Friday, July 2, 2010

Mark Steyn Calls It Right On Ronald Reagan

Growing up in the late seventies and early eighties, my opinion of Ronald Reagan was largely informed on the basis of the media portrayal of him: a cowboy too ready to call draw to be safe with the nuclear trigger, a B Movie Actor who said his lines well and was able to surround himself with capable people. It turned out the informed opinion was utterly mis-informed.

'Dutch' had been an all American kind of boy, growing up in a poor rural household, playing sports and life-guarding in summers. He grew into an All-American kind of man, making his living as a radio sports announcer before his boyishly handsome good looks landed him in the movie picture industry. During the late fifties he took on a position doing a promotional program for GE, giving speeches and hosting the traveling program. It was here that he honed his natural ability to connect with an audience. On October 27th, 1964 he gave his "A Time For Choosing" speech in support of the Goldwater presidential bid. It was a bold, compelling, persuasive address, and launched Ronald Reagan's political career on the national stage.

The confusion that the media types foisted upon this country was nicely unmasked by Mark Steyn in his piece Dutch Courage.
"Edmund Morris has described his subject as an “airhead” and concluded that it’s “like dropping a pebble in a well and hearing no splash.” Morris may not have heard the splash, but he’s still all wet: the elites were stupid about Reagan in a way that only clever people can be."

Exactly right.

Happy Fourth, everyone!


  1. Reagan was one of the greatest, and best, presidents we've ever had. I will always believe that God raised him up for just that time. I will always believe that without Reagan, we would eventually have surrendered to the Soviets without a shot -- that is how demoralized the nation was under the ministrations of the "liberals" of the time who were running the country. *They* (our "leaders" and rulers) did not have the desire to resist the Soviets, and everyone knew it; they were just "managing the decline" or "keeping the seat warm" for the people they were convinced held the moral high-ground.

  2. "Liberals" have been our enemies (and I mean that word, precisely) for a very long time.

  3. The Soviet Union was on the verge of economic collapse during the Carter Administration, but Carter's incompetence as a leader saved them. Oil prices that rose an order of magnitude as a result of not supporting the Shah, provided the foreign currency they desperately needed and easily got as the world's largest oil producer.
    The Left-Wing at the intelligence agencies bought the Kabuki-theater being pulled off by the Soviets at their defense plants.[Squadrons of unfinished aircraft(airframes with complete skins rolled out of factories to be moved to storage fields where they were replaced with canvas/paper covered wood-framed replicas as the metal versions were again rolled out of the factories, and the process repeated).] The same deception was carried out for other big-ticket weaponry--submarines, missiles, etc.) Jimmy Carter allowed them to save on some paper by cutting US Defense spending.

    I remember the faces of the Democratic leadership and leading thinkers in academia when the Soviet Union fell. They trotted out the BS about worrying about the power vacuum and what would replace it, but it really was the look that goes with the death of a dream. And the view that the wrong side won.