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Thursday, June 10, 2004


DON'T LET THE BASTARDS GET YOU DOWN 

Republicans should not get too upset at how some liberals are treating Ronald Reagan's legacy

This week, we should just focus on the good words about Ronald Reagan - there'll never be another special week for him, like this one, again

While this week has been a sad one for Ronald Reagan's family and all of his admirers, it has, paradoxically, been a good week for America, too. It has been good because the country has come to remember how one man changed the world and we all have been reminded how lucky we were to have Ronald Reagan as our president for eight years. However, there have been a few Reagan detractors who have tried this week to diminish, minimize and tarnish the man we came to love and admire. While some of it can be chalked up to inopportune political posturing, other Reagan bashers have crossed the bounds of decency and have resorted to disgraceful, spiteful, and hateful rhetoric to speak ill of a dead man before he is even laid to rest. However, those small people have made the point better than anyone how Ronald Reagan was a special kind of person to thrive in this shrill political environment while maintaining his charisma, charm and dignity throughout his life.

Despite the fact that everyone knew for 10 years that Ronald Reagan's health was in decline, and that he led a wonderful and charmed life for 93 years, tens of thousands of people felt it was important to mark the passing of his death by paying their respects to the president, on both American coasts.

Ronald Reagans' life, and presidency, has been recounted, rehashed and warmly remembered on television, radio, newsprint, websites and blogs. Most Americans know that Ronald Reagan is the political giant of a technological age that easily diminishes people into mere mortals.

Many cold and heartless souls, from Christopher Hitchens to Ted Rall, refuse to see or are ashamed of a brand of conservative philosophy, "Reagan optimism." While I have read some of the spewed vitriol directed at Reagan's legacy, I have chose to ignore most of it. Most importantly, I have not let what I did read bother me. In fact, I became more proud of the fact that my political hero was a man who always had a sunny disposition, never played to our worst fears and thought that America's best days were ahead of her.

Many Republicans, conservative pundits and right-leaning bloggers have reacted with well intentioned indignation at what these liberal embracers-of-negativity have had to say. Stephen Greene asked his readers to fisk Harold Meyerson and they did so with fervor. Michele Catalano even said that Ted Rall's blog literally hurts her head. Matthew of Blackfive mentions what a Kucinich supporter thinks of Reagan. Mindles H. Dreck of Asymmetrical Information relates one man's apocalyptic view of Reagan. At least John Cole tries to take a humorous look at what the Leftorium Troika of Kos, Atrios and Kevin Drum (and others) had to say. Steven Taylor gave Ted Rall the attention he looks for. Dave J, Left Coast Conservative, commented on Brokaw's and Rather's belly aching about Reagan coverage.

There are liberals still mad at the fact that Ronald Reagan won 2 landslides and saw his own Vice President elected in a landslide - that's one successful presidency! This week is OUR WEEK to reflect, remember and look back fondly on Ronald Reagan. There will be plenty of time in the upcoming years and decades to vouch for, defend and support his record in history. But, in the meantime, let us enjoy what we had and ignore those who intend to rain on what is for a brief moment again, Morning in America.

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ARI FLEISCHER APPEARED BEFORE THE REPUBLICAN JEWISH COALITION IN NEW YORK CITY 


Fleischer spoke of Bush's commitment to Israel at the Park East Synagogue

I was fortunate enough to get an invitation to see Ari Fleischer speak on Tuesday, June 8. The former White House press secretary spoke to the Republican Jewish Coalition at the Park East Synagogue in Manhattan. He gave a spirited defense of President George W. Bush. Fleischer highlighted Bush's strong commitment to Israel as well as the President's success in the War on Terror.

Fleischer was impressive as he recounted what President Bush has done to fight for peace and combat terrorism around the world. He gave insight as to what President Bush is like, behind closed doors, when it comes to fighting evil. The most telling moment came when Fleischer spoke about what President Bush thinks of Yasser Arafat. According to Fleischer, Bush met with a leader from the Middle East and told him that Arafat is an impediment to peace with Israel and is not even looking for what is best for his fellow Palestinians. When this Middle East leader told Bush that Arafat is all they got, Fleischer said that Bush leaned in so close that their knees were touching and Bush said, "I know that there is someone out there who is better." When the leader confronted Bush asking for someone specifically, Bush replied "I don't know who it is but I know he's out there. It seems that I have more confidence in the ability of Palestinians to find a force for peace than you do."

