Reagan vs. the Pope and the Mullah

Ed Hudgins's picture
Submitted by Ed Hudgins on Sat, 2016-01-30 16:59

It goes without saying that everyone on this site is disgusted by the Pope and by the morally-addled Euro-elites who covered up the artistic glories of Western civilization so they wouldn’t offend the visiting blood-drenched theocratic savage from Iran whose goal is to pull down our civilization.

But I call your attention to this little piece by AEI scholar Michael Rubin on Rouhani can’t handle nudes? and point especially to the final paragraphs:

Ronald Reagan famously appointed an African-American ambassador to South Africa during the height of the Apartheid era; he also appointed an American Jew to represent the United States in Pakistan, among the world’s most anti-Semitic countries.

Reagan understood that obsequiousness to authoritarians or the willingness to apologize for Western culture neither shows sensitivity nor encourages tolerance. Rather, it affirms the intolerance of those who claim moral superiority in their drive to suppress minorities or alternative views.

Moral certainty and courage vs. moral confusion and cowardice! That’s the contrast!


Mr_Lineberry's picture

realise everyone has an attention span (regarding matters other than themselves) of about 2 seconds, but the audio Doug the Second has posted is worth listening to.

If you bother to cue it and listen from 23 mins 20 sec to 26 min 0 sec everything is explained perfectly; explains why Donald Trump is steamrolling his way to victory, and no one is trusting Cruz or Rubio or Bush.

It also explains why the 'Establishment' is so anti-Trump Eye

9 Presidents who screwed up America

Doug Bandler The Second's picture

McClanahan is an Austrian or at least Austrian friendly. As a result he is very anti-Lincoln. But his book covers 9 Presidents who were terrible and 4 who at least tried to adhere to the original Constitution. The four good ones were: Jefferson, Tyler, Cleveland and Harding. No Regan in sight.

Oh and Nixon is one of the villains.

Oops, my bad

Ed Thompson's picture

I thought you claimed that Nixon's deals with China made him the best president that we ever had (which would have contradicted your other post saying that Reagan was the best president that we ever had). I am not of the opinion that a deal with another country can make you a best president--even a 3rd best one.

I prefer to evaluate the merit of presidents by how they deal with their own people first and foremost and, on that scale or continuum, Nixon fails someone like me. The White House tapes which show he had the Federal Reserve jack with the money supply to get himself re-elected (even though it hurt the American economy) and that he jacked with the price of milk to the effect that a comment picked up on the White House tapes has one party to the milk-price negotiation state something like:

"We better go and buy up as much milk as we can, while it is still affordable!"

leaves a bad taste in my mouth. If you are caught on tape deliberately setting back your own economy for short-sighted and narrow-minded personal gain, and if you are caught on tape devising schemes that will prevent babies from being able to get all the milk they need to survive--I have no truck with you.



Mr_Lineberry's picture

sure I am following you Ed.

The first post is correct - Ron Reagan wore POW check very well for an older man; Sanders has tried it a couple of times (doesn't work for him), even Trump doesn't look good in POW check. Lots of older men have problems with it as it clashes with their grey hair and older facial features.

It was his 103rd birthday. He is number 2 on my list (George W, Ron Reagan, Richard Nixon).

The second post is also correct - Nixon went to China in 1972, reached out to them, and (in effect) by doing so ensured there would never be a nuclear war which had been a real possibility during the previous 20 years.

Linz, I want Kyrel to answer you ...

Ed Thompson's picture

... but have a different take on the fall of the Soviet Union.

Imagine a union of people who tried to set 22 million prices for things. What will you get? Failure. That actually happened under Lenin and, realizing the failure (after starving 5 milllion of his people to death), he allowed for some capitalism in Soviet Russia, he called it the NEP. The salient point is that it did not have to happen there, in order for it to be known. That's because it wasn't peculiarly "Russian" (or "Leninist" or "Stalinist") totalitarian economic intervention that is a failure--but all such interventions.

