Monday, March 28, 2005

Liberals Refuse to Understand Ronald Reagan

The San Francisco Chronicle printed a review by Josh Green of two new biographies of Ronald Reagan, The Great Communicator revisited - Historians land early blows in the slugfest over Reagan's legacy. It is not my aim to review a book review, but I did note the following in the review of Ronald Reagan and His Quest to Abolish Nuclear Weapons by Paul Lettow, Random House; 328 Pages; $25.95;
But the book fails to address SDI's legacy: an estimated $70 billion spent over 10 years for a system that still does not work, even in its latest incarnation under the Bush administration as a ground-based, midrange defense missile system. One could argue that SDI effectively scared the hell out of the Soviets and may have changed the dynamics of Cold War bargaining. But the ultimate failure of missile defense technology -- which, judging from last year's dismal test of the most recent interceptor missiles, still needs some work -- is a glaring omission.
SDI was not a failure, as is implied here. Its unstated purpose was to cause the Soviet Union (remember them?) to get into an arms race to develop a similar system, which Mr. Reagan knew they could not do, and in doing so, collapse. That is a purpose that could not be made public, else the Soviets would not have fallen for it.

SDI worked perfectly and did not have to actually be built, today's technical difficulties notwithstanding. (The ground-based system being developed is an entirely different system although it does use technologies developed for SDI.) This does not suit liberals, though, so they willfully refuse to accept it.

Mr. Green's disdain for President Reagan is evident from the very first paragraph of his book review. He simply cannot accept the notion that Mr. Reagan was a brilliant man who knew how to pull our country out of the morass that Mr. Carter put us in;
They all get their own libraries, no matter how little they may have read while in office.
They prefer to portray Mr. Reagan as some sort of bumbling idiot who happened to stumble into the Presidency and then stumble out of it after eight years.

Ronald Reagan knew something that Jimmy Carter and his leftists and various other brands of liberals and "intellectuals" did not. You cannot defeat an implacable enemy by "engaging and understanding" them. Liberals make the same arguments today in their campaign against the War on Terror. They are as wrong now as they were then.

And that is why they are not qualified to lead the country.

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