20 October 2006


Here is the link I spoke about on KOPT-AM 1600 this morning.



19 October 2006

Unlimited Terms of Endearment Part XXV, The Secret Life of Duncan Scott (iii.)

(Part the third) Bringin' it Home

There is a gap in the narrative here: Sometime between the primary in Alaska, in 1986, when Dick Randolph's run for Governor ended in a third-place finish, and the beginning of 1987, when Randolph's campaign manager, Duncan Scott, moved to New Mexico.

Whether he'd moved to work on the Hal Stratton for New Mexico Attorney General campaign, or whether he was invited after Stratton -- a Republican with libertarian leanings -- won in a notoriously Democratic state is not known. But by 1987, Duncan Scott was working as an assistant Attorney General under Hal Stratton's Attorney Generalship.

But in the rest of the country, the Libertarian Party had been imploding, and continued through the late '80s. A sense of it can be garnered from this old USENET newsgroup talk.politics.misc entry:
From: Sean P. Ryan, Hardcore Alaskan
Date: Fri, May 1 1992 9:05 pm

... I've talked to Libertarians in years past about netting, and the only things which eminate (sic) from their mouths are CompuServe and Fidonet. No matter how hard you try to enlighten them as to alternatives, they don't listen. I highly suspect the reason to be that CompuServe and Fidonet are home to Libertarian-related discussion, so everyone simply points in that direction and forgets about everything else.

I also would highly suspect the reason to be that either they know, or have heard, about the subsidization of the Internet by the NSF and others, and all of a sudden become principled and back away. Grow up. The bastards are going to steal from you anyway, why not try to take some of their "manna from heaven" for your own? If I remember correctly, it was Duncan Scott, former executive director of the Alaska LP (who left very shortly after and his successors burned the party to the ground here) who was quoted in an Anchorage newspaper around 1984 or so as saying "I find it to be to our advantage to use government money to further our aims against the government." (Note: that quote is very heavily paraphrased here, as I don't have the exact quote in front of me. However, he was illustrating the LP's acceptance of all the benefits associated with its non-profit status as being good. And I would agree.)
This is a widely-held internal critique of Libertarian politics: that, being ideologically against any government at all, dealings with that government become problematic: what do you do with something that you don't believe should exist?

In our interview, Andre Marrou, the 1992 LP Presidential candidate and 1988 Vice Presidential candidate stated that Libertarians were usually more interested in writing tracts and essays than in actually getting involved with the electoral process.

"The Libertarian party, in my opinion, has the best philosophy and platform [of the political parties], but very few [Libertarians] are very serious about politics," Marrou said. "They don't have any interest in getting elected or helping others get elected."

Certainly Duncan Scott danced out of a burning barn. It had begun immediately after the "Crane Machine's" petulant walkout at the 1983 National LP Convention in New York. Murray Rothbard writes, in the final issue of the Libertarian Review:
Since that PresCon the C[rane] M[achine] has left the Libertarian Party....
To be fair, Rothbard may well be casting about wildly for bogeymen, because there was no doubt that the Party itself was in severe decline -- for whatever reason. The headline dominating the final issue of the LIBERTARIAN REVIEW says it all:

The State of the Movement: The Implosion

The end of a Presidential election year is a good time to take stock, to ask ourselves how our movement is going, and therefore how it may be shaping up for the future. All right: so how goes our movement? The quick answer is, not very well. For the last four years, the movement has been suffering through a severe contraction, reaching during 1983 and 1984 the status of what wordsmith Sam Konkin has called an "implosion."
And then Rothbard does his best to put a good face on it:
The recent implosion, however, is no reason for despair. No ideological revolution proceeds on a continuous straight line from birth to triumphant victory. Every such revolution proceeds in a zig-zag manner....
But things would get worse in the following years.

In 1987 Duncan Scott stepped away and into Republican Party politics, as did many Libertarians of the day:
Insight on the News
July 24, 1995

Libertarians in the big tent - Cover Story
Michael Rust

The Republican Liberty Caucus hopes to harness libertarian momentum for the GOP.

At this year's Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, Eric Rittberg took questions following a panel discussion on "Why Conservatism is Cool." The executive director of the Republican Liberty Caucus, or RLC, told those gathered that "conservatism may be cool, but libertarianism is cooler. Young people want government out of their wallets and out of their bedrooms."

Cheers and boos greeted this bold statement, but there was no doubt that the crowd had been made aware of the Tallahassee, Fla.-based RLC and its message -- that the Republican Party can be the most effective vehicle for the libertarian message. Certainly the RLC's leadership carries impressive libertarian credentials. Its leader, until his death earlier this year, was Roger MacBride, the Libertarian Party's 1976 presidential nominee. (In 1972, as a member of the Electoral College from Virginia, he refused to vote for Richard Nixon, instead casting his ballot for philosopher John Youth Hospers -- the only electoral vote ever cast for a Libertarian Party nominee. Hospers' running mate was Oregon television reporter Toni Nathan -- the first woman ever to receive an electoral vote. "The RLC's interim chairman is former Rep. Ron Paul, who garnered 430,000 votes as the Libertarian Party's presidential nominee in 1988."


