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Obama Could Learn From Ronald Reagan

Written on Wednesday, August 17, 2011 by

If President Obama really wants to get the U.S. economy going again, he could do worse than to study the results of my Dad’s 1981 Economic Recovery Act, which boosted the economy by leaps and bounds.

Take the matter of jobs, for example. Thanks to the 1981 act, an astounding 20 million new jobs were created. Moreover, inflation dropped from 13.5 percent in 1980 to a mere 4.1 percent by 1988, and unemployment fell from 7.6 percent to 5.5 percent.

Moreover, the net worth of families earning between $20,000 and $50,000 annually grew by 27 percent. At the same time, the real gross national product jumped by 26 percent and the prime interest rate was slashed by half — from 21.5 percent in January 1981 to 10 percent in August 1988.

The amount of individual tax revenues rose from $244 billion in 1980 to $446 billion in 1989. Moreover, total tax revenues jumped grew by almost 100 percent, rising by 99.4 percent during the 1980s. The act produced 92 months of healthy economic growth — the longest period of peacetime in the post WWII period.

Under my Dad, marginal tax rates were cut from a top rate of 70 percent to a mere 28 percent, while revenues to the U.S. government from all taxes nearly doubled – increasing from roughly $500 billion to an astronomical $1.1 TRILLION in 1990.

Such stellar economic growth was the result of my Dad’s economic policies, which were rooted in his belief in the ability of the American people to make the right decisions concerning their nation’s economic activity. Contrast that with the Obama administration’s quasi-Marxist policies, which seek to make Washington the center of the nation’s economic activity.

This results in aberrations, such as non-elected government boards seeking to dictate to corporations and business where they can and cannot locate their various operations, as we’ve seen in the case of Seattle-based Boeing’s decision to open a plant in South Carolina, a right-to-work state. Incredibly, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is trying to block that move, claiming that it is based solely on the status of that state as a right-to-work state, putting the government in league with Big Labor, which hates giving workers their rights to work as they see fit and wants to prevent the move.

Ronald Reagan would have been appalled by that outrage. When faced with a similar attempt by a labor union to twist the rules governing the behavior of air traffic controllers, my Dad simply fired them all and replaced them. He would have defied any attempt to prevent a company from moving some of their operations to a new location because .a labor union opposed the move on the grounds that it freed employees from the grip of Big Labor bosses.

The Obama administration has displayed outright hostility toward Boeing, using the NLRB to harass the company as it attempts to operate free of government interference. Too bad my Dad isn’t around to curb the power of an out-of-control government agency slavishly bowing to the dictates of a powerful labor union, and not the workers it pretends to represent.

Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a political consultant, and the author of “The New Reagan Revolution” (St. Martin’s Press, 2011). He is the founder and chairman of The Reagan Group and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Visit his website at www.reagan.com, or e-mail comments to Reagan@caglecartoons.com.

©2011 Mike Reagan. Mike’s column is distributed exclusively by: Cagle Cartoons, Inc., newspaper syndicate. For info contact Cari Dawson Bartley. E-mail Cari@cagle.com, (800) 696-7561.

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  • Dave

    Obama, the narcissist, won’t learn from anybody.

    • ROSE WINE

      Dave… you got it right! But none of them get it right unfortunately!

    • Dave Langdon

      You said it all. W are in BIG trouble

    • Chester

      obama can’t learn, period!!

    • donpepe774

      I do not believe obama can learn from Pres Reagan, MR REAGAN is more alive today than obama could ever be.

  • ROSE WINE

    You are and IDIOT!!

  • Tom Stewart

    The Differance Is One Is On Drugs, Yikeess, Plus Islam Is Not The Faith Of Ronald Reagan, End Of That Comparison. God Bless America And The Tea Party Patriots With Sarah Palin.

  • edd

    How do you teach anyone that is always talking? Obama got an education at Harvard, but when is he going to learn what they taught?

    • wisdomcries

      He has predominately displayed he learned exactly what Harvard desired to teach.

      Sun Tzu said know thy enemy so therefore he studied the constitution

    • donpepe774

      Correction, When he said “know thy enemy”,
      obama studied himself-his worst enemy.

