Letter to the Editor

The Capitol Weekly’s Sept. 15 article (“State contracts with ‘Saddam’s
favorite bank'”) contained omissions and political attacks disguised as
“fact.” The piece falsely reported that Treasurer Angelides refused to
respond to these attacks from a well-known partisan, when in fact he was not
given ample opportunity to respond.

The piece provided a platform for right-wing extremist Frank Gaffney — whom
the Boston Globe reports was “forced out of the Pentagon during the Reagan
years because of his strong opposition to arms control” and who has written
in an internet column that conservative ideologue Grover Norquist supports
“the left’s agenda.” Mr. Gaffney clearly has a political agenda – to
distort Treasurer Angelides’ remarkable record in fighting for corporate
responsibility. In addition, it should be noted that Mr. Gaffney is closely
associated with the Conflict Securities Advisory Group — the company whose
terrorism risk report CalPERS and CalSTRS investment staffs publicly
rejected as providing insufficient information to help the funds screen
their investments for terror links.

Because terrorist groups utilize complex networks that span national
borders, no investment manager — without the guidance of national security
officials — is in a position to authoritatively identify which companies’
activities may pose a risk. Only the federal government is in a position to
bridge this information gap for investors, and Treasurer Angelides has urged
— and will continue to urge — the Bush Administration to do what is right by
investors and our national security in this regard.

Mike Roth
Communications Director, State Treasurer Phil Angelides

Capitol Weekly Responds:

Editor’s Note: Capitol Weekly made a good-faith effort to solicit comment
from the treasurer’s office. Over a two-week period, Capitol Weekly left
three separate messages seeking a response. The treasurer’s office said it
did not receive the voice mails. On the fourth attempt, our reporter reached
an Angelides spokesman, who asked for the questions in writing. That e-mail
was sent, but was misdelivered, due to an error on our part.

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