"A lot of Libertarian Party folks are skeptical of the Republican revolution," Rittberg says, but adds that passage of nine of the 10 parts of the GOP "Contract With America" isn't a bad record for 100 days. "And just about every one of those planks was a Libertarian program." He points to prominent state Republican legislators -- Greg Kaza in Michigan, Duncan Scott in New Mexico and Penn Pfiffner in Colorado, all former Libertarian Party state chairmen -- and notes that some 25 state legislators around the country describe themselves as libertarian Republicans....
Or, for a more contemporary historical perspective, listen to Eric Dondero, who was, coincidentally enough, a paid petitioner in several states for Howie Rich initiatives this year (see interview published on the same day, July 24th by Ray Ring in High Country News)

from thirdpartywatch.com:
Eric Dondero Says:
July 24th, 2006 at 10:18 am

So much to respond to here… My first comment is to the gentleman who suggested that the Libertarians join the GOP "en masse" and form a distinct wing within the Party. As the guy who founded the Republican Liberty Caucus in 1990, let me assure you, that WE'VE ALREADY JOINED THE GOP EN MASSE.

At the 1989 Libertarian Party National Convention in Philadelphia, there was a purge of sorts. All the "Ron Paul wing" Realists in the LP were basically thrown out by the Bergland/Emerling faction. We wanted to move the Party into the Mainstream, concentrate on elections and campaigns, and not just fundraising gimmicks.

Over the next couple of years, slowly but surely, most of us moved to the GOP. I was the first to leave. In fact, I publicly declared that I was "turning Republican," right after Michael Emerling "Cloud" purged me.

LP Natcommers Cliff Thies, and Mike Holmes soon followed. Then followed other LP stalwarts like Alan Turin, and scores of others.

I started the RLC, and all the disgruntled ex-LPers rallied around the group.

What's happened since?

Over 20 libertarians, most formerly associated with the Libertarian Party have won elections to State Legislatures around the Nation. Folks like Greg Kaza (former Ed Clark for President Campaigner) and Leon Drolet (friend of the MI LP) in Michigan. Duncan Scott (fmr. Libertarian Party official) in New Mexico. Penn Pfiffner in Colorado (fmr. LP State Chair). Ken Lindell (fmr. 2-year ME LP member) in Maine. Toby Nixon in Washington State (fmr. 20-year GA LP member). Vic Kohring in Alaska (friend of the AK LP). And scores of others.

What else?

The RLC was largely influential in getting the former Libertarian Party Presidential candidate Ron Paul, first to switch back to the GOP, then to win a seat in the US Congress. The RLC also helped to elect scores of other Congressmen.

The bottom line; The Republican Liberty Caucus is simply proven itself to be the very most effective organization ever for libertarians in the political world. You could argue Cato has proven to be far more effective overall than the RLC, particularly in the Policy area. But in the world of libertarian politics, the RLC is King.
Dondero has been, all summer, a vehement proponent of the Rich initiatives online and in letters-to-the-editor. He was, at one time, Senior Aide to Congressman (and 1988 LP Presidential candidate) Ron Paul. But, his testimony should be taken, perhaps, with a grain of salt (see: http://bostontea.us/node/71#comment-345 )

Duncan Scott IS still listed on the Republican Liberty Caucus website on the advisory board as an "emeritus" member for New Mexico.

(Other board members include the late Idaho congresswoman Helen Chenoweth. See below under the Mountain States Legal Foundation details as to her lateness.)

How he got there is part of the story.

Scott worked for the new New Mexico Attorney General for about a year. In 1988, he returned to private practice in Albuquerque.

In Albuquerque in 1989, Duncan Scott began working on citywide ballot initiatives, including a term limits measure (that passed.) And as an attorney working pro bono, he represented the measure in court, winning at the district level, and then seeing term limits overturned in the New Mexico appellate courts.

By 1992, he had built up enough of a political base that he ran in the Republican primary, defeating Les Houston, the Senate Minority leader, a longtime fixture in New Mexico politics.*

[*NOTE: I lived in New Mexico from 1989 to 1993, and remember it well. I worked in 1989 for the New Mexico State Highway and Transportation Department's Legal Office as a Legal Secretary. The atmosphere for Republican appointees in the heavily-featherbedded-Democratic state bureaucracy made being a Republican a very tough thing to be. I say that as one registered "Democratic" at the time. - HW]

While in the New Mexico State Senate, Scott made a rather large media splash.
From the Santa Fe THE NEW MEXICAN
Monday 3/6/95
by Mark Oswald
column, Capitol Chronicle
[Summing up the two-month '95 New Mexico legislative session]:

During discussion by the Senate of a serious piece of legislation concerning the psychology profession last week, Sen. Duncan Scott, R-Albuquerque, proposed an amendment. It says:

"When a psychologist or psychiatrist testifies during a defendant's competency hearing, the psychologist or psychiatrist shall wear a cone-shaped hat that is not less than 2 feet tall. The surface of the hat shall be imprinted with stars and lightning bolts.

"Additionally, a psychologist or psychiatrist shall be required to don a white beard that is not less than 18 inches in length, and shall punctuate crucial elements of his testimony by stabbing the air with a wand. Whenever a psychologist or psychiatrist provides expert testimony regarding the defendant's competency, the bailiff shall contemporaneously dim the courtroom lights and administer two strikes to a Chinese gong."