    • http://www.frank1737@msn.com frank1737

      AWAKE!! OBAMA IS NOTHING BUT A BALD FACE LIAR–HE DID NOT GO TO HARVARD—IT TAKES INTELLIGENCE TO ATTEND HARVARD!!

    • donpepe774

      What do they do with their intelligence after they get to yale/harvard, get a lobotomy?

    • johnf1234

      The trouble with Obama is he did learn at Haaaarrrvaaaarddd, they teach LIBERALISM AND ANTI GOD SEMITISM TO DESTROY CAPITALISM… so Obutthead is following their lead, and notice how he has brought others from Haaaarvaaardd to his Administration..

    • SaneRepublican

      Hey, didn’t George W Bush go to Harvard????

      LOL!!!

    • Johnnygard

      Mr “Two Lies in One Name”, Why don’t you compare Bush’s grades in college to Obama’s? Oh wait, there is a reason you can’t do that!

    • SaneRepublican

      This is a tired old internet meme that has already been debunked. But why accept reality when you can just regurgitate some falsehood you’ve received via an forwarded e-mail that fits your intellectually dishonest narrative.

  • http://http/aol.com sean murry

    You cant tell an idiot anything nor can you agrue with one.

    • SaneRepublican

      You people on this website have certainly been proof of that….

      LOL!!!!

    • wisdomcries

      A person that insists on arguing with those he presumes idiots becomes the object of his own disdain.

    • http://TalkTalk johnny h

      Ronald Reagan had more common sense than any president I have knowm.
      Born in Dixon Ill. he worked his way to fame realising as he did the value of hard work and the innate goodness of working Americans.
      Obama??
      Talks the talk, but has no people skills nor does he have the imagination to realise just whay an exceptional Country the USA IS!!
      Remember his “City in a Hill” speech?
      And his realisation that a couple raising kids by hard work should not have govt taking 30% of their earnings so as to give the money to those willing to sit and watch, not wnting to work.
      THAT was Reagan`s greatness. He KNEW what it was like to work, and raised in a poor town in the 1930s, he also knew how Americans were able to look after other Americans down on their luck WITHOUT State controlled Social Security and Welfare!!
      Compared to Reagan, Obama is a bum!!!

  • Juan

    What? Obama doesn’t lean from his own mistakes nor does he accept fault if his ideas fail. He is arrogant, far to arrogant and ignorant to learn anything from anyone, even Reagan~it isn’t asking too much for Obama to learn something, anything-he is on OJT in the most important job in the world.

  • Faye

    No Obama is too stupid to learn he thinks he knows it all GET Rid Of The liar and thief

  • jim

    Not nice WACKY

  • David

    Reagan was one of the worst presidents in American history. He tripled the national debt and put us on the path to the huge deficit spending and debt problems we have today. He changed America from a trade surplus nation into a trade deficit nation, costing us tens of millions Middle Class jobs and trillions in trade debt over the years. And he is the creator of the illegal alien problem we have today which is a cancer on the nation and killing us. There are many other items but no space in this format.

    • http://www.frank1737@msn.com frank1737

      CLIMB BACK UNDER YOUR LIBERAL ROCK, YOU STUPID ASS!!

    • http://TalkTalk johnny h

      Seems like Democrats cannot take it that REAGAN, not some Democrat excuse for a president managed to see off the USSR!!
      Although never being given credit thanks to US Left Leaning Press and its biased attitudes.
      They supported Obama for “Progressive” reasons.
      African Americans are mad as hell that he has not come up to expectations.
      Remember when Libya threatened the US Mediterranean Fleet??
      He ordered retaliation and sank every Libyan aggressive ship, and shot down all aircraft that attacked fleet.
      For years the Arabs remembered that, and now what happens?…Obummer hasn`t the stones to join a Nato force flying over Libya! So much for the USA defending freedom in foreign eyes now!!
      What a legacy. He should be ashamed, (and no doubt he would be if he knew what the word meant!!And if he was as patriotic as the forces he is supposed to lead and inspire!
      Roll on 2012 I say!!

