Welcome Back, Dad (Guest Voice by Michael Reagan)

Talk show host Michael Reagan sees a lot of his father Ronald Reagan in GOP Vice Presidential nominee Gov. Sarah Palin and explains why in this Guest Voice. Guest Voice posts do not necessarily reflect the opinion of TMV or its writers.

Welcome Back, Dad

by Michael Reagan

I’ve been trying to convince my fellow conservatives that they have been wasting their time in a fruitless quest for a new Ronald Reagan to emerge and lead our party and our nation. I insisted that we’d never see his like again because he was one of a kind.

I was wrong!

Wednesday night I watched the Republican National Convention on television and there, before my very eyes, I saw my Dad reborn; only this time he’s a she.

And what a she!

In one blockbuster of a speech, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin resurrected my Dad’s indomitable spirit and sent it soaring above the convention center, shooting shock waves through the cynical media’s assigned spaces and electrifying the huge audience with the kind of inspiring rhetoric we haven’t heard since my Dad left the scene.

This was Ronald Reagan at his best — the same Ronald Reagan who made the address known now solely as “The Speech,” which during the Goldwater campaign set the tone and the agenda for the rebirth of the traditional conservative movement that later sent him to the White House for eight years and revived the moribund GOP.

Last night was an extraordinary event. Widely seen beforehand as a make-or-break effort — either an opportunity for Sarah Palin to show that she was the happy warrior that John McCain assured us she was, or a disaster that would dash McCain’s presidential hopes and send her back to Alaska, sadder but wiser.

Obviously un-intimidated by either the savage onslaught to which the left-leaning media had subjected her, or the incredible challenge she faced — and oozing with confidence — she strode defiantly to the podium and proved she was everything and even more than John McCain told us.

Much has been made of the fact that she is a woman. What we saw last night, however, was something much more than a just a woman accomplishing something no Republican woman has ever achieved. What we saw was a red-blooded American with that rare, God-given ability to rally her dispirited fellow Republicans and take up the daunting task of leading them — and all her fellow Americans — on a pilgrimage to that shining city on the hill my father envisioned as our nation’s real destination.

In a few words she managed to rip the mask from the faces of her Democratic rivals and reveal them for what they are — a pair of old-fashioned liberals making promises that cannot be kept without bankrupting the nation and reducing most Americans to the status of mendicants begging for their daily bread at the feet of an all-powerful government.

Most important, by comparing her own stunning record of achievement with his, she showed Barack Obama for the sham that he is, a man without any solid accomplishments beyond conspicuous self-aggrandizement.

Like Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin is one of us. She knows how most of us live because that’s the way she lives. She shares our homespun values and our beliefs, and she glories in her status as a small-town woman who put her shoulder to the wheel and made life better for her neighbors.

Her astonishing rise up from the grass-roots, her total lack of self-importance, and her ordinary American values and modest lifestyle reveal her to be the kind of hard-working, optimistic, ordinary American who made this country the greatest, most powerful nation on the face of the earth.

As hard as you might try, you won’t find that kind of plain-spoken, down-to-earth, self-reliant American in the upper ranks of the liberal-infested, elitist Democratic Party, or in the Obama campaign.

Sarah Palin didn’t go to Harvard, or fiddle around in urban neighborhood leftist activism while engaging in opportunism within the ranks of one of the nation’s most corrupt political machines, never challenging it and going along to get along, like Barack Obama.

Instead she took on the corrupt establishment in Alaska and beat it, rising to the governorship while bringing reforms to every level of government she served in on her way up the ladder.

Welcome back, Dad, even if you’re wearing a dress and bearing children this time around.

Mike Reagan, the elder son of the late President Ronald Reagan, is heard on more than 200 talk radio stations nationally as part of the Radio America Network. ©2008 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc.

Author: CAGLE CARTOONS

44 Comments

  1. Here's the other Reagan brother.

  2. I'm not sure what to make of this…Michael Reagan is a pure partisan, plain and simple. If he wants to think that Palin is Ronald Reagan re-born, power to him, although many could argue that isn't necessarily a great thing.

