Ronald Wilson Reagan
(President - 1981-1988)
By Richard E. Noble
Ronald Reagan’s political career begins in the post F.D.R. era and the period called McCarthyism. Reagan, at the time, was the president of the Screen Actors Guild and a McCarthy-ite, like his buddy Richard M. Nixon. Reagan was one of those who went before the McCarthy Committee and ratted on his friends and associates. He, Humphrey Bogart and Jimmy Stewart, were all of the same political attitude. I don’t really think that Bogart had the so called patriotic, anti-Communist motivation of Reagan and Stewart. Bogart was just cowardly. In honor of that position or characterization Bogart was cast in his next movie, “The Treasure of Sierra Madre”, to coincide with that public perception. He was a big success in duplicating the behavior of a coward.
It is suggested that Reagan may have lost his first wife over this political change of character. He was a Democratic. He went from Democrat to McCarthyite to Republican. Reagan claims to have “seen the light”, but his turn from a defender of the poor and destitute to a heroic supporter of the rich and famous may have been somewhat influenced by his romance and eventual marriage to his second wife, the daughter of a multimillionaire, but whatever...
Reagan came to redeem us from the Carter malaise, and in his first term as president, he did. Carter, in the campaign, had accused Reagan of being “trigger happy”. Reagan had, after all, been an advocate and defender of the Barry Goldwater candidacy. Reagan’s eventual gunboat philosophy and ability to bomb anybody anywhere frightened the heck out of a lot of Democrats. But, it seemed to work. Of course, there are those that claim that he planted the seeds to our current terrorist’s problems, but it is easier to blame Clinton.
Reagan is another of our non-general/non-lawyer presidents. He was only a war hero in the movies. In real life, he was an actor and radio announcer, In his first day in office, the 444 day Iran Hostage Crisis ended. A dilemma that Carter couldn’t seem to solve was ended in one day, seemingly by Ronald Reagan presence alone. While Republicans roared with delight, Democrats sat in suspended contemplation, wonder, admiration and bewilderment. How had he done it? The answer seemed to come to many around the year 1986 in the form of the Iran Contra affair.
It was suddenly discovered, against all of Reagan’s personal protestations that he was, in fact, playing Let’s-Make-a-Deal with the radical Iranian government. Not only was he trading arms for hostages, which he promised that he never, ever would do, but he was involved in a whole array of other very suspicious activities. These activities included subverting the Congress who it seems were not even informed or aware of these arms sales or of any monies earned from these sales; trading weapons illegally, via a Jewish Government intermediary, to hostile, hostage taking Iran; hiding the illegally gained profit in a Swiss bank; and smuggling drugs, and financing revolutionary guerrilla activities which had already been denied funding by Congress due to the inability to determine the good guys from the bad guys.
In “the Secret War against the Jews” by John Loftus and Mark Aarons the authors claim that George Herbert Walker Bush was the real mastermind of this operation and Reagan was once again “napping.”
Ronald Reagan then was brought before an investigating committee. Obviously suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, it quickly became evident that he could barely remember anything. Ollie North who had originally been selected as the fall guy refused to fall and the ex-General Poinderter took the hit.
Ollie swore under oath that to his understanding the President of the United States, Ronald Reagan, was completely aware and approved his activities. In fact, he restated this in the very first pages of his memoir.
Reagan may have relieved our malaise but now as he turned to walk away we saw a mask of the face of Richard Nixon strapped to the back of his head. Unlike Nixon, he didn’t try to cover up his misdeeds; he just couldn’t remember any of them.
It seems interesting to me that with all of the misdeeds and illegal activity of the Iran Contra affair, the only thing that the investigating committee was interested in was whether or not the president had authorized or was aware of the diversion of the illegal funds that had been gained from the transaction and deposited in a Swiss bank account. It didn’t matter that he had lied to all of the American people about a very, very important point of American policy; refusing to trade arms for hostages. It didn’t matter that he may have lied, subverted, or somehow misled the entire United States Congress by selling Government property (missiles, rockets and the like) without their knowledge and or permission. I hate to be so blunt, but in real life this would be called stealing ... robbery
embezzlement, something! Taking something that doesn’t belong to you and then selling it to somebody else and then keeping the money in a Swiss bank account? ... To determine that such behavior is against the law does not take a political scientist, or a Harvard law school expert. And then the fact that a group of men who were supposedly authorized by him personally or his close representatives in the Government, C.I.A. director Casey, and others, to smuggle drugs, sell them for a profit and use the money to buy weapons for the political overthrow of a neutral government; thus, supporting a group who had already been determined unworthy by the United States Congress, also has to be considered somewhat criminal, I should think.
