- The Washington Times - Sunday, January 18, 2009


Christopher Cox left his position as chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission Jan. 16. At the same time his career of public service, which began in the Reagan White House and continued as a member of Congress from California, had its first interruption in almost 23 years.

Chris has been controversial at the SEC. People on both the left and the right have been critical of him, and surely it cannot be denied that much has gone wrong with the financial markets during his time at the SEC. I predict, when the story is fully known, that the critics will be proven wrong.

I believe this for many reasons, including personal knowledge of him for more than two decades. His service in Congress was driven by a love of liberty and law. A graduate of Harvard Law and of Harvard Business School, he knows very much about both law and commerce. Mr. Cox has a particular interest in how they relate, and specifically in how law can support liberty. He has always stood for low taxes, frugal government and laws that protect property rights. Also, he has favored laws that place responsibility on the owners of property for their use of it.

Mr. Cox has always been keenly interested in national defense. For some years he was a leading force in a project to print English translations of Soviet newspapers, so we could see what that frightful government was saying to its own people.

It is an interesting fact that his job has placed him not quite in, but near, the middle of the government reaction to the financial crisis. One hopes he will tell what he has seen. Knowing him, I expect he may not, but if he does so it will be done modestly, charitably and truly. We will learn something from the tale, if the tale is told.

We should be thankful for the time that Christopher Cox has given his country. We should hope that he will give more.



Hillsdale College

Hillsdale, Mich

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