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WARNING: This site deals only with the corporate corruption of science, and makes no inference about the motives or activities of individuals involved.
    There are many reasons why individuals become embroiled in corporate corruption activities - from political zealotry to over-enthusiastic activism; from gullibility to greed.
    Please read the OVERVIEW carefully, and make up your own mind.




TOBACCO INDUSTRY EXPLANATORY

ABBREVIATIONS
JARGON
SPIN-MEISTERS
INITIALS
FIRST & NICKNAMES
Misc.RESEARCH HELP
Smoking-Gun docs.

RELEVANT LINKS

James Savarese
Robert Tollison
Anna Tollison
Richard Wagner
James C Miller III
economists networks
Carol M Robert
Elizabeth A Masaitis
Committee on Taxation and Economic Growth
Harold Hochman
Fred McChesney
Thomas Borcherding
Delores T Martin
Dennis Dyer
George Minshew
Ctr.Study Pub.Choice
James Buchanan
William Prendergast
Bill Orzechowski
CASH-FOR-COMMENT
NETWORK MEMBERS

Dominick Armentano
Burton A Abrams
Lee Alston
Ryan C Amacher
Gary Anderson
Lee Anderson
William Anderson
Terry Anderson
Roger Arnold
Richard W Ault
Michael Babcock
Joe A Bell
Bruce L Benson
Jean J Boddewyn
Peter Boettke
Thomas Borcherding
William J Boyes
Charles Breeden
Lawrence Brunner
Henry N Butler
Bill Bryan
Cecil Bohanon
Morris Coates
Roger Congleton
Jeffrey R Clark
Michael Crew
Allan Dalton
John David
Michael Davis
Arthur T Denzau
Clifford Dobitz
John Dobra
Randall Eberts
Robert B Ekelund
Roger L Faith
David Fand
Susan Feigenbaum
Clifford Fry
Lowell Gallaway
Celeste Gaspari
David ER Gay
Kenneth V Greene
Kevin B Grier
Brian Goff
Sherman Hanna
Anne Harper-Fender
Kathy Hayes
Dennis Hein
James Heins
Robert Higgs
F Steb Hipple
Harold M Hochman
George E Hoffer
John Howe
William Hunter
Stephen Huxley
John D Jackson
Joseph M Jadlow
Cecil Johnson
Samson Kimenyi
David Klingaman
Michael Kurth
David Laband
Suuner Lacroix
Dwight R Lee
Dennis Logue
C. Matt Lindsay
Donald P Lyden
Craig MacPhee
Delores Martin
Chuck Mason
Charles Maurice
Fred McChesney
James E McClure
William McEachern
Richard McKenzie
Robert McMahon
Arthur Mead
Paul L Menchik
John F Militello
William C Mitchell
Greg Neihaus
Allen Parkman
Mark Pauly
William Peterson
Harlan Platt
Michael D Pratt
Thomas Pogue
Barry W Poulson
Edward Price
Robert Pulsinelli
Raymond Raab
Roger Riefler
Terry Ridgeway
Mario Rizzo
Morgan Reynolds
Simon Rottenberg
Randy Rucker
Richard Saba
Todd Sandler
David Saurman
Mark Schmitz
Robert Sexton
William Shughart
Robert J Staaf
Thomas Stimson
Wendell Sweetser
Mark Thornton
Mark Toma
David G Tuerck
Richard Vedder
Bruce Vermeullen
Richard Wagner
J Keith Watson
Burton Weisbrod
Walter E Williams
Thomas L Wyrick
Bruce Yandle
Boon Yoon
Richard D Zerbe

 

 

OPINION ONLY

William Franklin ('Bill') Shughart     [II ]    

(misspelling Shugart)

— An ex-FTC economist who became an enthusiastic cash-for-comments academic for the tobacco industry and a partner/assistant to Robert Tollison in running the network. He was an associate professor at the Clemson University and University of Mississippi; now at Utah. —  

William Shughart II was a professor of economics who worked with Robert Tollison at the notorious Centre for the Study of Public Choice at George Mason University. He effectively became a partner in the economist's network scam set up for the Tobacco Institute. He also remained a cash-for-comments academic during professorial stints at Clemson University, and later at the University of Mississippi.

Shughart was more aggressively involved in the economists network scams of the 1987 period than most of the other 80-odd economists. Shughart was willing to do anything for money, and like most of these academics he was hired to write letters to the editor and op-ed pieces for newspapers. He was an active partner in the operation, helping Tollison and Savarese with the organization and administration.

Tobacco lobbyist James Savarese and Professor Robert Tollison of George Mason University collaborated in the 1980s to provide the tobacco industry, through the Tobacco Institute, with a number of networks of academics who would be willing to write propaganda material ... always provided their names were not linked to the industry or to any of the cigarette companies.

The idea was simply that the academic 'sleepers' would be available on a cash-for-services basis when needed to counter attempts to increase excise taxes, or to ban public smoking, or just to appear as independent experts at Congressional hearings and promote the industry causes.

Economist were by far the most useful academics to the tobacco industry because the distinction between economics and politics was never clear: so support of the cigarette companies could always be claimed as support for free-market economics ... the rights of individuals to make public choices ... small government ... or even the first Amendment to the Constitution.

The economist always claimed to be 'independent' 'professionals' and ' academics' from some credible university, and never revealed the source of their funding in their op-eds or letters-to-the-editor.

If ever put under cross-examination, they must be able to claim with weasel-word precision, that they had never received a penny from the tobacco industry. Therefore all payments were laundered, either through tobacco industry lawyers (usually Covington & Burling), the principle organisers, James Savarese & Associates, or through Bob Tollison's Center for the Study of Public Choice at George Mason University.

The aim was to have, in each State, at least one academic economist, one academic lawyer, and one academic from a business management, business law, marketing or advertising discipline willing to jump into action and write op-ed articles for their local newspaper, or to appear at local ordinance or legislative hearings. Copies were always sent to a local Congressman, who sat on some important (to the tobacco industry) committee.

The academics were always expected to wave their own and their university's credentials vigorously, and loudly proclaim their "independence' from any crass-commercial motives. And those who could boast of being 'non-smokers' were especially prized — since without this addiction, their non-dependent-on-tobacco status was thought to be proved beyond any doubt!

A recent biography of William Shughart is at the University of Mississippi web site.


Some key documents

• Professional experience

I have served on the faculties of the University of Arizona, Clemson University, and George Mason University, where I taught economics at the graduate and undergraduate levels and did research in economic theory and methods for ten years.

    [Source: the Aug 22 1995 Affidavit of Shurhart in Mike Moore's Mississippi vs. ATCO & the tobacco industry case.]

• His latest CV


1947: Born Harrisburg Pennsylvania


1947 Dec 3: Born Harrisburg, Pennsylvania


1969–78: Bachelor of Arts, Master of Science, and PhD in Economics from the Texas A&M University.


1978: PhD Economics from Texas A&M University


1978–97: Visiting lecturer University of Arizona


1979–83: Federal Trade Commission, Bureau of Economics [Reagan 1st term]


1979–83: With the Federal Trade Commission


1982 Sep: The Annual Report of the FTC mentions two joint papers with Tollison and Shughart and other cash-for-comments economists.

Dual Enforcement of the Antitrust Laws, by Richard Higgins, William Shughart, and Robert Tollison, September 1982.
    In this paper, a model was developed which shows that independent dual enforcement leads to more antitrust activity at a lower unit cost than would be obtained with a single agency.

        On the other hand, the paper states that if the agencies collude, as they appear to do under present institutional arrangements, dual enforcement leads to less and more costly antitrust activity than would otherwise result. According to the paper, empirical tests using historical agency budget and case production figures do not refute the models main predictions. It concludes that more enforcement activity would be obtained at a lower unit cost if the 1948 FTC-Justice liaison agreement were abandoned.

Antitrust Over the Business Cycle, by Ryan Amacher, Richard Higgins, William Shughart, and Robert Tollison, September 1982.
    According to this paper, two broad and venerable hypotheses can be deduced from the literature about collusion, antitrust, and economic activity. These are that both private collusive agreements and producer protection regulation should vary inversely with the business cycle. This paper gives evidence which supports both contentions. Employing data on general antitrust law enforcement activity and complaints charging violations of the Robinson-Patman Act, strong counter-cyclical tendencies are found in collusion and governmental regulatory intervention.

[These economists all had first-hand experinece with "collusion, antitrust, and economic activity.]

1983–85: Associate/Assistant Professor of Economics, Clemson University


1984 Feb 16: Draft outline of a book which is to be derived from lectures given at a industry-controlled Smoking and Society conference (to be held in June 1984 in New York). The book will be edited by Robert Tollison and the international tobacco lobby organization, INFOTAB, will distribute. One chapter is to be:

The Incidence of Taxes on Smoking (Savarese/Shughart)
Smoking is a heavily taxed activity. In general, the burden of the tax is shared by consumers (in the form of higher prices), producers of tobacco products (in the form of reduced profits) and tobacco farmers (in the form of lower rents).

    This section contains an evaluation of tax equity, including a consideration of how the burden is distributed among these three groups. The analysis utilizes US data as well as data from several other countries around the world.

    The paper presents evidence that taxes on smoking are regressive, ie, that excise taxes on cigarettes fall more heavily on low-income consumers.
At this time Shughart is an Assistant Professor of Economics. at Clemson University. James Savarese, his co-author, is the economics recruiter/consultant for the Tobacco Institute and collaborator with Tollison on many tobacco industry projects.

    These are speeches-cum-book-chapters were being commissioned through Bob Tollison well ahead of the conference.