    “Like Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin is one of us. She knows how most of us live because that’s the way she lives.”

    I wish all of “us” could be President's children. Michael Reagan thinking he is one of “us” is laughable at best.

  3. Oh, I think I'm gonna be sick. “Homespun values?” Give me a break. The only values Republicans have is greed. As Jon Stewart so eloquently put it, “Sure, the Republicans love America, they just hate half the people living in it. “

  4. “Obviously un-intimidated by either the savage onslaught to which the left-leaning media had subjected her”

    That is so ridiculous. The whole contrived narrative about the media ganging up on poor Sarah is at it's heart a ploy to garner sympathy. Here is an accurate and appropriate “apology” to suit the occasion:

    http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0908/13143

  5. Yeah, djshay, because your comment displays a love of the half of Americans who disagree with you.

  6. CStanley, if I could channel DLS for a just a moment, that comment isn't logical, which is to say, one doesnt' necessarliy follow from the other. The D's are much more big tent than the R's, and it isn't just rhetoric. This also explains why D's have more conflct and less lockstep in their ranks, they appeal to a broader base, greater variety among the populace, etc.

  7. Oh Michael, I read all the papers. I mean really — I read almost everything out there and the only place this “savage assault” exists is on Republican blogs and websites and we both know you're doing this to distract from legitimate concerns about her qualifications. Or perhaps maneuvering for a cabinet position. Indeed we're being given an endless encomium by the press and you're part of it.

    Asking questions is not a savage assault, it's the primary job of the press. Is it that you are afraid of questions? Are you afraid that she doesn't really compare to a two term governor of a State with one of the worlds largest economies? Do you really think your father also thought the Pledge of Allegiance was written by Washington?

    She is an undereducated, inexperienced, opinionated religious fanatic who does a fair job of reading a speech someone else wrote and nothing more. The comparison demeans your father as much as it impugns your credibility. Whatever she is, she's not a brave little girl standing up to the evil, hooked-nosed liberals. I know it and I know that you know it.

  8. Yeah, all the love we get from violent D protesters, their spitting on troops, assaulting R speakers on campuses, etc., I tell you, it just warms my heart.

  9. AR, a favorite tactic, characterizing the many by actions of the few… most of whom don't even identify themselves as democrats. I don't know any democrats who hate republicans, but I know many who hate their behavior.

  10. LOL- yes,the Dems are very 'big tent' on abortion, aren't they (hey, they invited Casey Jr, whose father was prolife,to speak this year, to make up for blackballing his father in '92.)

    Besides, Jspencer, I was referring specifically to the 'love' shown by that particular commenter. How can you criticize Republicans for 'hating half of America' when you are obviously doing the same thing in return?

  11. Back to the post, I don't put much stock in Michael Reagan, but I do believe that the GOP may be welcoming back some of those Reagan Democrats.

  12. It's somewhat over the top. Yes, the speech is great and her success is bitterly resented today, as we see to this day with “surly loser” behavior on the Left that has been there (along with viciousness and hatred) since Reagan was elected and liberalism and the Dems rejected by the public in large part in 1980, but you'll notice that the participants in the convention and the two candidates have learned already not to try to resurrect Reagan (the way Shaun beats long-dead corpses like past misconduct by the Bush administration).

  13. “I don't know any democrats who hate republicans, but I know many who hate their behavior.”

    Although I understand what you are saying JSpencer, I must say that this sounds eerily similar to some in the religious right camp who say, “I don't hate the sinner, I just hate the sin”. But yet their labeled as bigots and haters anyway. Am I missing something here?

  14. Oh, I get it! Caroline Kennedy compared Barack Obama to her dad, the greatest orator among Democratic presidents from the last fifty years. Now Michael does the same for the Republicans.

    One of Obama or Palin will be elected in two months, so we can test one of these impressions a lot more. Since the loser will have a high office to fall back on, no doubt with their ambition intact, we may even get to test both of them.

    So what will be the result? Will one of them tell his or her generals that he or she is not going to follow their invasion plan, as Kennedy did with Cuba in 1962, thereby saving the US from nuclear war? Will one of them be so bellicose that he or she almost triggers nuclear war as Reagan did with Able Archer in 1983?