Usually, anything proposed by Scott - whose hard-core conservatism is like cod liver oil for the Senate's Democratic majority - goes nowhere. But his wizard-hat amendment was warmly received and passed by a voice vote. It is now part of Sen. Richard Romero's psychologist bill, as the measure moves to the House.
The moment faded into internet obscurity. The amendment died in the New Mexico House. But, sometime during his Senate membership, Scott joined the Republican Liberty Caucus. And he did something that would prove more substantive, even if it was much less overt:

Duncan Scott formed and remains president of an entity called "Coalition for a Citizen's Legislature" in the last year of his senate term, 1995. He remains the President to the present day.

From Guidestar:
PO BOX 587

  • This organization is a 501(c)(4) Civic Leagues and Social Welfare Organizations
  • This organization is not required to file an annual return with the IRS because its income is less than $25,000.
  • Contributions are not deductible, as provided by law.
Now, let's follow Duncan Scott and the Howie Rich groups from there. Here is what Scott has done since then:

Of 1996, it was reported:
The Capital Eye
January 15, 1997

Special Interests Hiding Behind "Grassroot" Ballot Items
by Stephanie Limb

A record 91 initiatives were on the November 1996 state ballots ... For example, the Washington [State] Dentists Association was accused of buying the right to put its agenda on the 1994 ballot by paying signature gatherers $160,000. The dentists argued that the initiative process provided the only fair opportunity to make their arguments because their competitor -- the dentists association -- enjoys close political and financial ties to the state legislature.

Similarly, in Nebraska, proponents of an initiative to limit lawmakers' terms in office spent $139,000 on signature gathering. Except for one $2,000 contribution by a deceased resident's estate, the money came from organized out-of-state interests: $102,000 from the U.S. Term Limits, $20,000 from Americans for Term Limits, and $15,000 from the Coalition for a Citizens Legislature, David Martin reported in Political Finance and Lobby Reporter....
There you go: Coalition for a Citizens Legislature; President: Duncan Scott.

In 1997, Scott joined the Mountain States Legal Foundation, a "charitable" organization that sues on behalf of destitute and homeless mining, oil and timber companies, et al. Founded by James Watt* [*"We will mine more, drill more, cut more timber"], it is probably best known for its ten year battle to disallow the creation of the Grand Staircase of the Escalante National Monument in southern Utah.

Helen Chenoweth was a member of the board until the recent tragedy:
Oct 2, 2006 07:57 PM

CARSON CITY (AP) -- Helen Chenoweth-Hage, a conservative Republican firebrand who served three terms as an Idaho congresswoman, was killed Monday when thrown from a car that overturned on an isolated central Nevada highway.
Another prominent member of the Mountain States Legal Foundation was Gale Norton from 1979-83, now Bush's Secretary of the Interior, from Colorado. Founded in 1976, it kind of died out in the mid-80s, and was revitalized by grants from a who's who of right-wing foundations beginning in 1995. (See Media Transparency for details. )

In 1998:

Scott's Albuquerque Coalition for a Citizens Legislature was heavily involved financially in at least two ballot measure fights in Idaho and California. (These are by no means ALL the states, merely some of them):

Secretary of State, Idaho. Campaign & Contribution reports online:

Idaho, 1998 Term Limits initiative

11/02/98 50,000.00
Coalition for A Citizen Legislature*
POB 587
Albuquerque NM 87103
[*The contribution was, evidently a direct media buy from a Missouri ad agency, according to the Idaho Expenditures report:
11/02/98 50,000.00
Coalition for a Citizen Legislature
Thompson Communications
Marshfield MO
Purpose: advertising]

01/21/98 10,000.00
Coalition for a Citizen Legislature Inc
PO Box 587
Albuquerque NM 87103
And, in California, from the Secretary of State's online records [Note, by now you OUGHT to know which of these groups are Howard Rich & Friends entities -- HW]:

California Citizens for Term Limits
ID# 960588
(Terminated 1/13/98)


Under $10,000
$ 29,150

$10,000 or more
$ 372,498

Itemized contributions of $10,000 or more:

Americans for Limited Terms

Coalition for a Citizens Legislature

Term Limits Leadership Council

U.S. Term Limits

$ 401,648

No committees identified
And the winner was ...
State of California, June 2, 1998 Primary
Proposition 225 - Limiting Congressional Terms.
Proposed Constitutional Amendment.
Initiative Statute. Put on the Ballot by Petition Signatures.

2,689,045 / 52.9% Yes votes
2,395,338 / 47.1% No votes
It won.

And, in 1998, Duncan Scott had time to join the Board(s) of the National Right To Work and the NRTW Legal Foundation. He's the Vice President of one of the Boards. But we have dealt with this at length, elsewhere. (Part 22: Working the Airwaves)

He also had time to join the Legal Advisory Board of the Initiative and Referendum Institute. In a funny little bit of "trivial pursuit" ephemera, it turns out that the Lincoln, Nebraska lawyer, who incorporated Wisconsin-resident Leslie Graves' "Renewal Voter Outreach" group in Nebraska, Former State Tax Commissioner John W. Boehm*, is ALSO on that I&R Legal Advisory Board. Small world.

[* See Part VIIb, "America At Its Worst"

and ...

No. 99-929. Argued November 6, 2000-Decided February 28, 2001.

... Briefs of amici curiae urging reversal were filed for the State of Nebraska by Don Stenberg, Attorney General, and L. Steven Grasz, Deputy Attorney General; for the Initiative and Referendum Institute by Patrick T. O'Brien and John M. Boehm ....
Boehm's name and address for this case are ALSO at the bottom of the page on the amicus curiae brief.