1984 June 8: A study by economist, SC Littlechild "Smoking and Market Failure" (revised in October 1984), mentions a paper on smoking in restaurants, co-written by Shughart and Tollison. [Littlechild also works for the tobacco industry.]

    This is the study that was originally presented at the controlled Smoking and Society Conference, in New York during June 1984, and it has been revised for further use.


1984 Oct: William Shughart and James Savarese have jointly presented a "Revised Draft, Not for Quotation without Permission" document on "The Incidence of Taxes on Tobacco" — which has found its way into Brown & Williamson files.

    After 36 pages it concludes, rather tamely, that

Given that smokers as a group appear to have lower permanent incomes than the population as a whole, any per unit or excise tax on them will generally be regressive.


1984 Oct 31: [In the 447 page Final Opinion in the case USA and others vs Philip Morris et al]

During 1984, the Tobacco Institute paid $70,000 for one half the cost of a monograph commissioned by INFOTAB, edited by Robert Tollison, Professor of Economics at Virginia's George Mason University, titled "Smoking in Society."
It was planned to enlist many known tobacco-friendly academics to write chapters.
  • Hans Eysenck, University of London
  • Charles D Spielberger, Uni of Southern Florida
  • Domingo Aviado, Atmospheric Health Sciences
  • Sherwin J Feinhandler, Social Systems Analysts
  • Douglas Den Uyl, Bellarmine College
  • William Shughart II, Clemson University
  • Peter Berger, Boston University
  • Ingo Walters, New York University
  • Stephen Littlechild, Uni of Birmingham,
  • James Savarese [Later Tollison's partner]
  • Jean Boddewyn, Baruch College, CUNY
  • James Buchanan, George Mason University.

Tobacco Institute Memo
Tollison's Project Outline
Final Court Opinion page 297


1984 Nov 20: O&M is organising the first economists forum at the Public Choice Society meeting in New Orleans, Feb 21-23.

The topic would be "Public Choices About Tax Reform."

W.F. Shugart II, an economist from Clemson University, would chair the panel. Those who would present papers would be:
  • Thomas Borcherding, from Claremont Graduate School. Subject: "Tax Reform and Simplification: A Public Choice Perspective."
  • Harold Hochman, from City University of New York. Subject: "The Value-Added Tax: Do We Need Another Excise Tax?"
  • Fred McChesney, Emory University Law School. Subject: "Tax Reform in a Rent-Seeking Perspective: The Role of Interests."
  • Gary Anderson, an economist from George Mason University, would be the discussant.
Bob Tollison would be responsible for getting us on the program. He and Jim Savarese would work with each of the people to ensure that each paper contained a clear anti-excise tax message.

    Shughart and Anderson would also mention excises in their presentations. We will be obtaining CV s from Anderson and Shugart, who Jim and Bob Tollison know well. The other economists have all worked with us before.

    Savarese's estimate of the costs for running this Economists' Forum project with the three papers at $2,000 each and Gary Anderson with $1000, plus travel, hotel, administration, etc. was $16,000.


This appears to have been William Shughart's formal recruitment to the cash-for-comments network. His associate at Clemson University, Ryan Amacher, also appears to have been recruited at the same time.


1984 Nov 21: /E This C/V for Ryan C Amacher of Clemson University which has also been sent to the Tobacco Industry lists in the bibliography:

"The Behavior of Regulatory Activity Over the Business Cycle: An Empirical Test," Economic Inquiry, forthcoming, with Richard Higgins, William Shughart, and Robert Tollison.


1984 Nov 27: Ogilvy & Mather are organising an Atlanta Tax Symposium, for the Tobacco Institute on Jan 18 1985. They have enlisted:

  • Congressman Wyche Fowler ("who has agreed to accept an honorarium"!)
  • Tom Morgan, Dean of Emory Law School (moderator)
  • Robert Tollison and Fred McChesney will present remarks, which Jim Savarese will assist in preparing.
On another subject, attached you will find CV's on William Shughart and Dwight Lee, who will participate in the Public Choice Society meeting in February.

    The Public Choice Society, whose annual meeting we have recommended as a forum for the excise tax program, is an organization of economists, political scientists, historians, and social scientists. It was founded in 1960. Dennis Mueller, an economist from the University of Maryland,
    is this year's president. Bob Tollison is a member.


1985–88: : He is now listed as an Associate Professor, Department of Economics, and Research Associate,
Center for Study of Public Choice, George Mason University
.


1985 Feb 21: Susan Stuntz, the Issues Manager at the Tobacco Institute is sending some tobacco-related material on Florida workplace smoking bans to:

  • James Saverese. who was working at Ogilvy & Mather at this time
  • Bob Tollison Center for the Study of Public Policy at George Mason University
  • William Shughart, Department of Economics, Clemson University


1985 Mar 20: -23 [Doc date Dec 18 84] Ogilvy & Mather have set up seminars for some of the industry's cash-for-comments economists under the auspices of the Southwestern Social Science Association and the Eastern Economic Association. Trish Milita of O&M writes to Jim Savarese at the Tobacco Institute:

These are very strong academic panels and add a great deal of depth to our list of consultants for future use. I know all of these individuals personally except for Henry Butler who is a friend of Bob Tollison's at Texas A&M. They all understand their mission and will be submitting papers for us to review well in advance of the meetings.
  • The SouthWestern Social Science Association seminar run by O&M in Houston (Mar 20) was on "Taxation and Social Process. It had Robert Ekelund in the chair, and papers by Henry N Butler, Joseph M Jadlow and Richard E Wagner. Keith Watson was a discussant.
  • The Eastern Economic Association seminar, run by O&M in Pittsburgh (Mar 21) was on "Perspecives on Tax Reform". It had Robert Tollison in the chair, and papers by William Shughart, Gary Anderson, and a joint paper by John Bowman/Michael Pratt. The discussant was George Hoffer.
All the speakers were employed by the tobacco industry to promote their Social Cost and Taxation agendas.

1985 May 5: A Tobacco Institute summary of "Smoking and Society" edited by Robert Tollison. It gives details of the main speakers enlisted for a New York City Workshop run to benefit the industry, and it outlines the ideas which were translated into chapters for this book "Smoking and Society".The speakers at this workshop all work for tobacco as paid consultants or lobbyists:

  • Robert Tollison — professor of libertarian economics and organiser of the cash-for-comments economists network,
  • Hans Eysenck (misspelled) — famous behavioral psychologist, and tobacco consultant,
  • Charles D Spielberger — psychologist "Why People Smoke" (every reason other than addiction),
  • Domingo Aviado — pharmacologist (also worked for pharmacuetical industry),
  • Sherwin Feinhandler — sociologist and life-long tobacco lobbyist,
  • Douglas J Den-Uyl — Philosopher and political scientist (ethics!),
  • William F Shughart — Public Choice economist, associate of Tollison and Buchanan
  • Peter Berger — sociologist
  • HP Grant & Ingo Walter — business administration/finance,
  • Stephen C Littlechild — Professor of Commerce UK,
  • James Savarese — labor and economics lobbyist,
  • Jean J Boddewyn — professional advertising effects denier,
  • James Buchanan — guru of Public Choice Economics and partner of Tollison.
There are also notes on Glen Loury (economist), Walter Williams (economist), Amitai Etzioni (sociologist), Ricahrd Wagner (economist) Dwight Lee (economist), Peter Blau (psychologist), Terry Anderson (economist), and Theodore Sterling (computers/stats and professional lobbyist.).

[Every one on this list is a well-known, well-document tobacco lobbyist with academic background who was willing to support the industry if paid for their services. Most held academic posts as Professor.]

    The summary of this speaker's comments is:
W.F. Shughart and R. Tollison argue that there are zero social costs of public smoking in public places, and a law like the San Francisco ordinance has no real case for inter- vention. Nonsmokers benefit at the expense of smokers, who lose their rights as nonsmokers' gain.

    Also with Jim Savarese:
Shughart and Savarese show that cigarette excise taxes are regressive. Producers and growers pay the price of the tax to the extent that their efficiency is reduced* Similar tax payers have different tax burdens imposed on them. Smokers in most countries tend to be persons of lower than average incomes. The tax is unfair in its incidence.


1985 June 30 to Sep 6: The Tobacco Institute have arranged the weekly syndication of a series of Opinion pieces, comparing statements of four economists (varied weekly) on various subjects. These have been picked up and run by newspapers; presumably in the belief that they are worthy articles of economic opinion. The economists quoted are:
  • K Celese Gaspari (Uni of Vermont) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • David N Laband (Uni of Maryland) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Fred McChesney (Emory Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Dean Tipps — nominally a union official — actually Citizens for Tax Justice lobbyist
  • Allen M Parkman (Uni of New Mexico) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Richard Vedder (Ohio Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Roger Faith (Arkansas State Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Lee Alston (Williams college) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • William Hunter (Marquette Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Dennis Logue (Dartmouth College) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • William Shughart (George Mason Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Harold Hochman (City Uni of New York) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • David Wilhelm (Citizens for Tax Justice) — think-tank lobbyist
  • Joseph Jadlow (Oklahoma State Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Robert Ekelund (Auburn Uni) — a cash-for-comment economist
  • Thomas Borcherding (Claremont Grad. School) — a cash-for-comment economist
[It's great to see newspapers publishing such a diversity of economic opinion!]

1985 June 6: James Savarase & Associates has submitted its bill to Peter Sparber at the Tobacco Institute. The billing shows that some economists were paid via Robert Tollison, and that an Emory University Symposium had been held with Congressman [Wyche] Fowler.