    I'd just as soon the comparison stops with their oratory, that despite the rhetoric of fear, the 21st century isn't as dangerous as the 20th, but whoever lives long enough will find out. Someone may live long enough to curse these stupid partisan games that say someone who hardly has thought of foreign policy is acceptable even as an understudy for president.

  15. “I don't know any democrats who hate republicans, but I know many who hate their behavior.”

    I know plenty of democrats who hate Republicans, and vice versa. They often try and coat it by saying that they just disagree with them, but at the same time they can't bring themselves to actually commune with anyone who differs in ideology too terribly.

    As per Michael Reagan's column, he's clearly an ultra-partisan who has completely taken it upon himself to speak for his deceased father the past few years. Palin gave a great speech, but I wouldn't call it “inspiring” or “soaring” by any stretch. It was designed to jazz up the conservative crowd, with a bit of her trying to build her appeal to exurban and suburban moderates (the small-town crowd).

  16. DLS, once again you create an imaginary world to replace the one you fail to understand. Bizz as usual…

  17. CStanley, regarding the “big tent”, my comment isn't based on anecdote (as your's was), but on years of accumulated evidence and years of observing and taking part in politics. The republicans are much more homogeneous as a group when compared to the democrats.

  18. With all due respect to Michael Reagan, and with even greater respect to President Reagan, I believe Ronald Reagan would be turning over in his grave if he knew that his own (adopted) son was comparing him to a condescending, sneering, holier-than-thou, oozing with disdain for Democrats and community organizers, gun/bible-toting, book banning, moose eating, wolves-shooting-out-of-airplanes, Alaska separatist, for-the-bridge-to-nowhere-before-being-against-it, snarling pit bull with lipstick on.

  19. What's interesting is that the true fringists (who are often violent, and often who are opportunistic punks rather than true “movement” followers in the case of “globalism” rioters and “anarchist” vandals, as well as people who, say, throw rocks at gay-pride-parade marchers, something I saw in DC when I lived there) are fizzling this year; they fizzled at Denver and they're fizzling now in St. Paul, put down properly when they get violent, and will probably accuse the “pro-war, warmongering, evil right-wing corporate media” for propagandistically suppressing news of their activities when in fact they constitute little or any news of actual note.

    * * *

    Reagan Moms, C. Stanley — hockey moms as well as soccer moms!

    What McCain needs to do now, for effect even if getting low results, is another ad with the Hillary Clinton supporter, the same one, saying Palin is great, another reason to switch to McCain. “It's okay — really!”

    * * *

    “the Dems are very 'big tent' on abortion, aren't they “

    A good fraction of their side wants abortion always legal. This fraction is larger than (and as we routinely see, notably more extremist than) the fraction on the Bright Side who wants to see abortion always illegal.

    Abortion
    Legal in all cases: All 18 GOP 10 Dem 23 Ind 20
    Legal in most cases: All 38 GOP 32 Dem 42 Ind 39
    Illegal in most cases: All 27 GOP 37 Dem 18 Ind 26
    Illegal in all cases All 13 GOP 18 Dem 12 Ind 10
    (VOL) Don't know/Refused All 4 GOP 3 Dem 5 Ind 6

    http://pewresearch.org/assets/pdf/933.pdf

    * * *

    Tangentially:

    “if I could channel DLS for a just a moment, that comment isn't logical”

    I wish others on your side would do that more often. Even when I read leftish books and such that are defective (in the following case, it discusses _Allied_ bombing policy and ignores the other, worse, side in World War II and ignores that everyone knew the belligerents were being disproportional, but that's how things were, and all sides were still moral to the extent that they prepared for but sought to avoid and succeeded at avoiding chemical warfare, even when it was recommended on both sides; biological warfare was seriously considered as well), I love the appeals to logic and the laws of war (with their underlying morality) in the following book I have been reading lately — great appeals to logic though some great analogies used to rebut arguments in favor of “strategic” area bombing of civilians. (Who uses logic to a substantial degree? A philosopher.) It was worth purchasing for $4.98:

