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About Michael Parry Mazur

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Michael Parry Mazur was born on June 1, 1941, in Fargo, North Dakota, to Bernard Alexander Mazur and Gertrude Isobel Parry. He attended elementary and high school in Fargo, then attended Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.

In 1963, he received a BS in history, graduated class valedictorian, and was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa Society. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in economics in 1972 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in Cambridge, MA. His Ph.D. thesis, unpublished, was titled “The Economic Development of Jordan.”

Mr. Mazur became assistant professor of economics at Washington State University, in Pullman, Washington, in 1972, and subsequently assistant professor of economics at Dartmouth College, in Hanover, New Hampshire (date uncertain) and temporary positions (uncertain) at Harvard University, American University of Beirut, and American University in Cairo. He then became a staff economist at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in Washington, DC serving under Presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan.

During his academic career, Mr. Mazur published one book, Economic Growth and Development in Jordan (in London, published by Croom Helm Ltd.; in the U.S., published by Westview Press, Inc., both in 1979). The book “draws upon the results of two research trips to the Middle East, in 1969 and 1976. The latter trip, upon which the greater part of this study is based, was assisted by a grant awarded by the Joint Committee on the Near and Middle East of the Social Science Research Council and the American Council of Learned Societies.” (p. xv)

Mr. Mazur also contributed a chapter, titled “Economic Development of Jordan,” in Charles A. Cooper and Sidney S. Alexander, eds., Economic Development and Population Growth in the Middle East (New York: American Elsevier, 1972, pp. 211-79).

After joining the staff of OMB, Mr. Mazur coauthored with Thomas M. Lenard an article in Regulation, a journal published by the Cato Institute, titled “Harvest of Waste: The Marketing Order Program” (May/June 1985). The lengthy piece presents a devastating critique of the agricultural market ordering system operated by the Department of Agriculture, the only government program that ever succeeded in getting Congress to exempt it from review by OMB. The article was subsequently cited often in amicus briefs and writing by other scholars.

Mr. Mazur died of cancer in 1987 at the age of 46. He never married and had no children. His parents passed away in 1980 (mother) and 1992 (father). He is survived by three brothers, Peter, David and John.

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