The Great Ronald Reagan & Me

Ronald Reagan would have been 100 years old on February 6. As the partisan passions fade, everybody is starting to recognize the greatness of the man. President Obama recently read a Reagan biography for inspiration and wrote an article in USA Today praising him. Whether or not the homage by even some liberals is sincere, it is clear that they feel the need to genuflect in the direction of the great man.

Any president who leads a big change will provoke dislike on the part of his opponents and I recall the rabid hatred among some of them in the 1980s. They can be forgiven some of their faults. Reagan was a very insightful & intelligent man and a hard worker. We know that now from reading his journals and from other sources coming out about him. But he evidently liked to hide these things. Maybe he was modest or maybe it was a strategy.

Reagan used to say that you can accomplish almost anything as long as you don't care who gets the credit. The easygoing persona that he projected allowed lots of people to feel they deserved credit. It also allowed people to give him things he wanted w/o appearing to give in. Reagan didn't score points off the failures of others, but his affable personality led opponents to underestimate him. They thought many of his accomplishments were just dumb luck. In my experience, someone who is consistently "lucky" has something special going on. Only a man truly confident in himself can behave as Reagan did. That is one reason he was such a unique leader.

I voted for Reagan in both 1980 & 1984. It was a little hard for me to do in 1980. I had voted for Carter in my first election in 1976 and I was going to grad school at the University of Wisconsin, in one of the nation's most liberal enclaves. Whenever I would say anything good about Reagan, or even when I didn't join in the criticism of him, my colleagues would make fun of me. There is considerable social pressure in a liberal university setting to "rebel" within acceptable margins. I was finishing my MA in history at that time and looking forward to going on to my PhD. As I recall, most of my colleagues considered Jimmy Carter too conservative and Reagan was clean off the map. The popular candidate around my part of town was a guy called Barry Commoner. Commoner was a bit of a nut, but he said the right things about the environment and was sufficiently obscure to get the "intelligent" student vote.

It came as a surprise to me too that Reagan made sense to me. Up until that time, I just assumed that I was a species of liberal, like everybody else I knew. It was the local default option. My vote for Reagan had significant effect on my life. Of course, it was not the vote itself, but the cognitive dissonance it provoked. I have never been good at keeping secrets and so I talked about my Reagan attraction with my friends. They treated me like someone who had been in the sun too long and tried to explain why I was just being foolish. As I listened to their arguments and defended myself, I came to understand that I really did not hold the same sorts of views as they did. I started to read more widely and came to lots of different conclusions. One of the very practical changes I made was in my course of study. I began to perceive myself as a bit of an outsider in my history-sociology circles. I became more interested in practical things like business and decided to get an MBA. This was greeted with some distress by my friends. One well-meaning guy carefully explained to me that an MBA was a kind of "trade school" degree and it was not the kind of thing somebody like me should do. For me, at least, the MBA was a lot more of an intellectual challenge than my MA, but maybe that was just me.

You follow well-worn paths for maybe 95% of your life. This is something you have to do, since nobody could abide the chaos of constant uncertain change. There are a small number of inflection points, however. These are usually little things. You may be almost unaware of them at the time, but over time they take you off the old path and put you on a new one. The little half turn doesn't seem like much, but there can be substantial divergence a few miles down the path as the one change leads to another.

Somebody once told me that there are only around 5-7 inflection points in any life and if you think about it, you can probably identify them. They are rarely the big, shocking events we think of. The road to Damascus type conversions are the ones we mark, but they may actually be the culmination of a long process of change, not the beginning. By the time you make the public announcement, or even know it yourself, it may have been stewing for a long time.

Looking back, my decision in 1980 to vote for Ronald Reagan was one of those little decisions that changed the way I thought of myself and ended up changing lots of other things too. So like all Americans, I can thank Ronald Reagan for what he did for our country, but I also have a personal reason to be happy that he came along.

Posted by Christine & John at February 4, 2011 8:11 PM
Comment #318164

President Reagan was what America needed at the time. And why I can understand how people can hate or praise him, to me he was more of a teacher of politics. For I can say he did a good job inspiring American Business, he lost the best of America when he attempted to split Americas’ Workers into the Skilled and Unskilled. For imagine today if President Obama was to say there is a difference between those who have Master Degrees and those who hold PHDs.

No even today people may claim they believe in President Reagans’ Trickledown Economics, but facts prove them wrong. For why are prices of food and oil increasing when all it will lead to is higher wages and less demand? Yet, that is exactly what Wall Street and Washington is trying to do by inflating prices. For how much longer can they keep marking up the self-worth of stock with nothing to show for their labor?

Like I said President Reagan did make a good teacher; however, it is a shame Liberals and Conservatives lack the Wisdom to know why he stated “Race to the Bottom” instead of the “Race to the Top” being promoted by President Obama.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 4, 2011 8:52 PM
Comment #318172


Yes. Obama read a book about Reagan. My opinion? He was looking for ways to run his campaign for re-election…he is NOT Reagan…has no plans to be ‘Reagan’…he is a liberal & that will not change. He is only looking for ways to stay in office.
When is the last time our federal government passed a law or made a new regulation that was not based on a ‘feel good’ policy that they could use to get themselves re-elected?
When is the last time they raised a tax that effects ALL of us and not just the ‘sinners’ who they could easily target because ‘those people are bad & they should pay more’???
Why is it that WE have to save the planet from global warming & pollution when we send OUR jobs to the biggest nation on the planet who does NOT have the same environmental standards that we are required to live by? We can make our curly mercury filled lightbulbs(GE-who has closed all of their lightbulb factories in the U.S.) in China…poison THEIR people with mercury…breath the polluted air THEY send OUR way…turn our heads while they put their children to work…have work camps(like our miners used to live in)….live lives that people in our nation have fought against & prevailed.
Where is my mercury filled thermometer? Oh I remember. My brother & I broke it…we played with the mercury on the kitchen floor - mercury is COOL. I cannot buy one anymore because THEY ARE HAZARDOUS!
Our nation has lost it’s way. We should NEVER exploit any people or nation.
We can try to influence but we should NEVER think we can tell people of any nation what kind of government they should have. Like Egypt…where the hell were we? How many ‘diplomats’ have we had over there for the past 30 years? What have they been doing? Why have they not been nuturing political parties/leaders behind the scenes? We have 50,000 Americans living there? What have they been doing?
I could go on ….and on….and on…

Posted by: Dawn at February 4, 2011 11:57 PM
Comment #318173

Glad to see your back. Like I said President Reagan was a good teacher and believe it or not there is a good reason he placed America and Humanity in the Race to the Bottom. So why you speak of all the ills in the world, think about why President Obama would study President Reagan when he and the other World Leaders of Today want to start a Race to the Top. The answer might surprise you.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 5, 2011 12:06 AM
Comment #318175

