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Intro: "When you're listening to the many tributes to President Ronald Reagan, often for his talent making Americans feel better about themselves, you might want to spend a minute thinking about the many atrocities in Latin America and elsewhere that Reagan aided, covered up or shrugged off in his inimitable 'aw shucks' manner."

President Reagan, wearing an 'I'm a Contra too' pin, with Nicaraguan Contra leader Adolfo Calero, and NSC advisor LtCol Oliver North standing in the background, 01/01/84. (photo: TIME-LIFE/Getty Images)
President Reagan, wearing an 'I'm a Contra too' pin, with Nicaraguan Contra leader Adolfo Calero, and NSC advisor LtCol Oliver North standing in the background, 01/01/84. (photo: TIME-LIFE/Getty Images) your social media marketing partner


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+28 # fredboy 2011-02-06 13:28
He also cast out and dismissed the mentally ill, creating our tragic homelessness problem and hardening the minds of many Americans to disregard our most needy.
+7 # billy bob 2011-02-06 20:54
I've actually heard conservatives say we don't have a homelessness problem in this country for the very reason that so many of the homeless are mentally ill. I guess, that makes it "no one's fault" and therefore, no one bears any responsibility.
+13 # Ralph Averill 2011-02-07 00:18
In San Francisco the people Reagan tossed out of the mental hospitals were called Reagan's Rejects. Homeless, shuffling around the Tenderloin muttering to themselves, screaming at imaginary ghosts. Cold. Cold hearted, cold blooded.
Google Peoples Park.
+24 # tarantilla 2011-02-06 13:38
Sounds like G.W.Bush was in competion with him. In the US Mr. Regan is remembered for classifying kethup as a vegetable (to decrease school lunch program funding), rejiggering the CPI (to understate true inflation), and ripping solar panels off the white house roof (among other such things).
+8 # billy bob 2011-02-06 20:51
Don't forget cutting funding for the EPA to clean up toxic waste by 90% and then renaming it, the "SUPERFUND".
+4 # Jimfranklin709 2011-02-07 08:53
We are living in the He'll that Reagan is supposed to burn in.
+27 # Glen 2011-02-06 13:43
THANK YOU for laying it out there as others have before you, Robert Parry. It needs to be said, and repeated until Americans understand the lie put upon them concerning this despicable man, administration, and the future set by them.

Yes, a number of presidents have committed crimes and kept to a foul agenda, but none have been lauded as Reagan as some sort of god.
+22 # Willard Wheelock 2011-02-06 13:46
Now we can see who the criminals Bush and Cheney used as a role model after they stole the 200 election. The blind, sycophantic adoration of Reagan the great deceiver shows just how stupid and gutless the public and especially the so-called media are. Why not resurrect Hitler, Mussolini, and Hirohito as simply misunderstood instead of the inhuman mass murderers that they were? Nothing would surprise me at this point.
+14 # Marco 2011-02-06 13:59
Regan is the symbol for EVERYTHING that has gone wrong in the United States over the last 30 years. Greed, human rights abuses, and a TOTAL lack of accountability are Regan's TRUE legacy! If there is a god, Regan should be burning in hell as I write this!
+15 # Kootenay Coyote 2011-02-06 14:33
Not to mention, atop all the other hideous atrocities, Reagan’s deliberate & evil neglect of the AIDS epidemic, ensuring the deaths of millions worldwide, including plenty of his own citizens...Mons ter.
+18 # SFOtter 2011-02-06 14:44
Well done. It just sickens me to read how columnists fall all over themselves deifying the "great communicator" ignoring all his many shortcomings and misjudgements. He's given far too much credit for the fall of the Soviet empire. Without Gorbachev it would not have happened or taken many more years.

As a DC resident during his administration, I well recall how he undermined and demoralized the federal bureaucracy. It's easy to demonize the federal govt. after you underfund and undermine it with incompetent or even hostile cabinet appointments. Remember Ann Gorsuch and James Watt at the EPA and Interior dept. respectively? Yeah, he was charismatic and charming, but one judges a person for what they value and what they create. He made Americans FEEL good about themselves rather than BE good. Big difference.
+11 # Jefferson 2011-02-06 15:54
May this scumbag raygun burn in hell for the planned murders of tens of thousands: babies, mothers, children. His smiling GENOCIDE, the blood of which, fed the monsters of our present killing machine and the disgusting Bushco mafia that has rigged our elections, destroyed our economy, educational institutions and savings, that paved the way for the poisoning of our food and water, and brought us the fraudulent so-called AIDS epidemic, bio-weapon "scientist" Robert Gallo and Ronnie Reagan are the scourge of the century, may they burn in hell for their murders and lies, may their ilk and descendants disappear from the face of this earth. Genocidal Murderers
+8 # motamanx 2011-02-06 16:35
On TV this morning, a re-cap of the Reagan years mentioned his "deft handling" of the Grenada problem. I thought that was an unmitigated screw-up. Who's right?
+7 # Steve S 2011-02-06 23:25
One of my friends was a soldier in Grenada. Soon after his paratrooper jump, he discovered that the military planning of the operation was so bad that the maps soldiers had been given by the Army were useless. The only way they were able to find their mission objectives was by breaking into a hotel and commandeering tourist maps, which -- unlike the Army's maps -- were reasonably accurate.