  • Robert D. Tollison (includes services of four economists and expenses) Completion of 40 States' Economist List.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . $6.055
  • Emory University Symposium with Congressman Fowler (Robert Tollison and Fred McChesney + $1,500 to Emory Law School).  .  .  .  .  .  . $10,006
  • Public Choice Society Session.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . Total $17,326
    • Robert Tollison ($6863),
    • William Shughart ($2908),
    • Fred McChesney ($2748),
    • Thomas Borcherding ($3033)
    • Dwight Lee (DRL Inc) ($1773)
  • Op-ed Project Professional Fees and Expenses.  .  .  .  . Total $23,346
    • Robert Tollison (also laundering payment to four economists) — $15,346
    • A James Heins, Richard Vedder, Todd Sandler, Ryan Amacher, Joseph Jadlow, Henry Butler, RN Ekelund, Fred McChesney — (each $1000)
                        TOTAL A/C was for $56.733.81

See also previous links to Congressman Fowler
and


1985 June 19: Remarks on 'Sunsetting of Federal Excise Tax on Cigarettes" He is now at George Mason University and giving evidence before a Congressional committee. He recommends that excise on cigarettes should revert to 8 cents a pack from October [down from 16]... but, as he stresses, this opinion is not being bought by the cigarette companies, it is his independent opinion only...,

What I shall have to say on this subject is purely on my own behalf.
He is concerned about the cost-burden on the poorer people in the USA.

1985 June 21: James Savarese submits his bill to the Tobacco Institute for the academics who have written articles or made speeches for the Tobacco Institute.

  • Op Ed Project — $1000 each in 'professional fees'
    for Abrams, Alston, Armentano, Harper-Fender, T Anderson, Denzau, Bohanon, Jadlow, Wagner and Menchik.
  • Southwest Social Science Meeting — Houston
    • Keith Watson ($1,000),
    • RB Ekelund Jr ($2,003)
    • Joseph Jadlow ($2,605),
    • Richard Wagner ($2,716)
    • Robert D Tollison ($5,000)
    • Henry N Butler ($2,070)
  • Eastern Economic Assoc, Meeting — Pittsburgh
    • George E Hoffer ($1,431)
    • Gary M Anderson ($2,450)
    • Robert D Tollison ($6,375)
    • Bill Shurghart III ($2,529)
    • Michael D Pratt ($1,288)
    • John H Bowman ($1,000)


1985 Nov: The Public Relations Resources Catalogue of the Tobacco Institute.

  • Resources are defined as witnesses, materials, publications, corporate relations, and public service programs. Public Service programs center mainly on the success of the Fire Safety education grants and "Helping Youth Decide." [aka HYD program]
These programs are listed in the Fire and Youth and Sampling issues sections, respectively.
It also lists all the standard cash-for-comments economics, and has some special notes on some of them. This economist is credited:
Shugart (sic) has contributed to the preparation of several pieces of testimony on public smoking restrictions

    [He is now at the Center for the Study of Public Choice, George Mason University]

1986: "The Incidence of Taxes on Tobacco" (with James Savarese), in Robert D Tollison (ed.), Smoking and Society: Toward a More Balanced Assessment, Lexington, MA: DC Heath and Company,1986,


1986: Two chapters in "Smoking and Society: Toward a More Balanced Assessment,"DC Heath and Company, Lexington, MA: edited by Robert D Tollison

  • "Smokers versus Nonsmokers" (with Robert D Tollison),
  • "The Incidence of Taxes on Tobacco" (with James M Savarese),

1986 Jan: Public Relations Resources Commitee of the Tobacco Institute lists him as an available witness:

Public Smoking/Witness: Local economists are available to provide economic testimony on the public smoking issue. Those economists who have testified or prepared op-ed pieces on the economic effects of public smoking are marked accordingly. The others may be briefed an the potential cost to government of implementing smoking restrictions.
  • Professor William Shugart, Center for the Study of Public Choice, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

        "Shugart has contributed to the preparation of several pieces of testimony on public smoking restrictions."
[He is also listed under the heading ]
Taxes/Witness: Local economists are available to provide economic testimony on excise taxes. The economist explain why excise taxes are regressive and unfair to consumers and unsuitable and unreliable as a means to increase the federal revenue.


1986 Jan: The Tobacco Institute's Public Relations Resource Catalogue for their Regional Directors, lists documents, booklets, article, posters and people who can help them fight local public smoking ordinances and threats to raise the excise taxes on cigarettes.

    It provides a long list of economists who are willing to speak at hearings, write letters to the editor, or create op-eds for the newspapers to counter any threat to public smoking or possible increase in excise taxes.

    The Tobacco Institute offered their Regional Directors the C/Vs of all of these economists, and said

"Requests for economists should be made ASAP. Allow at least one week. PR approval needed."
He is listed [along with 50 other economists] as a contact in:
  • Professor William Shughart
    Center for the Study of Public Choice, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA,

    Shugart (sic) has contributed to the preparation of several, pieces of testimony on public smoking restrictions.
He is available on two weeks notice as a witness for hire.
Public Smoking/Witness: Local economists are available on two-weeks notice to provide economic testimony on the public smoking issue. Those economists who have testified or prepared op-ed pieces on the economic effects of public smoking are marked accordingly. The others may be briefed on the potential cost to government of implementing smoking restrictions.

Tax witness: [He will] "explain why excise taxes are regressive and unfair to consumers and unsuitable and unreliable as a means to increase the federal revenue."

    Those economists who have testified or prepared op-ed pieces on the economic effects of public smoking are marked accordingly. The others may be briefed on the potential cost to government of implementing smoking restrictions.


1986 Apr: See Center for the Study of Public Choice 43 page self-congratulatory booklet.

During 1985, we welcomed three new research associates to our staff. William F. Shughart II joined the Center Staff from Clemson University. Professor Shughart's research specialities are industrial organization, public choice, and antitrust. Jennifer Roback joined our ranks from Yale University.

    Professor Roback's academic speciality is labor economics, and she is currently engaged in several projects at the Center. Finally, Viktor Vanberg came aboard the Center during 1985. Professor Vanberg is part of our dare-to-be-different program; initially a sociologist with an adherence to methodological individualism, his emerging research interest is in organization theory and constitutional economics.

    Also during 1985, the Center suffered a large loss — Dwight Lee moved on to the University of Georgia, where he was given a chair. Life goes on, but it is not nearly so much fun without Dwight around.


1986 Apr 3: James Savarese writes to his stable of economists on the subject of "New Research Opportunities." [A sure-fire come-on with academics]

I would like to thank you for all of your cooperation and diligence in handling the projects we have worked on together. I am taking this opportunity to alert you to some new research opportunities that may be available in the upcoming weeks.

    The Tobacco Institute is interested in considering research proposals which would establish a much more realistic examination of the social cost issue as it relates to the smoking issue.
He includes an OTA paper on the dangers of smoking and also...
... rebuttals developed by Bob Tollison and Richard Wagner to the OTA report.

    The Institute would like to examine proposals for research that test, in a quantitative way, a number of propositions on the relevant cost considerations that apply to the smoking issue.

    If some aspect of this interests you, please provide me with a brief (1-2 page) description of any project you have in mind by April 30. Please include a cost approximation.
The scent of possible research money on top of the op-ed writing must have generated substantial academic enthusiasm. He is listed as one of the recipients of this letter on the "Brainstorming - Research Ideas" project.

1986 Apr 3: This appears to be the approved copy of the letter on "New Research Proposals" that Jim Savarese sent to his long list of network economists. This letter leaves no doubt that these academic economist knew that they were being paid to protect the interests of the tobacco industry.

    The economist were also being given outline "rebuttals" developed by Tollison and Wagner to help them in writing their counter-attacks to an an Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) anti-smoking report.

I would like to thank you for all of your cooperation and diligence in handling the projects we have worked on together. I am taking this opportunity to alert you to some new research opportunities that may be available in the upcoming weeks.

As you know, the tobacco industry is exposed continuously to a barrage of attacks on economic issues. Many of these attacks involve a serious perversion of the concept of social cost. The Tobacco Institute is interested in considering research proposals which would establish a much more realistic examination of the social cost issue as it relates to the smoking issue.

I have attached a report prepared by the staff of the Office of Technology Assessment which is representative of the kind of "research" being put forth by anti-tobacco activists. I have also included the rebuttals developed by Bob Tollison and Richard Wagner to the OTA report.

The Institute would like to examine proposals for research that test, in a quantitative way, a number of propositions on the relevant cost considerations that apply to the smoking issue.
This went out to the long list of cash-for-comments economist on the network.

1986 May: /E A Tobacco Institute list of "Schedule of Payments - Excise Tax Op-Ed project." (April-May 1986) This lists those academic economists who have already planted their article on a local newspaper, and the amount they are to be paid.

    They appear to have been paid $900 for each article, and $1025 if they had also made contact with their local Congressman. However a number of the cash-for-comments network members still have not completed their commission.

    The George Mason (Uni) production staff of Bob Tollison, Bill Shughart, and Gary Anderson were paid for "rewrites, editing and research, 18 articles", and Carol Robert for the "production of final product. " A total of $18,000 + $1067 expenses [or $1000 per article to make them into saleable propaganda for their local newspapers]

    A month or so later the GMU production staff were also being paid $9,500 for rewrites, editing and research on 9 additional articles, while Savarese seems to have been charging $5,800 + $235 in expenses for recruiting replacement economists in California, Montana, New York, Ohio and Tennessee.


1986 May: A bundle of information predominantly on Sick Building Syndrome and Indoor Air Quality is being circulated by the Tobacco Institute to its Regional Directors. However, Section 1 is headed

List of sources. Local and national experts you can call for quotes or background information.
This economists name and address are included under "Tobacco & Taxation (listed by state, alphabetically)".

1986 June 11: Peter Sparber at the Tobacco Institute memoes Fred Panzer, his boss, enclosing Shughart's statement along with others.