  • SaneRepublican

    Awe, it’s so sweet when a son still props up his dad on a pedestal. Unfortunately for most of us, reality doesn’t line up with the mythology of his dad. A sober review of Reagan’s presidency doesn’t yield the seamlessly conservative record being peddled today. For starters, federal government expanded on his watch and the deficit exploded due to Reagan’s massive government spending. But for now, let’s just talk about taxes…..

    It’s conservative lore that Reagan the icon cut taxes, while George H.W. Bush the renegade raised them. As David Stockman, Ronny’s budget director recalled, “No one was authorized to talk about tax increases on Ronald Reagan’s watch, no matter what kind of tax, no matter how justified it was.” Yet raising taxes is exactly what Reagan did. He did not always instigate those hikes or agree to them willingly–but he signed off on them. One year after his massive tax cut, Reagan agreed to a tax increase to reduce the deficit that restored fully one-third of the previous year’s reduction. (In a bizarre bit of self-deception, Reagan, who never came to terms with this episode of ideological apostasy, persuaded himself that the three-year, $100 billion tax hike–the largest since World War II–was actually “tax reform” that closed loopholes in his earlier cut and therefore didn’t count as raising taxes.)

    Faced with looming deficits, Reagan raised taxes again in 1983 with a gasoline tax and once more in 1984, this time by $50 billion over three years, mainly through closing tax loopholes for business. Despite the fact that such increases were anathema to conservatives–and probably cost Reagan’s successor, George H.W. Bush, reelection–Reagan raised taxes a grand total of four times just between 1982-84.

    This record flummoxes the best efforts of today’s Reagan hagiographers to explain away. Peter Wallison, for instance, after proclaiming that Reagan “stayed the course against changes in his economic plan,” later dismisses the president’s tax increases as “a modest rollback” that “seems to have been the result” of his accepting a Democratic promise to cut spending by twice that amount. (Whatever happened to “Trust, but verify”?)

    Reagan continued these “modest rollbacks” in his second term. The historic Tax Reform Act of 1986, though it achieved the supply side goal of lowering individual income tax rates, was a startlingly progressive reform. The plan imposed the largest corporate tax increase in history–an act utterly unimaginable for any conservative to support today. Just two years after declaring, “there is no justification” for taxing corporate income, Reagan raised corporate taxes by $120 billion over five years and closed corporate tax loopholes worth about $300 billion over that same period. In addition to broadening the tax base, the plan increased standard deductions and personal exemptions to the point that no family with an income below the poverty line would have to pay federal income tax. Even at the time, conservatives within Reagan’s administration were aghast. According to Wall Street Journal reporters Jeffrey Birnbaum and Alan Murray, whose book Showdown at Gucci Gulch chronicles the 1986 measure, “the conservative president’s support for an effort once considered the bastion of liberals carried tremendous symbolic significance.” When Reagan’s conservative acting chief economic adviser, William Niskanen, was apprised of the plan he replied, “Walter Mondale would have been proud.” By the time it was said and done, Reagan raised taxes 11 times during his Presidency.

    I would like to thank Joshua Green for reminding us of Reagan’s “Liberal Legacy.” But I suspect no amount of real history will dissuade you people from your intellectually dishonest mythology of your Saint. I only wish you people would be honest enough to admit that the your “love of Ronny” is based solely on emotion and not logic.

    • http://www.frank1737@msn.com frank1737

      YOU CLAIM TO BE A SANE REPULICAN–I THINK THE CORRECT SPELLING IS INSANE REPUBLICAN. YOU APPEAR TO BE A LIEING LOW LIFE LIBERAL THAT SHOULD KEEP YOU INEPT LIES TO YOURSELF WHAT EVER TYPE OF FAMILY YOU CAME FROM!!

  • http://AOL Ellen

    An arrogant, petulant liar. He has trouble putting a sentence together without his teleprompter. A real egomaniac. His latest ego tripm — after parents asked for no publicity about the heroes coming home after the helicoptor tragic event he chose to take a White House photographer to the return site for another photo-op.

    • http://verizon Ann Rand

      I saw those parents on tv. They were very gracious, but you could see that they werehurt and disappointed.. Nasty trick.Of course, he only thinks of himself.