There are economic facts not amenable to personal sentiment, they are true regardless of whether and when they are tried, and regardlesss of what people think. Now, you can have a situation where something fails and people are willfully clueless and, utilizing censorship, prevent the dissemination of the truth of the failure. This was the reason for the Credibility Gap of 1963 in Cuba and Vietnam. This is also what happened in Soviet Russia (and especially in East Germany after WWII).

The reason that Soviet Russia did not work is because it cannot work (sustainable totalitarianism is a metaphysical impossibility). Take Sweden in 1982. They tried to have the government control 67% of the GDP and ended up with a 13% fiscal deficit. Now, pretend--in your mind's eye-- that everyone is willfully blind to the negative effects of that (100% blind Swedes), and so they haphazardly continue the course and double-down. What happens next? Next year, the deficit is 14% of GDP. The year after that, the deficit is 15% of the GDP (like Greece in 2010). And guess what happened to Greece?

If evil alien life-forms gave drugs to Swedes to prevent them from recognizing reality--in order to experiment with human subjects in order to see how statism turns out--then the next year of statism would produce a deficit of 16% of the GDP, then 17%, etc. until everyone starves to death. Evil alien life-forms, being more scientific than Swedish people, would recognize and even acknowledge the truth (that statism is metaphysically unsustainable).

If your annual deficit unceasingly grows to an ever-greater proportion of your GDP, can you ever succeed? No.

No matter where you go, and no matter where it is tried, statism unchecked will fail.

Mr_L, your 5 Feb 2016 post, along with your 12 Feb 2016 post...

Ed Thompson's picture

... do not integrate (taken together, they are incoherent).

Was that planned or accidental? Are BOTH of these posts merely tongue-in-check sarcasm (or only one of them)? If just one of them, which one? An enquiring mind wants to know.



Lindsay Perigo's picture

You didn't address a single point I raised. Here's my post again:

What led to the fall of the Soviet Union was Reagan's holding out on the matter of Star Wars and walking out of the Reykjavik negotiations when Gorbachev insisted Reagan drop the project. Gorbachev thought Reagan wouldn't have the balls to do that. Study facts. Facts = what actually happened. Takes time to study them, I know, just as it takes time and intellectual focus to listen to real music as opposed to the decibel-overload beauty-underload headbanging you so mindlessly promote.

Answer me and I'll answer you.


Mr_Lineberry's picture

Richard Nixon is responsible for China; in view of your age it is a wonder you do not realise that.

Richard Nixon - the third greatest American President ever - ensured there would never be a nuclear war by reaching out to China, off his own bat (and with the opposition of Kissinger and others), and bringing them into the modern World.

The effects of his doing this are still being felt by billions of people on a daily basis. Nixon truly was the 'peacemaker' he set out to be.

The Actual Facts

Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture

Lindsay -- Gorbachev and his liberal Soviet allies deserve almost all the credit for reforming and liberating Russia -- not Reagan. They did it via glasnost, perestroika, and universal [liberal] values, among other things. To the extent Reagan had any influence at all, it was intellectual, such as "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" Given your conservative-seeming view of history, I'm curious: Do you think Reagan's military actions reformed and liberalized China as well?


Mr_Lineberry's picture

Happy Birthday Ron Reagan!!

America's second greatest President (after George W. of course), and his only drawback is the same one Rubio and Cruz have and why I would never support either under any circumstances.

Funny to think he would be 103! haha!

That is a great photograph; Reagan always wore 'Prince of Wales check' well for his suit jackets (a lot of older men can't oddly enough); and that grin.....

Happy Birthday Ronald Reagan!