    http://www.powells.com/review/2006_05_30.html

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/ar

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2006/mar/04/hig

    http://www3.sympatico.ca/ian.g.mason/Grayling.htm

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/category/story.cfm?c_

    I should also add

    http://www.killology.com/art_bomb_death.htm

    http://www.killology.com/art_bomb_myth.htm

    http://www.killology.com/print/print_bombing.htm

  20. Michael:

    With respect to: “the savage onslaught to which the left-leaning media had subjected her,” would you care to say a word or two on the “civil and respectful” way the right-wing media have treated Senator Obama on his patriotism, honor, citizenship, religion, his wife, his education, his family background, his ethnicity, his intelligence, his oratory skills, his community work, his experience, his love for country, down to his big ears and the color of his skin? Just a word or two would suffice, Michael. Perhaps words such as “my apologies,?” What did you say, “no, not a chance?” Did I also hear, “It's all part of finding out who this man, who might be our President, and of whom we don't know very much,is?” Perhaps, but do we have to swiftboat him in the process? Thank you, Michael

  21. Sometimes I think that–in the sense that Michael Jordan was bad for the NBA, because they keep trying to recreate him and keep failing instead of trying something new–Reagan was bad for the GOP, because they keep trying to recreate him and keep failing. Wasn't Bush cast in the New Reagan role? And now Palin is either the new Reagan or the new Thatcher, and Americans remember Thatcher due to her alliance with Reagan. They've been running on his memory for years now and, I mean, memories fade.

  22. Well, we have another comment chain trying to prove which group of tens of millions of Americans is morally superior to the other tens of millions of Americans. Excellent. That'll be resolved soon.

    As for the original Reagan post, I cracked up at how swept away by the speech that Reagan's already prepared to declare Palin the reincarnation of “the greatest President of the last 50 years”[tm] (Gotta borrow DLS' schtick sometimes.)

    If I were a bigger jerk than I try to be, I'd start a Palin as Messiah ad campaign. I'm sure it would go over well. Hey, just having a little fun as McCain would say.

  23. LOL, Palin the Messiah wouldn't fly anyway, her appeal is that she is down to earth with the people not floating on air above them. Thats why she is so effective against the Obama image, her reality is a devasting counterpoint to his elitism.

  24. Leonidas- His wife made many”stinky sock” speeches letting us know he's a human just like the rest of us. The elitism argument won't work.

  25. Dr. E, I was really surprised at the negative characterization that you wrote above about Palin, esp considering that you then criticized those who didn't defend Obama from similar labels. Would it have been OK for someone to write of Obama that he's an 'arugula loving, elitist, against NAFTA before he was for it, terrorist sympathizing, anti-white racist preacher loving politician who oozes with disdain for Republicans'?

    Why not defend all of the candidates from those kind of slanted screeds?

  26. It always amazes me how Republicans are so forward thinking— right back to the 1980's.

    But at least Reagan was smart enough to bring the troops back from Lebanon declaring it a battle we wouldn't win, and adjust his “Evil Empire” rhetoric when he found out that the Soviets were just as scared of Armegeddon as we were!

  27. Well, Kim, at least the Republicans look back to the 80s (Reagan) instead of early 60s (Kennedy) or 30s-40s (FDR.)

    Oh, and it's good to see you acknowledging that McCain was right in opposing the Lebanon mission. ;-)

  28. CS- Oh Yes, he was right- it was suicidal. Now, is it senility that makes him think differently now???

    And yes, Obama has been compared to the Kennedys. But his supporters are the youth who are both willing to overlook race and anxious to change the way government does business- not continue in the same self-defeating pattern.

  29. dear C. Stanley: I didnt understand your comment on this thread… ? Maybe meant for another?

    “Dr. E, I was really surprised at the negative characterization that you wrote above about Palin, esp considering”

    dr.e

  30. J. Spencer — that rest you have discussed before, you're badly in need of. When you descend to unflattering mirror talk at best, well… [sigh] McCain failed early in his campaign and so did others like Romney when they overdid the Reagan references, and Reagan was hardly more abused (or referred to, to an ordinary degree) than Giuliani abused references to 9-11. (He didn't neglect it, but certainly didn't abuse it; he avoided referring to it to a remarkable degree.) You disappoint when you blunder.

