Tim Hated Raygun

Tue, 6 Jul 1999 05:13:00 EDT

. . . but Tim is gone.

I got permission to share this e-mail. I wrote none of it, just forwarded an
op ed and got the expected response. :-) Does that make me manipulative?

I use my powers for good,

At 10:44 PM 7/5/99 EDT, I submitted:
>Ronald Reagan once inspired us with visions of a bright future. These days,
>all Republicans do is complain. Can the GOP rediscover
>its bright, shining past?
>By Paul Begala
>You want to know the Republicans' biggest problem?
>They suck.
>Lemons, that is.
>They have the same sourpuss, pinched, angry, judgmental attitude as the
>grumpy old man down the street who shakes his fist at the neighborhood
>children as they ride their bikes: "Kids these days. Only wanna have fun.
>Why, in my day...."
>Hearing them talk about America, you realize that Republicans -- from Tom
>"the Hammer" DeLay and Trent "the Hairdo" Lott on Capitol Hill to
>presidential wanna-be Gary Bauer to radio gasbag Rush Limbaugh -- are the
>last of the angry white males. While the rest of us are enjoying an American
>renaissance of unrivaled prosperity and social renewal, GOPers behave as if
>their favorite TV show is Mad About Everything.
>Consider this: In the wake of the tragic shootings at Columbine High School
>in Littleton, Colorado, lemon-sucking presidential candidate Pat Buchanan
>issued the following statement: "At Littleton yesterday, America got a
>glimpse of the last stop on that train to hell America boarded decades ago
>when we declared that God is dead, and that each of us is his or her own God
>who can make up the rules as we go along."
>Would Ronald Reagan have said America was on a train to hell? No chance.
>Because Reagan was unusual: He was a sunny conservative. The gang that
>succeeds him is dark and darker.
>They look at the country that most of us believe God sheds his grace on, and
>they see us on a path to ruin. They look at an economy most of us know is
>strongest in history, and they see disaster. They look at a society that
>of us know is coming together, and they see a country coming apart.
>The Lemon Suckers' intellectual heavyweight is Bill Bennett. The Republican
>activist and commentator was Reagan's education secretary when SAT scores
>went down, and he was George Bush's drug czar when drug use went up. Why is
>he so mad at us? Shouldn't it be the other way around?
>Bennett, however, has done us a tremendous service. In 1993, after 12 years
>of Republican presidents, he wrote a book called The Index of Leading
>Cultural Indicators, which detailed the hand basket in which we were going
>straight to hell: Crime up, divorce up, child poverty up, welfare up,
>abortion up, out-of-wedlock birthrate up. It is a stunning document
>--compelling proof of the abject failure of social policy under Reagan and
>But Bennett has never updated his statistical jeremiad. Why? I suspect it's
>because virtually every statistic he cites has improved in the Clinton era.
>Journalists and social commentators such as The New Republic's Gregg
>Easterbrook have documented the current American renaissance, showing that
>the key social issues the Clinton years have meant a decisive improvement
>from the Reagan-Bush regimes. And the Lemon Suckers can't stand it.
>Take, for example, the crime rate. Crime is now at a 25-year low, following
>such Clinton initiatives as more cops on the street, passage of the Brady
>Law, and smart prevention programs. The story is similar with the issue of
>poverty: When Reagan was elected president, 12.5 million American children
>were living in poverty. After 12 years of trickle-down theory being put into
>practice, that number had jumped to 15.7 million. But under Clinton-Gore,
>from 1993 to 1997, the child poverty saw its biggest four-year drop since
>Welfare was a favorite target when Reagan and Bush ran the show. Yet after
>the Reagan-Bush years more Americans were on welfare than at any other time
>in our history. During the Clinton presidency, 6.5 million people have been
>lifted off the welfare rolls -- a 46 percent decrease since 1993.
>As Blowhard Bill Bennett points out in his book, the birthrate of unwed
>teenagers skyrocketed in the '80s. If he had had the courage to update his
>report, he'd have to tell you that the teen pregnancy rate has dropped every
>year of the Clinton presidency. And the out-of-wedlock birthrate for all
>women, which soared from 18.4 percent in 1980 to 29.5 percent in 1991, has
>fallen in each of the last three years.
>For the Lemon Suckers, it's midnight in America. Aided and abetted by a smug
>yuppie elite in the commentariat that can't give the president or the
>American people an ounce of credit, the Lemon Suckers rail on. But the
>country they describe is unrecognizable to the rest of us.
>To be fair, the Democratic party has its own tradition of lemon-sucking.
>Adlai Stevenson to Jimmy Carter to Paul Tsongas, a strain of pious,
>self-righteous judgmentalism infected the left. One of Clinton's most
>important accomplishments has been to replace that elitist hogwash with a
>boundless optimism, an endless faith in our country and its people.
>The lemon-sucking right should learn from this. Americans don't want a
>president who doesn't believe in America. Reagan understood that
>instinctively. That's why he always wrapped his divisive and regressive
>policies in feel-good rhetoric. But with the Gipper no longer on the scene,
>his successors have got it ass backwards: They've kept the sour substance of
>Reaganism but discarded his sunny style.
>Yes, tragedies like the shootings in Littleton and Conyers showed us the
>of evil, but they also showed us the face of good: teenagers such as Cassie
>Bernall, who died for her faith, and teachers such as Dave Sanders, who died
>for his students. They clearly weren't riding Pat Buchanan's train to hell.
>When Bill Bennett unveiled his compendium of social statistics, he
included a
>dire warning: "Unless these exploding social pathologies are reversed, they
>will lead to the decline, and perhaps even to the fall, of the American
>republic." Hey, Bill, by turning away from the right-wing claptrap that you
>peddle, the American people and the Democrats are reversing those social
>pathologies. So raise a glass in praise of progressive politics, and drink a
>toast to Clinton's social policies. You might even find that champagne
>better than lemons.
On 7/6/99 at 2:25:57 AM Eastern Daylight Time gregnorton@in-tch.com (The Nort
One) responded to Grlygrl201@aol.com (Geege)
Some interesting points.
Crime: More cops on the streets? How many? Clinton claimed a big gain,
but nothing much happened. Crime began dropping before.
The Brady Bill? no impact whatsoever. Sorry. Might as well claim the
defeat of Hillary Care is what caused crime to drop. Or the election of
the Republican Congress. Crime began dropping because of 1) Demographics-
fewer young men and 2) The efforts of some city mayors. The Feds have
almost no impact.

