Economics Study: Treason, to Republicans

The quickest way to get thrown out of the Republican party is to get a degree in economics, and then say something about immigration.

By Dave Leach, April 5, 2018

Famous Republican leaders who have supplied Republican candidates with millions and billions of campaign dollars, but who unfortunately are economists, are rejected as traitors to the cause for agreeing with the consensus of economics research on immigration.

Two examples: Grover Norquist, founder of Americans for Tax Reform, and Richard Fink, manager of the Koch Industries funds.

An example of the converse: an Undocumented Economist who got the top economics post at the White House: Larry Kudlow.

Larry Kudlow.Trump has chosen television host Larry Kudlow to be his new chief economic adviser. Kudlow doesn’t have an economics degree….Kudlow will replace Gary Cohn, who resigned after Trump proposed tariffs that will raise the costs of goods for millions of Americans.” So reports The Blue Media March 15, 2018. He has a 4-year degree in History. That’s his only college degree. At least he studied economics after that, along with politics, at Princeton, but he didn’t graduate, according to Wikipedia. That was enough, however, to get him some posh jobs in radio and TV as an “economist”.

And enough to get to be President Trump’s chief economic advisor!

Gary Cohn, whom Kudlow replaces, has a 4 year degree in Business Administration. His major was called Finance, Real Estate, and Urban Development. He managed to rise to become director of Goldman Sachs from 2006-2017 when he took his job for the White House.

Here are the past Economic Council directors and whether they had any formal training in economics: (7 of the 11 “chief economic advisers”, who headed the council 17 of the 25 years since the position was created, had no college credentials in economics):

Jeff Zients, 3/5/14 to 1/20/17, BS degree.

Gene Sperling, 1/20/11, BA in political science JD (law), MBA.

Larry Summers, 1/20/2009, BS, MA, and Ph.D. in economics

Keith Hennessey, 11/28/07, BS in math and political science, Master of Public Policy

Al Hubbard, 1/10/05, BA, MBA, JD (lawyer)

Steve Friedman, 12/12/02, BA, JD (lawyer)

Larry Lindsey, 1/20/01, AM and Ph.D. in economics

Gene Sperling, 12/12/96, BA in political science JD (law), MBA.

Laura Tyson, 2/21/95, BA and Ph.D. in economics

Robert Rubin, 1/25/93, AB in Economics, attended London School of Economics, LL.B.

Grover Norquist. was a conservative before conservative was cool. He was an effective voice for limited government when others treated it like a mountain which will never fall. By no means did his work to limit taxes put him in the “mainstream”, or a member of the “establishment”! Yet that is how he is dismissed by many conservatives today because he is an economist, and has the bad judgment to state publicly the economic facts about the benefits of immigration to citizens.

Grover Glenn Norquist is an American political advocate who is founder and president of Americans for Tax Reform, an organization that opposes all tax increases. A Republican, he is the primary promoter of the “Taxpayer Protection Pledge”, a pledge signed by lawmakers who agree to oppose increases in marginal income tax rates for individuals and businesses, as well as net reductions or eliminations of deductions and credits without a matching reduced tax rate. – Wikipedia

Grover Norquist President Americans for Tax Reform “He served as Economist and Chief Speechwriter at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce from 1983 to 1984.” Harvard University in 1974, where he earned his B.A. in economics and M.B.A. degrees. “The core courses in an MBA program cover various areas of business such as accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, and operations management in a manner most relevant to management analysis and strategy.” (Wikipedia)

Karl Rove is credited for helping President George Bush get elected from 2000 to 2008. Breitbart News reported that Rove directed $26 million to Norquist’s organization for Norquist to support Republican candidates. That’s just in 2012. That is a lot of help Norquist has given Republicans, and that is a lot of confidence placed in him by Rove.

But Norquist’s knowledge pushes him to the side. Using the phrase “more immigration” as a synonym for “treason”, Breitbart News reported, Grover Norquist Stars in Daytona 500 Ad Promoting More Immigration.

