Larry Kudlow remembers Jack Kemp

Kudlow’s blog:

Instead of class warfare, how about one grand economic coalition?

When I first visited with Jack Kemp in his congressional office in Washington, D.C., in the late 1970s, I couldn’t help but notice the row of books on his desk. There was Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig von Mises, Benjamin Anderson, and Milton Friedman. And of course there was Jude Wanniski’s The Way the World Works.

Jack extracted big ideas from these big books, and he applied them to an American nation that was in big trouble. His detractors called him a jock, just as they called Ronald Reagan a dunce. Yet both men proved their critics wrong.

Working with Wanniski, Arthur Laffer, Robert Mundell, Alan Reynolds, Steve Entin, Norman Ture, and many others, Jack developed an agnostic economic formula that solved the vexing problem of economic stagflation and malaise.

Lower tax rates for everyone, he argued. Make it pay after-tax to work, produce, invest, and take risks, and the country will get more of all of it. Along with lower marginal tax rates to reignite economic growth, stabilize the free-falling dollar to curb inflation. And add free trade to that mix, since tariffs are nothing more than taxes on the purchase and sale of international goods.

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