He said that the reporting about the invasion -- both that of Reagan cheerleaders and that of administration critics -- was wrong about the Cubans who were there. At the time, Reagan cheerleaders claimed they were a tough force of elite soldiers, beaten by the US only because of brilliant planning of the operation, and administration critics said they were just noncombatant advisors.

My friend said that the Cubans weren't particularly competent soldiers, but they were definitely soldiers rather than just advisors -- poorly trained and equipped, but definitely shooting back. And the victory was certainly not due to great planning -- it was because the US had vastly superior numbers, firepower, and training. The soldiers won the conflict, in spite of the Pentagon's best efforts to foul it up.
+3 # genierae 2011-02-08 09:57
Wasn't there reporters on the beach shining spotlights on the invading American forces? I remember how embarrassing that was.
-5 # forparity 2011-02-07 13:23
I'd say that it was an adjunct screw-up.. though the end result was successful.

In context, however, I think that we look at these events, Bay of pigs with JFK, Resuce mission with Carter, the Sudan Rx and Afghanistan Al Qaeda camp attacks, etc., as military screw-ups (as far as the actual events go on the ground) and no reflection upon the President. A better guage would be to look at how successful they were with correcting the situation.. and as capturing Bin Laden goes to show, and Abu Ghraib in Iraq - not very. In the moment, the President is dependent on what the ole system is telling him.
0 # motamanx 2011-02-20 11:38
BAY OF PIGS was a Nixon/Dulles enterprise, created before the 1960 election. Kennedy took the blame, but then put the CIA on the carpet for that massive screw up.
+11 # Terry 2011-02-06 17:25
It is truly sad how uninformed we are about the real story behind our so-called leaders. If I were a journalist in the MSM I would feel worthless for what they have let pass and failed to report.

I can see why they want to throttle the Internet as it is the only way that people can find out the real truth behind the Spin that governments led by both parties generate to cover their tracks.

They have so much to be ashamed of, but they will probably never be brought to justice for all the wrong-doing they have brought to the people in our fragile world. We have learned to hate and reduce our "enemies" to less than human all on the instigation of the political/milit ary/industrial/ banking complex.

Sad, very sad how easily we are duped.
-19 # forparity 2011-02-06 17:52
A different view...

It was Pres. Clinton, who being completely aware of the world's unfolding pandemic, turned his back on the issue. Progressive columnist and frequent guest on MSNBC, David Corn wrote in 2002, in "Too little, too late
How many times is Bill Clinton going to apologize to Africa?"

"The prevailing view was, these people should die quietly. A cynical guess at Clinton's motivations: AIDS in Africa, it doesn’t poll well."

On the other hand, President George W. Bush would be the man who set the historic bar on what leadership and vison was all about in proposing, passing, and implmenting a program that is world aclaimed and will save millions of lives.

In the present moment, Obama is seeking to apply the Bush model here in the US, while world HIV/Aids leaders are visably upset that Obama is not maintaining the pace established by Bush.
+15 # billy bob 2011-02-06 20:47
I thought I could find you here forTEAparity.

How many lives did bush jr. save in Iraq and Afghanistan? How many lives were saved in New York City when bush intentionally ignored warnings that al quaida was about to attack? Letting them attack sure helped push his previously written "patriot" act through Congress quickly didn't it? It also aided in his implementation of cheney's PNAC agenda didn't it? As cheney said, "the American people would never go for all of this unless we had 'another Pearl Harbor' ". I guess the 3,000 who died in New York City on that day had to be sacrificed for the greater good of the Iraqi oil suppliers. baby bush sure has a good human rights record since opening Abu Graib and Guantanamo as well, doesn't he?

Thanks but no thanks, for the "different view". I'd rather focus on reality.
-14 # forparity 2011-02-07 09:50
Well, talk to the moderator about where my response to you went here.

But I'd added, after laying out the case, that you really exposed your hate and determined ingorance here in saying that Bush "ignored" the warnings about 9/11/. I'm confident that even Dennis Kucinich and President Obama would solidly agree with me here.

Those folks that had been preparing "daily" presidential briefings for years (I linked Clinton's too - which sounded even worse) didn't know that it was going to happen here and when or where. Don't go into that one FBI agent who got snuffed by the pathetic old system (which the Patriot
Act attempted to fix) - because not even the head of the FBI every found out - and as you should know, the CIA didn't know and neither did that other agency.

Funny, doesn't the Cheney quote sound like Rahm Emanual's view,"never let a crisis go to waste." Can't live on one-liners bb. As I said before, as a human being, you should spend some time trying to find the good in folks. See it's easy; I find a lot of good in LBJ, Nixon, Carter, Bush, Reagan, Clinton, Bush, Obama. They all cared/care deeply about their fellow man/women, and none of them would intentially do anything to hurt the country. I can also find fault in the details of each and every action and direction they all have taken.