  • David B.

    They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks and you know something they’re absolutely right too. Obama’s living proof of it along with the rest of them fools in Washington. You know the tax and spend Democrats!

    • SaneRepublican

      As opposed to the “tax and spend Reagan.” Oh, but I guess all that increase in deficit spending doesn’t count. And why should we include how increased taxes on corporations by closing some of their loopholes.

      Oh, I know why we don’t include that stuff….it’s because we’re rather live with Reagan’s mythology rather than Reagan’s reality. LOL!!!!

    • http://TalkTalk johnny h

      I agree.
      For the “Administration” swiftly returned to its big spending big bureaucracy ways when Reagan left.
      I also think, though only from reading about the times, that Reagan had something that other presidents, Particularly the Kennedys, did not have/ An instinctive “feel” for the correct point of view to be expressed.
      The reason Reagan lost a lot of chiefs of staff is because he regarded them as “hired help” and as such replacable. This probably caused the bad press that ensued when “Official Washington” as the press and other hangers on like to style themselves, found themselves out of the limelight because of the popular stances Reagan took.
      Reagan , with his leadership enabled US to become the ONLY Superpower!
      THAT ALONE should be worth something, even in Dem/Liberal circles!! Surely!!

    • SaneRepublican

      LOL!!!! I love it when you people display your ignorance of history.

      You do realize that Ronny only had three “chiefs of staff.” Not really “a lot” by any measure.

      James Baker was there for the entire 1st term (1981-1985)
      Donald Regan was there for the 1st half of the 2nd term (1985-1987)….and that was after he spent the entire 1st term as Secretary of the Treasury.
      James Baker was there for the 2nd half of the 2nd term (1987-1989)….and that was after he spent the entire 1st term as Senate Majority Leader

      So much for your “[Reagan] regarded them as ‘hired help’ and as such replacable [sic]” theory. So not only did have a small number of Chiefs of Staff during his time, they were all Washington insiders.

      Do you people ever do any research before you start talking about things you know very little about? No wonder you people don’t have any credibility outside of this website.

      ====

      Btw, I think you meant to say that this current Administration is just following in the “big spending big bureaucracy ways” that Reagan initiated. It’s only because he spent money on things you might have agreed with that you give him such a pass. Praise Allah for Ron Paul….he’s the only person who’s been ideologically consistent throughout his career.

    • helm

      Sane, Whack & Dave, Why are you all on here? All there of you have some positive points some times, but most of the time you just try to piss people off, why? Most of us here just don’t care for Obama and it’s a safe place to vent our anger and opinions, but you all seem to just enjoy pissing in others Wheaties. I don’t get it, maybe never will.

    • helm

      Ps. I don’t praise Allah but I do vote Ron Paul. He is the real deal. Crazy or not.

    • SaneRepublican

      I hate to break this to you, but God & Allah are one-in-the-same. The Koran & the Bible each share the same Old Testament….which is the same as the Jewish Torah.

      =====

      Okay, I was wrong, I didn’t hate breaking that to you at all.

    • Johnnygard

      Mr “Two Lies in One Name”, If this administration is doing the same thing as the Reagan administration, why did things get better with Reagan and worse with Obama?

    • SaneRepublican

      How easily you people forget that it actually got worse under Reagan before it got better. After his historic “tax cut” in 1981, recovery that started before Carter left office stalled and we were plunged into the worst recession since World War 2. The economy was so bad that Republicans lost a significant amount of seats in the 1982 midterm elections.

      Fortunately for Saint Ronny, after raising taxes and increasing his government spending, the economy got better just in time for him to win a landslide re-election. And Ronny continue his practice of raising taxes and government spending throughout the rest of his illustrious Presidency. But of course you people chose to ignore Ronny’s real record in exchange for some false mythology.

  • Jenn

    One big difference between Odumbazz and Ronald Reagan. Ronald Reagan had honor.

    • SaneRepublican

      Of course you are referring to Reagan’s honor of selling weapons to BOTH SIDES of a war just to keep it going because it benefitted the United States.

      Yup, Saint Ronny had honor and class…..