Or, finally, from the official 2000 Arizona Voter's Pamphlet:
Initiative and Referendum Institute Opposes Proposition 102


M. Dane Waters, President, Initiative & Referendum Institute,
Washington, D.C.

John Boehm, General Counsel, Initiative & Referendum Institute,
Lincoln, NE.

Paid for by Initiative & Referendum Institute]
In 1999 and 2000, Duncan Scott joined two groups that his former employer, Hal Stratton, had formed. One was "Lawyers for Bush." The other was "The Rio Grande Foundation," which Scott joined at its founding in 1999. RGF was a "free market" think tank, spending a lot of time on "school choice," "tax relief" and other favorite crypto-libertarian objectives.

In 2000, as a member of the "Lawyers for Bush" batch, Duncan Scott filed motions to impound the New Mexico ballots for the Bush campaign. In 2002, Bush appointed Hal Stratton Chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. (Duncan Scott doesn't seem to have been offered any GOP "thankyou" employment).

And, in 2000 and 2001, he gave his old Washington D.C. co-worker Dennis Rehberg $500 for his successful congressional campaign -- after the election: $250 on Nov 15 and $250 on April 12, 2001, after Rehberg had been sworn in.

In 2002, taxexemptworld.com reports that CCL was in hibernation or suspended animation:
PO BOX 587
ALBUQUERQUE, NM 87103-0587
Social Welfare Organization
$0 Assets
$0 Expenditures
Date filed: 12/2002
In 2004, US Term Limits ran two campaigns defending their term limits initiatives of the 1990s. One was run in Arkansas by Paul Jacob's brother, Tim:
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
$640,000 spent on campaign
Saturday, December 4, 2004

In the reports, filed Thursday, Citizens in Charge is listed as having financed the bulk of the campaign, with spending of $611,607.

Contributors listed included the national organization U.S. Term Limits, which, according to the report, contributed $175,000. Another $147,000 came from a group called Americans for Limited Government.

Tim Jacob, whose brother Paul is president of Citizens in Charge, said it was important to term-limits advocates nationwide to defeat the measure.
And the other Term Limits campaign, in Montana, was run by Duncan Scott. Here are his contributors (from followthemoney.org):
Total Money Raised: $88,543
[note: Howard Rich associates account for 97.70% of all funds]
Position: CON CI-42 [easing Term Limits Law]
Election Cycle: 2004
Location: Montana

Top Contributors

Amount $64,744
% of Total 73.12%

Amount $18,161
% of Total 20.51%

Amount $3,600
% of Total 4.07%
And, that brings us up to the 2006 news.
Land-use initiative makes November ballot
Gregory Hahn
The Idaho Statesman

Idaho voters have another question to answer in November.

An initiative to change the state's eminent domain and "regulatory takings" laws qualified for the ballot Wednesday with 49,053 signatures - more than the 47,881 required by law. Pushed by conservative advocate Laird Maxwell of Boise, the initiative would restrict governments from making decisions that lower a property's value without "just compensation" to the landowner.

"We now are gearing up for the campaign to get it passed in November," Maxwell said.


Maxwell used $330,000 from two out-of-state groups to pay signature-gatherers to meet the state's requirements. The money came from New York term-limits and property rights supporter Howard Rich and from "America at its Best," a group based in the Montana law office of Duncan Scott, a former Republican state senator from New Mexico. Maxwell is the chairman of that group....
Or this, from The Missoula (Montana) Independent:
by Paul Peters
Issue Date 8/3/2006

When I walk into Duncan Scott's Kalispell law office, I'm surprised to hear a live Grateful Dead show coming from the speakers on his computer.

Turns out Scott, who looks similar to Gene Hackman circa 1980, was at the 1974 Missoula Dead show he's listening to.

It seems strange for a man who has a bullet-riddled John Kerry sign on his door, confesses to be somewhat of a gun nut and who, through an organization called America at its Best (AAIB), steers hundreds of thousands of dollars toward conservative ballot initiatives.

Early this year, Scott became part of AAIB's new board of directors, helping to take it from being a small group that focused on Virginia-specific issues to one with national objectives. The group is registered as a nonprofit, but in the 501 (c) 4 category. Unlike a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit, (c) 4s do not have to reveal funding sources, as they are not tax-exempt.

This year, AAIB has made $100,000 donations to ballot initiatives in Nebraska, Idaho and Michigan, and $190,000 in Missouri. The money has been used to fund signature-gathering efforts. [NOTE: these numbers are very low, compared to later contribution totals. This was early in the petitioning season - HW]


Scott didn't seek a second term in New Mexico. He says, "I decided I could better serve conservative causes by suing liberals rather than serving with them."


Now, with AAIB, he has moved behind the scenes, to the money side of initiatives. So far, he notes, out of five initiative campaigns he has worked on in the past, all have made it onto a ballot, and four have passed.

"That's something I'm proud of," he says.
Proud, perhaps, but not exactly forthcoming:
Published Tuesday
August 29, 2006

The 'Not me' problem

... When [reporters] Aksamit and Goodsell asked how the measure originated and why Nebraska was chosen for it, neither the Omaha couple who filed the legal papers for it nor a host of out-of-state activists could supply the answers. When asked "Were you the one?" in regard to a range of key matters, all the players in this peculiar drama provided the same unsatisfactory response.