Try a little love, OK?
+7 # X Dane 2011-02-07 14:55
WHOOOOOOOW forparity. Do you ever have it WRONG. I watched the 9-11 hearing EVERY DAY.

The daily presidential briefs in August stated WITH CRYSTAL CLARITY that ( THEY COULD NOT SAY EXaCTLY WHEN) but Al Queda intended to hit INSIDE AMERICA.Condi Rice read it aloud, when pressed, and she was squirming a lot.
You may not remember that BUSH STAYED AT HIS RANCH ALL OF AUGUST. Some fearless leader!!

Also Madeline Allbright testified that the Clinton adm. had impressed on the incoming administration that the GREATEST DANGER we faced was from Al Queda. So you are wrong again, in attacking Clinton

Richard Clark testified that he was constantly brushed off, when he brought up the Al Queda danger, and ultimately he was reassigned.

-9 # forparity 2011-02-07 16:48
Wow - nice name calling. Sweet.

I didn't "attack Clinton" there, you see?

Compares 1998 PDB, for Clinton, to the one that you're claim to be familar with.

No clarity in it at all.. they'd been saying for years, they were going to hit in the US.

100's of those things, you see - that's why they are called "daily briefings." The folks that gave this one to Bush and reviewed it with him, had no idea as to what was going to happen, either. We all knew something was up - consensus opinion was that it was to be in Europe.

You might also remember that the draft plan for taking Al Qaeda out of Afghanistan that Bush had ordered up, months before, was completed only in the week before 9/11. As was widely reported, Bush was tired of us swatting flies with these folks, and wanted to them; wnated to end it.. early on.

Clarke testified to a lot of things, including how Gore and he convinced Clinton in stepping up our program of extraordinary rendition in mid-90's, which Obama refused to end, because if we close Gitmo, it will be necessary again.

Expand your mind - think.

As I noted elsewhere-folks out there like Dennis Kucinich and Bill Clinton and President Obama would get sick to their stomachs listening to this junk you've somehow picked up.
+6 # billy bob 2011-02-07 20:00
The C.I.A. and the F.B.I. was saying that al quaida planned an attack within DAYS - not "years". Rather than taking action, bush jr. famously said to a high ranking member of the C.I.A. "alright you've covered your ass now."

Instead of blaming everyone else for what happened on bush's watch with bush's foreknowledge and bush's gross negligence, if not complicity; try accepting that someone on your side may be responsible for one of their own mistakes.

Expand your mind - think.
-6 # forparity 2011-02-07 23:04
..Instead of blaming everyone else for what happened on bush's watch ..

Your m.o. - I did not blame anyone else, you see..

I wouldn't even blame Richard Clarke for personally giving the OK for all those Saudi's to leave the country.

You've not raised a single significant worthwhile point - only rattle.
+3 # billy bob 2011-02-08 00:34
So you agree and accept that allowing the terrorist attacks to occur without doing anything to stop them, in spite of previous warnings was bush's fault and not anyone elses...

I'm glad we agree on something.
+4 # billy bob 2011-02-07 20:12
forTEAparity, I notice that EVERYONE who disagrees with you is guilty of "name calling" and needs to "open their minds".

Could it be just POSSIBLE that you're wrong and the rest of us are right? Could it be just POSSIBLE that instead of lecturing the rest of us about our lack of civility and our lack of intelligence, you should start working on yourself and your own comments first?
+3 # Ken Hall 2011-02-07 20:24
One has only to compare the response of Clinton and the response of Bush to a terrorist threat. There was suspicion that a terrorist attack would happen in the US during the bi-millenial celebration. Clinton had the heads of all security bureaus meet daily in the month leading up to the celebration. He obviously took seriously his responsibility to protect the nation and the populace. Bush was told of a terrorist threat and continued his vacation in Crawford. Cheney was head of the Bush admin's terrorist task force; he assembled no meetings of said task force prior to 911. Clinton admin funded anti-terrorism measures, Bushco defunded them. The opening footage of "Fahrenheit 911" is quite damning, Bush sitting in that classroom looking like a deer in the headlights.
+3 # billy bob 2011-02-07 20:38
I keep re-reading X Dane's reply, but I still haven't located the "name calling" you're referring to.

Are you referring to X Dane turning the tables and pointing out your ignorance after you accused me of the same? Maybe your keyboard is working automatically and you really don't even know what you're saying. Are you aware of the insults that have come from you, or just those directed at you from others in revenge?
+3 # X Dane 2011-02-08 00:48
forparity, I have an excellent memory, and that particular daily brief was FAMOUS, because it said:
THAT AL QUEDA WAS DETERMINED TO STRIKE INSIDE AMERICA....... Again you obviously don't remember, that the CIA Director, George Tenet, said, I am quoting,----WE WERE ALL RUNNING AROUND WITH OUR HAIR ON FIRE, because we knew something terrible was going to happen. All August there was high tension in the White House and CIA, not in the country as a whole.

It is difficult to respond to you because you mix everything together.