Just to make sure the equivalence between “more immigration” and “treason” was crystal clear, Breitbart threw George Soros into the hit piece:

“Feb 21, 2015 Grover Norquist stars in a pro-immigration ad that a George Soros-funded pro- amnesty group is running this weekend at Daytona International Speedway during the Daytona 500. –

And if “more immigration” and “George Soros” weren’t enough warning about no-account Norquist, there is the biggest cussword in politics, “amnesty”: (“immigration reform”, in Breitbart’s lexicon, is “amnesty legislation”):

“Norquist teamed up with Michael Bloomberg’s pro-amnesty Partnership for a New America group earlier in the week to host a conference call in which top 2016 GOP donors pushed for comprehensive amnesty legislation.”

What a fool Norquist is, to say:

“Immigration is part of the secret sauce that makes America work,” Norquist says in the ad. “More people are a resource, they’re an asset; they’re not a liability.”

You ask, “But what if Norquist was correct? What if immigrants really are an asset, and not a liability?”

Really? You don’t get it, either?

Evidence is too frivolous a consideration when an important issue like immigration is at stake. The article says nothing about whether the facts support or refute Norquist. What is important is polls:

“While the ad touts the benefits of increased immigration, a recent Gallup poll found that a majority of Americans are disatisfied with the country’s immigration levels and just seven percent want more immigration at this time.”

Here’s Breitbart’s hit piece January 13, 2015, with its “amnesty” pejorative:

Grover Norquist is again lobbying for comprehensive amnesty legislation.

He will reportedly brief GOP lawmakers in Congress on Tuesday, arguing that the new GOP-led Congress has “an incredible opportunity” to pass amnesty legislation.

And next month, Norquist will push for amnesty legislation in Nebraska when he speaks at an “invitation-only reception.” According to a Lincoln Journal Star report, Norquist was invited “by a coalition of businesses, people, lawyers and interest groups” including the Nebraska Restaurant Association, the Nebraska Retail Federation, and The Progressive Voice of the Great Plains.

Last year, Norquist partnered with former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s pro-amnesty Partnership for a New American Economy last year to hold monthly conference calls with lawmakers to strategize on amnesty legislation.

Norquist also hailed the passage of the Senate’s Gang of Eight’s comprehensive amnesty bill, which the Congress Budget Office determined would lower the wages of American workers.

Norquist even endorsed Senator John McCain! McCain is another hero of the past – a survivor of years of torture in a Vietnamese Prisoner Of War camp, a past candidate for president and champion for Republican values – who is now vilified by conservatives as “mainstream” and “establishment”, largely because of his involvement in “immigration reform”.

It was in 2016, towards the end of McCain’s career and life, that Norquist wrote an endorsement letter for McCain, who was then being challenged by a “Tea Party Conservative” in a primary. Norquist credited McCain for taking his “taxpayer pledge”, which his challenger presumably had not. “It is unusual for me to personally endorse candidates but as a taxpayer advocate, I have for years appreciated your leadership in stopping tax increases and promoting tax reform. You have taken the Taxpayer Protection Pledge and protected Arizona taxpayers.”

Biting the hand the feeds them. You have to really oppose people to publicly vilify them even after they give your team millions of dollars. Which is how much Norquist, Richard Fink, and the Bloomberg Group have given Republican candidates.

I would be sympathetic if this opposition were because the Republicans they support are abortion-supporting, sodomite-loving, big-government perverts. But at least so far as this Breitbart article is concerned, their only crime – or at least their only crime serious enough to mention – is that they support immigration reform, which to Breitbart, merits the pejorative “amnesty”.

No matter how much money these people give, they can’t buy their way out of the anger they generate by going to school to study economics.

Report: ’16 GOP Fundraisers to Push Amnesty with Grover Norquist, Bloomberg Group

Top GOP fundraisers will reportedly join Grover Norquist and Michael Bloomberg’s Partnership for a New Economy group on a conference call next week to push for comprehensive amnesty legislation.