Ok Henry…you have confused me.
A race to the top of what? for who?
Our nation manipulates everything.
As far as I can tell it is always to the detrement of someone…including our own citizens.
‘Green Energy’ - so far subsidies for that have only caused food prices to go up & 90% of the windmills are made in China…how long does it take to re-coop the money spent to build one? Too long.
We have to bankrupt everyone? Destroy our own economy? Bring down our wages?
Our wages have gotten ‘out of control’ but what are wages based on? Who sets them? Who fights for higher wages?
Everything is connected…it starts here…in the U.S.
We are about to have a fight over Social Security at the same time wages are going down to equal the global economy?
Sorry Henry but I think our government has F&*KED us in their desire to control the world.
They have gone about it in the wrong way. The Sh*t is about to hit the fan. We are about to find out if there are more freedom loving peaceful Muslims than radicals in this world.

Posted by: Dawn at February 5, 2011 12:42 AM
Comment #318177

Sorry about the confusion; however, imagine starting a race in the middle and running toward the starting line (1980-present) than realizing you are running the wrong way try and turn the entire pack around to start running toward the finish line. For though a simple look at the political problem we face today, it is why over the last 40 years hardly anything has been done to solve the problems we face.

As far as “Green Energy” part of the hope was that corn being in surplus at the time could be used to create fuel. Now, droughts and spectulation have jacked up the price; however, China might be building windmills, but they cannot suppply the world with “Crystal Generators” (Ask your Kids about this idea). That is why President Obama is talking about creating new manufacturing jobs here in America.

Now, as far as the “Race to the Bottom” well you see where that has gotten America and why it might seem like our leaders want to Rule the World. Look at how long it has taken to educate the Middle and Far East so that we would have more Moderates than Radical. Because why I know your old enough to remember America landing on the Moon, could you see explaining to your Peers 40 years ago how Space Travel would have proved the Sky is not the Limit?

For ever Season there is a Time and for every Time there is a Season. Made a good song in 1969 and good reading even to this date. Wouldn’t you agree?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 5, 2011 1:53 AM
Comment #318183

Let’s celebrate by selling arms to Iran’s Ahmadinijad, and then give the profits to the Egyptian police so they can slaughter 50,000 pro-democracy demonstators. Those Mubarek thugs aren’t killing nearly enough people, and Iran’s Ahmadinijad really needs to step it up if he wants to become a world class enemy of the United States and as virulently anti-American in word and deed as Ayotollah Khomeini. They could learn a thing or two from Somoza’s national guard. Oh. And to make the celebration complete, Congress could pass a law specifically forbidding us from arming the Egyptian police, just to kind of spice it up and make the whole thing as illegal as possible.

Posted by: phx8 at February 5, 2011 1:23 PM
Comment #318184


We presume president Obama will act honorably in this situation, although it is up to the Egyptians and we can play only a supporting role.

The danger, indeed, is another Iran. Revolutions are often hijacked by the bad guys, who often are well-organized and ruthless. Popular uprising overthrew the French King, the Czar and the Shah, but in all these cases ruthless factions stole freedom from the people, replacing one tyranny with a worse one.

I hope that the changes in the Arab world can work as well as the fall of communism in Eastern Europe. The difference is that Eastern Europe had a responsible, democratic opposition ready to move into power. I don’t know the Arab world as well, but I am afraid that this is not the case in Egypt, Algeria or Syria.

Posted by: C&J at February 5, 2011 2:22 PM
Comment #318185

1) Lyn Nofzinger

2) Michael Deaver

3) James Watt

4) John Poindexter

5) Richard Secord

6) Elliot Abrams

7) Robert McFarlane

8) Alan Fiers

9) Thomas Clines

10) Carl Channel

11) Richard Miller

12) Frank Gomez

13) Donald Fortier

14) Clair George

15) Rita Lavelle

16) Philip Winn

17) Thomas Demery

18) Deborah Dean

19) Catalina Villaponda

20) Joseph Strauss

21) Oliver North

A typical Republican administration.

How many were pardoned by Bush?

Posted by: jlw at February 5, 2011 2:59 PM
Comment #318187

It is a given that Reagan, his policies, and his politics have always been the subject of vicious attacks by the left. Has anyone besides me ever noticed how much politicians on both sides of the isle want to be compared to Reagan, his policies, and his politics; when they want to appear to be moving to the “center”?

I believe this is called hypocrisy.

I would personally place Reagan in the same category as the founding fathers. He was a genius and had the ability to see the problems that America faced. But, sadly, he is a dying breed of real leaders in America.

Posted by: Z at February 5, 2011 4:10 PM
Comment #318188

C&J, it seems to me that you prefer the myth more than the man. By Republican considerations, Reagan was a terrible president.

As president, Reagan’s popularity was about what Obama’s is now.

He negotiated with enemies.

He increased the size of the government By an average of 2.5 percent growth, adding two hundred thousand federal employees.

Under Reagan, the national debt exploded from $700 million to $3 trillion dollars.

Reagan signed tax increases in six of the eight years of his presidency. The net result of which was every American with the exception of the very wealthy paying higher taxes after he left office than before he entered the office.

The reality is that Reagan’s legacy is one of big government tax and spend.

Posted by: jlw at February 5, 2011 4:10 PM
Comment #318190

C&J, I remember when I was but a young lad and Reagan saved me from certain death by stopping a bullet meant for me, What a guy he was. I remember a few years later when once again it was Reagan to the rescue and stopped a train as my car was stuck on the tracks, all by himself, just stopped the train. Then a little later he saved my dog “More Ron” from catastrophe by leaping over a building and grabbing him from the path of a ….. wait that was Superman not Reagan, sorry wrong mythology, my bad.

Reagan idolizers seem to have created a religion thinly disguised as a political movement based upon the mythology associated with Reagan but have conveniently forgotten the facts of what he actually did as president, how scary is that?

Posted by: j2t2 at February 5, 2011 5:01 PM
Comment #318191


Reagan’s legacy will be discussed by historians for a long time. As of today, his reputation is improving among those who understand and study these things and his popularity has grown, so much that even President Obama feels it prudent to appropriate him. You can keep your own opinion, however. There are some who agree with you.

I will leave all this analysis to people who know more about it than you or me. I know that I was better off after Reagan than before. Americans were much more confident in 1989 than they were in 1981. When I lived in Eastern Europe, the leaders who had helped bring down the communist empire told me how Reagan had inspired them.