The "flies" Bush was tired of swatting was in regard to Saddam. NOT Al Queda.

Obama WANTS to close Guantanamo, it is congress who will not assign money for a prison inside USA. He cannot do it by himself.

I am relieved to see that others agree with me
-3 # forparity 2011-02-08 15:36
Yes it did say that. Did you read the other one I linked - PDB? It's the same, more or less. There was no new news in there. We all knew that. Are you familiar with the 1993 bombings (FBI blew the sting). The Cole? The two embassies?

It's unforuntate that the FBI didn't pass up the information it knew about (flying lessons, etc.) It's horrible that the FBI and the CIA were not allowed, by law, to share intelligence info.

It terrible that the head of the CIA, etc., were running around thinking something terrible was going to happen - but believing that it was to be in Europe.. and it's too bad that we missed Bin Laden before. It's too bad we didn't go after him after the Cole - but it doesn't work like that.. it's not Cliton's fault, per say - it's not Bush's fault, per say. etc. Everybody wants to blame everyone else. It's a decadal on-going problem of not having the tools working proberly.

Bush did not know that there was an imminent attack planned in the US - not a single person involved has ever suggested such. He could have done more. Clinton could have done more. And Carter could have struck the Soviet's in a pre-emptive nuclar strike back in 1980 as he threatened to do in a personal phone call to the Soviet premier.. but he didn't. Hint - that would have changed everything, ya think? Even Chomsky says the 9/11 truthers are nuts.
-2 # forparity 2011-02-08 15:55
Once again, Bush ordered up a plan to take out the Taliban and AlQaeda early on in his admin. Plans came only a week prior to 9/11. That, "flies" was a quote attributed to Bush when he ordered up a plan to completely address the Taliban/AlQaeda issue in Afghanistan. Iraq is a different issue, where every day I wonder, "where was Saveteh childreninIraq. org, when 500,000 children died during the 90's becaause we thought the sanctions were working. Obama argued on Sunday, that Iraq was now a pretty good sorta viable Democracy - Hmmm. (I have my doubts.)

Last I checked, when Bush came in the second Palistinian Intifada was raging - the economy had tanked from the Enron era of greed and fraud.

And Bush headily adopted the European led model of the Road Map - which fell apart following horrific Sadar bombing. The Arab League had just, for the 1st time, announced that they would finally accept Israel as a viable partner and friend in the region (sure a few conditions) and what? The entire world media went silent.. that wasn't worth headlines? You can't make peace w/ no interest in peace.

Obama's 1st effort at the M/E peace process has collapsed again, as well.

Tough stuff over there.
0 # billy bob 2011-02-08 22:32
Ah yes, the bush smoke and mirror approach about how the intelligence reports that we know he received weren't actually reported to him, rearing its ugly head yet again.

Apparently you believe bush's side of the story regardless of how many of his own employees say he's lying.

bush DID receive a dire warning that al quaida was planning an attack IN THE U.S. WITHIN DAYS. He chose to to do nothing to stop it, then chose to rely on the blind support of his base (you) to accept the lie that he was somehow out of the loop when these warnings were coming in.

Thank you for atleast admitting that bush's buddies in Enron were responsible for the greed and fraud. You see! We DO HAVE COMMON GROUND AFTERALL! We both AGREE that bush's buddies in Enron WERE in fact guilty of the crimes they have been accused of.
-2 # forparity 2011-02-09 11:52
Best I remember it was President Clinton out praising Ken Lay, golfing with him.. and Ron Brown, then Bill Dalley in the Commerce Department that was carting Enron around the world helping them get international contracts. The Clinton Admin. gave Enron $billions in guaranteed loans - the Bush administration, when it came in and the era of greed and fraud - the bubble - had long crashed, refused to renew the loans - refused to interviene in former Clinton Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin's request to pound on Moody's for better ratings, and Enron promptly went under, as had thousands of other companies that went under during the crash.

Yes, I think Gov. Bush knew of them as far as their business in Texas - especially in building more wind farms than most anyone else, and in a lot of their community work. And who knows how dirty the political/busin ess atmosphere was -- but it was Clinton who was president then - and it was his Treasury Sec. -Rubin- who teamed up with Greenspan, Geitner, Summers to deregulate, and it was Rubin who turned down the job offer with Enron, but took it with CitiCorp who held most of Enron's commercial paper -- oops, right back up to where I started - a nice circle.
0 # billy bob 2011-02-09 14:12
I guess you're memory isn't as good as you think it is.
+4 # billy bob 2011-02-07 20:07
Thank you X Dane! forTEAparity's only purpose on these threads is to give us the repugnican talking points, just in case we don't hear enough of them anyway.
+3 # X Dane 2011-02-08 01:19
You are welcome billy bob. It is difficult "discussing" with forparity for he is "all over the map" We were talking about Bush, and he mixes in Clinton. Ken Hall is right Clinton's administration was trying hard to "get" Al Queda.
But Bush decided that ANYTHING Clinton had worked on was going to be dropped.