"Not me," said the two Omahans. "Not me," said the deep-pocketed backers in Chicago. "Not me," said the interest groups in New York and Virginia. "Not me," said the Michigan and California lawyers who drafted the ballot language. "Not me," said the Wisconsin woman who ran the petition-collection efforts. "Not me," said the activist who heads a Montana-based group that served as the financial conduit for the petition drive....
Of course, the writing makes it hard to tell whether they mean Idahoan Laird Maxwell, or Montanan Duncan Scott. But it doesn't really matter:
JULY 5, 2006

Idaho's Measure, New York's Money


Except for $50 donated by Maxwell, the entire budget for This House is My House (sic) came from out of state, according to reports from the Idaho Secretary of State. $100,000 came from Montana-based America At Its Best. Another $237,000 came from the New York-based Fund for Democracy, headed by Howard Rich, a libertarian activist and major donor.

Like Duncan Scott, Rich spends his money nationwide, funding libertarian candidates and initiatives across the country....
And, finally:
Outside Funds Fueled Petitions
Omaha World-Herald
August 10, 2006

LINCOLN - A group with ties to national anti-tax activists spent nearly $1.7 million gathering signatures on a pair of petition drives in Nebraska.

America at Its Best, which lists its address as a post office box in Kalispell, Mont., donated all but $1,998 of the $861,998 contributed to a petition drive to limit state spending.

The group provided all of the funding - $835,000 - for a separate petition that would ban the withholding of food and water from patients, according to campaign finance reports filed with the Nebraska Accountability and Disclosure Commission....
And so it goes.

To all outward appearances, Duncan Scott is a good Republican. He's the chair of the Flathead County Republican Party, and president of the Glacier Country Pachyderm Club which meets in the Bulldog Inn on the 3rd Friday of each month at high noon in Kalispell, Montana. He practices law just outside of Glacier National Park. But Duncan Scott has a secret life.

And, he's not alone.


[EXTRA SPECIAL BONUS: If you've read the series, take a gander at http://www.citizensincharge.org/main/project/staff.php . It's priceless, if politically incestuous.]

18 October 2006

Unlimited Terms of Endearment Part XXIV: The Secret Life of Duncan Scott (ii.)

(part the second) North to Alaska

"Serving the Sun Valley, Idaho resort communities," The Idaho Mountain Express -- "Idaho's largest twice weekly newspaper" -- published this story today:
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
Idaho initiative receives nationwide funding
Libertarian foundations support Proposition 2

Express Staff Writer

... This House Is MY Home has received $110,000 from America At Its Best, which, according to the financial disclosure report, is based in Kalispell, Mont. However, This House Is MY Home Chairman Laird Maxwell said he chairs that organization as well. Various media stories have named [Howard] Rich as a primary funding source for America At Its Best. Maxwell said Rich had provided seed money to the organization, but he said he was uncertain whether he was still a contributor....
That Kalispell, Montana address of "America At Its Best" is the law office of Duncan Scott, who also sent $870,000 to Nebraska (at last count) for a pair of initiatives, neither of which were "Eminent Domain/Takings" initiatives.

It's all rather complicated. So we'll just keep following Duncan Scott, pausing only to note that Laird Maxwell's "seed money" from Howard Rich came to something on the order of, well ... here's the latest figures hot off the Idaho Secretary of State's office website:
America At It's Best (sic)
PO Box 1678 Kalispell MT 59903

America At It's Best (sic)
PO Box 1678 Kalispell MT 59903

Fund for Democracy*
73 Spring St Ste 406
New York NY 10012

[*The San Francisco Chronicle, Oct 5, 2006:

(California) Donations included ... $1.5 million from (Howard) Rich's Fund for Democracy, which he describes simply as "a trust." The organization is not incorporated and has no publicly stated aim. ]

Fund for Democracy
73 Spring St Ste 406
New York NY 10012

Fund for Democracy
73 Spring St Ste 406
New York NY 10012

Fund for Democracy
73 Spring St Ste 406
New York NY 10012

Fund for Democracy
73 Spring St Ste 406
New York NY 10012

Fund for Democracy
73 Spring St Ste 406
New York NY 10012

Maxwell, Laird
702 W Hays Ste 16 Boise ID
And that's it. [I assume that the error of It's (it is) as opposed to "Its" (a possessive form of 'It') was the a clerical error in the SOS's office. Clearly it's not "America At It Is Best." It's nonsensical in its application, grammatically.] Onward:

When we strip away the masks, "America At It's Best" (sic) is Idaho's Laird Maxwell and Montana's Duncan Scott. (How it is that Montana AAIB contributes to Idaho's "This House is MY Home," when Idaho's Laird Maxwell is the chairman of AAIB is a mystery no one has quite yet made sense of).

The "Fund For Democracy" is Howie Rich. And Laird Maxwell even makes a $50 cameo as the crusty, homespun Idahoan fighting to empower the "people," as Rich's operatives in every state claim. Laird's wife Lori Maxwell (nee Klein) is quoted mouthing standard Richian rhetoric this week by the Center for Public Integrity:
Arizona's Million-Dollar Man
Pro-207 forces rake in more money from the Howard Rich machine

by jim morris
Published: October 11, 2006

... Lori Klein, the executive director of Arizona HOPE, says that there is nothing nefarious or surprising about the hefty out-of-state donations.

