The term ‘politician’ has been tainted these days, which is all the
more reason to honor one who served the people as few in this
representative republic do now. At least, in Washington.
This tribute to Jack Kemp is by journalist Mona Charen, who wrote speeches she says he didn’t even need.
An autodidact, he studied economics and history and
became a tireless evangelist for supply-side economics. He peppered his
speeches with references to “capital” and “labor” — which this
speechwriter found a little dry — but he also preached “opportunity”
and “growth,” which resonated. He recognized that capitalism, and the
unique opportunities it can foster, was far more important for those in
the middle and at the bottom of the economic pyramid that it was for
those at the top. Jack truly and deeply wanted to give people the
chance to improve themselves. He had seen how it could work close up.
His father had started with nothing. He borrowed money to buy one truck
and eventually developed his business into a profitable trucking
company. Jack wanted to distribute that kind of opportunity and as
broadly as possible.
This may sound like the distant past to some, but not to a lot of Americans who believe it’s the better way to the future.
Kemp was more than a supply-side evangelist. He was also
a serious student of foreign policy. While his hopes for mankind were
expansive, his tolerance for dictators and tyrants was nonexistent. His
love of capitalism was inseparable from his love of liberty.
His party is in the process of searching for themselves right now.
They’d do well to find a leader, or even a potential one, with the
principles of this JFK.