Then we must also wonder - if Ronald Reagan could authorize all of that with a clear conscience, could it also be possible that all of this dirty dealing had actually started way back in campaign number one?
Is anyone now investigating the possible treasonous behavior of Mister Reagan cutting a arms for hostages deal while competing with the then incumbent Jimmy Carter?
I mean, come on, the very day of his inauguration they release the hostages? In light of what we now know about the Reagan administration, this must loom as a very and highly probable possibility.
Now I do agree that it is too late to have Ronald Reagan executed like the Rosenbergs, or put in jail for life in light of his Alzheimer’s condition. And really there was no declared war with Iran at the time, but then there was no war with Russia at the time of the Rosenbergs or Alger Hiss and others who we convicted and punished in the past - in the case of Hiss, punished for much less egregious behavior; in the case of the Rosenbergs, for transferring information that Harry Truman offered to share with the Russians a few years earlier.
Ronald Reagan, it does seem very likely as a private citizen, cut a deal with a country that had for all extent and purposes declared war with us by taking our embassy and its representatives hostage - a flagrant violation of international law.
If Jane Fonda is labeled a traitor for giving succor and comfort to an enemy by sitting on a tank, what do we call a person who steals a tank from the U.S. Government then sells the tank to an enemy, along with a few missiles and other military hardware? A patriot? I think not. A Republican seems to be as accurate as we can get, I suppose. And may I paraphrase a famous Republican hero and say: Extremism in the name of undermining American government and American principles and ideals is not patriotism.
A few other things that we can thank Mr. Reagan for are: A national debt greater than the accumulated debt of all of the other presidents combined - a debt that for the first time in history grew at an even faster rate than the U.S. economy (and inflation) could compensate for.
It was during Mr. Reagan’s administration that most terrorists the world is now attempting to subdue were bought, supplied, or financed - this includes Osama bin Ladin, the Contras, Saddam Hussein, the Taliban and probably any others that we may be hearing about in the years to come.
He will also be remembered as the biggest modern day union buster since his name sake Woodrow Wilson and his personal hero Calvin Coolidge - Ronnie made firing people and cutting worker’s wages heroic instead of a disgrace.
He also killed the Public Higher Education idea for good. No longer will Americans look forward to the day that their child, if qualified, will be able to go to college for free. Instead they can look forward to paying off a debt greater than their poor parents ever imagined.
Ronnie encouraged his business friends to take their jobs overseas and with the help of a few of his friends gave them the scam of “cooking” the books.
It was Ronnie’s spending that brought us both the saving and loan and the commercial banking collapses - this is a fiasco that we have still not seen the end of and was the biggest payoff from the people (taxpayers) to a Capitalist business enterprise in all of American History.
But most of all we can thank Ronald Reagan for reviving the spirit and practice of war here in the United States and around the world - “Ronnie” set the groundwork with Granada and Tripoli, which gave his assistant the courage to attack Panama followed by Desert Storm and now Junior has brought us full cycle to Vietnam (Iraq) all over again; this has all served to achieve the main objective of re-establishing an international arms race that will certainly please his old Death Valley boss GE and others - soon all the world will be buying or seeking the where-with-all to start their own nuclear projects. We are probably looking forward to the greatest arms race in all of history. But what should we have expected from the spokesman and loyal employee of one of the greatest arms producers in the world. Oh and by the way, the first thing Ronnie did when he got into office was give General Electric the greatest tax break in the history of the Company. By the time Ronnie was done, GE went from paying hundreds of millions in taxes to having the United States government owing them money - they actually got a credit.
Ronnie may have been loyal to his wife and his ex-employer but he was a traitor to his class, to his roots and ancestry, to the workingman of America and to the American system of government.