Sarah Palin Does Ronald Reagan
The New York Times
"Sarah Palin will present the keynote speech at the Reagan Ranch Center in Santa Barbara today to celebrate Ronald Reagan’s 100thbirthday. The conservative former governor of Alaska who is considering running for the Oval Office in 2012 will honor the former president for the changes brought by the Reagan Administration during his tenure as president and the legacy he provided for millions of his admirers on the right.
Given all the rhetoric about how Ronald Reagan was such a positive influence on our government, our economy, our military prowess, much is forgotten about the many failures of his administration and the negative influence his administration left as his legacy.
Reagan was not the most popular president in American history; Bill Clinton was just as popular in the several Gallop polls.
Reagan’s promotion of “supply-side economics”, which promoted the idea that tax cuts for the rich would lead them to save and invest money which would lead to increase productivity and lower unemployment…never worked the way it was supposed to as the 1980s was the worst decade of post-World War II growth. In fact, his Voodoo Economics is a key reason America suffers the huge unemployment problems and the major distribution of income that stifles economic growth today.
During his presidency Bill Casey, director of the CIA, was responsible for secretly funding the contras in Nicaragua by borrowing millions of dollars from the Saudis…supposedly without Congress or Reagan’s knowledge it was reported with a wink and a nod.
A further goal of Reaganomics was to cut back on government which is touted today by his conservative followings…in fact, during Reagan’s presidency government spending grew by 25% and the number of government employees increased, as well.
Another conservative objective of his economic program while in office was to balance the federal budget…Reagan never produced a balanced budget and ran the biggest deficit in history, up to that time.
One of Reagan’s biggest “failures” was the Iran-Contra that involved secret sales of arms to Iran to raise funds to support anti-communist fighters in Nicaragua. At first Reagan denied knowledge of the affair only to find out after a Congressional Investigation that both he and Vice President George Bush had been involved.
The World Court convicted Reagan’s administration for human rights violations in Nicaragua…the administration then chose to remove the US from participation with the World Court ending a 39 year time of US support.
As is common in politics Reagan is revered as a game changing American President because of major world change that occurred during his time…the end of the Cold War supposedly based on the huge investment in military hardware made by his administration…in fact, the Cold War ended because of the economic collapse of the Soviet Union that began during the latter stages of Reagan’s term.
What we should learn on his birthday this year is how misleading the Reagan Legacy has become when touted by the conservative right. Like Sarah Palin and other right wing conservatives who use voodoo Reaganomics as a standard for their political causes the failure of those policies remain clear in historical fact, not on politically created legend about the man and his politics. The right should learn to get their facts straight."
- “Voodoo Economics”, Remark, presidential campaign (1980), George H.W. Bush
I was tempted to title this post ... "Ronald Reagan: Not Dead Enough" just to tick off some right wing folks I know - but in the Irish culture that I was raised in - it is taught that there are sometimes unfortunate consequences for speaking 'ill of the dead'