carguy123 SuperDork
2/25/10 10:28 p.m.

A friend of mine just sent me this and I was totally amazed!

It is a speech that Ronald Reagan the actor gave in 1961 long before he became a politician. He was a much better speaker than I remember. Reading the info box at the upper right you find out this was from Operation Coffee Cup (don't ya just love those Cold War era names).

If nothing else it's a real good time capsule and is entertaining. But listen to it the whole way thru and I think you'll be amazed or freaked out cause if you change a few names it is almost word for word what we are hearing on TV today. Just proves up that axiom that if you don't know history you are doomed to repeat it.

I'll warn you this is political, but only because the exact same campaign is being waged today. If it weren't for the timing it would just be an entertaining look into the mindset and world troubles of the early 60's.

I was too young to have any interest in politics or even cars back then but it made me say "WOW, they've been trying to peddle the self same stuff since 1961".

Reagan does a better job of spelling out the ramifications in a clear and concise manner than any of our present day politicians have.

I love the last line.

oldsaw Dork
2/25/10 11:06 p.m.

Ahhh, Reagan; a politician who wasn't afraid to speak his mind. Whether or not you agreed with him, you knew where he stood.

And he was always prepared with the un-scripted zinger:

carguy123 SuperDork
2/25/10 11:25 p.m.

At this time he wasn't a politician, but you can see how he developed into one. If you didn't recognize the voice or know who was speaking you'd swear it was someone speaking on CNN today, except he's better than the politicos of today.

ignorant SuperDork
2/26/10 7:15 a.m.

I am going to ask this question very seriously. Why do people like reagan so much? The tale of the tape is pretty weak. He expanded our government greatly and set up his VP for great failure afterwards.

He was able to speak well and I draw a parrellel to Obama from all the old speaches I've seen.

I'm seriously serious... serious... Why do people like the guy so much.....

TJ Dork
2/26/10 8:02 a.m.

I tend to agree with you ignorant. He was a good speaker and charismatic like Obama. He also is the one that really ramped up government spending and debt all the while talking about how bad big government was.

To me his legacy is in the $13 Trillion national debt - for it was on Reagan's watch where it really started ballooning.

16vCorey SuperDork
2/26/10 10:50 a.m.

I've always wondered the same thing. Oh, and "trickle down economics" doesn't really work. And ketchup isn't a vegetable.

aircooled SuperDork
2/26/10 10:59 a.m.

He is or course seen as the prototypical "perfect" conservative. He certainly talked the talk, I am just not sure he walked the walk. There are some who say his trickle down economics pulled the US out of its slump in the 80's but I am not sure there is any actual proof of that, it seems like it could have just as easily been the massive increase in government (defense) spending, but I am no economics expert... ...of course, I am beginning to suspect there is really no such thing as an economics expert.

Interesting comparison between Obama and Reagan... probably more alike than many would admit, but I wouldn't try to bring it up on any FOX (or CNBC) show, there would be LOTS of yelling.

minimac Dork
2/26/10 11:06 a.m.

I thought "trickle down" worked pretty well. The 80's were great years(financially) for most working Americans, especially after the 14%-16% mortgages and inflation of the Carter years. If businesses aren't making money, they're not going to hire anyone. When Khadafi, or Qaddafi or whatever they're calling him this week, was a creating problems, Reagan dropped a bomb in his lap and guess what-no more problems w/ Khadafi.Some how I don't think Chavaz would come here to insult our nation and president, if Reagan was in office. One of the things I didn't like about him though, was breaking the air traffic controllers union.

Matt B
Matt B Reader
2/26/10 11:38 a.m.

So you actually believe trickle-down economics worked?

And we should bomb anybody who speaks bad of us?


oldsaw Dork
2/26/10 11:42 a.m.

One suspects very few board members remember (or were breathing) during the "national malaise" the country experienced during and after the Carter admininstration.

Whether one agrees with Reagan's policies, or not, he directed the country towards one of its' longest periods of sustained financial prosperity. Yes, he spent a lot of money and cut taxes, but revenues either increased or remained essentially static.

To those who say he presided over an expansion of government, is that claim directed towards spending or a huge increase in governmental intervention and people on the payroll?

Here are links to a couple or articles that may help some put the "Reagan-era" in perspective:

One can argue that "trickle-down" economics didn't benefit a significant portion of the people, but it's apparent that the same portion fails to benefit from government largesse, too.

I readily admit that I wasn't a Reaganite at the time, but in spite of revisionist history, his Presidency facilitated some wondrous things for the country.

TJ Dork
2/26/10 12:24 p.m.

If by sustained financial prosperity you mean a lot of debt, then yes he did that. Somehow in this day and age the more you owe the richer you are. It makes no sense, you cannot borrow your way to wealth.

My claim is based on the national debt. I do not know if the number of government employees went up or down or what happened to their pay under Reagan. My guess is that the number of people and the associated payroll went up though.

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
2/26/10 1:00 p.m.

Reagan was a great speaker, and was generally considered a good person, who actually cared for the folks working with him. He is also credited for ending the cold war by spending more $$$ on defense than the USSR could keep up with. His administration also lifted government regulations on industry, which helped them make more $$$. (although the clean air/ clean water folks would say the cleanup cost more than the fix)

He also broke the law (although he didn't recall) by funding a revolution with U.S. taxpayer money without Congressional approval. (Iran / Contra) This also funneled weapons to our buddies in Iran in exchange for the release of the U.S. hostages.

He also appointed James Watt as the sec. of the interior. He was viewed as a horrible "fox in the chicken coup" by the greenies. His administration was seen as very pro-business, or very anti-environment, depending on who you talk to.

He did have that re-assuring FDR-type grandfatherly thing going on. When Reagan spoke, most folks thought he was telling the truth, and that he had the best interests of the country in mind. Like him or not, he helped U.S. morale at a time we really needed it. (Post Vietnam.... Carter years)

I wasn't a fan of his while he was in office, but he wasn't all bad.

Of course he wasn't a flawless saint either as most conservative radio hosts would have you think. (Rush / Hannity)

Will Reader
2/26/10 5:37 p.m.

People underestimate the simple value of a leader who makes people feel good about their country. Reagan embodied TR's philosophy of speak softly and carry a big stick: he had a very soft, soothing voice, but he wasn't afraid to use it to speak out for the oppressed population of the former communist bloc nations.

And he was just plain likeable. It's a shallow comment perhaps, but you can't hate someone who makes you smile.

Oh, and supposedly, one time the Secret Service caught him packing a 1911 in his briefcase on a trip to the Soviet Union. That's just awesome.

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