Sunday 23 August 2020

The corrupted tobacco economist network Part 49. Or the one with a secret network of lawyers. Different people, same dishonesty.

Overview of previous posts here

Lawyers network

As mentioned in the first chapters, the 1984 social cost excise plan did not just aim for an economist in every state, the tobacco industry also wanted to set up a network of lawyers.

In 1986, James Savarese sent Fred Panzer of the Tobacco Institute a very interesting letter

Savarese was paid $11,400 to set up the network and from Savarese's billing, we know the reason the network was created

The members can be found in the appendix (to be published at the end of the blogseries).

Savarese's wrote small remarks next to some of their names,illustrating the layers werevery well aware why they were recruited
  • Anthony Wiener - Tony will be out of the country during August. He was very enthusiastic about the free speech arguments. Harvard J.D., with strong economic emphasis in his teaching and research.
  • George M. Sullivan - George would like to see a legal brief on the subject he is arguing.
  • William Mitchell  - Bill will be in Washington in late August for the American Political Science Association meetings. He would like to go to lunch with us on August 28. I did not make any commitments. 
  • John Bagby - John is a business law professor at Penn State, which is about halfway between Pittsburg and Philadelphia.
  • Professor J[ames].R. Kearl - Jim is Mormon, so he has a problem with most Tobacco Institute issues; however, he says he would probably be comfortable with a 1st Amendment op-ed on the advertising ban.
Savarese charged $3.000 for producing 3 op-eds on the topic of ad bans. With titles like "The censorship nightmare" and "Freedom of speech" should just mean that there should be little doubt the lawyers were libertarians too.

Savarese reported and proves again the industry was rewriting the so-called work of 'independent' academics.

Another document shows Savarese seemed to be less in touch with the lawyers than the economists, a message such as this seems unlikely in the economists network

It may be the use of layers was a one time thing. Neither Google nor the LTDL reveal much more activity than listed here. Whatever happened to the network, in 1989 Savarese forwarded to the Tobacco Institute the letters sent by the lawyers to their local congressman.

We know Marshall A. Leaffer sent a letter to Senator John Glen, probably including his op-ed on a possible tobacco advertisement ban

Philip Morris Network
Another document in the LTDL hints there must have been several networks, not just the one's ran by the Tobacco Institute.

The documents carries the remark "not on Philip Morris List", suggesting there may have existed similar networks to the network described in this paper. This has not been explored.

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