Remember how hard Clinton tried to get a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians?? Right up to the last days of his presidency..... ..And what did Bush do??????? dropped it like a hot potato.

How incredibly stupid. Something as important as the Middle East peace process certainly should not have been stopped because a new administration came in......

And when did Bush take it up again????
On his way out the door!!
+4 # genierae 2011-02-08 10:15
X Dane: I think that Bush, by neglecting a peace agenda, was simply doing what the Israelis wanted done. They have no intention of agreeing to a peace treaty with Palestinians. They want to carve out settlements piece by piece, until the Palestinian territory is riddled with hostile settlers. They want to continue the apartheid policies that are keeping the Palestinians prisoners in their own land. They see this as the only way to survive as a Jewish nation, and they will use whatever harsh tactics they consider necessary to continue the status quo.
+4 # X Dane 2011-02-09 01:32
Genierae, you may not read this, but like you I worry about the actions of the Israelis.

I do not understand, why they would not want a two state solution, for if there is only one state, before very long they will be a minority, since Arab families have more children.

The difference will be greater and greater, and eventually they will be out voted. They can not "keep down" a Palestinian population much larger than their own. I simply don't understand it.

The Israelis are smart and hard working, they must be able to see the writing on the wall.

The Palestinians need and deserve their own state. For their sake, and ours I hope it happens before something awful happens.
+1 # genierae 2011-02-12 08:00
X Dane: I think that Israel is very insecure, and this has created deep paranoia. They think that they are hated by everyone, and so they respond in ways that make everyone hate them. They are creating massive bad karma, and the backlash is beginning to be felt. If not for the US government's patronage, they would not be able to survive as a nation. Our country is an enabler of their crimes, and until we cut them loose, they will continue to cause us great harm. The Israelis may well be hard-working, but the right-wing fanatics that are now in charge of the government have very little intelligence. Like in the US, the lunatics are in charge of the madhouse.
+2 # Steve S 2011-02-07 22:50
I would say that Bush ignored the daily briefing about Al Qaeda through incompetence, rather than intentionally.

Bush did a lot of terrible stuff intentionally -- condoning torture, following in Reagan's bloody footsteps, for example -- but being asleep at the wheel in advance of 9-11 was mere incompetence.
+2 # billy bob 2011-02-08 00:30
If it was merely incompetence and not negligence or complicity, I would like to add that his incompetence was a product of his disrespect for President Clinton and the work of Democrats, who after dealing with terrorist threats in the previous administration were taking the matter very seriously. Famously, one meeting was scheduled, in which Clinton's team would have briefed bush jr. on the terror threats facing the country. Like reagan before him, bush didn't have enough respect for the previous administration to take the matter seriously enough to actually participate.

If it was only incompetence, it was also born out of an arrogance that didn't require him to take similar advice when it was offered to him by the C.I.A. or the F.B.I. Of course, after the fact, bush was ready to lay blame for the "lack of intelligence" on the very people he didn't respect enough to listen to when it might have helped.

+4 # billy bob 2011-02-08 00:30

Then there's the fact that cheney and rumsfeld were specifically looking for evidence to tie the attacks to Iraq, even if it had to be manufactured. To me, it sounds more like bush had a pre-existing agenda and a playbook for realizing that agenda. The attacks on 9-11 served as a pretext for putting that agenda in motion. Any doubts about there being a pre-existing agenda could be alleviated by checking out what cheny's group PNAC was proposing back in the 90s.
+5 # Steve S 2011-02-06 23:30
The battle against AIDS in Africa is one of the few areas where Bush deserves a mild thumbs up. His funding of efforts to deal with the problem was inadequate, but it was a worthwhile attempt to do something right.

On balance, the Bush administration was a disaster of corruption and incompetence, but fighting AIDS was a needle of good in a haystack of harm.
-3 # forparity 2011-02-07 09:57
Funding was inadequate? Wow - was a rather major jump in funding - I think it was $15 billion over the first 5 years - then they almost doubled it, in his last budget. I've never heard anyone suggest that he lowballed it. I guess one can always spend more. But look at the budget. His twin programs here, on the other hand, reached all of it's goals - odd for federal policy.

Reminds me of the silly Medicare part D smear. (yes - I'd done it differently too - but that's the problem with over 500 people in congress bickering). Bush proposed to provide drug benefits to Seniors for 1st time in history. The D's proposed a $1.2 trillion budget - then $800 billion. In the end, it was a ten year $400 billion tab that got approved. It was coming in under budget a couple of years back. Funny how everyone, but the seniors who greatly loved having a drug benefit, used the program against Bush - 1.) as a budget buster; 2.) for not doing enough.

Politics is a funny thing.
+6 # X Dane 2011-02-08 01:47
GOOD GRIEF forparity. medicare part D


Bush was a one man destruction band.
Tax cuts have never before been given in wartime.

