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IS IT OVER YET?


trilingual
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Can I turn on the TV set without getting yet another syrupy retrospective on the life of the "Great Communicator?" Or sights of his endless imperial funeral?

 

Obviously, Hollywood overlooked Nancy Reagan as a worthy successor to Cecil B. DeMille. Of course, she's apparently been planning this extravaganza for 10 years, so there's no reason it shouldn't have been lavish. As far as I can tell, the only thing missing was the pyramid Elizabeth Taylor rode in on in "Cleopatra!"

 

Meanwhile, wherever they are, Ronnie and P.T. Barnum must be busily comparing notes. :-( It turns out you can fool an awful ot people for an awful long time!

 

Hopefully, this orgy will be over for good. Reagan may have been an amiable fellow, but his policies weren't. It bothers me to have the nation essentially forced to give him such an overblown send-off when he wasn't an especially great president and was far from universally beloved, in spite of the mythology the ultra-right is so busily trying to concoct.

 

Fortunately, history will take care of the rest. The idea that Reagan ranks with Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson or F.D.R. is ludicrous. He doesn't even make it into the second tier of greatness, with presidents like Woodrow Wilson, Teddy Roosevelt, or Harry Truman! Even the tragically flawed Lyndon Johnson left a far greater and more profound legacy than Reagan did. So did Dwight Eisenhower, who was also a real war hero and not just a wartime radio announcer! And in years ahead, it will be obvious that Reagan doesn't rank with them.

 

I can understand the ultra-right wing's need for a hero they can look up to (although their choice of heroes is certainly bizarre) but for the life of me I can't understand how so many other Americans, the majority of whom aren't ultra-rightists, can get taken in by the likes of Reagan, in spite of his amiable personality. Regardless of his politics, there was never any "there" there to Reagan. He was an ignorant man with an incredibly limited world view who demonstrated his lack of knowledge whenever he had to speak without a script. It's hard to believe that we really want to elevate such utter mediocrity to such a high pedestal.

 

Of course, maybe we don't. Maybe that's why Bill Clinton was so successful (and so popular that he would have won a third term, according to the polls, if it had been permitted under the Constitution), and why the majority of Americans voted for Al Gore to replace him. Regardless of their politics, Clinton and Gore definitely weren't mediocrities and stood in stark contrast to their recent Republican predecessors.

 

Speaking of which, here in the Republican heartland Clinton was scheduled to give a speech at the University of Kansas a couple of weeks ago to launch a speaker's series at the new Bob Dole Institute of Politics on the KU campus. The speech was scheduled for a large campus theater, holding about 1500 people, but the demand for tickets was so great the event had to be moved to the Allen Field House, which holds 14,000 people, and it was SOLD OUT! People hung on his every word, and were talking about the speech for weeks afterwards. So at least in one corner of the Midwest there seems to be nostalgia for something a little less mediocre than our current political leadership. :D Maybe there is some hope, after all!

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Excellent post Tri. Enjoyed your perspective on things. I am currently in Thailand and don't see the tv much. But, the main pages of CNN, NewYorkTimes nd BBC has been on Reagan for days. I personally never liked his policies but he was a good spokesman. As a teen, I also listened to his speeches and loved listening to him talk.

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Tri I am a great admirer of you and your posts and what you do for the Board. But Pres Reagan will live on for a along time, not quite sure why but I am sure some of it has to do with The Cold War, Margaret Thatcher and Mikael Gorbachev (SP) Was suprised to see how many were there today. Even though many of us don't like his homefront policies the international community really seemed to like and respected him. HUGS Chuck

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You've got to be kidding!!!!! Clinton will be relegated to the dust bins of history ten minutes after he's buried-- oh, except for the an occasional MTV special on "Most Shocking Sexual Moments in History!"

 

Peace,

 

Kippy

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Clinton will certainly be remembered for his sexual indiscretions. But he'll also be remembered as the President who presided over the longest peacetime economic expansion in American history, creating more than 20 million new jobs, keeping inflation down, and bringing the U.S. into fiscal surplus for the first time in memory. He'll also be remembered as being one of the most articulate and intelligent occupants of the White House (even if he wasn't the most astute, as his indiscretions showed). Clinton was very much admired and respected outside the U.S., where most people aren't as concerned by the sexual pecadilloes of political leaders. (In other countries people are more focussed on the the political and economic accomplishments of their leaders and less on their private lives.) Clinton left the U.S. in much better shape than he found it, in spite of all the time that was wasted by the concerted campaign by the extreme right to discredit him and hound him from office. If Clinton had been more successful in some of his foreign policy endeavors, like actually achieving a peace agreement between the Israelis and Palestinians, he would be considered a great President. I don't think history will consider him one of the "great" presidents, but he will rank up there among the better ones. And history will judge him less for his sexual escapades than for the many solid achievements of his administration. It will certainly rank him higher than either Reagan or the Bushes!