Reagan had a positive effect on my life and those of many people I know and like. I suppose other people have different experiences.

Re taxes - I paid a lot more taxes after Reagan than before, but that had more to do with the fact that I was only marginally employed before Reagan took office and was well established when he left. It was worth it. I was not rich, but my tax rates, however, were lower, as were those of all Americans who paid taxes.


Leftists are trying to appropriate the Reagan legacy. I have no trouble with that. It is the sincerest form of flattery. All great Americans become the property of the American people in general. I can admire Roosevelt, Truman and Reagan all at the same time, recognizing their flaws as well as their greatness.

Posted by: C&J at February 5, 2011 5:08 PM
Comment #318193


I don’t require my human heroes to be perfect. Reagan accomplished great things. I don’t believe he was perfect or godlike. He was an inspiring and effective president, the best in my memory.

The proof of a great leader can be found in the inspiration he leaves in people after he has left the scene. As some point, the greatness of the legacy exceeds the human capacities of the man. Reagan undoubtedly did this, as you say.

We need such inspiring figures. Clinton said that it was Kennedy who inspired him to enter public service. I don’t think he was inspired by the “true” Kennedy, with all his human failings, but rather by the aspirations that Kennedy engendered. A new generation is inspired by Reagan in the same way.

Posted by: C&J at February 5, 2011 5:15 PM
Comment #318195

C&J No one is talking perfection here I just disagree that Reagan was great or that he accomplished many great things. I am just trying to set the record straight for those that do idolize him for many of the mythological events they claim to be his doing. He was a salesman that sold many on a false ideology that he himself proved did not work. We suffer the results of this man to this day.

I understand you have a more rational view of the man but many, “Z” as an example, don’t seem to be able to ascertain the difference between fact and mythology, judging by the following statement.

“I would personally place Reagan in the same category as the founding fathers. “

Posted by: j2t2 at February 5, 2011 5:44 PM
Comment #318196


I am always suspicious of this section of the Post, which treats opinion as fact and reduces complex issues to five “myths”

The myth-busting on the taxes, for example, is subject to lots of questioning. How does this guy define “blue collar” for example. The rich paid a great % of Federal taxes after Reagan, although at a lower rate, since all rates dropped.

Re being a hawk - this is myth worth busting, but it cuts both ways. Reagan responded appropriately to events. He was hawkish against the evil empire and then when he saw a chance to make progress the other way, he changed. It is the sign of true intelligence and leadership.

Re Reagan being popular - He was reelected by a greater % than any president since. I recall that liberals hated him with unreasonable passion. Some of them have since learned from experience. I don’t think there ever was a myth that Reagan was loved by all.

I would not put Reagan up with Jefferson, Washington or Franklin, but he was the best president in my memory, as I wrote. I hope to meet a better one, but I don’t expect one.

Posted by: C&J at February 5, 2011 6:04 PM
Comment #318198

J2t2, this is the first paragraph from the link you posted:

“On Sunday, America celebrates the 100th birthday of Ronald Reagan, whose presidency is a touchstone for the modern conservative movement. In 2011, it is virtually impossible for a major Republican politician to succeed without citing Reagan as a role model.”

This article tries to make us believe that only Republicans try to emulate Reagan, but the article is only a half truth and if they would lie about one thing, they would lie and stretch the truth about other things. Here is the truth:

2008: “Obama Compares Himself To Reagan, JFK…But Not Bill Clinton”

2011: “By MICHAEL KINSLEY | 2/5/11 10:47 AM EST Updated: 2/5/11 11:13 AM EST
Time magazine’s cover this week features a Photoshopped picture of Ronald Reagan with his arm around President Obama. The cover story purports to answer the question of why Obama is channeling Reagan, a question no one was asking until Time brought it up. It’s a standard newsmagazine technique to add a “why” to the thesis of a story. It makes it seem deeper, even while skipping over the hard part of whether it’s true.
If Obama is attempting to emulate Reagan, there is no mystery about why. Reagan carried 49 states in 1984, the year he was reelected. But Time contends the 44th president is following the example of the 40th in some unusually profound way.”

Perhaps j2t2 could help us out: who exactly controls the purse strings of the Federal Government, and who passes tax hike bills to be placed on the presidents desk? And it would be a waste of time to actually research the reasons for the things you allege because you would never be convinced of any other result.

Posted by: Z at February 5, 2011 6:13 PM
Comment #318199

Reagan’s early “legacy” started in California, where he found it “prudent” to shut down hundreds of mental facilities and turn literally thousands onto the streets.
Of course, all of their property here was secluded and protected, so they would never have to actually see the folly of his “brilliance”. Yep….way to go Ronnie….

Posted by: jane doe at February 5, 2011 6:18 PM
Comment #318205


The problem of involuntary commitment is a different problem. We changed those rules in the 1960s, which dumped a lot of strange people onto the streets. We now believe that the mentally ill have the “right” to live independently, even when they are potentially dangerous. The issue of involuntary hospitalization of the mentally disturbed homeless is an old issue. You might recall that ”billy bogg case in New York.

I worked at a bookshop in the 1980s. We used to have this guy sit in front of our place and cut himself with razor blades. It got blood in the sidewalk and tended to discourage customers. We would call the cops, but they couldn’t take him away. Sometimes they would bring an ambulance, but he always came back. I also had a problem with a guy called “Art”. He used to carry a big ice chopper and swing it at people while swearing. I called the cops many times, but since he never actually hit anybody, they couldn’t do anything. I used to wash the sidewalk with the hose when he came around, which prevented him from sitting on the pavement, but that was all that anybody could do. I talked to him a few times, but he was just nuts and there was no use trying to persuade him of anything. He told me lots of different stories, so I could never figure out what his true story was. He probably should have been institutionalized, but he refused all attempts to help.

We didn’t live in California and I don’t think this was Reagan’s doing, BTW.

Posted by: C&J at February 5, 2011 6:45 PM
Comment #318208

Jane Doe,
Governor Reagan at the time was following orders from Washington due to the fact that Congress was lead to believe all but the most serious mentally ill could live in our Society without the aid or support in place to help them. And why we still can debate if this was a move done to save millions of dollars or because of Civil Rights and the major mistreatment that was shown to be happening. The fact, we have worked to solve a lot of those issues can be seen.

Now as far as President Obama studing President Reagan I do believe the authors have once again failed to get the point. For if America is going to when the “Race to the Top” than who better to learn from than the Master who gave us the “Race to the Bottom?” IMHO any other comparisions are simply part of the authors trying to spin their own point of view. Considering none of them had the smarts to ask President Obama if he believed America could win the “Race to the Top” by following the lessons learned over the last 30 years of racing to the bottom.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 5, 2011 7:36 PM
Comment #318213

“This article tries to make us believe that only Republicans try to emulate Reagan, but the article is only a half truth and if they would lie about one thing, they would lie and stretch the truth about other things.”