Enclosed are statements prepared for various Congressional hearings on the tax issue that specifically comment on earmarking to some degree.

    These statements are by:
  • Henry Butler of Texas A&M,
  • William Shughart and Dwight Lee of George Mason submitted to Ways & Means, June 20, 1985;
  • Bob Tollison of George Mason for the Chafee subcommittee on September 10, 1985;
  • Randy Rucker of North Carolina State on the Rose bill on July 18, 1985; and
  • CM Lindsay of Clemson for hearings on the Stark bill which never were held.


    I've asked Jim Savarese, who provided these papers, to begin working on copy that could serve as the text for multipurpose anti-earmarking publications.


1986 July 17: Susan Stuntz (Issues Manager) at the Tobacco Institute writes to PR head William Kloepfer giving him some useful quotes elicited from "Economic, Labor Submissions to GSA" [General Services Administration].
These were usable quotes from cash-for-comments letters opposing the proposed federal building smoking ban. The economists all claimed the cost projections of producing and installing "No Smoking" signs was a major reason for their gratuitous involvement. There are many quotes:

"It is simply silly to content that 'this rule is nat a major rule for the purpose of E.Q. 12291...."
      William Shughart of George Mason University's Center for the Study of Public Choice.


1986 Jul 21: Sam Chilcote of the Tobacco Institute writes to the members of the Executive Committee detailing their successes in generating objections to the proposed GSA {Government Services Administration] anti-smoking bans.

    They have persuaded the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) to help having the rules amended, and have turned out their friends and associated companies to generate letters of objection.

Included among the comments received by GSA thus far are thousands generated as a result of contact with TAN [Tobacco Action Network] activists, other tobacco family organizations, key coalitions, organized labor and economists.

    The State Activities Division's alert of key contacts in the field, as well as TAN activists, has generated at least 3,100 letters of opposition. These are letters for which copies have been sent to division headquarters; there are no doubt many others.

    Among member companies, all have asked their employees to write letters of opposition. In addition, RJ Reynolds reports its phone bank efforts to reach Washington, DC, residents, may have resulted in up to 3,700 opposition letters. Reynolds also sought letters from respondents to an earlier mailing on the federal excise tax issue. Philip Morris initiated a program designed to generate up to 10,000 mailgrams to GSA by the comment deadline.

    Letters of objection (all remarkably similar in content) from numerous academic economists were also attached. They all seemed to focus on one extraordinary aspect: the cost of implementating the ban.

    They all attacked the GSA's calculation "that the costs of NO-SMOKING signs in government buildings would cost less than $100 million annually." Robert Tollison had circulated a much higher estimate of costs (which some of the letter-writers mentioned)... and all of the economists' letters completely ignored any cost savings, such as lower cleaning and painting costs in government buildings; reduced sick days; higher productivity, etc.

    These letters, were all written within a few days of each other by university professors spread across the country, and they came from:
  • 8th July — Arthur T Denzau, Washington University, St Louis, Mo
  • 3rd July — Barry W Poulson, University of Colorado, Boulder
  • 10th July — Thomas E Borcherding, Claremont College/Graduate School, California
  • 7th July — William F Shughart II, Center for the Study of Popular Choice, George Mason University, Washington DC
  • Undated — (joint) Cecil E Bohanon, James E McClure, Stephan F Gohmann, Clarence R Deitsch, Lee C Spector — all PhDs in economics at Ball State University, Muscie, Ind.
  • 7th July — John F Militello, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania,
  • 7th July — Jean J Boddewyn, Baruch College, The City University of New York [Advertising lecturer]
  • 5th July — Morgan Reynolds, Texas A&M University
  • 8th July — Cliff P Dobitz, North Dakota State University
  • 8th July — William C Mitchell, University of Oregon
  • 11th July — Arthur C Mead, Economist, Newport RI
  • 10th July — D Allen Dalton, Boise State University, Idaho
  • 10th July — Henry N Butler, George Mason Univeristy
  • 10th July — (joint) S Charles Maurice, Leonardo Auernheimer, Niccie L McKay, John R Hanson II, Lynn Gillette, Gregory Delemeester at Texas A&M University
  • 9th July — (joint) Robert B Ekelund, Richard Ault, David Saurman, John Jackson, RG Hebert, JK Watson, Mark Thonton, at Auburn University, Alabama
  • 9th July — (joint) Richard K Vedder, Lowell E Gallaway, Jan Palmer, David Klingaman at Ohio University


1986 Jul 21: Samuel Chilcote of the Tobacco Institute writes to the members of the Executive Committee detailing the TI's successes in generating objections to the proposed Government Services Administration (GSA) workplace anti-smoking bans. They have persauded the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) to have the rules amended, and they've turned out their friends and employees in associated companies to generate letters of objection.

Included among the comments received by GSA thus far are thousands generated as a result of contact with TAN [Tobacco Action Network] activists, other tobacco family organizations, key coalitions, organized labor and economists.

    The State Activities Division's alert of key contacts in the field, as well as TAN activists, has generated at least 3,100 letters of opposition. These are letters for which copies have been sent to division headquarters; there are no doubt many others.

    Among member companies, all have asked their employees to write letters of opposition. In addition, RJ Reynolds reports its phone bank efforts to reach Washington, DC, residents, may have resulted in up to 3,700 opposition letters. Reynolds also sought letters from respondents to an earlier mailing on the federal excise tax issue. Philip Morris initiated a program designed to generate up to 10,000 mailgrams to GSA by the comment deadline.

    Letters of objection, remarkably similar in content, from numerous academic economists were also attached. They all seemed to focus on the question of cost-of-implementation — criticizing the GSA's claim that new expenses for no-smoking signs, etc. were unlikely to cost more than $100 million annually. Robert Tollison had circulated a much higher estimate of costs (which some mentioned)... and all of the letters a completely ignoring any cost savings.

    These letters, all written within a few days of each other by university professors spread across the country (and copied to the Tobacco Institute), came from:
  • 8th July — Arthur T Denzau, Washington University, St Louis, Mo
  • 3rd July — Barry W Poulson, University of Colorado, Boulder
  • 10th July — Thomas E Borcherding, Claremont College/Graduate School, California
  • 7th July — William F Shughart II, Center for the Study of Popular Choice, George Mason University, Washington DC
  • Undated — (joint) Cecil E Bohanon, James E McClure, Stephan F Gohmann, Clarence R Deitsch, Lee C Spector — all PhDs in economics at Ball State University, Muscie, Ind.
  • 7th July — John F Militello, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania,
  • 7th July — Jean J Boddewyn, Baruch College, The City University of New York
  • 5th July — Morgan Reynolds, Texas A&M University
  • 8th July — Cliff P Dobitz, North Dakota State University
  • 8th July — William C Mitchell, University of Oregon
  • 11th July — Arthur C Mead, Economist, Newport RI
  • 10th July — D Allen Dalton, Boise State University, Idaho
  • 10th July — Henry N Butler, George Mason Univeristy
  • 10th July — (joint) S Charles Maurice Leonardo Auernheimer, Niccie L McKay, John R Hanson II, Lynn Gillette, Gregory Delemeester, at Texas A&M University
  • 9th July — (joint) Robert B Ekelund, Richard Ault, David Saurman, John Jackson, RG Hebert, JK Watson, Mark Thonton, at Auburn University, Alabama
  • 9th July — (joint) Richard K Vedder, Lowell E Gallaway, Jan Palmer, David Klingaman at Ohio University


1986 Dec 8: Sam Chilcote is summing up the Tobacco Institute's activities in fighting the Packwood Tax Plan which attempted to impose special excise taxes on tobacco, alcohol and fuel (in the oil crisis years) to reduce use. Packwood also wanted to make these taxes and tarffs non-deducatable for federal income tax purposes.

    The document bundle (219 pages) includes:

  • Pages 2 to 34: A major study done for the TI by Policy Economics Group
  • Pages 35 to 50: Another major study commissioned from DeSeve Economics for the Coalition Against Regressive Taxation (CART) [funded by tobacco to act as a front]
  • Pages 51 to 57: A couple of papers done for Covington & Burling
  • Pages 58 to 100: A long document which has deliberately NOT included the name of the organisation which produced it within the document itself. (But done by deSeve Economics Associates Inc).
  • Pages 101 to 129 : A paper on the "Burden of Tobacco Taxes on Selected Demographic Groups"
  • Pages 130 to 144: Some booklet trying to rabble-rouse the Hispanic and Black communities and make them believe Packwood is attacking them racially.
  • Page 145 to 177: A Citizens for Tax Justice 'poll' on attitudes. and Coalition Against Regressive Taxation document
  • From Page 178 on: many of the op-eds they have had published in newspapers by the cash-for-comment academic economists,
See pages 210 to 219 of the bundle which have multiple Letters-to-editor/commentary from 17 cash-for-comments economists — William Hunter, Dennis Logue, William Shugart, Harold Hochman. David Wilhelm, Joseph Jadlow, Robert Ekelund, Thomas Borcherding, K Celeste Gaspari, David Laband, Fred McChesney, Dean Tipps, Allen Parkman, Richard Vedder, Roger Faith, Lee Alson, and William Hunter,
      They had obviously managed to plant these multiple-author pieces on a number of newspapers.


1986 Dec 11: James Savarese sends Fred Panzer at the Tobacco Institute a summary of the activities of his network of economists. This is effectively the beginning of the main cash-for-comments economists network.

Dear Fred,
    I have attached a list of all the economists we have used along with the projects they have worked on in behalf of the Tobacco Institute.
There are now 62 names on the list (Some states have 4 or 5) not counting himself and Bob Tollison. The details given for each consist of State, Regional Division [of the TI], Name, Address and Telephone number. Added to this is a list of the 'Projects' they have completed (in later lists, also the names of Congressmen they have contacted.)

