Ralph Benko

Will America start prospering again — as it has not prospered for over a decade? Likely yes. But not without a fight. Now that Jim DeMint has raided Steve Moore from the Wall Street Journal that card might be Heritage Foundation vs. the White House. Could be big.

John Holdren, now Obama’s White House science advisor, 40 years ago termed America “overdeveloped.” Holdren co-authored a 1993 book,Human Ecology: Problems and Solutions, with Anne and Paul Ehrlich reportedly saying that, “A massive campaign must be launched to restore a high-quality environment in North America and to de-develop the United States….” (Emphasis supplied.)

As Reason Magazine’s Ronald Bailey put it upon the occasion of Holdren’s nomination to White House service: “Holdren … acknowledge(s) ecological ignorance about the principles of economics, but [didn't] express any urgency in learning about them.” Holdren seems, to this columnist, still to favor “de-development” more euphemistically stated as “sustainable prosperity.”

Who could disagree with “sustainable prosperity?” But what does it mean? This White House presents as, deeply, imbued with magical thinking regarding policies of job creation.

How to fight such ignorance? How about … deploying the protégé of a towering intellectual Julian Simon who once upon a time decisively refuted Dr. Holdren?

That’s exactly what Heritage’s president Jim DeMint now is doing. DeMint recently lured one of America’s leading advocates for policies of equitable prosperity, Steve Moore, to Heritage Foundation. Moore’s title, Chief Economist, suggests he has been given great authority.

Moore (with whom this writer long has had a collegial relationship, and, long ago, was professionally retained by Cato to publicize one of his books), might be his generation’s most influential Supply Sider. Raiding him from the editorial board of the Wall Street Journal is cognate to the New York Yankees recruiting Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox.

Raiding the Bambino changed baseball history forever. Almost a hundred years later, DeMint’s raid of Moore just might similarly transform American history. Here’s how.


Ralph Benko

Ralph Benko, author of The Websters’ Dictionary: How to use the Web to transform the world. He serves as an advisor to and editor of the Lehrman Institute's thegoldstandardnow.org and senior advisor to the American Principles Project.
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