Now, scrutinize Reagan

For the past 10 years I have enjoyed your editorials, but the one Jan. 22 (“Putting aside partisanship”) topped them all.

It is so good of you to mention that Barack Obama could be a transcendent president. But – and there is always a but – he needs to stop campaigning, whatever that means. When you ask him to compromise with the Republican Party, do you mean the way he tried to during his first term, and was immediately labeled as a radical socialist or worse?

I can see you are very much concerned about the future of our country, and this makes me very happy.

You brought up Ronald Reagan and his going over the heads of Congress directly to the people, using his voice and acting experience. That gives me the opportunity to talk about Mr. Reagan, who was voted our best president in modern times. A well-informed paper as yours must be aware of the fact that, in the 1960s, Mr. Reagan was a regular FBI informant, dealing directly with his friend J. Edgar Hoover.

Also you should know that just before the 1980 presidential elections, when the Ayatollah Khomeini was ready to release the 50 American prisoners to President Jimmy Carter, Mr. Reagan has been accused of suggesting that
the release should be delayed until after the elections, which Khomeini agreed to, thus giving Mr. Reagan a political victory and cementing future deals of selling weapons to Iran and using the profits to fund the so-called “contras.” Mr. Reagan compared this group to our Founding Fathers – they were trained by the CIA under the direction of John Negroponte.

All this history brings me back to Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes, who wrote in 1990: “Why do we elect retarded presidents like Reagan if not to prove that all men are equal? We prefer recognizing ourselves in this idiot who talks like us, looks like us, makes our jokes, shares our mental lapses, amnesia, prejudices, obsessions and confusions, justifying our own mental vulgarity. How consoling! A new Roosevelt, a new Kennedy would force us to admire them for what we are not, and that’s an unsettling feeling.”

Joaquin Godoy

Aiken, S.C.

Putting aside partisanship

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