-2 # forparity 2011-02-08 21:13
Well, I strongly opposed the top end of the tax cuts - but most of them went to middle and lower classes.. Like Obama, needed lots of stimulus (not paid for either, ya know) to get us out of the disaster he inherited.
+3 # Ken Hall 2011-02-08 01:48
There was a lot of "smoke and mirrors" concerning AIDS during the Bush admin. He would announce with great fanfare in a speech that he would budget X amount of dollars to fight AIDS in Africa, but in the budget presented to Congress the amount would be significantly smaller. He also stated in 2006 that he was doubling funding to $30 billion but if one did the yearly math it didn't work out that way.
-2 # forparity 2011-02-07 11:16
Also, here is an interesting tid bit - in response to Parry's oft use smear of Reagan..

AIDS funding skyrocketed in the 1980s, almost doubling each year from 1983 — when the media started blaring headlines — from $44 million to $103 million, $205 million, $508 million, $922 million, and then $1.6 billion in 1988.

Reagan did, first speak of the need to increase funding to fight HIV/Aids, during a press conference in 1985. I'd suggest that he was more progressive at the time (comparitively - seeing as how little we knew then, compared to the 1990's) than Bill Clinton was during his term.

I, once again reger to David Corn here:

Too little, too late - How many times is Bill Clinton going to apologize to Africa?,_africa/

Not to mention the millions who died in Rwanda, DR Congo, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, and of course "blood diamonds."
+1 # forparity 2011-02-07 12:40
Oops. I made a mistake, and I apologize to Mr. Parry. My first post yesterday was meant to be a response to an earlier commentor on the ole issue of attack Reagan on what he did, or didn't do over HIV/Aids. However, I missed and created a new comment. As the day went on, and with so many of these mentions here, and elsewhere, on this subject - I implanted that here, it must have been in Mr. Parry's column. It was not - he did not address this issue. I apologize.
+6 # billy bob 2011-02-06 23:48
By the way, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine &
National Institutes of Health, by 1990 there were over 5.5 million cases of HIV in Africa. I guess they have a liberal agenda too.

Again, forgive me for being so ignorant about history compared to you, but didn't President Clinton take office in 1993?

Maybe President Clinton did too little, as the rest of the world is still guilty, but being "too late" is hardly his fault - especially, since the current hypothesis is that HIV began crossing from monkeys to infecting humans as far back as the 1930's due to deforestation from colonial rubber plantations.

Now, if you wanted to pinpoint the decade during which AIDs first became known as a global pandemic and during which the most could have been done to stop it in its tracks, that would have to be the 1980s. Now, let's see... Which Democratic President could we blame for being in office during that decade?

Oops! I guess history has a liberal agenda as well.
-4 # forparity 2011-02-07 11:44
you know bb.. it's this blame thing that gets us into trouble. Holding accountable - all for the same, is a different animal.

I saw a survey a few years back - amongst HS and college students nationally - wow, right when they are being taught history. A much larger percentage blamed Nixon for Vietnam, than LBJ. In fact .. in the first question.. "which US president do you associate with the Vietnam War - Nixon was the leading answer.

It would be helpful if they remembered that it was LBJ who sent 586,000 of our troops over there, and it was Nixon, as he promised (it was an ugly out - but) started bringing them home as soon as he was President.

I find that you live in that world of shallowness. We can't move forward with that kind of thinking.

This is why Obama embraces Ronald Reagan. Looking forward... finding the best in everyone.

Try it. At least try to find something good in everyone.
+4 # X Dane 2011-02-07 14:16
You are right Johnson WAS the one who escalated the war in Vietnam, and Nixon
DID end it; but certainly NOT as soon as he became president.
You need to read more history too before you lecture.
+4 # billy bob 2011-02-07 19:52
No, he only ended our involvement 5 years after taking office, while already feeling the pressure of Watergate.
+4 # billy bob 2011-02-07 18:00
I always notice that you expect me to find goodness in you, but not until after getting in a few jabs yourself.

For the 100th time stop lecturing the rest of us about the civility you are incapable of participating in. You're right. President Johnson was WAY TOO CONSERVATIVE. Maybe we should have gotten out of Viet Nam in 1968 when the overwhelming majority of Americans wanted us to. The only thing was that nixon promised to end the war as soon as he took office and people actually fell for it. He, like reagan, cut a deal with a foreign country behind the back of a sitting American President without the consent of the Pentagon or Congress, thereby committing TREASON. Like reagan a few years later, he told South Vietnam to sit tight and not go through with the peace treaty that was already on the table, but to wait until he entered office, so he could get them a better deal. Five years later, the U.S. left Vietnam without ANY deal, thanks to nixon. Of course, I'm sure you're a HUGE fan of President Kennedy who, ironically, shortly before a repuglican put an end to his Presidency with a "Second Amendment remedy", was planning an exit strategy that would have removed ALL American forces by 1965.

+4 # billy bob 2011-02-07 18:03

I know you don't believe in links, but here's a "wee bit of history" for ya:

Unfortunately, conservatives at the time felt that withdrawal would be a show of weakness in front of the commies, so the war lingered, with the "bipartisan cooperation" of a CONSERVATIVE Democratic President all to willing to "find something good" in conservative ideology.

