If the allegations are true, then I must say that I am shocked–shocked!–that a conservative book publisher would underpay its authors. Why, that would be like a conservative clothing manufacturer underpaying the workers who sew the shirts and pants. Never happen! From the New York Times (“Conservative Authors Sue Publisher,” by Motoko Rich):
Five authors have sued the parent company of Regnery Publishing, a Washington imprint of conservative books, charging that the company deprives its writers of royalties by selling their books at a steep discount to book clubs and other organizations owned by the same parent company.
In a suit filed in United States District Court in Washington yesterday, the authors Jerome R. Corsi, Bill Gertz, Lt. Col. Robert (Buzz) Patterson, Joel Mowbray and Richard Miniter state that Eagle Publishing, which owns Regnery, "orchestrates and participates in a fraudulent, deceptively concealed and self-dealing scheme to divert book sales away from retail outlets and to wholly owned subsidiary organizations within the Eagle conglomerate."
Miniter, author of Shadow War: The Untold Story of How Bush Is Winning the War on Terror, has an interesting take:
"It suddenly occurred to us that Regnery is making collectively jillions of dollars off of us and paying us a pittance." He added: "Why is Regnery acting like a Marxist cartoon of a capitalist company?"
Um, I’m not a Marxist, but I thought the general idea there was to share the wealth. And that the general idea of capitalism was that the wealth rises to the top. Maybe the plaintiffs should contact Haymarket Books and ask about their profit-sharing plan?