No Z the link I posted tells us the truth. You would be hard pressed to find a republican presidential candidate in 2007/2008 that did not try to convince the conservatives that the were Reagan incarnate. It was funny, if I get some time I will try to find a link to some of the videos of them sounding silly.

This guy did not need to lie, nor did he only tell half the story. Why not apply this same standard you seek to impose upon this guy on a conservative hack like Breitbart?

” Here is the truth:”

Z once again it seems you are unable to discern what is being said here. Here is a brief quote from the link you use to try to spin the issue.

From the huffpo link-
” But perhaps the most interesting offering was when he tried to place his candidacy into a historical context. Which elections does Obama see as analogous to 2008? And with which presidents does he share personal similarities? That would be John Kennedy in 1960 (hardly surprising) and Ronald Reagan in 1980 (more daring). But not, it should be noted, Bill Clinton in 1992.”

From the Politico link-
“Opinion Column
Should Obama channel Reagan?”

Simply put Obama was not trying to emulate Reagan as you claim. Because some Time magazine writer makes a comparison does not mean Obama is emulating Reagan as you and evidently Kinsley claim is truth. Critical thinking skills Z, critical thinking skills.

“Perhaps j2t2 could help us out: who exactly controls the purse strings of the Federal Government, and who passes tax hike bills to be placed on the presidents desk? “

Corporate America controls who gets elected and who represents us Z. Therefore they control the purse strings of the Federal government. The president has a veto pen that can be used to veto any legislation that comes across his table. Did Reagan ever veto a tax increase or any bill that added to the problem as he saw it?

“And it would be a waste of time to actually research the reasons for the things you allege because you would never be convinced of any other result.”

Wow what an excuse to continue upon your merry way blissfully ignoring facts that put your mythology and ideology into question. Look up Reagan’s record in any nonpartisan site you want Z, facts are facts. BTW do you realize it was Reagan that championed the amnesty of +/- 3 million illegal Mexican immigrants.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 5, 2011 9:09 PM
Comment #318215

“We didn’t live in California and I don’t think this was Reagan’s doing [deinstitutionalization], BTW.

I must echo C&J’s and Henry’s point. The mental health de-institutionalization movement was a national movement. It was not Ronald Reagan’s unique concept. The theory was that the mentally ill would be better served by a community based system. Unfortunately, the money saved by closing the institutions did not flow into the community care. The experiment was an abject failure. The ability to control severe mental illness through outpatient services and medication was vastly oversold by the medical community. Today, the mentally ill populate our streets and jails. It is a national disgrace.

Posted by: Rich at February 5, 2011 9:19 PM
Comment #318224

C&J, yes, Reagan was the great communicator and ones perspective of him is primarily based on political prospective. Some people did better because of Reagan and some did not. I think the statistics are fairly clear on the percentages.

Reagan could have been a great president, but he was beholding and as a result he surrounded himself with a lot of sleaze.

The real legacy of Reagan is that with just a whisper his Administration started a movement. Today, that whisper has grown to near hurricane force winds. The movement was given a name by none less than Poss Perot and it is called The Great Sucking Sound. And, all the presidents and all the presidents men since have emulated the Reagan Administration. Obama is emulating Reagan, but he is doing it bent over double by the wind.

Posted by: jlw at February 5, 2011 10:49 PM
Comment #318226

Why I agree the mentally ill does represent a large population of the Homeless, and jail population. America has made great leaps from what the system was like 40 years ago. And though we have a long way to go in that battle, we have an even longer battle in getting the people who need help to work with the system they are given. For C&Js’ “Art” is somewhat of the norm.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 5, 2011 11:00 PM
Comment #318227


Since a majority of Americans now think Reagan was a good president, we must assume that they feel he did well. I expect those are the percentages you are talking about.

Re Ross Perot - he was talking about the prospects for NAFTA, subsequently passed by the Clinton Administration. He made his statements during the 1992 election. Reagan was not involved in that election. I assume you are trying to connect Reagan in some way, but chronology doesn’t permit it, sorry. I suppose you are trying to argue that Reagan was responsible for the deeds of Clinton, Bush & Obama, but do you really want to go that far out on that limb?

It is interesting that the man with the most liberal voting record in the Senate - the current President - feels the need to claim part of the Reagan legacy. If Reagan’s power can still beguile the most liberal president we have seen twenty two years after he left office, maybe Reagan was better than you think. The alternative explanation - that president Obama is so credulous or craven - seems unbelievable.

Posted by: C&J at February 5, 2011 11:25 PM
Comment #318229

“It is interesting that the man with the most liberal voting record in the Senate - the current President - feels the need to claim part of the Reagan legacy.”

C&J, what nonsense. Did you claim Ross Perot’s legacy because you mentioned him in your writing? Did Obama try to tell us, in his opinion piece, that he was somehow riding the Reagan train to conservative idolatry? Obama wrote a very gracious remembrance of a former president. Nothing more. Seems to me Obama is a class act as president who can see the good in former presidents despite political differences. When a conservative can do the same for FDR let me know.

” If Reagan’s power can still beguile the most liberal president we have seen twenty two years after he left office, maybe Reagan was better than you think.”

Reagan doesn’t have to be good to have a following the likes of the conservative movement, C&J. Lets face it Beck, Limbaugh et al have the same type following their every word. Although if you accept that Boehner is not a crazed wing nut then you must also accept that Reagan “shaped our times”. Considering the mess we are in today one has to wonder who is deluded, IMHO.

” The alternative explanation - that president Obama is so credulous or craven - seems unbelievable.”

And completely without logic for those that espouse such foolishness.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 6, 2011 1:50 AM
Comment #318230

Speaking of Boehner and hypocrisy here is something that should have true tea party types back in the streets protesting once the Reaganfest is over.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 6, 2011 2:10 AM
Comment #318232

Since I know you are old enough to remember President Reagans’ Race to the Bottom than I can assume you should know why he did it. So today who has the most toys and what are they doing? Shouldn’t we than be following in their footsteps?

Now, President Obama wants to have America join the Race to the Top. Do you know why?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 6, 2011 2:37 AM
Comment #318234


I am old enough to remember Reagan, but I do not remember any meaningful “race to the bottom.” I understand that some Reagan opponents tried to claim he was doing that with regulations, but I didn’t feel the affects they claimed were hurting me. In face, from 1981-89 things got better for most Americans. In 1981 we had a terrible economy, communism-oppression was spreading &pessimism rampant. In 1989 the economy had recovered, freedom was spreading & Americans were optimistic. Reagan didn’t do it all, but he helped.