"Many businesspeople [in Arizona] were afraid to contribute to us, even though they believe in property rights, because of the draconian retaliation they would experience from the cities," Klein says. "Government is just so entrenched in the private affairs of the business on one level or another - through regulation or licensing or zoning - that the guys with money don't want to go up against the powers that be..."
We know that the relationship between Laird Maxwell and Lori Klein is now a marital relation. The exact nature of the relationship between Laird Maxwell, Howie Rich and Duncan Scott isn't known. What is known follows.


Dick Randolph had been, in Murray Rothbard's words in the 1982 Libertarian FORUM, "the jewel in the LP diadem ever since he won his seat in the State House from Fairbanks."

In 1982 -- as chronicled elsewhere -- Randolph ran for Governor of Alaska as a Libertarian and lost. Randolph's fellow Libertarian, a professional hunting guide named Ken Fanning, had been elected in 1980. In 1982, Fanning lost his bid for re-election, too. In 1984, Andre Marrou was elected, returning the LP to the Alaska statehouse in Juneau.

If Randolph had been the jewel, then Alaska was the crown. They'd been the most successful, had elected the largest number of Libertarians, and, they were making quite a lot of money fundraising.

But, in 1983, the Libertarian Party of Alaska decided to get serious, and hired an executive director, possibly the first hired by any state LP in the USA.

In a telephone interview with Andre Marrou, the 1992 LP presidential candidate recalled the political climate at the time:

Marrou remembered Randolph's gubernatorial run in 1982. Eric O'Keefe came up there. And he remembers meeting Ken Guida, confirming Rothbard's report in the Nov-Dec 1982 Libertarian Forum.
In early summer, Randolph, for some curious reason, turned his entire campaign over to the Crane Machine, lock, stock, and barrel -- and to Eastern preppie carpetbaggers at that. After offering the job to several others and having it
turned down, the Crane Machine sent Kent Guida -- fresh from his only political experience as third-place loser in a three-person race for national chair in 1981 -- to Alaska as campaign manager (?!) for Randolph. Other Craniacs poured up there, including Anita Anderson and Paul Beckner, and Ed Crane himself and the Riches were much in evidence. Crane and his hireling Chris Hocker were made co-finance directors of the Randolph campaign in the lower 48. And when Craniac Eric O'Keefe was kicked out of his job as National Director of the LP in August, he was immediately trundled up to Alaska to help run the show....
"It was the next year [1983] Dick Randolph called me up," Marrou says. Randolph said "We want to have a full time executive director for the [Alaska Libertarian] party."

"Randolph nominated Duncan Scott. I didn't know him." At the time, Marrou was the state LP officer in charge of elections. Duncan Scott was hired as the Alaskan LP state executive director, on salary. And there was plenty of money for that salary.

The LP had been quite successful in raffling off airplanes at $20 per ticket. If they sold all their raffle tickets, they would collect $60,000 for a $10,000 airplane, Marrou recalls. They also put pull-tabs in the bars. "But they didn't bring in as much as the airplanes."

He recalls Duncan Scott in 1983: "Very good executive director of the [Libertarian] party. [Alaska's LP] was the only party with paid employee. Duncan Scott was good at managing, good at fundraising, etc." Scott was, according to Marrou, "Fairly thin; he wasn't tall, about 5'10" Sharp, college graduate; he had a law degree. I respected him a lot."

In 1983 and 1984, Duncan Scott was also the director of something called "Alaskans for a Competitive Economy, Inc." which, Marrou explains, was the accounting mechanism for a petition drive and ballot measure from the Libertarian Party.

Unlike Scott's 1982 experience in Montana, the Alaskan initiative was successful. "We eliminated 52 pages of regulations, and abolished the Alaska Transportation Commission," Marrou says, adding, "I was one of the three who incorporated ['Alaskans for a Competitive Economy']."

During this period, "Duncan and Dick were palling around a lot together." Randolph, an experienced pilot, would fly Scott to Randolph's hunting lodge on Clark Lake. By contrast, Marrou says he was never invited to the hunting lodge.

But, in September of 1983, the National Convention was held in New York City....


We pick up our tale at the 1983 National Libertarian Party convention in New York City, where ten years earlier, Andrea Millen and Howard Rich had been elected the Chair and Vice Chair, respectively, at the founding of the New York Free Libertarian Party in 1973.

In 1976, the NY FLP suffered a schism, [ Libertarian Forum, April 1976 ]:
The big libertarian political news from New York is the defection from the Free Libertarian Party of nine of its leading members, including four of its former candidates for office, and two of its former chairmen. Of the nine, three have resigned from the FLP outright (Childs, Millen, and Rothbard), while the other six remain, in the words of the joint statement of the nine published below, alienated, but continuing to do what they can "for our cause ... on their own." All of them have "disengaged" from the FLP.

Walter Block
Andrea Millen [NOTE: later, Andrea Millen Rich]
Murray N. Rothbard
Roy Childs
Ralph Raico
Jerry Tuccille
Gary Greenberg
Howard Rich [NOTE: married Andrea Millen]
Fran Youngstein [emphasis added- HW]
After that, explains Melinda Pillsbury-Foster, a delegate to the 1983 National Convention, the Southern California Libertarian Party Chair and Los Angeles County Party Chair, "They all left the New York party," but the 'disengagers' remained involved at the national level.