Ed Hudgins's picture

Happy Birthday Ronald Reagan!
February 6, 1911
A true hero!
Ronald Reagan photo reagan1.jpg


Lindsay Perigo's picture

That's just stupid and pig-ignorant. What led to the fall of the Soviet Union was Reagan's holding out on the matter of Star Wars and walking out of the Reykjavik negotiations when Gorbachev insisted Reagan drop the project. Gorbachev thought Reagan wouldn't have the balls to do that. Study facts. Facts = what actually happened. Takes time to study them, I know, just as it takes time and intellectual focus to listen to real music as opposed to the decibel-overload beauty-underload headbanging you so mindlessly promote.

Reagan vs. Gorbachev

Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture

I think that the secret libertarian and radical liberal Mikhail Gorbachev deserves 90% of the credit for the fall of the Soviet Union.

On Ronnie Raygun

Grant Jones's picture

Reagan devised and implemented that strategic that led to the demise of the Soviet Union. For that alone, all decent people owe him immense gratitude. I graduated from high school in 1980. After the hell of the Carter years, Reagan was a breath of fresh air.

Ronald Reagan

Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture

Thanks for those observations and links, Ed! Smiling

I thought Reagan was semi-libertarian in rhetoric, but only slightly libertarian in practice. He deserves some credit, but all those conservatives like him are utterly hopeless in converting mankind to freedom within the next two centuries. And for the Republicans to rule the leading branches of the American gov't -- the White House, Senate, and House of Representatives -- for even ten years in a row would be terrifying.


Mr_Lineberry's picture

I always thought Ron Reagan was a great man - cut taxes, sorted out the Russians, made America great again, all with a genial personality and hilarious sense of humour.

I also admire how Reagan never apologised for his behaviour in Hollywood in the 1940s.

Only oddball thing about him is why he ever married that dreadful Wife of his; snotty cow who couldn't act and slept her way around town.

Reagan, values & Federalism

Ed Hudgins's picture

Two points:

First, an anecdote about Reagan and the power of ideas. In December 1989 (where were you then?) as the Soviet bloc collapse was coming to completion, “On the way to the Estonian capital of Tallinn, a colleague and I stopped in Moscow to meet with academics and others who were promoting reform. They told us that they had heard the words of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, who didn’t worry about offending Soviet leaders but, rather, described the communist regimes as evil and offered hope to the peoples under Red repression that one day they might be free.” (See account of my adventures here: Eastern Europe 20 Years Later.)

Contrast this with Obama’s cowardice in his refusal in 2009 to denounce clearly and unambiguously the Islamist mullahs as Iranians took to the streets against their oppressors. (See Iran and Obama's Hollow Moral Core )

Second, the challenges of America’s Founders was how to preserve individual rights in light of both the need for government, albeit a limited one, and the dangers of government power. Federalism was one of those ways. “Subsidiarity” means government functions should be as close to the people as possible, so people will have more control. Further, the states are laboratories. If one does something better, others can learn. In addition, if one state screws up, it doesn’t directly impact other states, while if the Feds control everything, everyone is screwed by errors.

The Constitution spells out in Article I, Sec. 8 the Federal powers, and the 10th amendment makes clear that “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” (This amendment and so many others are ignored today.) Federalism is not a perfect mechanism. There’s always a tension between Federal and state powers, and how to interpret the incorporation of the Bill of Rights to the states via the 14th amendment. But Federalism was meant to protect people from tyranny.

Also note that Article IV, Sec. 4 states that “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government.” This certainly could justify Federal government intervention in the South in the ‘50s and ‘60s. State and local governments used their powers, sometimes in league with the KKK, to prevent blacks from voting, thus cutting off the ultimate republican government mechanism for dealing with political issues: voting.

Pathetic evasion ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

... about Reagan. Most of you are anti-hero. Reagan was a hero. Radical for you wankers to grasp, I know. The survival of the world—about which you care zit, since the only important thing in the world is the satisfaction of your own zero-based vanity—depends on your Narcissism, you think. Hate to break it to you, but that's not actually the truth. There's true high-mindedness out there still.