What I remember about the Reagan time was optimism, renewal and progress. Of course, I remember the American left trying to convince Americans that things were getting worse, that nuclear war was imminent and that people were going to starve in the streets. I didn’t believe them because it didn’t make sense in terms of what I was seeing and experiencing. Evidently most Americans agreed with me, since Reagan was reelected with large majority and today most Americans have a favorable attitude toward Reagan.

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 10:04 AM
Comment #318237


We were not speaking of Boehner at all. As I recall, we were discussing whether or not to credit Reagan with all the good things that happened when he was president.

Maybe Boehner will change the Pelosi rule. I didn’t recall that you thought that rule was so bad when Pelosi was doing it, BTW.

Re Reagan-FDR etc - I have always said good things about FDR and so did Reagan. Reagan pointed out that he was a Roosevelt supporter & that the he didn’t leave the Democratic party but that the Democratic party left him.

Re shaping the future - Reagan turned the country around. I remember the hard and nasty times from 1973-82. Didn’t like them much. The next ten years were better. The economy grew well with only minor downturns until 2007. Twenty-five years is not bad. Every system requires updating. I am hopeful that Obama can be inspired by Reagan and that the new Republican majority in the House can discipline him to to the right thing.

Re Obama being credulous or craven - I do NOT believe that. I believe that Obama is trying to learn from Reagan because he understands the greatness of Reagan. But if you believe that Reagan is so bad, and Obama is embracing him, then you must choose which of those two things Obama is displaying.

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 10:19 AM
Comment #318239

C&J, I am not saying Reagan is so bad. As president he did things that are to be admired. He was a pragmatist and put the country before the ideology most of the time. He should be respected for that. In fact talk radio conservatives should emulate this quality much much more often. He was a decent president, perhaps even a good president, but not a great president in the way Washington, Lincoln and FDR were great presidents.

I am saying that the idolization and cult like following of Reagan that holds him up as the equal to the founding fathers is out of line with the actual facts of what Reagan did and did not do. I am saying that his legacy is mixed at best and that we are still living with many of the ill effects of his legacy yet today. I am saying that it is time to tear down the wall of misinformation those on the right have built in their hero worshiping of Reagan.

You seem to like to run with the “Evidently most Americans agreed with me, since Reagan was reelected with large majority and today most Americans have a favorable attitude toward Reagan” banner held high as if it were proof of Reagan’s greatness. Perhaps you should consider that if not for all the misinformation perpetrated by the talk radio conservatives about what Reagan did and did not do February 6, 2011 would be in more perspective. After all what Reagan really did was work with and compromise with those he disagreed with politically to move the country forward. Which of course is Obama’s point in his editorial and all but forgotten by the like of Boehner and conservatives today.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 6, 2011 11:05 AM
Comment #318240


Nobody but the founding fathers have the honor of being there at the creation. Whether or not others could have done as well - or better - is an irrelevant question. Washington set the tone and created much of our country because he was the first. Nobody else can ever do that. You talked about “luck”, maybe we can call it by the more grandiloquent term fortune, but it matters.

The legacy of the founding fathers is mixed, BTW. All human activities contain good and bad. It is often difficult even to understand which are which in many cases. Reagan’s legacy is also mixed, but mostly good.

Re fortune - I don’t want to go too far down a tangent, but FDR was very much saved by fortune. His New Deal was largely a failure. He was saved by his performance in WWII, which gave an ex-post-facto blessing to the New Deal. Had he been defeated in 1940 by Wendell Wilkie, his place in history would have been that of a dilettante.

Most of the far-reaching New Deal Federal laws were declared unconstitutional. Justice Louis Brandeis took aside one of Roosevelt’s aides and told him, “This is the end of this business of centralization, and I want you to go back and tell the president that we’re not going to let this government centralize everything.”

Roosevelt appropriated lots of Wilkie’s hawkish rhetoric and moved to the right to get reelected. This served him and the country well. He even talked about replacing Dr. New Deal with Dr Win the War. This is good, because Dr New Deal could not have pulled it off.

IMO FDR faced a bigger, more existential challenge, which is why he is considered greater.

Re perspective on Reagan - We need heroes to admire. Historians can talk about the details. For example, I admire FDR. I visit his memorial every springtime and have read six or seven biographies. When I look to inspiration from him, I don’t dwell on his many mistakes but rather on his success. The same goes for Reagan.

As long as we are talking about great men of the past, consider George C Marshall, the architect of victory in WWII. He said that you should judge a man by what he CAN do and let him do it. Don’t dwell on faults, just try to avoid them and minimize them.

Ronald Reagan is the most successful & inspiring president in my lifetime. I look to him for inspiration, not perfection.

This is what I wrote re Reagan and FDR on my personal blog last year -

“After a while all presidents belong simply to the American people. That is why I can put Reagan and Roosevelt in the same category. The fact that Reagan undid many of the things Roosevelt had wrought does not affect the analysis. Roosevelt did things appropriate for the 1930s & 1940s, things that helped make American prosperous for decades. But nothing lasts forever and even the most effective solutions ossify and break apart with time. By the 1980s the appropriate thing for Reagan to do was change them. Solutions must be appropriate to the circumstances.”

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 11:33 AM
Comment #318241


BTW - here are some old entries from my own blog re Reagan -

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 11:41 AM
Comment #318250

Don’t feel bad that you don’t remember agreeing to race to the bottom in the 1980’s for just as many of My Community Elders and Peers agreed the “Sky was the Limit” even though they could clearly see stars above in the 1970’s. It does show why there is a political disconnevt when President Obama talks about winning the “Race to the Top.”

And that is sad considering the
Race to the Bottom has lead to a lot of the Blessings and Problems America and Humanity faces today. And though it is to early and unresponsible of me to try and define President Obamas’ and other World Leaders Ideology of “Race to the Top” one can imagine that it has something to do with putting rules and regulations in place that will encourage trade while returning the Rights of Workers.

For look at President Reagan Deeds and think what could be done today by the White House and Congress to encourage Americas’ Business, Labor, and Management to start building a Green Sustainable Government and Society. Because why time has changed and the goals may differ, the more they stay the same.

Given that what are you going to do and need to grow your company into the Mean Green Lean Machine that it will have to become in order to survive the next 100 years.

Become energy independent so the price of oil does not constantly effect your bottom line?

Change the material you use in order to offset the raising costs of commodities and resources?