    • helm

      Iran Contra (spelling?) affair, yes. Like obama & holder with the guns right?

  • am2sweet

    Obama could learn from Donald Duck. I have never seen anyone who fails so miserably in trying to explain what it is he doens’t have a plan for. In his little tour this week he states he’s waiting for congress or someone else to come up with something since he obviously can’t.

    • SaneRepublican

      Or maybe it’s because he knows that according to the Constitution, it’s Congress’ job to “legislate” and the President’s job to “execute.” Hmmmmmm, could that be why the placed Congress in the “Legislative Branch” and the President in the “Executive Branch”?

      ====

      Btw, I love the irony your comment: when Obama does propose something, he’s a “Nazi Dictator”; and when he asks to propose something, he’s “obviously can’t come up with” anything on his own. LOL!!!!

    • Johnnygard

      After all this time, what is the logic of waiting until September to give us his economic plan? Give it to us now, and THEN go on vacation.

    • SaneRepublican

      The reason is to drive you people crazy….and it works! LOL!!!

  • LeRoy

    Obama cannot learn anything, he already knows it all just ask him.

  • Dodi

    He’s been in office now for nearly 3 years and I would like to know, if anyone can tell me, on what issue did the arrogant ass listen to the American people? If he won’t listen to the American people, whatever makes you think he would listen to a great president such as Ronald Reagan? This idiot is a total dipstick!If he can’t have his own way he acts like a 2 year old.

    • SaneRepublican

      You people do realize that “the American people” comprise of more than just the 20% that you people represent?

      You people don’t even have the majority of Republicans supporting you.

      But of course you people don’t realize any of that. To realize that would force you to accept that the world doesn’t revolve around you.

      What a bunch of petulant children you people are.

    • wisdomcries

      When some ones main course involves using the term “you people” several times it is indicative of a Napoleon complex that stems from a petulant child.

    • SaneRepublican

      LOL!!!! “Napoleon complex”? Really, is that the best you could come up with?

      What’s wrong with the term “you people”? Why does it get under your skin so much?

      I’m really sorry if it makes you cry, but you certainly aren’t a part of “us people” (i.e., the majority of real Americans that don’t support “you people”).

    • wisdomcries

      The sure sign that the nerve has been appropriately targeted is when one nervously tries to laugh it off and lashes out with juvenile accusations that are transparent.

      Humorous that you are aware that what you write constitutes nothing of substance that you feel the need to explain yourself. (ok now is where you will say that we are so stupid you knew we couldn’t get it)

    • SaneRepublican

      I laugh it off because you people are pretty eff’ing funny.

      And I did provide you something of substance giving you explicit details to the real tax-n-spend record of Saint Ronny….would like me to repeat since you apparently missed it the first time.

      Too bad you aren’t able to counter the actual history I presented you people with anything more than your “Napoleon complex”…

    • http://TalkTalk johnny h

      Seems that Democrats cannot comprehend the boost that Ronald Reagan gave to the USA across the world, after he took up office.
      I was in England when Mrs Thatcher was PM, and the response to Reagan was electric,he was feted in Europe as the man who, as President actually STOOD UP AND DECLARED American values.
      How dare some democrats try to deface the memory of a Preident who, fighting against the tide of Appeasement took decisions which shocked the USSR leadership into realising that YES, “their day” was coming to an end.
      And you know what??? It DID.
      Abd Reagan deserves the benefit for THAT, not to be denigrated by Amercans just because of party affiliation!!

    • http://verizon Ann Rand

      Thank youJohnny H. Some people are ignorant because they chose to be.Can’t do much about that.

    • Johnnygard

      Yes you idiots, the world revolves around the “sane republican”!

  • http://www.frank1737@msn.com frank1737

    I AM A VIETNAM VET AND I WOULD LIKE TO STATE THAT YOU ARE ONE IGNORT A– HOLE THAT NEED TO HAVE YOUR BUTT KICKED FOR SUCH A VILE , STUPID COMMENT AND I WOULD LOVE TO DO IT!!!

