Today would have been Ronald Reagan’s 102nd birthday, and I felt it appropriate to share a few of my favorites. I’m of the opinion that Reagan was the best president since Calvin Coolidge, and amongst the top five presidents America has ever boasted. He was smart, empathetic, persuasive, firm, and made the case for American opportunity and exceptionalism – and thus conservatism by default – better than most before him and any since. He toppled Soviet communism, probably preventing a third world war, and cut marginal tax rates here in the states, which ushered in an era of wonderful economic growth and prosperity for the vast majority of Americans. After inheriting a recession from Jimmy Carter, Reagan’s economy bested it in the first two years of his first term. He won 44 states in 1980 and 49 (49!) in 1984. His lasting legacy is, above all, that limited government conservative values – a morally concerned culture and free market economics – work and can win, both in message and in implementation, when both are managed correctly and persuasively. His approach to politics and leadership was endearing and his ideas are enduring, he was truly a unique example of what the holder of the Office of the President of the United States should look like. America was better off because of him and worse off now that he’s gone. “A rising tide lifts all boats,” and America flourished under the watch of Ronald Reagan.
My favorite Reagan quote:
“Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today’s world do not have.”
My favorite Reagan speech, which was actually a televised campaign speech on behalf of Barry Goldwater’s run for the presidency in 1964:
Reagan was also very funny and witty, which never hurts. It was part of the reason people liked him so much:
Happy Birthday, President Reagan. America remembers you.
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