According to a BuzzFeed report, the GOP fundraisers on the Tuesday call will include Mitt Romney’s “former finance director Spencer Zwick; California-based fast food CEO Andrew Puzder; and billionaire health care executive Mike Fernandez.”

….But their views on pro-amnesty issues are homogenous. Rupert Murdoch, who said a comprehensive amnesty bill that includes an unlimited number of high-tech visas “can’t wait,” Michael Bloomberg, Bill Marriott, and Julian Castro are all board members who have been vocal about the need for comprehensive amnesty legislation that the Congressional Budget Office determined would lower the wages of American workers.

Oh? the CBO said the legislation would lower the wages of citizens?

The CBO did two studies in 2013. One was “static”, economese for not counting the indirect benefits to citizens by stimulating the economy, and the other one “dynamic”, which does count that indirect benefit to citizens.

The dynamic study calculated that for the first few years, the average wage of citizens could drop as much as 1%, because of wage competition from the additional million legal immigrants a year planned by the Senate’s immigration bill that year. But after that, citizen wages would raise about 1%. Meanwhile, our national deficit would drop by a quarter trillion a year!

Testimony during the Senate Judiciary Committee immigration hearings pointed out that most of that initial drop is borne by our least educated: high school dropouts, whose low skilled jobs are easily filled by low skilled immigrants – most other citizen groups’ wages rise even during that initial adjustment. A later review of several economics studies by Roodman broke that down further: the period of adjustment is the time it takes for investors to provide facilities, equipment, and trade to put an unexpected wave of people to work. And it is not dropouts per se who suffer job competition, but particularly teenagers whose reason for not having high school diplomas is that they aren’t old enough.

(Articles about these facts were posted at, which has been down for several months. I will work on getting them reposted here.)

This is hardly a comprehensive review, obviously, of what Norquist’s expertise in economics has cost him. This is just a few articles from Breitbart. Norquist is in the news a lot. Try googling “Norquist” and “immigration” if you need something to do.

Richard Fink. Fink’s name is not as well known as the name of the funds he influenced until his official retirement in 2015 as Executive Vice President at Koch Industries.

The Kochs were ready to give nearly a billion dollars to Republicans during the 2016 campaign. (Also see Washington Post.) The Kochs are worth $42 billion. Senator Marco Rubio said he would be honored to “earn” some of that.

But unfortunately, Fink is a real economist, so he knows what our economy needs is a lot more immigration. Which makes it very hard for him to support candidates who will only listen to Undocumented Economists about immigration who say citizens would be a lot better off without it. From Americans For Prosperity website:

Richard Fink was an executive vice president and an associate professor of economics at George Mason University. He served on the university’s board of visitors from 1997 through June 2005. Richard earned his Ph.D. in economics from New York University and M.A. in economics from UCLA. He graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in economics from Rutgers University.

The Kochs eventually withdrew, mostly, from the 2016 presidential race. Their allies were divided between Rubio and Cruz. But after Rubio dropped out, leaving Cruz and Trump, National Review reports:

It quickly became clear, however, that the brothers were not interested — not in Cruz, whose rhetoric on immigration and foreign intervention they believed negated his finer qualities, and not in the 2016 campaign itself, which they’d already determined was a waste of their resources.

Koch Industries has supported:

…Koch English classes, health checkups, courses to help Spanish speaking children earn high school diplomas; the LIBRE initiative, lessons on how to build a family business, breakfasts with Hispanic pastors, tutorials on immigration law, support for immigration reform that stops short of campaigning for S744, donations for children being held for crossing the border. Candy-packed Easter baskets for an elementary school containing a bilingual pamphlet about our (then) $17 trillion debt.

As little as the Koch’s liked Cruz’s immigration rhetoric, they must not have liked Trump’s any better, which is why they, and their considerable money, mostly dropped out of the 2016 presidential race. Incredibly, the feeling among many of the noisiest conservatives was mutual. They didn’t like all that money going for “moderates” who love “amnesty”.

See how much trouble education causes? If you want people who are out of touch with reality, and determined to remain so, to vote for you, it doesn’t pay to be smart.

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