Yes, the list is endless, but the rewards if done proper cannot only help “The Corporation” grow, but allow room for the better treatment of Employees so the Comunity can grow.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 6, 2011 4:21 PM
Comment #318251

Sorry link to Race to the Bottom didn’t work so here is the website

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 6, 2011 4:26 PM
Comment #318259


I looked up what the term meant. I meant that I don’t remember it because it didn’t happen.

Re energy - we use the fuels we use today because they are cheaper and easier to use. The government record in creating widespread innovation is not good. They can create conditions for the people to create innovation, but they don’t innovate well.

Many other world governments have been supporting “green energy”. We hear a lot about the programs and how they are going to work, but the record is not good. The German government, for example, pushed solar. Sounds good until you remember that it is cloudy in Germany most of the time.

Meanwhile, we Americans have figured out ways to get natural gas from shale deposits. This is a real game changing technology. Gas is plentiful in many parts of the world and it is much cleaner than oil or coal. The U.S. will easily be able to reduce its CO2 emissions.

We will indeed develop new and better technologies, as we always have. The government can contribute infrastructure and sound tax policies. But should not try to manage the process.

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 6:56 PM
Comment #318263

If the Race to the Bottom did not happen than how do you explain most Americans having lower wages today than they did in the 1970’s?

How do you explain why we are trying to inflate our way out of the problems we face?

How do you explain the Corporate Raids of the 1980’s?

How did Wal Mart start becoming a National Player with its’ “But American for America?”

But most important of all, how is it that you don’t remember the 1980’s as a Conservative? For the Race to the Bottom is real and just because you don’t recall it happening doesn’t make it so. In fact, “Meism” and the “One with the most toys at the end” came about because of President Reagan and World Leaders agreeing to Race to the Bottom.

For in case you forgot, in the 1970’s it was the hope of the Top 2% that their numbers would grow and is why some enjoy the wealth they have today. Even though their numbers have actually decreased.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 6, 2011 8:13 PM
Comment #318269

The Reagan years were a true economic turning point for the US. It was the period in which financialization began to replace manufacturing as the driving force in US economics. It was the beginning of the trade deficit problem. The US became a debtor nation for the first time during Reagan’s presidency. It also marked the end of the ascent of the middle class and beginning of its decline. Increasingly, debt began to replace wages as the fuel for our consumer economy. The wealth inequality gap which had been declining since WWII began to widen. The engine of growth for the US economy increasingly became dependent upon the growth of private sector debt. It was a time bomb that exploded in 2008 and maintains a strangle hold on our economy.

Posted by: Rich at February 6, 2011 9:07 PM
Comment #318270


The median income, adjusted for inflation, is significantly higher than it was in 1972. Standards of living are even higher than the inflation adjusted incomes would indicate. I am watching the super bowl on an HD flat screen, which was not available even to the richest person in 1972.

Re inflation today - we had twenty-five good years. Nothing lasts forever. The Obama policies didn’t work out well at first, but let’s hope we get better.

I understand that many people have gotten worse off and many have done better. I was brought up in a blue collar family. I am better off than my father at this stage in his life. When I look at my relatives and friends, most of them are better off too. Statistics tell me that median income (which isn’t affected by a few people making a lot more money) has increased.

Median income was $33,338 in 1967; it is $43,318 today, even with the recession. Households are also smaller today, so the money goes a little farther.

I know people complain a lot about how poor they are. How many of them don’t have a big screen TV and a computer?

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 9:21 PM
Comment #318272


The 1970s sucked. The system built on cheap oil & exchange rates fixed to the dollar and gold had collapsed. Reagan didn’t have anything to do with that. His policies helped bring the economy back and we had twenty-five good years from 1982-2007. I regret to inform you that a twenty-five year run is about all we get. Can you tell me about periods of prosperity that were significantly longer? I cannot think of any, so if you provide me an example, I will be grateful (and surprised). The post-war good time period we like so much lasted from around 1949-1972, which is about the average. It also had a few hard times, BTW.

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 9:33 PM
Comment #318275

Median income has only improved by $399.20 per year for 25 years for most Americans while we have seen increases of 500% and better to those on Wall Street for doing the same exact job they did in 1972. Now add in the fact that gas went from $.32 cents per gallon in 1972 to over $3.00 today. A loaf of bread has gone from $.25 cents to $2.99 today. Than add the increase of a car that has went from $3,000.00 to over $20.000.00 today. A home which wa around %50,000.00 to over $250,000.00 just a few years ago. And this has lead to a Better Living?

No, you may hear people complain about how poor they are and think because they own a Big Scren TV and a computer that they are somehow better off. Yet, how much Profit has been lost due to the fact Corporations today are forced to keep their prices so low? In fact, how much Profit have you lost because the wages of other Americans make it impossible to purchase your products?

No, for every Millionaire there are Billionairies which make more money off the ignorance of those who think they are better off today than yesterday due to their material world. However, compare it to what could and can be and the difference would amaze you.

For why you and I grew up with banks paying 7% interest of our savings accounts, why was it changed since $20.00/wk at 7% interest for over 40 years will gross you over a Milliom Dollars. Was it done to improve the Standard of Living for the Average American? Because imagine today if the Poorest American had a networth of over a $1,000,000.00, what would the rest of the world look like?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 6, 2011 9:58 PM
Comment #318277


All those inflation things you mention are figured into the adjustments. People may not feel better off if they think like you indicate. They feel bad that bread costs more but forget that they make more. I recall that I made $1.65 an hour at my first job.

BTW - I buy “Oven Joy” wheat bread today for $1.09 a loaf. It is good bread. Sometimes it is on sale for less.

Re gas - you choose 1972 on purpose. As I explained to Rich, the era of cheap oil ended that year. Reagan didn’t have anything to do with it.

So let’s figure this out. Bread cost $.25 back when minimum wage was $1.60. Now it costs $1.09 when minimum is $7.25. I could buy a little more than six loaves. Now a guy making minimum can buy … just a little more than six loaves. the price of bread has stayed about the same. But man does not live by bread alone. In 1973 I bought my big box stereo that cost around $300 back then. It took me a month of work to buy that. You can buy a system that is much better in sound quality today for less than fifty dollars, but let’s get a really good one and pay $300. This, BTW, would include things unavailable even to the richest person in 1972. IT still takes a kid today making minimum only about a week to buy that.

BTW - don’t you like low prices?

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 10:30 PM
Comment #318280

I could ask you the same thing about Profits and the ability of all Americans to earn a decent income from their savings?

As far as IT, divide the amount of money spent on a product in order to bring it to market by the number of units you must produce in order to turn the first penny of profit. For if you consider just the computer and the programs you can run on it than over the years the cost have reached near zero. Same can be said about a stereo or even the cars of today. Even as new as the I Phone and Apps are they still demand on IT done years ago. So why wouldn’t they cost less?

