Friday, August 26, 2005

Smacked Down: Miller Tastes Defeat On KAPT

The KAPT board decided Thursday to abandon Treasurer Jonathan Miller and his lawsuit over $13.7 million he wants to take from the General Fund to prop up the KAPT program. This move was widely expected.

Instead of supporting Miller's money grab, the board resolved to "work vigorously with the General Assembly to pass legislation that will ensure that all currently held KAPT contracts will be honored when an unfunded liability arises." Contrary to Miller's wishes, this language echoes the sentiments expressed by members of the General Assembly.

In fact, the language of yesterday's resolution was very similar to that of a March 18, 2005 letter sent out by Senate President David Williams to KAPT contract holders which stated "The Kentucky Senate intends to live up to our commitment to the KAPT families."

Miller struck a defiant posture nonetheless, claiming unconvincingly that not only was the board's decision "a symbolic victory" for him, but that President Williams "reversed course and has announced that he supports the rights of KAPT families."

Miller's reputation for petulance is well-deserved. He slipped into name-calling mode in an email to contract holders, labeling Williams "formerly KAPT's most ardent foe."

The only person to ever suggest that the General Assembly wanted to harm contract holders' investments has been Jonathan Miller. Without provocation, Miller has attacked repeatedly the members of the State Senate for seeking to put a cap on Miller's unsustainable scheme. When the Democratic House members became convinced of the necessity for action to stem the tide, he attacked them too.

No one can know how Miller's lawsuit will turn out other than to waste more taxpayer dollars.

Every politician knows the hack's version of the sucker punch. It's called the straw man: accuse your opponent of saying something he didn't say, then attack him for saying it. This is Miller's favorite trick. He does it twice in the same paragraph of his statement on government email to contract holders. He said KAPT families were "attacked as undeserving rich people" and that legislators wanted to "shut down KAPT and force refunds (without interest)." The only person to make these claims has been Miller himself.

And he wants you to elect him Auditor of Public Accounts in 2007. Given his New Liberal Math techniques, I don't think we can afford much more of Mr. Miller.