  • johnf1234

    he does not want to learn how to be Ronald Reagan, Obama wants to be KING of America, Ruler of All… He doesn’t want to lead, he just wants the power grab to dictate and destroy…
    When all else fails, BLAME SOMEONE ELSE FOR HIS FAILURES…,
    people watch his BS rhetoric coming up in September, remember he signed into legislation those 608 new burdensome regulations on businesses, now he is going to try to play the nice guy and say that he will cut taxes, so how is that going to create jobs, when he just increased taxes on businesses with all those new burden regulations???? He is a felonjious scam artist, deceiving as hell, LIAR in Chief, con man in chief, taxer behind closed doors in chief, rhetoric in chief, partisan in chief

  • DMAC79

    BO could learn alot from bugs bunnie;

  • Boletero

    It´s very simple: You spend more than you earn, you go broke !!!

    And don´t raise taxes: You don´t rob Peter to pay Paul !

    But then again: We have to contend with the MORONS in WDC !!!

    Saludos…….

    • SaneRepublican

      But isn’t the “government spending more” than what the “government took in” EXACTLY what Reagan did during his 8 years as “President”?

      I mean, how else could Saint Ronny expand the federal deficit to record levels?

      It’s nice to finally hear someone admit than the Reagan broke the country.

    • Johnnygard

      “Reagan broke the country”? We should be so lucky as to have it that broke again. We sure had some very good years during and after RR, even good with Clinton.

    • SaneRepublican

      The years during Reagan was little more than the economic equivalent of a “drug induced high.” Thanks to Saint Ronny’s failed economic polices, George Bush (the greater) got saddled with a recession what wasn’t his fault and it cost him re-election against Clinton.

  • Howard-the Banger Club

    Great comments. Some people are teachable, Obama and hi 30 olus Czars are not. It’s not to late to impeach. Email Floyd Brown, Congressman Darrells Issa and ask them what’s the next step. Email your Senators/congress tell them what you don’t like and how to fix it or ask how they plan to fix.

  • rick

    how in the name of allah, could reagan teach anything to a kenyan born indonesian citizen & illegal alien whose only households, were either communist or muslim?? you propagandists don’t have to worry about research, which free’s you up to write exactly what your told to write but, for y’all who only believe what your told to believe, reagan would have ALL of soetero’s protectors and his illegal govt., in prison, awaiting the construction of the gallows at leavenworth. very stupid column!

  • scout

    We’re the dumbies for letting this ever happen and by not getting this problem resolved ASAP.

  • scout

    The problem won’t go away just talking about it.

  • Yellow Eagle

    He’s too high & mighty to learn anything from anyone!!!

  • gaetano

    I have to say, that there are a lot of things being said of past presidents, of the u.s.a. I am 68 yrs.old, and have seen presidents come and go. Some good and some bad,according to me. But, the real truth of the matter is, was it good for the country? Who knows? My life has been fairly treated by our government in the past,BUT, never has it changed so drastically since this man with the unknown past,and the un-American name come to be president.It wouldn’t make a difference who was president now, to me, except that NOW, my life is not being treated fairly by the government. SO, my comclusion is,when some thing isn’t broke ,you don;t fix it, but when something is broke, you fix it or get another new one. In this case, I would have to say, that there is definatly something broken,and it can’t be fixed, IT NEEDS REPLACED BY A NEW ONE. So, lets just start over again and get a new one and forget about all the bullsh%% in the past and move to a better one.OBAMA HAS TO GO. I don’t care what party he represents,because he is not helping me or the country. WHAT SAY YOU?

  • http://www.galtsoneteaparty.com organizingmom

    “Man is not free unless government is limited….As government expands, liberty contracts.” -Ronald Reagan

    • SaneRepublican

      Too bad he didn’t practice what he preach.

      There is more to the size of government than just the number of regulations. Reagan presided over the greatest increase in the size of government with his explosive deficit spending. Saint Ronny set the stage for what we’re having to deal with today.

      Thank you, Ronald Reagan. I only wish you were alive to day to see the disastrous long-term impact of your successful short-sighted policies.

  • Insurgent

    This site does not honor freedom of speech!!

  • Insurgent

    This site does not honor freedom of speech!