To: Pres-Elect Trump: From: forgotten people Re: Jack Kemp


“The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer.” –President-Elect Donald Trump, November 9.

Amity Shlaes wrote the book “Forgotten Man” which gave us another look at the modern welfare state which started in the 1930’s.  Shlaes shows Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal created a new forgotten man, the man who subsidizes the funding of other constituencies.

One of the least remembered promises of the Obama Administration and the most forgotten policies of his legacy will be the pledge to end chronic homelessness by 2017.   “Hope and Change,” the winning campaign message of 2008, turned out to be just another political promise for those who live on the streets, in their cars or in tents.  They too were forgotten.

So are taxpayers funding $744 billion in 80 federal welfare programs each year where it’s impossible to tell if recipients are attaining self-sufficiency as a result of government assistance.  It turns out there are many forgotten people when it comes to the modern welfare state that began in the 1930’s, multiplied in the 1960’s during the “War on Poverty,” and grew even more in the decades since.

Where does Jack Kemp come in?  Jack Kemp rescued the forgotten cabinet department, the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development, which with its own $48 billion budget, forgot its mission, promoting policies that are not effective in addressing homelessness or what causes it in the first place.

Jack Kemp served in the George H.W. Bush Administration and his former colleagues give him credit for breathing new life into a broken and neglected cabinet department under Republican and Democratic Administrations alike.  Donald Trump: please find the next Jack Kemp.

Here are excerpts of a video from Kemp’s former colleagues and four more examples of how to manage and lead a government agency (yes, that is actually possible)

This article is 3 of 3 in a series, posted on this page.

  1. Show up

I said Jack, do me a favor, when you’re ready to go to these cities do not get off the plane and go downtown to speak to (whatever group), you get off the plane and go to public housing first.


  1. Embrace capitalism

I can’t get over the number of men and women I run into now that ran into Kemp in one of these trips around the country that went on to become entrepreneurs and wildly successful.  A lot of that came from the Kemp optimism of going out and giving it a try.


  1. Provide ownership

We did a cost-benefit analysis of resident management and not only did it improve the quality of life but it did so at lower cost to the government.


  1. Maximize Resources

We always proposed re-allocating what was in the HUD budget and programs that weren’t effective and should be programmed to other things.


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