Monday, April 27, 2009

The Real Reagan

People I care for and respect are fans of Ronald Reagan. That's fine for them, but not for me. I didn't like him while he was President and don't now, and this article gives good reasons why. I think a mythology has grown up around Reagan and that we need to be more aware of the negatives of his Presidency. For one thing, I find it hard to forgive him for beginning his Presidential campaign in Philadelphia, Mississippi, near where the 3 civil rights workers were murdered, and speaking there about states' rights, clear code to appeal to the worst strand of racism in America. Reagan came close to impeachment over Iran-contra, as well, and the article references a lot of the nasty things the U.S. did in Latin America under Reagan. The article may go to far the other way, but Americans seriously don't know our own history of supporting murderous dictators and the blowback that has caused our relationships in the world. Take Iran, for example... very few Americans know that we caused the overthrow of a popular prime minister there in 1953, and re-instated the Shah, who proceeded to brutalize his people. But the Iranians know. They don't forget it, and it was part of the reason for the Iranian revolution. A good back on that topic is All the Shah's Men.

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