    Virtually all of these cash-for-comment academics have been generating op-ed articles for newspapers, or have, in some unspecified way, opposed the Packwood Excise Tax plan — or perhaps helped fake up one of the 'Chase' [Econometrics studies]. A few participants have attended Congressional or government inquiries ['Treasury I') or local ordinance hearings as 'independent witnesses' while secretly acting for the tobacco industry. Two of the 64 members (Ann Harper-Fender and Gary Anderson) were acting termporarily as advisors to Ronald Reagan's Advisory Council on Intergovernmental Relations— which sought to bring pressure on the FDA, EPA and OSHA and stop them being pro-active with smoking bans.

    Other participants have been promoting the industry line at various academic conferences and fora [mainly as keynote speakers at economic society meetings] , and a few of the core-team were involved in brianstorming sessions with members of the tobacco industry looking for new angles for their PR, and for possible research project which might generate some economic propaganda for the industry.

    Many of them have joined in with the industry's orchestrated letter-writing campaigns opposing workplace smoking bans.
  • GSA = General (Government) Services Administration.
  • 'Ways & Means' = Congressional committee on finances
  • ALEC = American Legislative Exchange Council (a formalised way for big business to directly influence Congressional and State politicians)
  • Chase Econometrics = A company that did economic impact studies for the tobacco industry in various locations to 'prove' that smoking bans would destroy local economies.

        The references for this network member were:
Virginia [ Region VI ]

Professor William F. Shughart II

    Public Choice Center, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia 22030, 703-323-2790

    Services rendered:
    • academic forums
    • GSA letter writing campaign


1987: "Dual Enforcement of the Antitrust Laws" (by William Shughart, Richard S Higgins and Robert D Tollison), in Robert J Mackay, James C Miller III and Bruce Yandle (eds.) , Public Choice and Regulation: A View from Inside the Federal Trade Commission, Stanford, CA: Hoover Institution Press


1987 Feb 6: Jim Savarese, Bob Tollison and Henry Butler write to "Participants in advertising op-ed project"[the academic economists on the Tollison/Savarese list].

We are finally ready to get this first op-ed project off the ground. I am asking you to review the attached materials and write an editorial for a major newspaper in your state. This article should support the basic right to advertise legal products and oppose attempts to restrict advertising either by outright bans or by punitive use of the tax code.

    Obviously, the point of this exercise is to support tobacco's right to advertise on basic constitutional grounds. Arguments which touch on issues such as censorship, cutting off the free flow of information, and even the experiences in other countries with such bans might be useful.

    Upon completion of a draft op-ed, please send it to me immediately via Federal Express. I will go over the article and return it to you for submission to a newspaper. At that time you will be given some guidelines for submitting your editorial to a newspaper and an appropriate newspaper in your state.

    If you have any questions, please feel free to call Anna Tollison, Jim Savarese, or Linda Prichett at 202-466-7590. You can also direct any technical questions to Bob Tollison at 703- [323-3771] or Henry Butler at 703-841-2665.
[Note this letter gives us a detailed account of how the op-ed system worked, and how much these "independent" academics were expected to conform to tobacco industry control in return for their generous payments.

    Note also, that this is directed to new academic economists. The letter below, appears to have been for the established cash-for-comment academics. ]


1987 Feb 6: [Same day as above] a letter to "Economists" from Jim Savarese, Bob Tollison and Dwight Lee [Note, not Henry Butler here] Re" Excise Tax Op-ed" says:

We have received our first op-ed project of 1987 and for many of you it is a familiar one. The issue once again is opposition from any and all reasonable angles to an increase in cigarette excise taxes.

    We are attaching some materials which may be of help in formulating your argument and generating relevant data. Some of the more salient points are listed below:
[This list gives figures, promotes the regressive nature of such taxes, and requests "earmark" arguments against the use of excises to fund Medicare, health care, environmental protection.]
It is important that we generate a generalized opposition to the principle of earmarking revenues.

    Upon completion of a draft op-ed, please send it to me immediately via Federal Express. I will go over the article and return it to you for submission to a newspaper. At that time you will be given some guidelines for submitting your editorial to a newspaper and an appropriate newspaper in your state.

    If you have any questions, please feel free to call Anna Tollison, Jim Savarese, or Linda Pritchett at 202-466-7590. You can also direct any technical questions to Bob Tollison at 703- [323-3771] or Dwight Lee at 404-542-1311.


1987 May 18: The same day as the [above] audit report, James Savarese & Associates were placed under contract with the Tobacco Institute for two years. There is nothing unusual in the contract except that:

  • The Tobacco Institute wanted approval rights over all staff.
  • They attached a list of billing rates for various staff and services.
  • Approval was now with TI's "Vice President for Issues Management." [ Susan Stuntz]
  • Robert Tollison was formally recognised as a primary subcontractor of James Savarese & Associates, to be paid at $100 per hour.
  • Leslie Dawson, Savarese's full-time employee, was paid at $95 per hour.
  • William F Shughart, EA Massitis, Anna Tollison and Carol Robert were approved subcontractors paid at unspecified amounts.
  • There is no suggestion of the Tobacco Institute paying contract academics direct (as per auditor recommendations).


1987 May 18: The Tobacco Institute had James Savarese & Associates's accounts audited because of "possible improprieties noted during the examination of the initial two-month period." The auditor found that:

  1. It was a one-employee operation - Savarese billed at a rate of $150 per hour, or approximately $300,000 a year.
  2. He only keeps rough accounts and has no contract with the Tobacco Institute.
  3. He marks up the conveyed cost of all subcontracters by varying amounts up to 100%.
  4. Often the name of the subcontractor is not disclosed or [their existence] establishable... because of concerns that disclosure of their remuneration by the Tobacco Indsitute could harm the credibility of the work they produce."
The examination of the books revealed to the auditor that:
  • The inital "Economic Impact" research was done by Robert and Anna Tollison, with help from William F Shughart, and EA Masaitis.
  • The Economists list was put thogether by Robert and Anna Tollison, with help from Carol Roberts and DRL Inc.
  • A so-called "Prohibiiton Video project" done by Mary Claire Sanders (charge at $300 per week — totally $4,700) seems to have been a hidden supplementary payment made under directions of senior staff at the Tobacco Insitute. Ms Saunders was employed by the TI through a temporary employment services to work with the TI on Federal Relations.
Recommendations: That "independent consultants and subcontractors working under Savarese's direction, bill to, and be paid directly, by The Institute unless there is an important business reason to do otherwise. "
[There is no record that economist-contractors were paid directly, so the TI must have found "important business reasons to do otherwise."]

1987 Jun 3: Memo on "Economic Witness Evaluation" from Dennis Dyer of the New England division of Tobacco Institute to his superior, George Minshew.

The Public Relations Division has identified six economists in New England who appear willing to work with us on our tobacco-related issues. In April another economist was identified and subsequently contacted — Professor Simon Rottenberg, University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
They had initially identified six economists in New England who appeared willing to work with them on tobacco-related issues [lending their names to op-eds, studies, etc. and giving witness for the industry at inquiries].
During the past three years, I have had an opportunity to meet and work with the designated economic witnesses in Maine (Professor Robert McMahon) and New Hampshire (Professor Dennis Logue).
  • Professor McMahon reviewed and agreed to "author" [their quotes] an economic impact study on the effects of a public smoking bill in Maine. He presented testimony at two worksessions and conducted a limited number of one-on-one briefings. The bill was defeated.
  • Professor Logue testified on a broad workplace bill. In conjunction with this testimony, he submitted an economic impact study prepared by Jim Savarese. The bill was enacted.
[This is an unequivocal statement that these academics allowed their names to be attached as 'authors' to propaganda and pseudo-research prepared by the tobacco industry in order to deceive legislators.]

    On February 24 I contacted each of the identified economists in the region by letter (Attachment B). In each instance I provided the economist with three examples of Tl-generated economic impact studies and asked for their initial impressions and recommendations.
[He was effectively asking them whether they would put their names to this pseudo-research]

    Three of the seven economists [in the New England region only] responded (Attachments C-l through C-3). With the exception of Professor Celeste Gaspari from Vermont, the other two seem to continue their interest. Only Professor Logue chose to give even the briefest of responses to my inquiry.

    Follow-up conversations with all of the identified economists indicate a general willingness to be involved but a lack of real understanding as to what our requirements might be.
This was a variation on the tobacco industry's standard technique for recruiting scientists and academics. Before they were formally commissioned, they must first prove that they were aligned to industry requirements by turning in written commentary which shows that they support the industry's pro-tobacco position.

    Dyer has a plan for more effectively use of these economists, nationwide. He also includes the full multi-page resume of Professor Dominick T Armento (see table above) who has proved to be one of their most successful recruits.

