So let's talk about the man conservatives pray to every night, Ronald Reagan. This week is a big deal to all those who love the man who will soon have his image on Mount Rushmore. "The Gipper" will be 100 on Sunday, and you would think that he freed the slaves and wrote the Declaration Of Independence all by himself.
Sorry folks, but, once again, I have to be the contrarian.
Reagan the fiscal conservative? Sorry, Ronald Reagan was responsible for the largest tax hike in California's history when he became governor.
Under Reagan's watch A-merry-ca's debt climbed from 712 billion to 2 trillion, and "The Gipper" never presented a balanced budget to Congress in his eight years in office. (That,by the way, is historian Kevin Starr talking, not the field.) And yes, it was under Reagan that unemployment hit 10% for the first time since the Great depression.
Under Reagan's watch, (whether you believe the "Dark Alliance "story or not) the crack epidemic exploded in this country. And, generations later, urban A-merry-ca is still reeling from its effects.
Reagan's assault on labor unions in this country created a climate for cheap labor which led to A-merry-can jobs going abroad. Under "The Gipper" the homeless population exploded to over two million. Poverty rose by over 25%, and we can thank "The Gipper" for putting our beloved A-merry-c on a path to Third Worlds status.--- Very rich folks; very poor ones, and a weak middle class.
Issues of race and civil rights? Don't even get me started. "The Gipper" embraced the apartheid government in South Africa. (Did I mention that he launched his presidential bid from Philadelphia, Mississippi?) He kept up a constant assault on affirmative action, cut funding for social programs which disproportionately affected black folks, and he fired members of the Civil Rights Commission who did not see eye to eye with his look away policies on matters of race. (Did I mention that he launched his presidential bid from Philadelphia, Mississippi?)
Oh, and for good measure; he invaded that big bad Island of Grenada just to show those darkies down in the Windies just how tough A-merry-ca was. He opposed the Voting Right Act because he said it was "humiliating the south", (Did I mention that he launched his presidential bid from Philadelphia, Mississippi?) and he sided with Barry Goldwater in opposing the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Nice.
I won't even get into Ollie North, Iran- Contra, and his horrendous foreign policy as it relates to Lain America. (Read this link.) "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall". Yes, he tore it down, but no thanks to you. We can thank those fighters in the mountains of Afghanistan (who just so happen to be giving us hell right now) for that.
"I would rather have Roosevelt in a wheelchair than Reagan and Bush on a horse"
Jesse, try telling that to the people who worship at the altar of "The Gipper". Soon, that horse will be on Mount Rushmore, and the B movie actor with the gift of gab will be sitting right on top of it.