Mr_Lineberry's picture

Doug is under a misapprehension if he thinks Mr Donald Trump is - "...unleashing a pent up pro-white racial consciousness."

What Mr Donald Trump is doing, probably on the advice of Roger Stone (love his books btw), is zeroing in on what are euphemistically called "Reagan Democrats" but what would be more accurate to refer to as "Catholic America".

Catholic America delivered 49/50 states for Richard Nixon and Ron Reagan - once they got to know both men's opponents - and Trump is eyeing up a similar sort of landslide.

Middle class, white, Catholics tend to be married with children, tend to have dinner each night with their children, tend to have enormous respect their original ancestor/s who came through Ellis Island - (which gets instilled into their children as a measure of how well the family has done since arriving in America), tend to have enormous reverence of institutions; obey the law, pay their taxes, work hard and are 'good citizens'.

They are very, very uneasy about "identity politics", but will accept things like first trimester abortions or gay marriage because the Supreme Court mandated it (this is where their reverence of institutions kicks in).

Economic issues are not of great importance for these people in this election cycle because they tend to live in places where the economy is pottering along quite well, so in recent months the number one issue for 'Catholic America' - (and others) - is terrorism.

'Catholic America' saw the Syrian refugees on the TV news, they saw to their horror the shootings in California a few weeks back, and the FBI Director saying "we can't do background checks on Syrian refugees - some of these people could be anybody".

As people who sit up and listen to whatever an FBI Director says, just as their grandparents did when J. Edgar Hoover talked about Communism (reverence for institutions again)....they got very, very uneasy.

Donald Trump then pipes up and says "Don't worry - I won't let any of them into America"; 15 million white, middle class, Catholics found themselves nodding their heads.

Hillary Clinton's response to Syrian refugees without background checks, and mass murder in California? "Donald Trump is a xenophobic, racist bigot".

Catholic America greeted Hillary shooting her mouth off with a sense of: "what the f***??????" Shocked - (and the stench of George McGovern seemed to permeate the air).

Hillary has seen her numbers tank and - unless I am very much mistaken - Hillary is getting focus group and opinion poll evidence from 'Catholic America' - places like the Boston, New Jersey or Pittsburg suburbs - which show she is in enormous trouble.

It is significant that Hillary has taken time out from the battle of her life in Iowa to make two foreign policy speeches in three weeks - and run ads about it in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Massachusetts.

Hillary cut her teeth in the McGovern campaign 44 years ago and she can count votes; she knows she made a huge error in attacking Trump over a ban on Syrian refugees, and that when Catholic America deserts Democrats (Stevenson, McGovern, Carter, Mondale, Dukakis) it is an electoral college wipeout.

States' Rights

Neil Parille's picture

To me, Rand's discussion of states' rights shows her problem when writing on the micro level. Of course, no one is arguing states should be able to violate anyone's rights (not even George Wallace probably thought state-enforced segregation was rights violating). The point is that decentralization may be a greater means to protect individual rights, or at least preventing the growth of centralized government power.

I don't see any reason why Rand shouldn't in principle support a one-world government, so long as it is rights-respecting.

Of course some times centralized power has turned out for the good and other times local power has been good. If Ancient Greece had been one big country then maybe the glories of Ancient Athens wouldn't have taken place. Hard to say.


Doug Bandler The Second's picture

Be careful there Kyrel. Wood's Nullification idea runs against the dominant Constitutional view of the Objectivist mainstream. They hate anything which hints at states rights (that's Conservatism don't you know). After all, Ayn Rand made her "50 dictatorships vs one" comment and that settled everything ever to be said on the subject.

Also, Woods and the Austrians are no fan of Lincoln and the Civil War. To them it was an economic war caused by restrictive tariff policies. But to Objectivists, the Civil War was a legitimate war against the "feudal agrarian south". Rand's words. Rand came down against the South so that settles that. Research and facts be damned.