    On Page 44 there is a copy of Dyer's letter to Armentano. The Professor had been previously contacted by Jim Savarese (a specialist lobbyist and recruiter of economists) and this was the follow-up letter arranging a formal review of some literature (to ascertain his opinions re smoking) and to arrange a meeting for recruitment discussion. This letter has been prominently labeled:
  "**SAMPLE LETTER TO ECONOMIC WITNESSES**"
  • Attachment 1. Page 15 is a pro-industry article Armentano has written in the Hartford Courant, "Cigarette taxes flunk on fairness"
  • Attachment 2. Page 16 is the resume of Robert C McMahon, who is an Associate Professor of Economics at the USM.
  • Attachment 3. Page 19 is the resume of Lee J Alston, Assisant Professor of Economics at Williams College and a private consultant to an unnamed law firm. [He is in Australia on leave - see reply page 45]
  • Attachment 4. Page 24 is the resume of Dennis E Logue of the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College, New Hampshire. [He is at Georgetown University at this time, and he replies (Page 46) favourably reviewing the literature he has been sent, and suggesting lines of defense for the industry]
  • Attachment 5 . Page 32 is the resume of Arthur C Mead, Assistant Professor at the University of Rhode Island. [He didn't reply to the TI request that he review their literature and comment on the economic case]
  • Attachment 6 . Page 37 is the resume of K Celeste Gaspari, Assistant Professor of Economics, University of Vermont. [She replies (Page 48) saying she is still waiting for the annual $1000 retainer she was promised, and is disappointed with the Tobacco Institute. She won't work with them if this is the way they do business.]
    I will reiterate my disappointment with the Tobacco Institute. It is true I never had a written agreement with the Institute —we only spoke over the phone. I did, however naively, trust that a verbal agreement with a prestigious institute was as good as a formal contract. I was evidently mistaken.

        In answer to your letter, I am not interested in working with your group at this time if this is the way you do business.
  • Attachment 7 . Page 40 is the resume of William F Shughart II, ex Special Assistant to the Director, Bureau of Economics at the FTC, and now an Associate Professor at Clemson University. [He apparently didn't reply — but he was a long-term lackey anyway.]

[Every economist on this list was a paid lackey of the tobacco industry.]

1987 June 9: The Tobacco Institute's Phase II - Excise Tax Op-Ed project involved an article-writing campaign by cash-for-comment economists was run by James Savarese Associates (either by Savarese himself, or his associate Leslie Dawson). Robert Tollison at George Mason University was the originator of this network, and he ran it secretly with Savarese as the front and with the assistance of ecoonomists Henry Butler, Dwight Lee and William Shughart— and later with the help of another GMU associate Richard Wagner.

    In the mid 1987 period, the project was under control of Jeff Rose [under Peter Sparber] at the Tobacco Institute and it focussed on defeating cigarette excise tax increases — and especially the threat of such taxes being 'earmarked' to bolster health care budgets.

Anna Tollison, the wife of Bob Tollison, was employed by James Savarese Associates to keep a record of the articles generated by the large contingent of academic economists, and to organise payment. She reported that

"In sum, 41 economists were solicited to write editorials. We have publications in 20 states, 14 articles have been written and submitted, and 7 articles are still outstanding." [Others were in the offing]
[She included a long list of the economists who wrote the articles, the newspapers in which they were published together with their circulation figures.]

1988: In this year he joined the University of Mississippi as Professor in Deparment of Economics and Finance


There is much more material on his activities in the years 1988 to 1995. He continued to work for the tobacco industry in various ways.

1988: Professor of Economics and Free Enterpise, University of Mississippi School of Business Administration


1989 Nov: Carol Hrycaj's monthy report to the Tobacco Institute on her project "Excise Taxes."

Economists Tollison, Shughart and Anderson have offered their article, "Political Entry Barriers and Tax Incidence: The Political Economy of Sales and Excise Taxes," (published in Public Finance) for our use. We are considering distribution options or t e author's conclusions.


1991 Jan: /E Tobacco Institute draft plan for 1991 with emphasis on "Taxes." These are the economist-related paragraphs:

Objective
To discourage reliance on consumer excise taxes on cigarettes to meet social and economic objectives by demonstrating that excise taxes are regressive and inconsistent with fair taxation.

Goals and Tactics:
  • Commission two op-ed articles in 1991 from consulting economists. As articles are published, provide to other Institute decisions for promotion and submission to appropriate policy makers.
  • Conduct at least 10 presentations by consulting economists on the excise tax issue before national, regional and state tax policy conferences.
  • Continue to utilize consulting economists for testimony and briefings. Expand appearances to include presentations to business clubs and the business press. Conduct media refresher courses for public speaking appearance and delivery of testimony.
  • Utilize the consulting economists for an op-ed program that addresses the national earmarking issue and state specific earmarking issues. As articles are published, provide to other Institute divisions and promote to appropriate public policymakers. Use field staff network to support distribution efforts.


1991 Jan 8: Savarese has sent the current list of network economists to Carol Hyrcaj at the Tobacco Institute. It contains three new names, but otherwise is essentially the same as the old lists.


    ALABAMA, Robert B. Ekelund, Jr., Auburn University
    ARIZONA, William J. Boyes, Arizona State University
    ARKANSAS, David E. R. Gay, University of Arkansas
    CALIFORNIA, Gary Anderson, California State at Northridge
                Roger Arnold, California State Univ. - San Marcos
    COLORADO, Barry Poulson, University of Colorado
    CONNECTICUT, Dominick Armentano, University of Hartford
    DELAWARE, Burton Abrams, University of Delaware
    FLORIDA, Bruce Benson, Florida State University
    GEORGIA, Dwight R. Lee, University of Georgia
    IDAHO, Allan Dalton, Boise State University
    ILLINOIS, James Heins, University of Illinois
    INDIANA, Cecil Bohanon, Ball state University
    IOWA, Todd Sandler, Iowa State University
    KANSAS, Michael Babcock, Kansas State University
    KENTUCKY, Brian Goff, Western Kentucky University
    LOUISIANA, Michael Kurth, McNeese State University
    MAINE, Robert McMahon, University of Southern Maine
    MASSACHUSETTS, David Tuerck, Suffolk University
    MISSISSIPPI, Bill Shughart, University of Mississippi
    MISSOURI, Joe A Bell, Southwest Missouri State University
                Thomas I. Wyrick, Southwest Missouri State University
    MONTANA, Terry L. Anderson, Montana State University
    NEBRASKA, Dee Martin, University of Nebraska
    NEVADA, John Dobra, University of Nevada Reno
    NEW HAMPSHIRE, Dennis Logue, Dartmouth College
    NEW MEXICO, Allen Parkman, University of New Mexico
    NORTH DAKOTA, Cliff Dobitz, North Dakota State University
    OHIO, Richard Vedder, Ohio University
    OKLAHOMA, Joseph Jadlow, Oklahoma State University
    OREGON, William Mitchell, University of Oregon
    PENNSYLVANIA, Ann Harper-Fender, Gettysburg College
    RHODE ISLAHD, Arthur Mead, Universityof Rhode Island
    SOUTH CAROLINA, Ryan Aiaacher, Clemson University
    SOUTH BikEOTA, Dennis lain, Augustana College
    TENNESSEE, JR Clark, The University of Tennessee at Martin
    TEXAS, S Charles Maurice, Texas ASM University
                Michael Davis, Southern Methodist University
    VIRGINIA, Richard B Wagner, George Mason University
    WASHINGTON, Richard D. Zerbe, Jr., University of Washington


1993 Apr 8: The economist's network is still functioning, but Savarese and Tollison have negotiated a different deal for the participants. Savarese now bills the Tobacco Institute for economist network op-ed commissions, half-down and half on delivery. They are being paid for preparing the articles rather than only when they succeeded in getting their articles published. This bill is for $37,000.

  • Op-ed article by Robert Tollison to be submitted to Wall Street Journal — $4,000.00

  • Rebuttal article by Bob Ekelund, Auburn Univeristy, to be submitted to the Birmingham News — $3,000.00

  • "Monster" tax op-ed project using twenty economists to submit articles in opposition to using excise taxes on cigarettes to finance health care reform — to be submitted to twenty newspapers in twenty different states. FIRST HALF = $30,000.00

[They now get $3,000 each per article — half on commission and half on delivery — while Tollison gets $4,000]



1993 Apr 13: Calvin George writes to his Tobacco Industry boss Susan Stuntz asking for permission to spend the $67,000 for the 22 op-eds listed by Savarese.

As previously discussed, the 20 economists proposed for the comprehensive op-ed program in opposition to excise taxes for health care reform have been selected with two primary criteria in mind:
  • first, capacity to reach major media markets in states and Congressional Districts represented by key members of the Senate and House Leadership, as well as the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means Committees; and

  • second, the previous track record of the economists in being able to place successfully op-eds in the major dailies identified.
The cost of this project would be $67,000, which is consistent with previous experience for similar efforts. I am recommending approval of this proposal. Funds are available for this purpose in #1305-7301 under the line items for "Economists to deliver briefings, testimony, and write articles..." ($45,000) and "Op-eds on...health care costs" ($25,000).


    The name of this economist is included in the list of these 20 network participants They also specify which newspapers ahould published their articles.

1993 Aug 3: This is a series of lists dated from March to August 1993. Savarese's staff have sent these to the Tobacco Institute to progressively report successes and failures with the economists writing op-ed pieces and having them published.

    Collectively they give us a good idea as to how the network worked and how litte they managed to plant on the major newspapers (the smaller local papers were obviously easy.) It's also interesting to observe the mechanical processes and the tight control the tobacco industry and its lawyers exerted over these academic lackies.

  • The articles were either rejected, revised or passed by Jim Savarese and his staff
  • They were then sent for checking and alteration by Calvin George [Cal] at the Tobacco Institute.
  • The lawyer David Reemes who worked for the industry's main Washington lawfirm Covington & Burling then cleared them for publication.
  • The economist then received the revised copies back for onward transmission to the selected newspapers.
  • They would then send a copy to their local Congressmen without mentioning the tobacco industry's contractual arrangement.
Clearly, by 1993, many of the original network members were dropping out. The Tobacco Institute also appears to have been having problems getting even those academics who stayed loyal to write articles that justified their $2000 to $3000 payments. [Perhaps some of them developed a conscience!]

    Despite the protestations, these are not 'independent' opinion articles. They are industry-shaped, manipulated propaganda pieces designed as advocacy vehicles to promote tobacco interests in political, media and public circles — even when they don't directly mention or promote cigarettes or smoking.

    These lists are all headed 'MONSTER' Tax Op-Ed Project:
    MISSISSIPPI
    Sampson Kimenyi [later transfered to] Professor Bill Shughart II, Department of Economics and Finance, University of Mississippi, MS
    • Mar 23 — [TI designated newspaper/s] Jackson Clarion-Ledger
    • Apr 9 — Recieved 4/15/93 — Sent to Cal 4/16/93 — Received from Cal 4/22/93 — Waiting - legal 4/28/93 — Returned 4/29/93 — Rev. Draft 4/30
    • May 12 — Submitted to the Jackson Clarion-Ledger
    • May 18 — (as above)
    • June 2 — Published by Jackson Clarion-Ledger
    • June 14— Published by Jackson Clarion-Ledger on 6/7/93
    • Aug 3 — (as above)


1994 March 16: A group of academic economists including almost all the members of the Tobacco Institute's cash-for-comments network sent an "An Open Letter to President Clinton on Healthcare Reform." This had been organised by David J Theroux, the founder and operator of the Independent Institute apparently with the assistance of an academic network member, Simon Rottenberg. [The institute was well-funded by the tobacco industry]. They say:

In The Open Letter to President Clinton, 565 economists and 76 other scholars from all 50 states and the District of Columbia state their firm opposition to any form of direct and indirect price controls in any healthcare program.

    Rationing Health Care: The New Threat of Price Controls, by Simon Rottenberg and David J. Theroux

    They use the old straw-man scare techniques of the sky-falling.
In countries that have imposed these types of regulations, patients face delays of months and years for surgery, government bureaucrats decide treatment options instead of doctors or patients, and innovations in medical techniques and pharmaceuticals are dramatically reduced.
Which, as anyone who has lived in England, Canada, Australia, etc. knows, is pure rubbish.

    Along with Shughart and his associates, also on this list of signatories were a number of think-tank lobbyists [including most of the Hoover Institute] and others who worked for the tobacco industry, and the Research Director of the Independent Institute, Robert Higgs, who was also a fill-in network economist.

1994 Oct 14: David Theroux of the Independent Institute is updating the Tobacco Institute on the progress of their book "Sin Taxes" which is a project being directed by Bill Shughart (a key member of the cash-for-comment economists network) and Tom Di Lorenzo (who worked for the tobacco industry direct,)


1995 /E: The same Auburn University cash-for-comments economists team are working also for the alcohol industry [Most tobacco companies own beer and/or distilled spirits companies].

"Exclusive Territories and Advertising Restrictions in the Malt Beverage Industry" William Shughart, Robert B. Ekelund, Jr., John D. Jackson, David S. Saurman, and Robert D. Tollison.
[See also their 1988 report on alcohol advertising]

1995 July 15: The Independent (a newsletter of the Independent Institute) has him speaking at a conference "De-Taxing America: Alternatives to Predatory Politics." The theme set by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman, Congressman Bill Archer, was a call for the abolition of the Internal Revenue Service.

Excise taxes on "politically incorrect" products or activities are used increasingly to fund the "nanny state." In the opening session, chaired by Independent Institute research director Robert Higgs, William Shughart II (Uni. of Mississippi), editor of the forthcoming Institute book based on the studies presented at the conference.

    DE-TAXING AMERICA: Predatory Politics and the Public Interest, examined the arguments used to rationalize excise and other selective taxes.


1995 Aug 22: This is the deposition of Professor William F Shurhart in Mike Moore's Mississippi vs. tobacco industry case.


1995 Oct: /E Philip Morris has been sent a list of the Tobacco Instutute's network economists who had been commissioned, and had...

... prepared and submitted op-eds [attacking the FDA] for publication to major newspapers in select states — targetting key Congressional districts:

    Economists prepared and submitted op-eds for publication to major newspapers in select states:
  • Dr William Boyes, Arizona State University
  • Dr Barry Poulson, University of Colorado
  • Dr Dominick Armentano, University of Hartford
  • Dr Dwight Lee, University of Georgia, Athens
  • Iowa economist tbd [To Be Determined]
  • Dr Cecil Bohanan, Ball State University
  • Dr Robert Pulsinelli, Western Kentucky University
  • Dr Michael Kurth, McNeese State University (Louisiana)
  • Dr Bill Shughart, II, University of Mississippi
  • Dr Joe Bell, Southwest Missouri State University
  • Dr Terry Ridgway, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Dr Allen Parkman, University of New Mexico
  • Dr Lowell Gallaway, Ohio University
  • Dr Ed Price, Oklahoma State University
  • Dr William Mitchell, University of Oregon
  • Dr J.R. Clark, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
  • Dr Michael Davis, The University of Texas at Dallas
  • Robert Higgs, Independent Institute, Edmonds, Washington
  • Dr Charles Breeden, Marquette University
They had been told to "attack the FDA proposal from an anti-big government, anti-regulatory perspective" with a number of pre-determined themes
  • While FDA claims their focus is on preventing youth smoking, the action is the first step to impose harsher regulations on tobacco;
  • The FDA regs will have repercussions on not only the tobacco industry, but vending, confectionery and candy industries, distributors, advertisers and sponsors for sporting events; and
  • The regs will have a devastating impact on jobs.

[This memo demonstrates just how compliant these academic tobacco lackeys had become — and how much they were willing to follow tobacco industry instructions in writing their op-ed pieces.]

1995 Nov 27: One of Shughart's columns in the Clarion-Ledger is headed "FDA proposal merely 'power grab' to regulate tobacco advertising." It advises the readers that William Shughart II is professor of economlcs and holder of the PMD Self, Henry C. Self and William King Self Free Enterprlse Chair at the University of Mississippi. He trots out the familiar 'slippery slope' argument of the tobacco industry, writing:

"Under the guise of protecting helpless children from the "evil weed" [Commissioner David] Kessler's FDA has proposed an expansive set of rules that would give that agency broad authority to determine the terms and condition under which tobacco products are advertised and sold.

    Dr Kessler's passion for power is well known. Kessler has been on a personal crusade since appointed by President Bush In 1991 to force Americana to conform to his own version of political correctness.

    Cigarettes are no more of a "drug delivery system" (medical device) than are scented markers, glue dispensers, chocolate candies, or a cup of coffee. Kessler has lost sight of his agency's fundamental mission. If he succeeds this time around, what will be the target of his next crusade? Cappuccino? Chinese food as the delivery device for antiviral agents like garlic and ginger? Let's not forget where the road paved with good intentions leads.
["Good intentions"... "passion for power"??]

1995 Nov 27: "FDA Proposal Merely 'Power Grab' to Regulate Tobacco Advertising", Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, MS), 27 November 1995


1995 Dec 8: The Savarese Status Report on the FDA Op-ed Program says that Shughart's draft op-ed was published by the Jackson Clarion-Ledger newspaper on Novemeber 27.


1995 Dec 21: Savarese & Associate's Status report to Carol Hyrcaj at the Tobacco Institute on the FDA op-editorial program [Dec 8th].

As reflected in the status report, we have replaced Iowa, Wisconsin, and the Houston congressional district with three new states (California, Massachusetts and West Virginia). As you know, we have already received Robert Sexton's (California) article, as well as confirmation that the economist in Massachusetts is able to participate.

At this time, we are asking those economists that have published, to forward a copy of their article to their congressman/congresswoman.
Clearly some of their draft articles were not entirely satisfactory and required rewrites by Savarese's staff. The notes include some additional revealing items such as:
  • Professor Cecil Bohanon — "Revised op-ed returned to economist 11/10"
  • "Professor Pogue has been contacted. We are waiting to hear whether he will be able to particpate."
  • Professor Kurth — "Will have op-ed to us by next week" [for checking]
  • Professor Ridgway — "Will have op-ed to us in a week"
  • Professor Gallaway — "Returned revised op-ed to economist 11/2"
  • Professor Davis — "Returned revised op-ed 11/3"
  • Clifford Fry, Resources Inc, Bryan Texas — "Had to identify new economist. Sent materials 11/14"
  • Prof Charles Breeden, Marquette University, — "Had to identify new economist. Sent materials 11/14"
[These last two were obviously a fill in for a Texas and a Wisconsin economist who had dropped out or the network.]

1996: Vedder is now a research fellow with the far right-wing think-tank, the Independent Institute along with fellow cash-for-comment network economists, William Shughart, Robert Higgs, William Mitchell, and Lowell Gallaway.

Research Fellow Richard Vedder (Ohio U.) testified before the Kemp Tax Reform Commission (7/12), and analyzed US fiscal problems on"NewsTalkTV,"and in TheWall Street Journal(11/14) and The Detroit News and Free Press (11/19).

    OUT OF WORK, his book with Lowell Gallaway (Ohio U.),was acclaimed in several articles by AP columnist John Cardiff ,and recommended in Philanthropy (Fall '95). Gallaway and Vedder are now writing a book on immigration for the Institute.


1996 Jan 5: This Status Report on FDA Op-ed Program is revealing about the master-servant relationship between the tobacco industry and their network economists. It lists 20 attempted newpaper plants of their anti-FDA propaganda and details about the 20 economists who wrote these articles on commission:

MISSISSIPPI
Professor Bill Shughart II, Department of Economics and Finance, University of Mississippi, MS
  Jackson Clarion-Ledger - Published November 27,1995
  Contacted Congressman Wicker 12/19/95
Attached in front of this document is a model letter to be used by the professors when sending a copy of their article to a local Congressman. Of course the cover letter to the Congressman makes no mention of the fact that the Tobacco Institute paid $3,000 to have the op-ed written.
See also the earlier version of this report which notes which op-eds have been sent for revision before being submitted to the newspaper.

