It's hard to say considering...
- Reagan's popularity frequently dipped below 50% during his first two years.
- Reagan began the systematic dismantling of regulation that was meant to prevent Republican greed from collapsing the economy, as it did to bring on the first Republican Great Depression, and did again at the end of Bush’s term.
- With Reagan, Republicans wasted no time in giving the rich a big wet kiss by shifting the tax burden (once 90% under that Socialist Dwight D. Eisenhower) to the middle class. A large number of tax loopholes were written into the tax code that catered to special corporate interests. Reagan’s next move was to bust unions, and stagnate wages while simultaneously increasing credit to give the illusion of wealth.
- "Trickle-Down" worked exactly as intended, to benefit the wealthiest at the expense of working class Americans. It increased economic inequality and shifted most of America's wealth to the top.
- Republicans then went after education – doing away with civics classes and making education another brass ring that could be grasped only by accumulating massive debt. Debt served to create a society of indentured servants who may think they work for XYZ Company, but really work for the bank.
- One of the last pieces of this recipe for Oligarchy was to deregulate the media. Reagan did away with media ownership laws as well as the Fairness doctrine, which made propagandists like Rush Limbaugh possible. The airwaves were then flooded with pro-corporate, anti-worker Republican propaganda to keep the people stupid enough to vote Republican.
- Inequality grew by leaps and bounds under Reagan.
- As governor, Reagan oversaw the largest tax increase in Californian history. Democratic Governor Jerry Brown cut back the tax rate when he came to office.
- As president, Reagan expanded the federal government by about 90%. Reagan allowed the welfare state to enlarge and the military budget to explode causing monstrous budget deficits and government growth that dwarfs government growth under Clinton, even when Clinton had a Democratic Congress.
- Reagan also bombed Libya, put the "war" in War on Drugs, allowed the continuation of Selective Service registration (despite his campaign promise to end it), helped the Khmer Rouge terrorize Thailand, imposed brutal trade sanctions on Nicaragua, funded the murderous brutal Contras, sold missiles to Iran, gave assistance to Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden, and lied to the American people.
- The foreign policy of Ronald Reagan did more to impoverish and kill the poor and helpless humans of the world than any world leader before or since - with the possible exception of GWB. He was going to defeat communism (which was already falling of its own weight) and he didn't care how many children were burned alive or how many people starved to death on the way.
- In 1988, Reagan’s last year in office, outlays as a percent of GDP were running at 21.3% with a deficit of 3.1% of GDP. The budget deficit over Reagan’s eight years averaged 4.2% and ran as high as 6.0% in 1983. (In 1980, the last year of Jimmy Carter’s presidency, government outlays were running at 21.7% of GDP and the budget deficit was 2.7% of GDP.)
- Reagan raised taxes twice in 1982, and then raised them again in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, and 1987. In spite of all those tax hikes, Reagan didn't grow his way out of the deficits caused by his 1981 tax cut.
- It took an eighth tax hike from George Bush Sr. in 1989, a ninth in 1990, a tenth from Bill Clinton in 1993, and then another economic boom to erase Reagan’s deficit. Sure, a strong economy helped, but without all those tax increases the deficit would never have disappeared.
-Reagan increased unemployment from 7% to 11% in his first three years. The unemployment rate did not get better until his fourth year.
- Reagan taxed the wealthy at 50%. (Governing to the right of Reagan, Obama taxes the wealthy at 35%.)
- The practice of rewarding incompetent cronies with gigantic useless contracts for unneeded military hardware was elevated to art form under Reagan. Reagan's legendary megalomania, hubris and abject ignorance led him to believe the tales of any crackpot who managed to slither past the goons who comprised his inner circle. Star wars missiles, atomic shields, space-age death rays, you name , he would fall for it and blow billions of your tax dollars on it.
- Ideologically, he was a hater and an imperialist and far-right loony-tune. He hated the poor. He hated gays. He hated leftists. He hated communists - and he was pretty sure you were one if you disagreed with him. He never met a social program he didn't scorn. He never met an American in need he wanted to help. His response to the AIDS epidemic is one of the most sickening cold-blooded expressions of pure murderous political evil in the history of the earth.
· 9 years ago