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The following articles were written by Doug Henwood and appeared in Left Business Observer issues #51 (February 1992) and #52 (April 1992). They were written by Doug Henwood, editor and publisher. They retain their copyright and may not be reprinted or redistributed in any form - print, electronic, facsimile, anything - without the permission of LBO.


He's back!

Jerry Brown, on a white horse

update to printed version (1995)

According to an advisor to Brown, Arthur Laffer -- the fellow who drew a curve on a cocktail napkin (one that showed that lower tax rates led to higher collections) and thereby gave birth to supply-side economics -- was the real author of Brown's loopy tax plan [CBO analysis below]. Wanniski or Laffer, it has a loony Republican/nouveau riche pedigree.

another update (1998)

Jerry says this is all old news; presumably when you live in the eternal present, the past counts for little. For his side of things, click here.

Like Richard Nixon, Jerry Brown just won't go away. Unlike Nixon, Jerry's swooping in from a stint with Mother Theresa, where he rediscovered Catholicism and learned that abortion is "crazy." Surprisingly, he's doing pretty well in the polls, and he's even made a few friends on the left.

In a January appearance in New York sponsored by The Nation, Brown briefly charmed this first-time viewer. He denounced the national power elite, intoned a world beyond material accumulation, and gave evidence of having had a thought or two in his life. A little research was in order.

First stop was J.D. Lorenz's book Jerry Brown: The Man on the White Horse. Lorenz, founder of California Rural Legal Assistance, spent seven months as Gov. Brown's first employment director, vainly trying to convince the governor to craft a jobs program during the mid-1970s recession. Lorenz was canned for base political reasons, and got his revenge by writing an amusingly nasty book.

At first, Lorenz was ready to cut Jerry some slack. When Brown told Evans and Novak that welfare mothers were going to have "to tighten their belts," he dismissed it as just "sounding off." The welfare moms remark reminded Lorenz of a moment in the campaign when Jerry enthused about his great new law & order TV ad. Reciting its script to Lorenz, Jerry punctuated it every five words or so with a fist-chop and the expletive "buzz word." Five fist-chops, five buzz words. "I sound tougher than [his opponent, Houston] Flournoy, and