1996 Mar 8: Kelleigh Varnum, of Savarese & Associations advises Carol Hrycaj at the Tobacco Institute that:

We have located an economist to replace John David (WV). His name is Cliff Dobitz (ND). The status report reflects this addition.

    Also attached is Ed Price's (OK) letter to Congressman Largent.

    Doblitz was an old network contributor from North Dakota. But presumably he had not then been contracted or contracted to attack the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) which was the then-current project for both op-ed writing and contacting Congressmen.

    The Status Report for this FDA Op-ed Program records his involvement.

1996 Apr 16: Kelleigh Varnum advises the Tobacco Institute on the progress of the FDA Op-ed Program.

To date, 14 of 20 articles have published.
  • David Kurth (LA) informed us that his op-ed published on February 21, in Lagniappe. Apparently, there was a breakdown in communication with the editor and he did not realize that the article had published. Enclosed is a copy of the article. Unfortunately, it is of very poor quality. We will forward the original to you when we receive it.

  • Although the Atlanta Constitution has promised for quite some time to publish Dwight Lee's op-editorial, there still have not been any developments. As a result, we have directed Dwight to pursue other outlets for submission.

  • Cecil Bohanon (IN) is contacting the editor of the Journal Gazette. He will pursue other outlets for submission if they decide not to publish his article.

  • Publication of Barry Poulson's (CO) and Cliff Dobitz's (ND) op-editorials is forthcoming.

  • Both Mike Davis (TX) and Terry Ridgway (NV) are checking with their editors on the status of their articles.
The general list also records this economist other attempts.
  • Jackson Clarion-Ledger Published November 27,1995
  • Contacted Congressman Wicker

    12/19/95:



1996 May 17: Kelleigh Varnum-Roffman of Savarese & Associates is reporting to Walter Woodson at the Tobacco Institute re the FDA Project. She includes:

  • Updated status report on the FDA op-editorial program
  • Original copy of Cliff Dobitz's (ND) published op-editorial
  • Copy of Michael Kurth's (LA) letter to Congressman Hayes
To date, 15 of 20 articles have published. Please find below some brief notes regarding the status of the remaining op-editorials.
  • Publication of Barry Poulson's (CO) op-ed is forthcoming.
  • Although the Atlanta Constitution has promised for quite some time to publish Dwight Lee's op-editorial, there still have not been any developments. As a result, Lee is pursuing other outlets for submission.
  • Cecil Bohanon (IN), Terry Ridgway (NV) and Mike Davis (TX) are checking with the editors of their papers. They will report back to me on the status of their articles. We will pursue other outlets for submission if any of the above are declined.

    The package contains a list of the current cash-for-comment economists working on the project with a note that:
Professor Bill Shughart II
      Jackson Clarion-Ledger published Nov 27 1995
[Shughart] contacted Congressman Wicker 12/19/95


1996 June 24: Status Report on FDA Op-Ed Program. It lists the various network economists and the articles they have planted with their newspapers. It also records publication dates and those newspapers which declined to use the propaganda, together with the Congressmen who have been contacted.

    About this network economist it says:

MISSISSIPPI
Professor Bill Shughart II, Department of Economics and Finance, University of Mississippi, MS 38677
Submitted to: Jackson Clarion-Ledger - Published November 27, 1995
Contacted Congressman Wicker 12/19/95


1997: The Independent Institute publishes "Taxing Liberty and other 'Sins': Predatory Politics and Taxation" — a book edited by William F Shughart II of the cash-for-comment economists network. Many of the network members also get to write a chapter[in bold], while the other chapters are all written by their close academic associates at Clemson, Auburn, Florida, and Californian State Univerities.

Independent Institute Book for the Tobacco Instititue
Chapter Authors University Subject
  Intro: Wm Shughart II editor
1. William F Shugart MississippiThe Economies of Excise Taxation
2. Brenda Yelvington Clemson Uni   Excise Taxes in Historical Perspective
3. Adam G Gifford Cal State, Northridge Whisky, Parchment and Margarine
4. Randall G Holcombe Florida State The Politics of Selective Excise Taxation
5. Dwight R Lee Uni of Georgia Overcoming Taxpayer Resistance
6. Thomas J DiLorenzo Loyola College, Excise Taxes to Fund PC Propaganda
7. Gary M Anderson Cal State, Northridge Bureaucratic Incentives/Taxes to Prohibition
8. Mark Thornton Auburn Uni. Prohibition: The Ultimate Tax
9. B.Benson/D. Reamussen Florida State Predatory Public Finance
10. Richard E Wagner George Mason Taxation on Alcohol/Control of Social Costs
11. Robert Ekelund/P. Gant Auburn Uni Excise Taxes the Answer to Healtcare Crisis?
12. Richard K Vedder Ohio University Bordering on Chaos
16. Gordon TullockArizona StateExcise Taxation/Rent-Seeking
Also three professors of law.

[This 626 page document is the last corrected copy of the full manuscript ready for the printer. It has last-minute white-outs and hand-corrections and insertions by a single editor in order to maintain the 'excise tax' theme. It was in the Philip Morris file cabinet of inhouse lobbyist Josh Slavitt.]



1998: Principal Consultant, Nathan Associates Inc. (while still holding his university positions). In this year he also received the Sir Antony Fisher International Memorial Award, from the Atlas Economic Research Foundation, for "Taxing Choice: The Predatory Politics of Fiscal Discrimination."
[Antony Fisher was the principle behind-the-scenes funder and promoter of a hundred or more uber-libtertarian/Randian think-tanks which promote laissez-faire corporate deregulation. His Atlas Network works with the tobacco and other major coporate interests around the world.]


1998: Professor of Economics, University of Mississippi


1998–99: Op-eds and other material probably written for the Tobacco Institute>

  • "Cochran Bill Calls for Cost-Benefit Analysis of Federal Regulations", Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, MS), 15 January 1998,
  • "Taxes and Liberty", LibertyTree: Review and Catalog, vol.12, no.1, 1998,
  • "Don't Expect the Tobacco Bill to Stay Snuffed Out Long", Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, MS), 22 June 1998, p.
  • "Business Owners Need Say About Second-Hand Smoke", Clarion-Ledger (Jackson,MS), 7 September 1998, p.
  • "Circumventing Constitution", Meridian Star (Meridian, MS), 21 January 1999, p.
  • "Kyoto Treaty Rules Must Not be Put in Force 'On the Sly'", Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, MS), 8 February 1999
  • "Smokers No Drain on Taxpayers; Suits Just Part of 'Big Lie'", Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, MS), 22 November 1999,


[The Editor of the Clarion-Ledger must have been particularly thick if he didn't wake up to the fact that Shughart was selling advertorial space in his newspaper.]

1999: Board of Policy Advisors of the Heartland Institute


1999 Oct 19: Thirty Seven right-wing academics have signed an "Open Letter to the Attorney General" in support of senior tobacco industry executives and helpers who were under threat of being charged with Racketeering under the RICO Act. This was two years after the signing of the Master Settlement Agreement (MSA)

    It appears to be a final-draft version (organised through George Mason University) from the Philip Morris files. It says [truncated]

  • The lawsuit instituted by the Department of Justice against the tobacco industry to recover Medicare expenses from smoking related illnesses is without legal or economic merit. This politically motivated, thinly disguised tax ignores the rule of law and establishes dangerous precedents and threats to free enterprise.
  • The tobacco industry should not be denied its constitutional right to require individual evidence of causation and damages.
  • The Administrations' effort to circumvent the will of Congress is transparent. Congress has already rebuffed federal government efforts to tax tobacco out of existence when it rejected the McCain tobacco tax bill in 1998. Other administration efforts such as the Food and Drug Administrations effort to expand its jurisdiction to include cigarettes and tobacco have been rejected by federal courts of appeals.
  • This action poses an unprecedented threat to commerce and constitutionally guaranteed freedoms. The federal assault on cigarettes threatens to establish a dangerous precedent for other industries.
  • The Department of Justice Tobacco Medicare litigation violates elementary considerations of fairness and undermines confidence in the constitutional system. We oppose this threat of vast expropriation of private property and this attempt at taxation through litigation.
It has been signed by many of the network economists (and other 'consultants' and academic lobbyists) from all the well-known laissez-faire universities. (At least half of the signatories worked for tobacco at some time.)

2000 Feb 6: "Taxing Tobacco: 'Meathead' Public Policy is Deceptive", The Reporter (Vacaville, CA), 6 February 2000,


2004: Associate Director, James M Buchana Center for Political Economy, George Mason University,

    Also a "Scholar with the Round Table Group, Inc, and President of Oxford Economic Inc"


2006: Member of the Task Force on "Taxing the Poor", National Center for Policy Analysis, Dallas, TX.
[Don't confuse with National Center for Policy Alternatives]

    The National Center for Policy Analysis is a Dallas based (with Washington DC offices) offshoot of the Atlas Foundation and is heavily funded by the Koch brothers.. central to the Tea Party movement. Other members of the cash-for-comments network also worked through the NCPA.


2006 Nov: "Smoke and Mirrors: The Political Economy of the Tobacco Settlements" (with Taylor P Stevenson), Public Finance Review 34 (November 2006),

[Has he declared his conflict of interest in writing this material ??

    Is he still working for the tobacco industry ?]


2010: "Tobacco Settlements", in Roger Chapman (ed.), Culture Wars: An Encyclopedia of Issues, Voices, and Viewpoints, vol. 2, Armonk, NY and London: ME Sharpe, 2010,


2010 Mar: Guest Editor, Essays in Honor of Robert D Tollison [special issue], Public Choice


2011: Professor of Public Choice, Utah State University. Also Professor Emeritus of Economics, The University of Mississippi

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