    Sorry, Paca, but I don't go in for schtick — I leave that to, say, Obama or Bill Clinton, and worse, ESPN and the aggravating Fox follower-on, “FSN.” (I avoid teevee but sometimes encounter it, anyway.) I go in for humor, I go in for eviscerating what others say wrongly, I go in for creativity in presenting facts, but sorry, no schtick.

  31. CS – careful, your frustration is starting to boil over (understandable), and you are heading toward my level of belligerence.

    Go cool off. I need at least one role model here!

  32. LOL, Austin, good idea. I think I'll get the Mojitos ready for tonight.

    Dr. E- sorry, I mistakenly thought that a commenter above was you with a new screen name. Actually I've seen a few lately by that commenter (D E Rodriguez) and have been thinking that was you with a more strident tone than usual.

    The mistaken identity certainly explains things- sorry for the dumb mixup!

  33. C.Stanley; it's ok. Hardly a day goes by that I dont call my family members by each others' names, not their own, grandkids, kids, husband(s), parents, staff, you name it. lol

    My screen name is archangel. It's the only one I have. Archangel, that is. As well as screen name. lol.

    dr.e

  34. Well, guess I will again point out the 800 lb gorilla in the room, and apologies in advance to Michael.

    My comments here today are not directed at the rightists here, who apparently condone, or at least forgive, these transgressions. Rather, they are for younger readers of TMV who may be unfamiliar with the history of the Reagan era. I am not making any of this up, and you can verify the facts through a quick search.

    Ronald Reagan was a confessed traitor to the United States of America. He admitted selling arms to our enemy, Iran. The proceeds of the sale were transferred in direct violation of an act of Congress which he had signed, to a terrorist organization in Central America whose goal was to overthrow by violence the elected government of Nicaragua, headed by Daniel Ortega. Reagan's admission was public and televised:

    “A few months ago I told the American people I did not trade arms for hostages. My heart and my best intentions still tell me that's true, but the facts and the evidence tell me it is not.”

    The accusation of “treason” has been tossed around at and by partisans of both parties. But there is no clearer act of treason than directly aiding our enemies by giving them weapons that can be (and have been) used against us.

    Reagan was either complicit or criminally negligent in not supervising his top officials who then used the funds through abuse of Oliver North's tax exempt “non-profit” in violation of tax law, and insurance fraud involving the “disappearance” of boats and planes transferred to the terrorists (Contras) while insurance companies reimbursed the former owners of these properties. White House officials, including Oliver North knew about and supported the fact that drug money, from the introduction of crack cocaine to America, was used to fund the Contras. (all this was discovered through the Freedom of Information Act and is directly from Reagan's White House records. Bush Sr. White House records have been “sealed” by his son GW Bush, presumably to prevent us from learning more)

    The tactics of the contras included rape and torture, killing of church workers, health care workers, teachers and elected officials. The assassination of elected officials was advocated by Reagan's CIA in a manual delivered to the Contras (also obtained through FOIA).

    Reagan and Bush Sr. pardoned several of those who betrayed our country and who in the most direct way, funded an insurrection that killed many and destroyed the Nicaraguan economy. Ironically, Oliver North went to Nicaragua to warn its citizens against re-electing Daniel Ortega, who was in fact, re-elected in 2006.

    That Republicans, including Palin and McCain, continue to both revere and emulate Reagan is beyond ironic. It is frightening.

  35. DLS, half the time I have no idea what you're going on about. I can only imagine you're talking for your own benefit.

    GreenDreams, thank-you for the post. As I've said before, Reagan was much loved, but also much over-rated.