Rush Limbaugh a sourpuss? I don't think so.

Buchanan is a sourpuss.

Notice the "Angry White Males" touch. Nice use of the Tar Brush. What
about Walter Williams, Ken Hamblin, Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder, Mona
Charon, Linda Chavez? Are they all "angry white males"? I don't think so.
Williams regularly guest hosts Limbaugh's show. Hamblin has his own show
based in Denver. Larry Elder is in California. Black men. But if he's
white? Dismiss him, don't take him seriously.

Bennet was Reagan's secretary of education when SAT scores went down.
They'd been going down for more than a decade. Assumption is that a
Secretary of Education has some short term impact on what happens in the
schools. Maybe Bennett was successful, it just took 12 years for the
success to become manifest. Maybe Bennet and the Department of Education
were irrelevant. Might as well blame the Weather Bureau for hurricanes.

--compelling proof of the abject failure of social policy under Reagan and

Hmm. Trends that had been under way for 30 years. "Dead on Arrival":
annual pronouncement by the Speaker of the House regarding the Reagan
budget. Shows how successful Reagan was at implementing social policy.

This is the best:
"Welfare was a favorite target when Reagan and Bush ran the show. Yet after
>the Reagan-Bush years more Americans were on welfare than at any other time
>in our history. During the Clinton presidency, 6.5 million people have been
>lifted off the welfare rolls -- a 46 percent decrease since 1993."

Welfare rolls have dropped because of the Welfare Reform passed by the
Republican Congress over the strident objections of the Clinton-Gore
regime. Clinton vetoed it twice. He only signed it the third time around
because campaign advisor Dick Morris told him he would be hurt in the 1996
election if he didn't sign it.

It's interesting the Rep. Begala puts so much credit/blame for things on
the doorstep of the Whitehouse. As if his branch of government, Congress,
were irrelevant. Of course, if you look at Congress, you get the exact
opposite set of claims: Under the Democrat-Dominated Congresses of
Reagan/Bush crime went up, drug use went up, welfare went up. Under the
Republican-Dominated Congresses of Clinton, crime has gone down, drug use
down, welfare down, the budget is balanced.

Oh, speaking of which--- remember when Clinton fought so hard against a
balanced budget? He claimed it couldn't be done until 2005 without
impossible and inhumane hardships on the American people. Guess what? He
lost the budget issue just like he lost the welfare issue- and the bastard
claims credit! Bagala gives him credit! Clinton fought the reduction in
welfare roles with everything he had. It's as if Robert E. Lee claimed
credit for the victory at Gettysburg
"American people and the Democrats are reversing those social
>pathologies. " Ahem. Would that be the Democratic Majorities in Congress
since 1994??????

The sun came up today. Thanks to the American people and the Democrats.