It is well to keep that walkout in mind, along with the Bozeman, Montana walkout in the summer 1983: when Eric O'Keefe was fired, preceded by a massive parliamentary fireworks display.

The New York National LP Convention of 1983 was eagerly anticipated. The arc of the party was on the rise. (from the Libertarian Party's "history" webpage)
First national convention held in June in Denver, Colorado. John Hospers, a philosophy professor at the University of Southern California, is nominated as presidential candidate. LP vice presidential candidate Tonie Nathan becomes the first woman in U.S. history to receive an electoral vote.

Ed Clark receives 5% of the vote in his race for Governor of California.

Dick Randolph of Alaska becomes the first elected Libertarian state legislator.

Presidential nominating convention held in Los Angeles. Ed Clark and David Koch named as presidential and vice presidential candidates.

Permanent ballot status achieved in California as more than 80,000 voters register Libertarian.

Ed Clark appears on the ballot in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam, and receives almost one million votes. His campaign runs extensive national television ads and offers many Americans their first look at what the LP has to offer. Many in the media recognize the LP for the first time as a serious political force.

Dick Randolph is re-elected to Alaska state legislature. Ken Fanning, also running as a Libertarian, is elected to Alaska legislature.

Louisiana congressional candidate James Agnew receives 23% of the vote. Alaska gubernatorial candidate Dick Randolph receives 15% of the vote. Arizona gubernatorial candidate Sam Steiger receives 5% of the vote.
The 1983 Convention had started out looking like a glorious new day for the Party. They would nominate their 2004 Presidential ticket. And then bad things started to happen:

It was an odd week to begin with. The presidential "campaign" within the party had begun in early 1983.

Murray Rothbard writes in the February 1983 Libertarian Review:
I bring tidings of great joy: We have a presidential candidate.

His name is Gene Burns, of Orlando, Florida. At the last NatCom meeting at Orlando, on December 4-5, I first met Gene Burns by appearing on his radio talk show. I was impressed by the astuteness of his questions and his obvious sympathy with and knowledge of libertarianism. Then, at the banquet Saturday night, Gene delivered a magnificent, stem-winding speech that brought the entire audience to its feet.

Jocularly, without realizing how prophetic we were, some of us nudged each other and said, "Hey, what about him as a Presidential candidate?" And now, that dream has come true.
But in the week preceding the LP Convention Burns unexpectedly withdrew from the race.
It wasn't supposed to be an exciting convention. Since January, radio talk show host Gene Burns of Orlando, Florida had been campaigning hard for the Presidential nomination. No one was in the field to oppose him. The desperate Crane Machine, trying hard for a "big name" candidate, sought for months to induce Republican Representative Ron Paul to run against Burns, but without success....
Then Burns dropped the bombshell [LF, Sept/Oct 83, page 2.]:
The peaceful lull, and all hopes for a serene convention, ended abruptly on Thursday, August 25, when I and a few others received a lengthy mailgram from Gene Burns announcing his withdrawal from the race, this announcement coming a mere four days before the convention. Burns made the mailgram public that afternoon, declaring that not enough funds had been raised for his race. Following a pattern that he had established in early and mid-June, Burns, when faced with a financial problem, dropped out of the race without consulting any of his LP friends and supporters, then promptly made himself incommunicado for many days, going fishing, and answering no calls.
Political maneuvering began in earnest, with three factions arising within the LP: [p. 6]
[Floor leader for the successful nominee, Dave Bergland] Emil Franzi, in his typically perceptive way, has engaged in an incisive sociological class analysis of the composition of the Libertarian Party. "There are three groups in the Party," he points out, "the preppies, the rednecks and the hippies." The "preppies" or would-be aspiring preppies are the Crane Machine, the epitome of the three-piece suit Eastern Establishment; the "hippies" are the Radical Caucus, and the "rednecks" are the Alicia Clark supporters of 1981. There is not, of course, a 1-to-1 correlation here, but the broad breakdown provides a remarkably accurate fit of the three factions. The Crane Machine is the "respectable" preppie elite, the opportunistic seekers after power; the rednecks are the unpretentious populist voters, the people of the heartland of America....
For a time, Tonie Nathan, the 1972 Vice Presidential candidate (and a featured speaker at this year's 2006 National Libertarian Convention) was the "Defense Caucus" candidate. She withdrew early on, and supporters went to the Dave Bergland camp and the Earl Ravenal camp (the "Crane Machine" candidate).

[p. 9]
The Crane Machine had three aces up its sleeve at this convention ... The second, which appeared toward the end of the week, was the very visible and imposing appearance of multi-millionaire David Koch. Koch, moving around the delegations with Randolph and MacBride, laid it on the line: If Ravenal were nominated, he was prepared to give $300,000 to the Party for ballot drives. And what this "Unity" spokesman was asked, "if Bergland is nominated Would you, in the name of unity, then contribute an equal amount to ballot drives" "Certainly not," David Koch replied, "I only contribute to first-class candidates."
Koch had run in 1980 as the Vice Presidential candidate after pledging to spend $500,000 on the campaign. But this time the LP wasn't buying.

When, after a long series of tough floor battles, Bergland was nominated, the Crane Machine got up and walked out of the convention.

Tonie Nathan remembers that it was odd. "We were supposed to have a dinner that night." But none of those who walked out returned. Except for one, Nathan says. "Howie Rich came to the dinner."

