Dicky's Doodles &Scribbles

Cartoons,editorials and comment about current events and more.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Wrapping Themselves In The Mantle Of Ronald Reagan

Once again we find ourselves in an election cycle and once again Republican candidates are breaking their arms in an effort to wrap themselves in the mantle of Ronald Reagan.
It has become something close to an article of faith among Republican candidates for high office and particularly those running for the Presidency. They are determined to convince voters they are “Reagan Republicans” and continuously invoke his name to attempt to demonstrate they are the heirs of the so-called Reagan Revolution.
Many thought Fred Thompson was the logical politician to take the coveted spot. After all he, like Reagan, was a well known though mediocre actor and, like Regan, he had a lackluster record while he was serving as an elected official.
Republicans get teary eyed when they invoke the name of “The Gipper” and they have long sought to build and enhance a mythology about him as President. Some even sought to have his head added to the Presidential pantheon of Mount Rushmore.
The truth is that Reagan was a lousy governor and an equally lousy President. He was a phony through and through. He was lazy, uninvolved and unknowledgeable about history, current events and the requirements of his job. This performance led to the Iran-Contra scandal which has had long lasting and serious repercussions concerning our relations and policies in the Middle East and Latin America.
The Regan tax restructuring doomed the middle class and low income Americans to more than two decades and still counting of
wage decreases and and social inequity.
If anyone could be compared to Reagan it is the current occupant of the White House who is equally unintelligent, un-involved and easily led by a cabal of “handlers” and behind the scenes conservative big-wigs.
A recent book on Gerald Ford really puts it well. Below is an excerpt from an interview with author Tom De Frank.

Tom De Frank tells what Gerald Ford said about Ronald Reagan

MR. RUSSERT: Let me move on to Ronald Reagan. Because this was very striking in your book, Tom DeFrank, and we’ll bring in Bill Safire on this and get his sense of the public and private man. Here’s what Tom DeFrank writes about Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford: “Three days after Ronald Reagan died Ford joined millions of his fellow Americans in mourning the country’s heartfelt loss. ‘He and I became very good friends,’ Ford told CNN’s Larry King. ‘Let me be’” “‘forthright: I think Ronald Reagan was a first-class president, and I treasured my relationship and association with him.’
“Baloney. Ford neither liked nor respected the former Hollywood actor. He considered Reagan a superficial, disengaged, intellectually lazy showman who didn’t do his homework and clung to a naive, unrealistic, and essentially dangerous worldview.” (Italics mine) (Sounds exactly like G.W. Bush! My comment)
How do you know that?
MR. DeFRANK: I know that because he told me that several times, and there’re lots of quotes from the books that, that back that up. At one point he said, “I have to say he was not a technically competent president, but he was a hell of a showman, he had a hell of a flair.” And he also says at one point—told me at one point that, that foreign leaders had told him the same thing. President Ford said “Foreign leaders have said they were appalled by Reagan’s lack of, of knowledge of the issues. On the other hand, they all agree with me that he was one hell of a salesman.” So, he said it many, many times. But I want to say, to put this in context and in fairness to President Reagan, from the day that President Reagan told the world about his Alzheimer’s in 1994, Gerald Ford never uttered another unkind word about him. As a matter of fact, for the next 12 years, Ford would say all that bitterness about ‘76, something like this really puts it into perspective. But up until that time, from ‘77 to 1994, he was still bitter at Ronald Reagan.


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