Fleischer staunchly defended President Bush's policy on fighting terrorism. He said that President Bush will do whatever it takes to protect America and has proved that by eliminating the Taliban as well as Saddam Hussein's regime.

Fleischer exhorted his largely Jewish audience to encourage their friends to support President Bush. To paraphrase, Fleischer said, "I would not be here before you tonight unless I had a deep and binding faith that this president is the right man for the job and will do whatever he can to keep America safe and help Israel."

I was impressed by Ari Fleischer. He spoke with clarity and gave a sound and cogent argument about why it is important to keep George W. Bush in the White House. I know that the crowd warmly received Fleischer's words. It is my hope that Ari Fleischer continue to help the president during the campaign because he knows what exactly what this country is facing and what this election is all about.

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DAILY 7: DICK MORRIS; TARANTO ON PRESIDENTS; HADLEY ARKES; ORIN SAYS BUSH CAN WIN LANDSLIDE; BUSH IS LIKE REAGAN; REAGAN & FDR; BUD SELIG 


DICK MORRIS: RON AND BILL
One was obsessed with his public image and reveled in the company of stars and starlets, frequenting Hollywood at every opportunity; the other was self-contained, confident of what he stood for and needed no adoring mobs to satiate his ego or vindicate his sense of self-worth.

It's odd that the former is Bill Clinton and the latter Ronald Reagan.


JAMES TARANTO: WHAT MAKES A PRESIDENT GREAT?
Mr. Lindgren averaged the ratings for each of the 39 presidents (George W. Bush was not yet elected, and William Henry Harrison and James Garfield were omitted because they died shortly after taking office) and divided them into six categories: great, near great, above average, average, below average and failure. The results appeared in November 2000 on OpinionJournal.com and have just been published as a Wall Street Journal book, "Presidential Leadership: Rating the Best and the Worst in the White House," which also includes an essay on each president and several thematic chapters on presidential leadership. (For excerpts, click here.)


HADLEY ARKES: REAGAN'S SENSE
Well, there we had it. As we used to say: Let Reagan be Reagan. His own paths of curiosity, his ways of reflecting about a problem, lingered with questions of principle, and he framed them in ways that were universally accessible.


DEBORAH ORIN: BUSH CAN WIN LANDSLIDE
Like President Bush, Carter faced voters nervous over both the economy and foreign policy and wondering whether it's time for a change — in Carter's case, skyrocketing inflation at home plus the endless Iran hostage crisis.

But there's a big difference, since Carter kept getting bad news on both fronts, while Bush is starting to get good news on both the economy, with a surge in new jobs, and Iraq, with international support for the June 30 transfer of power.


ADMIRERS DRAW PARALLELS FOR REAGAN, GEORGE W. BUSH
Both Mr. Reagan and Mr. Bush were successful two-term governors from big Western states — California and Texas, respectively. Both were most comfortable with a frontier lifestyle of blue jeans, with belt buckles, Western boots and the open range of their ranches where they reveled in clearing brush from the land and repairing fences.


RICH KARLGAARD: RONALD REAGAN IS THE 20TH CENTURY'S GREATEST PRESIDENT
Reagan, no fool, never liked deficits but was not unduly troubled by them, either. He pondered his priorities and took out the loan. Then he shattered the Soviet Union and created the conditions for a doubling of American asset value in eight years. For that, Ronald Reagan is the best president of this century.


BUD SELIG DOESN'T WANT TO CHANGE BASEBALL PLAYOFFS
"We had a serious discussion this past winter. I went into it thinking I want to add two more teams. But the more I looked at it, the more we talked about ititit was so great last October, this time I'm not sure," Selig said before Wednesday night's game between the San Francisco Giants and Tampa Bay Devil Rays. "Everybody is kind of convinced that we'll just let it sit and leave it as it is. Last October was so good, I'm not quite certain that we want to change it."


Update: Discussing these topics are; Club for Growth, Wonkette, Chronically Biased

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