No, Consumers have been making less than $2.00 a day for the last 30 years or more. And why some think that is acceptable or that even an icrease of $10,000.00 over the last 25 years makes for a better life. In reality all it has done (by design) is to limit the amount of resources this generation has been able to use. So what will happen when America and Humanity work to make every Human an economically viable and financially independent Customer for every Corporation instead of the select few in the World we have today?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 6, 2011 11:02 PM
Comment #318281


I often am really not sure what is making you so unhappy. Life is better now for most Americans than it was in 1972. We live longer, have more stuff, take more vacations and even the air most of us breathe is cleaner.

Are we happier? I don’t know. Happiness is an individual thing. All society can do it provide the raw materials, mentioned above. If people cannot be happy with what is provided to most people today, perhaps they just cannot be happy at all. Life is tough for some people, no matter what their advantages.

Speaking for myself, I was happy when I was poor; I am a little happier now that I am not poor, but mostly happiness, IMO, comes from your own spiritual strength or lack thereof. Our modern American society supplies most people with enough stuff, but maybe too many people have lost their way spiritually. All the stuff in the world cannot help them.

Posted by: C&J at February 6, 2011 11:10 PM
Comment #318284

Two words: Iran and Contra.
Two more: Death and Squads.
Regan was a traitorous drug dealer at best and a war criminal at worst. The fact that he and North are held up as heroes by the Right just shows how morally bankrupt Conservatives are.

Posted by: 2.3.S at February 7, 2011 12:39 AM
Comment #318286

It is not about being happy or if you are better off today than you were in 1972. In fact, one could use the same words from 40 years ago and say if you are over 30 than your words don’t mean a thing. For why President Reagan did alot to help America move forward after the turmoil of the 60’s and 70’s. Could he do the same today following the same Ideology?

No, the 21st Century will require more than just revamping your parents institutions. And why they are important as far as history. Yesterday Idelogy of a Dog Eat Dog World isn’t going to help the Youth of Today build a better world for their children and grandchildren.

For 25 years from now based on the last 25 years do you really think half of the population of Earth still should be living on $2.00 a day and the median income be only $50,000.00 while people on Wall Street are making 1,000s of millions a year? Will that solve the problems of the 20th Century considering what food and fuel will cost?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 7, 2011 1:12 AM
Comment #318307

Reagan, I would say, was a mediocre president with great communications skills in a time where there was less competition on that front.

He did not make Bush 43’s mistake in letting policy go to hell in order not to admit a mistake. He was willing to compromise on policy to avoid the worst of results. He was willing to be flexible on tax policy, rather than do what too many Republicans do nowadays, and just mindlessly embrace tax cuts and oppose rises in taxes.

His economic policies, though, were bad for the middle class. His deregulatory crusade culminated in the near-destruction of our economy. Even within his term, America’s economy became more unstable. Fiscally, his term was a disaster.

And his heirs never learned the lessons they should have from him, engaging in their politics in an obnoxious, charm-challenged way that assumes they don’t have to sell their agenda.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 8, 2011 10:15 AM
Comment #318321

Rich nailed Ronald Reagans true legacy to the wall.

There was a time in the 90’s when Carter was more popular than Reagan.

In 2025, Obama will rank higher in the past presidents polls than Reagan.

Posted by: jlw at February 8, 2011 6:04 PM
Comment #318325

“Ronnie” wouldn’t have anywhere near the accolades thrown around in his name, if it were not for Nancy.
She had him hog-tied and green-broke long before they hit the White House. She still appears to have the rest of the Reagan hangers-on eating out of the same hand.

Posted by: jane doe at February 8, 2011 6:44 PM
Comment #318328

Jane, Jlw & Stephen

You guys have your opinions. I think I can understand how you feel. It is hard to give up the old fights. Lots of people used to feel as you do. But now that we have had time to assess the situation and have new documents, most people have come to believe that Reagan did a good job. Maybe opinion will shift and you can be among the majority.


As we learn more about both Reagan and Carter, our opinions about them have changed. Your prediction about Obama is interesting. I suppose you have some reason for believing it besides the feeling, but I suppose nobody will remember the prediction come 2025.


Nancy played an important role. Reagan was evidently too nice a guy and liked everybody. Nancy, not so much. She played the same role as Hilary played for Bill Clinton. You usually need some kind of team to keep a visionary leader in business.

Posted by: C&J at February 8, 2011 7:03 PM
Comment #318333


You seem to recognize that the neo-liberal economic policies promoted by Reagan have run into a brick wall. “I regret to inform you that a twenty-five year run is about all we get.”

Yet, you appear to continue the support of those policies. You seem oblivious to the fact that it was the private sector debt burden that collapsed in 2008 and required the federal government to socialize an enormous amount of private sector debt. You supported the bailouts but abhor big government. You recognize that the de-regulated free financial markets failed, but oppose new financial regulation as a burden on the financial system.

What alternatives do you advocate? Conservatives have been pretty light on the prescriptions and heavy on the proscriptions in recent years. Is the financialization of our economy a good thing? Is the loss of a manufacturing base a good thing? Is the trade imbalance a good thing? Where the hxx, do you think that we should be going?

Posted by: Rich at February 8, 2011 8:44 PM
Comment #318335


Everything has to adapt. But we don’t live in a binary world. The types of polices I supported in the 1980s need to be adapted to changes in the American and world economy. That does not mean we go back the the kinds of policies we followed in the 1970s or that we grow government to never-before seen levels.

I believe in government. It has a role in society that only it can perform. It performed a necessary role as a lender of last resort and the Fed protected the stability of the money supply. In doing so, it pushed the economy back on the road. To use Obama’s metaphor, it pulled the car out of the ditch. But like the tow truck operator, along with the traffic cop, now that the car is out of the ditch, we don’t expect them to confiscate the car or drive it themselves. To the extent that the car drove off the road by breaking laws, those who did it should be castigated. But we do not need a revolutionary change.

IMO - the spreading of risk as in the mortgage should be curbed and we should demand higher standards for loans. These things are in place now.

One of the big unaddressed worldwide problem is the artificially low Chinese currency. Everywhere you go in the world, this is a problem. I don’t know how to address that. If you do, perhaps you might tell President Obama.

Re manufacturing base - our manufacturing base in larger now than it was twenty years ago. It employs fewer people because of productivity gains. What happened to agriculture is happening to manufacturing. Our relative manufacturing strength has slipped, please see above about the undervalued Chinese currency.

Re the trade balance - please see above re Chinese currency and also try to figure out how to get Americans to consume less and still get the economy to improve. U.S. imports are doing well; we just import even more.

