Ronald Reagan

The Man Who Sold the World: Ronald Reagan and the Betrayal of Main Street America

Submitted by TWIRIMaster on Fri, 01/20/2017 - 13:29

"Since Ronald Reagan left office—and particularly after his death—his shadow has loomed large over American politics: Republicans and many Democrats have waxed nostalgic, extolling the Republican tradition he embodied, the optimism he espoused, and his abilities as a communicator.

The Fox Effect: How Roger Ailes Turned a Network into a Propaganda Machine

Submitted by TWIRIMaster on Sat, 01/14/2017 - 23:44

"In light of the recent allegations by Megyn Kelly, Gretchen Carlson, and other women about Roger Ailes, anyone wanting to understand his impact on the media world should read The Fox Effect.

Based on the meticulous research of the news watchdog organization Media Matters for America, David Brock and Ari Rabin-Havt show how Fox News, under its president Roger Ailes, changed from a right-leaning news network into a partisan advocate for the Republican Party.

Social Security is Insolvent

Submitted by TWIRIMaster on Sat, 07/11/2015 - 17:22

"October 10, 2012

"Ponzi scheme!", "bankrupt", "liberal conspiracy". These are terms you often hear from the Republication party and radical conservatives when describing the Social Security program. The issue with those terms is that they're all false. Whether it's your conservative uncle around the dinner table, conservative mouth pieces like Rush Limbaugh or the Tea Party members of congress, these flat-out lies are being told across the country.

Social Security is important in people's lives, especially retirees who rely on these benefits. Social Security is not part of the budget and doesn't contribute one nickel to the national debt. Social Security is part of a payroll tax, which is 100% solvent until the year 2038, and can pay out over 80% of the benefits until 2085. Social Security, from its creation under one of our countries greatest presidents Franklin Delano Roosevelt, has been one of the most successful programs the government has ever provided its people.

While Social Security is solvent for the short-term, there are long-term issues with the program that stem from situations that occurred over thirty years ago. In the 1980s, Republican President Ronald Reagan cut tax rates drastically. In 1980 the top tax rate was 70%, which was cut to 50% by 1984 and finally down to 28% by the time Reagan left office in 1988. Supply side economics, or "Reaganomics", was the economic system that Reagan used and was the idea that giving wealthy Americans more money would create jobs which would then "trickle down" to other Americans.

The supply side theory didn't exactly work as planned and Reagan needed a way to make up for the loss in revenue. Reagan ended up tripling the debt while congress raised the debt limit 18 times during his presidency without hesitation. With the lack of revenue coming into the government, Reagan needed a way to keep his fiscal house in order. In addition to raising the debt limit, Reagan also raised taxes multiple times and he did it on the middle class by attacking Social Security.

 

Reagan Raised the Debt Ceiling 3 Times More than Obama

Submitted by TWIRIMaster on Sat, 07/11/2015 - 17:20

"President Reagan raised the debt ceiling more times than any other President since 1960. He raised it 18 times, for a 67% increase.

Watch Bloomberg’s Hans Nichols breaks down the numbers that make up the debt ceiling and looks at how many times it has been raised through the years. He speaks on Bloomberg Television’s “Market Makers”:

President Obama “doesn’t even compare” to Reagan’s record, he has raised the debt ceiling 6 times, for a 31% increase.

According to Bloomberg’s numbers, Republicans have raised the debt ceiling 49 times since 1960, while Democrats have only raised it 30 times. The debt ceiling has been raised 79 times since 1960.

Ronald Reagan “proved deficits don’t matter”, according to former Republican V.P. Dick Cheney. How did he do that? By driving up the deficit. Under Reagan, the deficit skyrocketed. Reagan was in office from January 20, 1981 – January 20, 1989

The following graph from Business Insider “shows the history of Federal Government Deficits. You can see that starting in in 1981, they really boomed like nothing comparable in history.”

deficit chart reagan

Republicans like to blame Obama’s $787 billion stimulus for our debt (never mind that Bush also stimulated the economy), but we will have spent $3.7 trillion on Bush’s wars by the time they’re over, according to a recent report by Brown University. When Republicans done with the stimulus, they blame ObamaCare. But in reality, ObamaCare reduces the deficit according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

When Bush took office, we had a surplus $86 billion. He left us with a $642 billion deficit. The Bush tax cuts have cost nearly $1.3 trillion over 10 years. If Republicans really cared about the deficit, wouldn’t they cut defense spending? Defense spending cost $718 billion last year, which is 20% percent of federal spending.

Republican Saint Ronald Reagan raised the debt ceiling the most times of any president since 1960. So, do Republicans think that Ronald Reagan left us the horrible burden of debt?"

 

Ronald Reagan and the Republican hypocrisy over illegal immigration

Submitted by TWIRIMaster on Sat, 07/11/2015 - 17:18

"Republicans and conservatives around the country are cheering a great wall to be built at the border while crossing their fingers over a pipe dream of an Obama impeachment. Despite their fantasy, their own past might leave them with their jaws dropping.

November 6, 1986. That date might not seem to special to many people but it was the day that then President Ronald Reagan put pen to paper and signed into law the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. Also known as the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, for Democrat Rep. Romano L. Mazzoli and Republican Sen. Alan K. Simpson who chaired their respected subcommittees, Reagan signed the bill into law with the hopes that the immigration issue would be taken care once and for all.

Among some of the bills provisions, it granted legal status to nearly 3 million illegal immigrants who entered the country before January 1, 1982 as long as they followed a plan to pay back taxes and fines. It also came down on employers who knowingly hired undocumented workers, while also attempting to secure the border. A noble effort, the results weren't as promising as fraudulent applications soured the bill's intentions, opening the door for more employees to hire a growing number of illegal immigrants entering the country.

Immigration reform has been a hot topic as Washington continues to make it the elephant in the room when it comes to today's current process. Everyone seems to know that it's an issue that must be tackled, but both sides of the political aisle get worried about the fallout. While Democrats argue over how far to take the immigration issue, Republicans question if they as a party can even afford to get it done. The overwhelming majority of illegal immigrants come from south of the border and the Republican party sees no light at the end of the tunnel if they stick with the status quo.

As the Hispanic population continues to grow, so does the voting base. According to the Pew Research Center, 11.2 million Latinos voted in the 2012 election, just over 48 percent of those who were eligible.

"Latino population has fueled quick growth in the number of Latinos eligible to vote (U.S. citizen adults). Between 2008 and 2012, the number of Latino eligible voters grew from 19.5 million to 23.3 million—an increase of 19%. By contrast, the number of Latino voters increased by 15% over 2008."

Republicans find their party at a political crossroads. They still cater towards an aging southern white population that doesn't typically support immigration reform, but they also know that if they want to have a chance in national elections moving forward, they can't appear to hard on immigration. Ronald Reagan gave it shot in 1986, but if he was doing that today, conservatives would be screaming "impeachment" with every movement of the signature of his pen. High profile Republicans, such as former VP candidate Sarah Palin, have called for President Obama's impeachment, but if they look back at their favorite leader's history, they might tone their rhetoric down or risk being called out over their own hypocrisy."