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The American Dreamer

 

Often this week I have heard Reagan referred to as "The American Dreamer."

Well, I imagine it's true... a dreamer he was. One supposes that he dreamt of a strong, pure, and beautiful America, the America portrayed on countless propaganda posters manufactured during WWII. The America portrayed on '50's television, an image that women and men are still battling over now, in 2004.

Reagan dreamt of a "Shining City on a Hill". Lovely, a great notion. The problem is that he didn't really care who got stepped on on the way to this vision. The Shining City has turned out to be more of a gated community rather than a beacon of democracy. gays, ethnic minorities, and other malcontents, well, they belong somewhere else.

Reagan's international policies were no less illusory. He believed in a Strong Arm, and a Big Stick. Again, a leftover idea, and totally false. The rest of the world has never really cared what America thinks, despite the fact that we are "Number One"... how rude of them!

Each and every one of the international problems that our country shame-facedly confronts today are directly related to Reagan's arrogant international policies.

It was during the Reagan era that the terrorist army was built, with american money, and to confront the Soviet Union.

The karma of that policy is Al Qaeda. It was during the Reagan era that S. Hussein was stocked with all manner of weaponry, to be used against the evil Iran. The karma of that policy is, well, you figure it out.

The adulation of Reagan is an adulation of a whiter, simpler America, where the concepts of good and bad are as simple as black and white.

That America didn't work out. It has never worked out...when will Republicans get that?

 

La Trix

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>Can I turn on the TV set without getting yet another syrupy

>retrospective on the life of the "Great Communicator?" Or

>sights of his endless imperial funeral?

 

ABSOLUTELY!!! Just tune in pay per view, HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, TV Land, Nick at Night, or countless other stations! But then again, such a simple act of pushing a button, would not enable you to rage your hatred, would it?

 

What a hateful, self-indulgent opinion it is to state that Reagan's funeral was an "endless imperial" function! I guess you, in all your "eternal youth", missed the extravaganzas of all the OTHER state funerals where the deceased lied in state in the Capitol, where the deceased had the EXACT same ceremony that Reagan received, and some of them were never even President!

 

There was NOTHING more or less "imperial" with those funerals than Reagan's funeral, which he was ENTITLED to, as an ex-president, but then again, you have to spew your ignorance about state funerals being "imperial" only if it is applied to RR, right? Never let facts overshadow your personal HATRED! :(

>

>Obviously, Hollywood overlooked Nancy Reagan as a worthy

>successor to Cecil B. DeMille. Of course, she's apparently

>been planning this extravaganza for 10 years, so there's no

>reason it shouldn't have been lavish. As far as I can tell,

>the only thing missing was the pyramid Elizabeth Taylor rode

>in on in "Cleopatra!"

 

To paraphrase Dan Ackroyd "tri, you IGNORANT slut!". See my previous comments about RR's funeral being NO MORE extravagant than any other state funeral, and I'm fairly sure about that, as I've seen them ALL up front and personal, from JFK to RR!

 

What a COLD HEARTED skeptic you are to IMPLY that Nancy's only CONCERN over the last 10 years was to see Ronnie off in "imperial" style, especially since such style was in "total" compliance with all the other sendoffs of public figures who had a national funeral in Washington, DC, after lying in state in the Rotunda. The only thing sadder than your ignorance, is your self-righteous hatefulness!!!! :(

 

>Hopefully, this orgy will be over for good. Reagan may have

>been an amiable fellow, but his policies weren't. It bothers

>me to have the nation essentially forced to give him such an

>overblown send-off when he wasn't an especially great

>president and was far from universally beloved, in spite of

>the mythology the ultra-right is so busily trying to concoct.

 

SEE PREVIOUS COMMENTS!

>

>Fortunately, history will take care of the rest. The idea

>that Reagan ranks with Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson or

>F.D.R. is ludicrous. He doesn't even make it into the second

>tier of greatness, with presidents like Woodrow Wilson, Teddy

>Roosevelt, or Harry Truman! Even the tragically flawed Lyndon

>Johnson left a far greater and more profound legacy than

>Reagan did. So did Dwight Eisenhower, who was also a real war

>hero and not just a wartime radio announcer! And in years

>ahead, it will be obvious that Reagan doesn't rank with them.

