National Review / Digital
Perry’s Program
Cut? Yes. Balance? Maybe. Grow? Well . . .


Gov. Rick Perry has never been a split-the-difference kind of guy, and being a conservative in Texas means that he’s never much had to. But with his presidential campaign foundering, he has offered the Republican primary electorate a tax plan — he calls it “Cut, Balance, and Grow” — that splits the difference between the idealistic, big-ideas approach of a Newt Gingrich or a Rep. Ron Paul and the less imaginative approach of Mitt Romney, a candidate whose mind has never once been troubled by an original thought and whose every word is focus-grouped to within an inch of its life. Governor Perry’s plan has been praised by the Club for Growth and by National Review’s Larry Kudlow, which puts it at the front of the pack in the optimism primary. The pessimists will be less enthused, though there is much to like about the proposal.

Cut, Balance, and Grow: That gives us three metrics by which to judge the soundness of Governor Perry’s fiscal agenda. Let’s take them in the order of the magnitude of the terror induced by the underlying issue.

November 14, 2011    |     Volume LXIII, No. 21

Books, Arts & Manners
  • Anthony Daniels reviews After America: Get Ready for Armageddon, by Mark Steyn.
  • Steven F. Hayward reviews Collision Course: Ronald Reagan, the Air Traffic Controllers, and the Strike that Changed America, by Joseph A. McCartin.
  • David Pryce-Jones reviews Jerusalem: The Biography, by Simon Sebag Montefiore.
  • Stephen Smith reviews Railroaded: The Transcontinentals and the Making of Modern America, by Richard White.
  • Ross Douthat reviews The Way.
  • Richard Brookhiser turns the page.
The Long View  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Athwart  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Poetry  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  
Happy Warrior  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .