Thursday, March 01, 2012

Pay No Attention to That Man Behind the Curtain

Charles and David Koch have sued the Cato Institute, Kathryn Washburn, the widow of William Niskanen, former President of Cato, and a Director herself and Edward Crane, a shareholder and current President of Cato, essentially for control of the Institute.

Before reaching for the popcorn, a bit of history is useful, which is provided at Politico and in the complaint.  Cato was originally founded in Kansas as the Charles Koch Foundation by Charles Koch, George Pearson, Roger MacBride, Murray Rothbard and Ed Crane.  Rothbard left, Pearson sold his shares back and who knows (RTFR) what happened to MacBride, but David Koch and William Niskanen joined.  Each of the partners has an equal number of shares and there are agreements, which on the face say that if anyone leaves the Institute or the mortal coil, the shares have to be offered back.  Before Nishkanen's death there were four shareholders, Crane, Niskanen and the two Kochs.

Crane and widow Washburn claim (read infra) that the shares were offered back and refused, therefore they pass by Niskanen's will to Washburn, the Institute and the Institute for Justice in equal shares (see the will, Politico appears to have gotten this wrong).  That leaves control of Cato well up in the air.  Eli hopes for a washing of laundry.


Snapple said...

I am not sure that there is anything in the agreement about what happens if someone dies. The wife, Katherine Washburn was a high official in the Interior Dept until recently.

Now she reportedly advises non-profits.

Crane's address on the legal document is wrong. He lives on Juniper Lane, not Jupiter Lane.

I know because I live a stone's-throw away. Figuratively speaking, of course;)

a_ray_in_dilbert_space said...


I refer to billionaire thugs like the Koch Bros as tygoons.

And those who are taken in by their propaganda are of course Kochsuckers.

John said...

And those who implement the brothers' political agenda are Kochroaches

John Puma