 

Washington - a lifetime SLAVE holder, who only granted freedom to his slaves in his will, when he was no longer alive and need their services!

 

Jefferson - a lifetime SLAVE holder, SLAVE breeder, rapist of his wife's slave mulatto sister, who to this day, his "illegitimate heirs via Sally" fight for recognition!

 

Lincoln - an ignorant, REDNECK of monumental portions! who was more than HAPPY to acquiesce the right of Southern states to own slaves if it would preserve his "misconception" of what "constituted" the questionable right of the "Union" as a sacrosanct ideology! The same clueless shit, who signed the Emancipation Proclamation only after TWO FULL YEARS of rebellion by Southern states to exercise their "legal, contractual rights" to DISSOLVE themselves from an agreement of "union"!

 

FDR - talk about imperialism, how about his goal to be President for life, and his desire to pass the crown to his prodigy! The driving force behind the amendment limiting the president to two consecutive terms! A rich, self-centered aristocratic man, who cared LITTLE for the minorities of this country, and who HATED his wife Eleanor's campaign for minorities. The same paragon of virtue, who presided over the SEGREGATION of black Americans from white Americans in the armed services, despite the FACT that the World was engaged in the Greatest Battle for Freedom in all of History! The same smug assed piece of crap, that ALLOWED the murder of countless citizens in Hawaii, despite all the warnings, just so he could advance his own personal agenda of power. Yep, a real PARAGON OF VIRTUE!

 

Teddy Roosevelt - where the hell is he supposed to so GREAT?? As even he stated "I can either control America or control my daugher Alice, I can't do both".

 

Truman - another winner who was stupid enough to FIRE MacArthur, because of "personal reasons", just like he had the Washington Post reporter fired for "criticizing" his daughter's musical abilities. If he had followed MacArthur's advice there would have been NO Korean War and there would have been NO COLD WAR with the USSR, as they BOTH would have been CRUSHED! And I suppose NO Vietnam War, NO Berlin Wall, NO suppression of Eastern Europe under Soviet control, NO Cuba, NO Soviet oppression anywhere!

 

Eisenhower - Now there is a real paragon worthy of worship! A TOTALLY do NOTHING president who was more concerned about his golf score than the future of America! A man who thought of people as mere pawns on a chess board, and had NO qualms about designing the Normandy Invasion, KNOWING it would result in the DEATHS of THOUSANDS UPON THOUSANDS of young American/Allied men, as "after all, they're just cannon fodder"! and If "I succeed, I'll be a hero and president some day!". Real winner, who couldn't even sit on the throne and do nothing, as his limited ability dictated, as he just HAD to get America embroiled in Vietnam, and TOTALLY FUCK over the Cuban situation, leading to communism's first and still strongest base in the Americas!

 

>He was an ignorant man with an incredibly limited world view who demonstrated his lack of knowledge whenever he had to speak without a script. It's hard to believe that we really want to elevate such utter mediocrity to such a high pedestal.

 

RR may have been many things, but imo, IGNORANT he wasn't! Anyone who would state so, is ONLY showing their OWN ignorance. I don't think we should put him on a pedestal, which I acknowledge has been the advocation of the GOP for many years, not just with his recent passing, but that doesn't mean that given the view of history with the passage of time, that he is the EVIL that you INSIST on branding him. After all, with the passage of time, even Nixon has a lot of strong points!

>

>Of course, maybe we don't. Maybe that's why Bill Clinton was

>so successful (and so popular that he would have won a third

>term, according to the polls, if it had been permitted under

>the Constitution), and why the majority of Americans voted for

>Al Gore to replace him. Regardless of their politics, Clinton

>and Gore definitely weren't mediocrities and stood in stark

>contrast to their recent Republican predecessors.

 

I do believe there was a movement afoot to override the Constitutional amendment to limit a president to two terms during the Reagan administration. If such had occurred, there is NO DOUBT, imo, that Reagan would have won a third term, hands down! I suppose you meant successors, not predecessors! :(

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Guest msclonly

It is amazing that there is no mention of the role RR had in the demise of Communism!

 

As you condem, so you become!

Certainly takes on a lot of meaning, when you are reading these strings with so much hatefulness in them.

It has even more meaning, when you realize this ANGER comes from issues in their own lives, that have not been resolved into adulthood. How sad it must be to go through life with such hate and anger, that has little to do with the persons, that it is directed at!