Melinda Pillsbury-Foster remembers, "He[Duncan Scott]just went 'poof.' They all went 'poof.' They were all just GONE." The Craniacs had left the convention, but until the dinner that Saturday night, September 3, 1983, no one else in the LP realized it. And, for the most part, the "Craniacs" never returned again.

As has been noted in previous reports, the "Crane Machine" includes most of the major players in the "Howie Rich & Friends" group that have been the subject of this entire series. [see: "The Crane Machine Revealed"]

Add to that group that walked out of the LP Convention Duncan Scott. Tonie Nathan remembers that Scott was there, but can't recall if he was one of the group that walked out. Pillsbury-Foster is sure: "Yes, he was there, and yes, he was one of those who walked out." But he did not stand out, which Nathan confirms.

Duncan Scott returned to Alaska, still was running the ballot measure campaign for the Libertarian Party and the "Alaskans for a Competitive Economy, Inc." (ACE) And, still the Executive Director of the Alaskan LP, Duncan Scott led that 1984 campaign -- a successful year for the LP. Andre Marrou was elected to the Alaskan state house, and the ballot measure passed. Bergland's campaign didn't fare very well, as the Crane wing of the party sat out the presidential campaign.

[NOTE: according to one eyewitness, Howie Rich and his brother-in-law, Paul Jacob, worked in Connecticut under assumed names. Jacob, former Chair of the Arkansas Libertarian Party, had gone underground after his indictment on draft resistance charges on 23 September, 1982. Jacob was later arrested and tried, on July 1-2, 1985, offering the Libertarian defense the draft is a form of slavery and by resisting he remained free. He was found guilty, sentenced to five years -- the maximum -- with 4 ½ suspended. He spent the next several months as a guest of the U.S. Government -- HW]

But, even with the losses of 1982, Alaska remained the "jewel" in the LP diadem.

And then, one day in March of 1985, Andre Marrou called Dick Randolph. Marrou had a long-term plan for the Alaskan party -- part of which was for Randolph to move up to the Alaskan Senate, combined with a number of other moves, culminating in a Libertarian ticket for Governor and Lt. Governor. "Dick shot me down," saying that "the Libertarian party was dead, etc. etc." Marrou recounts.

And then, a short time later, with rumors flying about a Randolph Republican bid for governor, "I called Dick in March '85," to ask Randolph if the rumors were true. "Dick said, 'I'm not going to do that [jump to the GOP]. I'm a dedicated Libertarian'." But two weeks later, Dick Randolph announced that he was moving to the Republican party to run for governor.

"He went on statewide radio and announced that the Libertarian Party was dead." Marrou was incensed. "Dick broke his word to me. I asked specifically if he was going to do this. He said 'no'."

I located the secretary of the Randolph campaign in 1986 (she lists her involvement as from 1985 to 1986, so the campaign was just under way when Marrou called Randolph in March of '85.) Her name is Lillian Simmons, she was a legal secretary at the time and she is currently running for Texas House District 52 as the Libertarian candidate. She writes:
In 1985 I worked as a secretary at the campaign of Republican Dick Randolph for Governor of Alaska. Dick Randolph had served in the Alaska Legislature as a Libertarian previously, and he had sponsored and passed the Alaskan Dividend. This is the Alaskan reverse income tax. This governor's race was a primary race with thirteen Republican candidates. Dick Randolph ended up in third place. It was a high third place.
In a telephone interview last week, I asked Ms. Simmons whether she knew Duncan Scott during the Randolph for Governor campaign in 1985-6.

"Oh yes. He ran the campaign," she says. "He was a very nice man."

Foster-Pillsbury says that there has been a lot of speculation that Duncan Scott talked Dick Randolph into returning to the GOP. When told of this speculation Marrou said that he didn't know, but that it was "entirely possible," adding, "I never would have thought Duncan Scott or Dick Randolph would do it."

This caused Marrou quite a problem in his re-election campaign. Everywhere he went, he recalls, the local media asked him about Randolph's defection, and his announcement of the death of the LP. Marrou was not re-elected.

As for Randolph? "He was roundly defeated. That ended our unbroken string of victories. He made big mistake in running for governor. He only got 13% in primary. Last I ever heard from Dick, was in 1985, he was building a boat he was going to live on in the Chena River."

In 1998, Dick Randolph switched his party membership back from the GOP to the Libertarian Party.

Meantime -- now, by all appearances, a good Republican -- Duncan Scott moved to New Mexico, to take a job as Assistant Attorney General in the office of the new Republican Attorney General of New Mexico, Hal Stratton.

But Scheherazade perceived the coming of the dawn and fell silent.

NEXT: The CONCLUSION -- Howie and Duncan and Money, Oh My!


17 October 2006

Diapers Remain A Growth Industry

Well, you've no doubt heard the news. I stayed up for it, and here's the screen capture of that blessed moment. www.census.gov

Needed: baby wipes

Here's some population data (dates are approx):
U.S. population hit 200 million in 1967

1790: The first U.S. census 4 million

1820: 10 million

1880: 50 million

1920: 100 million

1950: 150 million

1970: 200 million

1990: 250 million

2006: 300 million
That's a hundredfold increase in population from the Declaration of Independence.

If you were born in 1950, US population has just doubled. If you were born in 1920, US population has just tripled. If you were born in 1910, world population has more than tripled:

1.8 billion to 6.55 billion.

Better get used to changing diapers.