|Ronald Wilson Reagan|
Morning in America
|Successor||George H.W. Bush|
|Greatest Accomplishments||Ended the Cold War, Saved Economy (on the short term) with Reaganomics, Brought pride back to Americans|
Ronald Wilson Reagan was the 40th President of the United States.
Ronald Reagan never fell short with smart responses to pointed questions or heckling. His sense of humor earned him points with people across the country.
Ronald Reagan was born in Tampico, Illinois and was raised in Dixon, Illinois. Reagan attended Eureka College where he attained a Bachelor's Degree in economics and sociology. Reagan moved to Iowa and became a radio announcer and movie actor. His most notable role was athlete George Gipp in the movie Knute Rockne, All American. This earned him the nickname Gipper. Reagan was also elected President of the Screen Actors Guild six times and helped to uncover secret communists in the film industry.
Reagan was originally a Democrat, though he became a Republican as he felt the Democratic Party was to soft on Communism. After delivering his famous "A Time of Choosing" speech endorsing Barry Goldwater, Reagan became very popular among conservatives and was convinced to run for Governor of California. After becoming Governor of California, Reagan made efforts to get tougher on student protests and successfully balanced the budget in California. He made three attempts to obtain the Republican nomination for President of the United States and finally got it in 1980. With his vice presidential candidate George H.W. Bush, Reagan beat incumbent Jimmy Carter and became the 40th President of the United States.
Reagan was the oldest man to date to be elected President. 70 years old to be exact. Shortly after being elected, John Hinckley Jr. attempted to assassinate Ronald Reagan. Reagan was injured, but survived the ordeal. Reagan made efforts to restore the struggling economy with a system called "Reaganomics". Reaganomics involved the cutting of spending, cutting of taxes, and reducing of government regulations. Reagan's economic plans successfully decreased unemployment and reduced inflation, though some criticized it as creating "Lopsided Prosperity" by making the poor poorer and that he had not cut enough spending which increased the national debt. Though he is still credited with ending the recession and creating a strong time of prosperity in the country. He was also a great public speaker, and was effective in creating a new sense of national pride.
Among the most important moments in Reagan's foreign policy were the Invasion of Grenada, which removed Cuban revolutionaries from the tiny island of Grenada where they had established a Marxist-Leninist regime that threatened the national security of the United States. The American occupation would last for only two months but managed to successfully create an appropriate constitutional government.
Reagan's re-election came in 1984 and he managed to win every state except Minnesota, which was his opponent Walter Mondale's home state.
Reagan's second term was very much involved in military affairs. Reagan sent many troops into South America for his War on Drugs, and his wife Nancy Davis began a public awareness campaign called "Just Say No".
The Reagan Doctrine - willingness to support any group opposed to the expansion of Soviet influence - was the cornerstone of the administration's foreign policy. The new doctrine approved the arming and funding the Sunni Islamist guerrillas called the Mujaheddin who were fighting the Soviet Red Army's occupation of Afghanistan. Unfortunately, the successful Mujaheddin eventually morphed into the Taliban and al-Qaeda. The Reagan Doctrine also included arming and funding the anti-communist insurgent/right-wing terrorist army called the Contras who were battling to overthrow the Marxist Sandinista government in Nicaragua. The Sandinistas had come to power in a popular revolution against the corrupt conservative miltiary dictatorship of Gen. Anatasio Somoza.
Support for the Contras produced the only real stain on the Reagan Presidency: the Iran-Contra affair. An incident where National Security Council member Oliver North illegally diverted profits from weapon sales with Iran to an anti-communist insurgent/right-wing terrorist army called the Contras. Congress passed laws against helping the Contras due to their human rights violations and involvement in cocaine smuggling, though Reagan wanted to continue funding to finance the latter. Though Reagan's involvement was never proven, many suspected he new more than he let on.
Reagan also passed the Immigration Reform and Control Act, which made it illegal to knowingly hire illegal immigrants. Reagan's heavy military spending was believed to be part of a plan to force the Soviet Union to spend an equal amount to compete against the United States. This contributed heavily to the financial collapse of the Soviet Union.
Reagan's life after his Presidency was rather quiet. The only notable thing was his announcement of his Alzheimer's disease. This brought much needed attention to what was a relatively unknown ailment at the time. Reagan died in 2004 and was given a massive funeral.
Political Positions and Stances Edit
- Opposed abortion
- Did not obsessively push a pro-life agenda either as Governor or President.
American Culture and Values Edit
- Belief in God is the root of civilized behavior.
- Conservatism and fanaticism are opposites.
- Private values should be at the center of public policies.
- Religion must be vibrant.
- No great nation abandoned the gold standard and remained great.
- A tax system that discourages hard work is wrong.
- Cut taxes, slash spending.
- Abolish Department of Education.
- A centralized school system has failed and is unneeded.
Energy and Oil Edit
- Oil and gas should not have price controls.
Foreign Policy Edit
- The U.S. has no territorial ambitions.
- Having a mutual nuclear reduction with the USSR was beneficial.
- Favored the destruction of the Berlin Wall.
- The U.S. should have helped in the overthrowing of Sandinistas.
- Limit the U.S. role in the U.N.
Global Warming and Environment Edit
- Many EPA officials should resign.
- Acid rain proposals were burdensome to industry.
- The ethic of the U.S. should be pro-development.
Government Roles Edit
- If government is big enough to give everything, they can take it away.
- He did not want the abolishment of government, but the fixing of government.
- The Free Market is better than the government at determining winners and losers.
- Government is not the solution, it is the problem.
- Businesses need to be deregulated.
Health Care Edit
- He announced his Alzheimer's to promote public understanding.
- Did not cut Medicare.
- Focused on preventing AIDS over finding cure.
- Handicapped newborns should be protected.
- One-time amnesty should be granted for illegals.
- People should be allowed to move freely from Canada and Mexico.
National Security Edit
- To grow military, Democrats had to grow social programs.
- The wounds of Vietnam had to be healed so America could lead again.
- Roll back Communism.
- We're armed because we mistrust each other, vice-versa.
- Eliminated all possibility of Russian attack.
- SDI: Destroy ballistic missiles.
- Do not freeze nuclear production.
Same Sex Marriage Edit
Second Amendment Rights Edit
- Carried pistol as President, even to the USSR.
- Served 8 years in the military
- Reached rank of captain
- Elected 40th President
- Won every state but two, his competitor, Walter Mondale's, home state of Minnesota and the most liberal area, Washington, D.C.
- Ended the Cold War
- Turned around the American economy
"Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same."
"Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves."
"Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!"
"No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!"
See also Edit
- ↑ Reagan on Values
- ↑ Reagan on Economics
- ↑ Reagan on Education
- ↑ Reagan on Foreign Policy
- ↑ Reagan on Environment
- ↑ Reagan of Government Roles
- ↑ Reagan on Health Care
- ↑ Reagan on Immigration
- ↑ Reagan on National Security
- ↑ Reagan on Second-Amendment