 

 

It is never to late to have a Happy Childhood!

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>>What happened to Tricky Dick's big state funeral? Did I

>miss

>>that one?

>

>It was Nixon's choice not to have a state funeral.

 

Ummm .... no.

 

Nixon actually had a State funeral, complete with pomp & circumstance, 21-gun salutes, and past presidents & foreign dignitaries. They presented the flag to Pat Nixon just like they did to Nancy Reagan.

 

He just chose (wisely, IMO) not to have it in Washington, and to have it more low key. But all protocols of a state funeral were observed.

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>It is amazing that there is no mention of the role RR had in

>the demise of Communism!

 

It is amazing, indeed. But there's a simple explanation for this omission: people like Trilingual don't actually think that the demise of Communism is a such a good thing. People just like him spent the entire Cold War mocking the idea that the Soviet Union was "evil" (just like they mock now the idea that Islamic radicalism is, or that Castro is). These oh-so-sophisticated and nuanced genuises laughed and laughed at Reagan for being such a simpleton as to think that Soviet-style Communism could be called "evil," and they constantly accused him of being excessively harsh towards the Soviet bloc.

 

Of course, as it turns out, history could not have possibly vindicated Reagan any more completely, and it made laughingstocks out of people like Trilingual for putting the Soviet Union - with its gulags and murdered dissidents and comprehensive enslavement - on the same moral footing as the West. Wouldn't you also not want to talk about it if you were them?

 

Even former Soviet officials, such as Gorbachev, along with virtually the entire community of Eastern bloc dissidents, credit Reagan with being the first American since Truman to recognize Eastern bloc communism as the truly evil scourge that it was, and further credit him with playing a significant role in its demise. Millions of people recognize the role which America, behind Reagan, played in liberating millions of people from that evil, oppressive disease.

 

People like Trilingual will now pay lip service to the idea that they think Communism is bad (even though they weren't saying that at the time), but deep in their little socialist hearts, they don't actually think that it was. That's why people like him don't think it's any big deal that Ronald Reagan stood up to, and helped crush, Communism. To them, it is the United States that is the "evil empire." That's what really needed - and still needs - to be crushed.

 

And, of course, Reagan didn't express sufficient symapthy for or concern about the plight of gay people with AIDS (a true accusation, as far as it goes), so to pathologically self-centered and self-absorbed people like Trilingual (for whom jobs, the economy, fight against Communism, national security, etc. somehow aren't issues important to Gay Americans), that flaw makes any defeat of communism - and everything else - totally irrelevant.

 

>As you condem, so you become!

>Certainly takes on a lot of meaning, when you are reading

>these strings with so much hatefulness in them.

>It has even more meaning, when you realize this ANGER comes

>from issues in their own lives, that have not been resolved

>into adulthood. How sad it must be to go through life with

>such hate and anger, that has little to do with the persons,

>that it is directed at!

>

>

>It is never to late to have a Happy Childhood!

 

Thank you for saying this so concisely, accurately, and perfectly. This really encapsulates, and explains, so completely so much of what they are saying. It's truly a pity that they will never, ever even be remotely open to the notion that this is true, let alone accept it and act on it.

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There's no evidence that anything Reagan did brought about the demise of Communism, his show-business-y rhetoric notwithstanding. This is just another of the myths Reagan's idolaters keep trying to peddle.

 

The general consensus is that Communism collapsed from within. Its entire rotten structure had finally become so bloated and and dysfunctional that the entire system caved in on itself, with a speed and a finality that left everyone in the West gasping for breath (including Reagan's CIA and other Western intelligence agencies which DIDN'T foresee the collapse of the Soviet system).

 

The only person in the West who is generally credited with helping speed the fall of Communism is Pope John Paul II, who provided such strong moral (and other) support for dissident movements like Solidarity in Poland and elsewhere in Eastern Europe which finally became large and powerful enough to challenge the Communist establishment. Along with millions of others, I utterly disagree with John Paul's antediluvian teaching on sexual morality, but there is no question that he will forever be remembered in history for his role in helping bring about the end of Communism. Reagan, I believe, will be about as well-rememberd in a hundred years as Millard Fillmore and Warren G. Harding are in our own times. . .

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Guest ncm2169

< They presented the flag to Pat Nixon just like they did to Nancy Reagan.

 

Ummm. Not exactly. :o

 

Nixon died on 4/22/94. Pat died on 6/22/93.

 

I remember Henry Kissinger bawling at Nixon's funeral, but I don't think it was cuz they'd exhumed Pat. }(

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