The shallow lectures about civility coming from you, as one of the most insulting individuals, on these threads are not fooling anyone.
-5 # forparity 2011-02-07 19:10
US troop levels in Vietnam, by year.

1959 760
1960 900
1961 3,025
1962 11,300
1963 16,300
1964 23,300
1965 184,300
1966 385,300
1967 485,600
1968 536,100

Enter Nixon

1969 475,200
1970 334,600
1971 156,800
1972 24,200
1973 50

Also, last I checked, the Democratic Party controlled both chambers of Congress, during all of those years (LBJ and Nixon) -even the years when LBJ was hiding the majority of the cost of the war from Congress. I'm quite sure that would be considered impeachable, today.
+5 # billy bob 2011-02-07 20:31
Thanks for checking that for us.

Why don't you go check what President Kennedy's plans were right before he was removed from office by a “Second Amendment remedy”? While you’re at it, you could check out why President Kennedy chose Johnson as his running mate in the first place - HINT: it was because Kennedy was considered too liberal and Johnson was a known conservative. Also, while you’re busy being our “fact checker”, why don't you go back check who it was that started bombing Cambodia?

The last I checked nixon came to office promising to end American involvement in Vietnam IMMEDIATELY. When pressed on that issue by David Frost (after leaving office), he said, "well that's just one of those things you say to get elected".

The last I checked, 20,863 more American lives were lost in Vietnam AFTER the time nixon PROMISED to end our involvement.

By the way, how much do the "wars" in Iraq and Afghanistan cost us? Answer: YOU DON'T KNOW. It's classified information. If it's impeachable, then, a repugnican controlled Congress wasn't doing it's job by impeaching bush jr. when the costs became a state secret. Any article you read quoting the actual costs of these "wars" is nothing more than an estimate. And, like everything else partisan, especially when arguing against people like you, the estimates vary WILDLY.
+5 # billy bob 2011-02-07 21:30
You may also want to check who it was that was protesting the Democratic Party's complicity in the war - for example at the Democratic Convention of 1968. I'll give you another hint. It wasn't repugnicans. There really wasn't any question about their love of the war. It was liberals who were being represented by the only party willing to even listen to them that were protesting. At the time, the Democratic Party was still about 1/2 conservatives. nixon's "Southern Strategy" to alienate Southern Democrats who were still angry about the Voting Rights Act paid off in huge dividends that, to this day, help the repugnican party by consolidating nearly all conservatives under one banner. The year nixon won the election ('68) was the culmination of that split between conservative Democrats (who loved Johnson before he turned on them by standing up to segregation), and liberal Democrats. nixon exploited that division beautifully. He became the "law and order" president. Now, with the "patriot" act, we can see what repugnicans meant by "law and order" all along. He invented the phrase "silent majority", to signify that repugnicans certainly weren’t protesting the war. They were too "patriotic" for that. Now, of course the phrase "silent majority" has turned on it's ears as the members of that party have virtually cornered the market on abrasive hate speach.

+4 # billy bob 2011-02-07 21:33

So, once again, thank you for arbitrarily picking 1/10th of the complete story and running with it as though it were the whole truth.

The real world is a bit more complicated than your rhetoric, regardless of how much you seek to “educate” and lecture the rest of us until we align ourselves with your version of history.
+2 # billy bob 2011-02-07 21:37
Oops. I made a mistake too. I said:

"It was liberals who were being represented by the only party willing to even listen to them that were protesting"

Of course I meant to write:

"It was liberals who were NOT being represented by the only party willing to even listen to them that were protesting"
+1 # George D 2011-02-08 13:06
I'm glad this guy shows up to say what we all expect to hear from "the other side". It's a reminder that, we are simply preaching to the choir on sites like these and the affect of our words are limited. One side ignores "the left" and the other side ignores Fox. Each tries to point out inconsistency and hypocrisy, while often ignoring the stark reality and where we might be somewhat prone to agree.

So let me pose this question then; Does one bad deed (or failing) wash another? The article is about PRAISING REAGAN and not about praising Clinton. It purports to say that Reagan doesn't deserve the praise and it makes a good argument about that. Your post tries to change the subject. Can we agree to stay on a topic? If you think Reagan deserves the praise, offer a convincing rebuttal to the points made. If you can't, then can we agree that we ALL should be more careful about who we are led to admire?

[quote name="forparity "]A different view...

It was Pres. Clinton, who being completely aware of the world's unfolding pandemic, turned his back on the issue. Progressive columnist and frequent guest on MSNBC, David Corn wrote in 2002, in "Too little, too late
How many times is Bill Clinton going to apologize to Africa?"
-2 # Louise Clark 2011-02-06 19:33
Happy birthday to the real Ronald Reagan.
+10 # billy bob 2011-02-06 21:04
Thank you Robert Parry and RSN for reminding us all about the REAL reagan. A lot of this information seems lost on a lot of younger voters, since the internet, as we know it, didn't exist in the 80's when reagan's crimes were being committed. Since the internet wasn't around like it is today, Google doesn't have nearly enough intelligent and factual information on what was actually happening just a couple decades ago. Articles like this are performing a public service. As for me, my own dislike of that lunatic grows as more and more of his lies come to light.

