dick Armey (R. TX), and C. Boyden Gray, former counsel to George H. W. Bush. Gray is currently a partner at the law firm Wilmer, Cutler and Pickering, the law firm which defended Xerox exec's against Securities and Exchange Commission charges that they manipulated earnings to raise Xerox share prices(not exactly open market policy). Other directors include: one Reagan appointee, a former member of the Texas State Legislature, and the head of an investment securities firm.

These are the men heading an organization which claims it recruits, educates, and mobilizes armies of grassroots activists. None of these men are the grassroots type. Their connections to money and power begs the question, who benefits? Certainly, you and I see some benefit in the few hundred dollars we can save on taxes, but at what cost to our social and our natural environment? Without the government to oversee huge corporations, who keeps checks on environmental issues, labor issues, fraud issues, and the myriad other issues which we entrust to it? Corporations focus on the bottom line. Everything else comes second. Removing government's oversight ability fattens the pockets of corporate insiders like those heading CSE.

Many are scared by the black clad activists carrying their red and black flags around town, but we have much more to fear from the anarchists dressed in suits and ties carrying huge corporate paychecks and the rhetoric of advancing freedom, while only advancing themselves. Our children will suffer greater consequences than we will if they are successful.
stench of hypocrisy 17.Feb.2004 18:15

Adam Smith

For all the rhetoric about the evils of "government," these guys are some of the most well connected "anarchists" of all time! They rail against it, but they have no qualms about seizing the government honeypot for themselves whenever they can. Their champion GW himself was not above exercising eminent domain to seize the property of small landowners for his baseball stadium when he was a partner in the Rangers baseball team.

Beware the rhetoric of "antigovernment." These scoundrels have refined this shit to a science. Unfortunately, too many innocent and gullible people fall for it.

"Government" is really just another word for the collective social action of our society, which in theory has to be formally endorsed by giving all the members of the society a vote. The question is, what end does it serve, and does everyone really get to vote? These guys want to make it serve their own private enrichment, and they've done very well at that thank you very much. As to voting, well, others have covered such matters much better than I could here.