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Saturday, February 05, 2011 

Sarah Palin Does Ronald Reagan

"For Ms. Palin, a speech on Friday evening to a conservative group that gathered to pay tribute to President Reagan offered an opportunity to connect herself to the most iconic figure of the Republican Party. Yet she did not use the appearance — one of the highest-profile Republican platforms in months — to move beyond familiar criticism or attempt to prescribe a new or specific remedy for what she sees as missteps in the Obama administration"
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


Editors Note:
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'

The CIA was reporting that the USSR was on the verge of economic collapse even before Reagan took office.

The one thing that has always bothered about the hero worship of Reagan surrounding the hostage crisis is that Carter tried to effect a rescue only to see the military botch the job and he is labeled as weak and cowardly. Reagan on the other hand trades arms to the Iranians to effect their release and is considered strong and brave.

So much of the myth of Ronald Reagan is just that a myth.

ps you should have gone with "Ronald Reagan: Not Dead Enough" it was worth the risk of damnation.

pps I caught this discussion on TRN worth watching

Thanks .. good info

Carter stayed up all night and provided the will and direction to move funds out of Iran, and freeze Iranian assets so the theocratic regime couldn't use them. That is one of the reasons they hated him so much. He crippled the Iranian regime from the get go by taking the money away.

That was a President who understood what was really important in the world.


Under Reagan the United States was a "state sponsor of terrorism" using their own definition. They supported groups who engaged in terrorist attacks against the democratically elected government of Nicaragua. The Contras blew up bridges, power lines, telephone lines, roads, schools, medical facilities and more. They shot, killed, raped, and kidnapped.

That is another part of Ronald Reagan's legacy - war crimes by groups he and his administration sponsored. I believe that the current secretary of defense, Robert Gates was up to his neck in the Contra muck and advocated selling arms to Iran during the Iran-Iraq war.

"Because of his senior status in the CIA, Gates was close to many figures who played significant roles in the Iran-Contra Affair and was in a position to have known of their activities. In 1984, as deputy director of CIA, Gates advocated that the U.S. initiate a bombing campaign against Nicaragua and that the U.S. do everything in its power short of direct military invasion of the country to remove the Sandinista government"

"Robert Gates had sent a memo to the White House in 1985, urging US government to sell Iran arms during Iran-Iraq War"

He was a senior CIA, NSC dude through the whole period



In the '70s Jimmy Carter started funding a group of Islamist extremists called the Mujaheddin in Afganistan - locals who would harrass the Soviet backed regime and the Soviets in the country. He did it to piss off the Soviets - it wasn't much - the usual chopstick in the ribs kind of thing the cold war superpowers would do all the time in the others' client states (doesn't make it right, but it was low key business as usual).

Reagan's administration decided it was a brilliant idea to start recruiting ultra-fanatics from all over the Arab/Muslim world and begin arming them and having the trained by the CIA to take the war on the Soviets to a whole new level.

The Mujaheddin eventually took over the country of Afghanistan and began a terrible repressive regime - eventually known as the Taliban.

Those fanatical Islamists decided that they had won against the Soviets and now they should direct their attention toward the real problem in the world - the United States.

Reagan's regime armed and trained the fanatics who would spawn Al Qaeda and a host of other Islamist terror groups. And gave them a country from which to base their training and operations from - Afghanistan - because *who gives a shit about a backwater like Afghanistan?*


Yeah - Reagan

a towering figure of freedom... not

Another example of Reagan's "Greatness" is the "Silent Genocide"of the Mayan Indians of Guatemala in the early 80's

Children were often beaten against walls, or thrown alive into pits where the bodies of adults were later thrown; they were also tortured and raped. Victims of all ages often had their limbs amputated, or were impaled and left to die slowly. Others were doused in gasoline and set alight, or disemboweled while still alive. Yet others were shot repeatedly, or tortured and left alone to die in pain. The wombs of pregnant women were cut open. Women were routinely raped while being tortured.

Throughout the period of the genocide, the US continued to provide military support to the Guatemalan government, mainly in the form of arms and equipment. The infamous guerrilla training school, the School of the Americas continued to train Guatemalan officers notorious for human rights abuses; the CIA worked with Guatemalan intelligence officers, some of whom were on the CIA payroll despite being known human rights violators. US involvement was understood to be strategic or, put another way, indifferent to the fate of a bunch of Indians.

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