The fact that he and nixon are now both swimming together naked in a lake of fire is not enough justice, as far as I'm concerned. Hopefully, this nation will recover from his presidency completely, in time to celebrate the 100th anniversary of his death.
+8 # billy bob 2011-02-06 21:08
As a friend of mine said a few years after President Bush's son took office:

"You know things are going pretty rough when people start remembering REAGAN NOSTALGICALLY!"
+13 # X Dane 2011-02-07 03:59
Watching the nostalgic waxing of Reagan today made me want to throw up. Peggy Noonan in particular is sickening in her adoration of him.


His administration certainly was, and so was W's UGH.
+8 # BishopAndrew 2011-02-07 13:15
Reagan was perhaps one of the most cold hearted scoundrels who ever occupied the White House. If the gutless Democrats would have pursued it as they should but were afraid to do he would have been inpeached at the very least! Speaking of gutless Democrats don't they ever learn!!!!! This whole secular ideological canonization of Reagan makes me want to projectile vomit!
+1 # billy bob 2011-02-07 17:40
The Democrats didn't impeach reagan due to gutlessness, but the repugnicans sure paid back the "bipartisan" "reaching across the isles" in the name of "working together" and finding a "civil" "compromise", didn't they?

I think comparing how the Democrats in Congress failed to do their job in the 80's with the way repugs chose President Clinton's term as "pay back time" for nixon, is a good lesson, still applicable today. This is why lofty words like "greater good", "cooperation", and "civility" only come up when repugnicans are at a disadvantage, and why Democrats need to learn that it's a two-way street. Cooperation is NEVER unilateral.
+1 # billy bob 2011-02-07 17:42
Reagan was not only an "enabler of atrocities", but an active participant.

Democrats in Congress who had power to hold him accountable for his crimes, were enablers of reagan.

Some things never change.
+2 # BishopAndrew 2011-02-08 12:29
The French have a wonderful proverb that the more things change the more they stay the same. Apparently this is what Obama meant when he said "change"! The question I have is why do we allow the reagans of the world to repeatedly "get away with murder?! Oh and just for everyone's information, in Argentia during Reagan's city on the hill nonsense there was a joke about "the flying nuns" which referred to the nuns who the military arrested and transported by helicopter or plane to dump in the ocean! So much for compassionate conservatism!
+1 # billy bob 2011-02-08 14:00
The fact that people from other countries have felt the brunt of reagan and his followers' philosophy, and are able to question the propaganda with first-hand facts, is PRECISELY why the repugnican party hates the U.N. and anything that smacks of cooperating with other nations.

Right-wingers hide their heads in the sand about this kind of thing because ignorance is bliss.
+4 # elaine 2011-02-08 09:15
Reagan was a nightmare for the U.S. and a worse nightmare for Central America. Even his son recently recalled how his father was aware of his own mental issues of Alzheimer DURING his presidency. Reagan STARTED the huge separation of wealth occurring in this country. In the 70's, the top 2% of the richest in the US owned 7% of the wealth. With Reagan in office, the top 2 percent's wealth sky-rocketed (and of course with Bush, too) so that now they own 25% of American wealth! Of course, his lack of interest in his own son was also recalled by Ron Reagan Jr., this year. Narcissism needs to be taken seriously and screened and treated early. It causes immense destruction that cannot be underestimated. Look at Cheney, with his secret energy deals, shooting his friend in the face and starting a war to benefit his pocket book.
+1 # Thomas R. 2011-02-09 17:31
I remember saying to friends that I thought I could NEVER be nostalgic for Reagan--the squint-eyed "grin"--not under any circumstances. Then along came the pop-eyed "smirk." And I realized NEVER to say never.
Parties mean nothing to me. Dem or Rep--the title doesn't matter. It's the man -- the MAN. The two above happen to be Rep,-- the party that seems to attract the worst kind of MAN. Yet, as Nader says, Tweedledee and Tweedledum(mer) The "new" great communicator seems as helpless as a babe in a diaper. Either that or the greatest con-man who has ever been born. Talk about hornswoggling his followers.
Although I voted for Nader, I had hopes for the new Dem. But once OB began appointing his Cabinet, I soon lost them ("Sal" at Interior, fergawdsake?) Bailing out Banks, fergawdsake? Creating a "new" Health system--as bad as the non-system it is supposed to have up-graded? [Made the bloodsucking insurance industry quite thrilled I'm certain (they backed it all the way)]. PLEASE inform me --are we, is the nation, any better off than under the two monsters cited above?
+1 # Thomas R. 2011-02-09 17:35
Where is a plan like that of FDR? Where is a NEW New Deal---a BETTER Deal for the average folk? OB promised "change"? (Oh that's right --to paraphrase --change means more of the same. Well we got THAT alright.
My last word to anyone who reads this-- stop the partisan politics and bickering between two evils (i.e. corporate shills ALL). Vote for a MAN, not a Party.

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