  36. C. Stanley:

    Yes, it was me, D.E, Rodriguez who wrote “that negative characterization “of what Michael Reagan said about Sarah Palin. Here it goes again to refresh your memory:

    Michael:

    With respect to: “the savage onslaught to which the left-leaning media had subjected her,” would you care to say a word or two on the “civil and respectful” way the right-wing media have treated Senator Obama on his patriotism, honor, citizenship, religion, his wife, his education, his family background, his ethnicity, his intelligence, his oratory skills, his community work, his experience, his love for country, down to his big ears and the color of his skin? Just a word or two would suffice, Michael. Perhaps words such as “my apologies,?” What did you say, “no, not a chance?” Did I also hear, “It's all part of finding out who this man, who might be our President, and of whom we don't know very much,is?” Perhaps, but do we have to swiftboat him in the process? Thank you, Michael

    Ok, now that we have author and post macthed, please tell me what your objections are.

    Thank you

  37. You really do need that sleep these days, J. Spencer. [sigh] Don't risk losing any more in case McCain surprises us and does well, too. Go to bed early tonight rather than risk watching the GOP convention and McCain's speech.

    One reason Reagan was so well liked by people in addition to his communication skills were the sources and nature of the attacks on him in the 1980s (similar to why Bush is not necessarily admired by many of us today but we still defend him against the worst aimed his way). That's a lesson still not learned by the Palin (and Palin-success) haters yet. What happens if McCain and Palin win, riots as in '68? (There's a reason to bring some troops and other military assets home, still “hot”)

  38. DLS,

    Your ignorance is only outdone by your nasty antisocial outbursts… I'd hoped a real person would emerge from your hateful rages but after the last few 'episodes' it's obvious that is not to be.

  39. “One reason Reagan was so well liked by people in addition to his communication skills were the sources and nature of the attacks on him in the 1980s”

    What exactly does that have anything to do with anything? Your team has made slanderous charges against the patriotism of both Obama and his wife. Meanwhile, you actively revere and defend and hold up as the ultimate in presidential excellence a man who ACTUALLY committed treason against our country. That, sir, is hypocrisy.

  40. Hi, D.E.,

    I really liked this paragraph from you (the parts you copied again in a later comment):

    “With respect to: “the savage onslaught to which the left-leaning media had subjected her,” would you care to say a word or two on the “civil and respectful” way the right-wing media have treated Senator Obama on his patriotism, honor, citizenship, religion, his wife, his education, his family background, his ethnicity, his intelligence, his oratory skills, his community work, his experience, his love for country, down to his big ears and the color of his skin? Just a word or two would suffice, Michael. Perhaps words such as “my apologies,?” What did you say, “no, not a chance?” Did I also hear, “It's all part of finding out who this man, who might be our President, and of whom we don't know very much,is?” Perhaps, but do we have to swiftboat him in the process? Thank you, Michael”

    I think it was the other part that you didn't cite again, which included this description of Palin:

    “a condescending, sneering, holier-than-thou, oozing with disdain for Democrats and community organizers, gun/bible-toting, book banning, moose eating, wolves-shooting-out-of-airplanes, Alaska separatist, for-the-bridge-to-nowhere-before-being-against-it, snarling pit bull with lipstick on.”

    which undercuts the first part. You would like Reagan to apologize for name-calling and smearing Obama, and yet pretty much do the same thing to Palin. The separatist charge for instance is even close to questioning her patriotism. At a very minimum, your string of adjectives is not precisely civil and respectful.

    For the record, I'm not saying Reagan's (or his ilk) charges are fair while yours are not. They are both unfair.

  41. Point well taken, pacatrue. The way to fight sleaze and mud is not to imitate it, but rather to indicate it. Secxod post did, first post didn't..with the exception of several of the true facts in it (book banning, condescending, bridge to nowhere, etc.).

  42. Yes, paca got it right- it was that first post about Sarah Palin that I was objecting to, not the one that you directed at Michael Reagan, D. E.

  43. Sadly, sadly, the attacks seem to work for American voters. Expect lots of them. On both sides. I doubt we will ever have a calm, rational discussion of issues when these flame wars move the polls more quickly and surely. What an idiot idealist I am…

  44. I know this was two weeks ago, but come on D.E. are you a woman hater or a republican hater…probably both…it shows in your comments above.

Submit a Comment