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May 03, 2009

Jack Kemp dies

Jack Kemp has died. I remember him in his political pomp, the advocate of the supply side revolution. He was rather unfairly maligned it has to be said, for he's one of the few who really got what supply side economics was all about.

It wasn't and isn't purely about marginal tax rates, it isn't all about the Laffer Curve. It is, as it says, about the supply side of the economy. Breaking up AT&T's monopoly was supply side economics for example.

Jack Kemp, the ex-quarterback, congressman, one-time vice-presidential nominee and self-described "bleeding-heart conservative," died Saturday. He was 73.

Kemp died after a lengthy illness, according to spokeswoman Bona Park and Edwin J. Feulner, a longtime friend and former campaign adviser. Park said Kemp died at his home in Bethesda, Md., in the Washington suburbs.

Kemp's office announced in January that he had been diagnosed with an unspecified type of cancer. By then, however, the cancer was in an advanced stage and had spread to several organs, Feulner said. He did not know the origin of the cancer.

This is a good piece on the qualities of the man, which is, at this stage, what we should be concentrating upon of course:

Was there ever a man of such high spirits as Jack Kemp? Reagan was sunny; Kemp was a perpetual solar flare. He had an athlete's energy and an optimist's expectation that all would come out well. He also felt the respect for learning that only those who come to it late and under their own steam have. Ideas, he believed, really could save the world. Some of his ideas were half-baked—he put far too much credit in his friend Jude Wanniski—and his timing was bad.

May 3, 2009 in Politics | Permalink


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