Sunday, April 30, 2006

So how did the ultrarich manage to conceal their role in repealing the estate tax?

It's not surprising that the ultrarich should wish to repeal the estate tax. It's impressive how well they were able to conceal their role.
Maybe the Heirs Aren't Apparent - New York Times

THE watchdog group Public Citizen ( and the advocacy group United for a Fair Economy ( issued a report this week saying that 18 superwealthy families are largely responsible for financing the lobbying campaign aimed at repealing the estate tax; the Senate is scheduled to take up repeal next month.

The families, worth $185.5 billion, have financed and coordinated the campaign and have, until now, managed to hide their participation behind the trade associations and business groups they have formed to represent their interests, Public Citizen reported. The families include those behind some of the nation's biggest and best-known companies, like Wal-Mart, E.& J. Gallo Winery, Nordstrom and Koch Industries.
I wonder how many GOP races they funded in the last election? They don't have to bribe anyone directly, they just have to make sure their friends get into the House, Senate and White House.

The interesting question is how they managed to conceal their role so effectively. What else is this group up to that we don't know about? Are there any journalists left outside Salon and the Wall Street Journal? (Hello, NYT, anyone home?) The place to start is to think what else this group would care about, then look for odd infusions of cash, then trace the cash back. For them a $10 million "gift" is chump change. That's enough to buy a bunch of US Senators.

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