Obama has been driving this vehicle for more than two years now. His proposals for structural change have been weak. Unfortunately, he outsourced lots of his thinking to Nancy Pelosi, who was not up to the task. He seems to be coming around, however.

Posted by: C&J at February 8, 2011 9:03 PM
Comment #318343

With China, anything done by President Obama and/or Congress to lower their currency would violate our trade agreement with them; however, nothing is written or can be said it American Businesses join together to promote buying Americas’ new Green Products instead of the imports of 20th century products being sold at Wal mart and other discount stores. Because why others would have to explain how the fall of China products sold would force the increase of their money, but by forcing China to switch production in their plants basicly overnight the effect on the value of their currency would have to be reconsidered.

As far as the car being pulled out of the ditch. President Obama is trying to repair the damage done by Republicans blindly following the Ideology of Straving the Beast which can be seen as we now have numbers lower than the 1950’s in revenue and higher than the 1920’s when it comes to the Top 1% holding more money than the rest of the country. So until we can fix the top heavy car being financed at prices lower than the 1950’s than I guess the Race to the Bottom isn’t over.

For why shouldn’t we aim to have the top 1% hold 95% of the Wealth in the Country and the income recieved by the Federal Government be lower than the 1920’s. Just how low do you want to go with the cost of living increasing every day. Should gas become $10.00 a gallon, bread increase to $8.00 a loaf while the value of your house drops below $50,000.00?

Seems to me America would be better off buying a new car than fixing the car built by Republicans. Thus, why President Reagan may have won the Cold War by racing to the Bottom with Russia. Can President Obama and this generation learn from their parents life lessons and win the Race to the Top? Would you want to race using the old beat up car of the Republicans or the new sporty Electric Car which can out run the fossil burning cars of the 20th Century?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 8, 2011 10:05 PM
Comment #318346


We have no trade agreement with China re currency. We just cannot get them to let their currency rise, as it should. The whole world is in this mess. A Brazilian friend of mine told me about the problem they have with low cost Chinese goods. I have heard Europeans complain. We all have the same challenge and the same opportunity - China.

What American “green products” are you talking about?

The income received by the government is not below that of the 1920s. It is not below that of the 1980s. And government is spending much more than it ever has before. I don’t know where you got the figures. President Obama was a bit disingenuous when he talked about discretionary spending, BTW, as a % of GDP. We all know that the big growth came in entitlements.

Re taxes - the rich pay most of the Fed tax already. The poorest 20% actually get more money back than they pay in and the lower 50% pays almost no net taxes.

Re a new car - we won’t get one with the old ideas that liberal democrats are selling.

Posted by: C&J at February 8, 2011 10:27 PM
Comment #318351

Warped Reality gave a good link about Americas’ taxes being lower than the 1950’s and even Fox reported on the Wealthy holding more money today than in the 1920’s.

As far as Americas">”>Americas Green Products I guess a little education is in order.

Re taxes With Warren Vuffet admiting he pays only 16% on his income taxes while his secatary pays more on the money she makes I do believe you need to seperate the dollar amount paid from the percentage of income to include payroll since it is part of the wages one must consider when hiring an employee.

Re the car Compare the GM Volt to the cars of the 20th Century. Consideting most Americans drive under 40 miles day I wonder at the end of the race who will win since most cars or I should say SUVs on the road in the 20th century were getting 9 mpg?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 8, 2011 11:08 PM
Comment #318352

Sorry second link should be

Still trying to get my fingers to work right.

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 8, 2011 11:13 PM
Comment #318355

“But now that we have had time to assess the situation and have new documents, most people have come to believe that Reagan did a good job.”

C&J are you sure it is a good job that these many people think Reagan did? Many people compliment Reagan for his ability to communicate. Many for his leadership in the Reagan revolution. Many for his ability to motivate the nation. All well and good but what did he actually do that would cause one to think his presidency was a success? He was for small government yet grew government more than most presidents. He was for less taxes yet he raised taxes more than most. He was for financial responsibility yet he grew the debt by over 2 trillion dollars when the debt was in the millions of dollars range. What new documents have come into being that has fooled this majority of Americans into believing he has done a good job for the Country?

Posted by: j2t2 at February 8, 2011 11:36 PM
Comment #318384


What it takes in matters less than what it spends. The recession has lowered tax revenue. Government spending is higher. When the economy recovers, taxes will rise.

I only wish the government was the size it was in the 1950s.

Re green products - a little education is in order. Do you buy all these product? If not, I bet it is because they cost more and you think that you might use your money better.

The problem with these industries is exactly that - price.


Our taxes were lower in 1989 than they were in 1981. I know we can figure out many ways to make this look not so, but it is true.

I believe that Reagan was essential for the successful ending of the Cold War. He also produced actual reductions in nuclear arms. The economy got going under Reagan and kept going for a quarter century.

Most Americans find reasons to favor Reagan and historians are coming to understand better his positive impact. If you do a literature search, you will find these things.

I liked Reagan since 1980, but even I underestimated his intellectual skills. After reading his own writing, I saw the evolution of his thinking. He actually came up with his own judgments - something his detractors convinced us was not true.

Posted by: C&J at February 9, 2011 4:38 PM
Comment #318394

So if we were to follow President Reagan than adding higher taxes to non green products would be ok since not only would it be good for moving Americas’ Businesses forward, but would have sabe on such expenses as landfills. For if you are only worried about the price of things than do you support lowering management pay back to what they were recieving in the 1950’s?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 9, 2011 6:00 PM
Comment #318396


Add taxes to carbon. I have long advocated it. Nobody, including Obama, will touch that subject directly.

Posted by: C&J at February 9, 2011 6:11 PM
Comment #318419

I thought Obamas’ Cap and Trade Bill taxed carbon so why did Conservatives and Republicans oppose it when it would have lead to a long term energy solution and American Jobs?

Posted by: Henry Schlatman at February 9, 2011 9:10 PM
Comment #318434

“Our taxes were lower in 1989 than they were in 1981. I know we can figure out many ways to make this look not so, but it is true.”

So was our income,well unless you were in the top 1%.

And our national debt was higher and we all see where that has lead us. The legacy of “debtor nation” status does impress me.

“He actually came up with his own judgments - something his detractors convinced us was not true.”
Posted by: C&J at February 9, 2011 04:38 PM

That really isn’t setting the bar very high is it C&J, a little like saying he “could walk and chew gum at the same time”. Not much of a reason to celebrate if you ask me. Certainly not a reason to use great in the same sentence as you use Reagan.

Posted by: j2t2 at February 10, 2011 9:54 AM
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