I could go on, but you get the point.

Yes y'all, you're all milquetoast

Doug Bandler The Second's picture

I know what I write is shocking to Ortho-Objectivists. Race realism, sex realism, demographic realism, Islamo-realism, Muslims-will-rape-you-realism, Jewish-intellectual-movement-realism, etc, etc, etc. Yes, I look at the world from a much wider lenz than the typical Objectivist. But when I read comments from Luke or VSD, etc, I'm not seeing any argument. Translated, all I'm seeing is "he's challenging my worldview, let me insult him and maybe he'll go away." Maybe I will go away or maybe Linz will ban me. I don't know. But that will not change anything.

Luke, VSD, et all, understand that right now you have a Presidential candidate that is unleashing a pent up pro-white racial consciousness. You are seeing the beginnings of a racial holy war in Europe. Events are unfolding which are NOT resulting in a massive turn to race blind individualism, but towards a pro-white ethno-nationalism. The fastest growing ideology outside of leftism amongst the young is not libertarianism, it is the alt-right which is a pro-white racialist movement. Why do you think that is? And do you think that will stop?

Rand wrote her novels when America was 90% white and the great war was an intra racial war between white ideologies. That is no longer the case. Objectivism did not adapt to the new historical dynamics. IMO, the movement is basically closer to the left than to the right. And I doubt it will have any type of influence in the coming decades. I don't say that with happiness as I love Rand and would love to live in the free society she envisioned. But as a white heterosexual male, I see that the Left has oriented its movement, which controls everything, to obliterating me out of existence. That will include the culture and the racial group that made me possible.

Forgive me if I take offense.


Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture

Yesterday Doug mentioned the libertarian Tom Woods. I don't know about his podcasts, but his recent book, Nullification: How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century (2010), was quietly radical, shocking, and outstanding! It tells how the states created the federal gov't, not the reverse, and thus they are the dominant actors in American gov't, and have the right to sit in judgment of it, and potentially to nullify its laws, or even withdraw from this federal union. Quite persuasive!

Ed Huggins on Islamic Immigration

Neil Parille's picture

Here is Ed's piece from 2006 on immigration.* While Ed is somewhat better than ARI Objectivists such as Binswanger and Brook, he does not in principle oppose turning the US into a third world country or Europe Islamic.  In fact, he appears t believe that under the right conditions such a policy is mandatory.

Consider an extreme example. What if a small, democratic country—for example, Luxembourg, with a population of less than a half-million—were faced with thousands of would-be immigrants from Muslim countries who were vocal members of a “Make Europe Muslim” movement? What if the goal of these immigrants was to have enough fundamentalist Muslims move into small countries so that they could quickly become the majority, and then use existing democratic institutions to set up Islamic theocracies?
The government of tiny Luxembourg probably would act to protect the rights of its citizens by banning immigrants from Muslim countries. If the government couldn’t sort out the intolerant Islamists from the tolerant immigrants, it would be acting reasonably to protect its own citizens by simply restricting or barring immigrants from certain countries.

So if Luxemborg could separate the "tolerant" Muslims from the "intolerant" it should allow massive "tolerant" Islamic immigration?  By the way, tiny Luxembourg has produced two Nobel prizes in the hard sciences, which is 1 more than the entire Islamic world (1.6 billion).  Why is turning Luxembourg into a "tolerant" Muslim country in the natives' best interest?

Fortunately, immigrants from Muslim countries in the United States have assimilated better than those in Europe, no doubt in part because of America’s “melting pot” tradition. Only a small fringe of Muslims in America side openly with Islamists. And in fact it is valuable to have immigrants from Muslim countries in America who accept freedom and tolerance, and who try to convince their former compatriots in the old country of such principles.

But in principle, if the situation changes—if there are more terrorist attacks in the United States, or if more new immigrants openly profess an anti-freedom philosophy—it might become too difficult to sort out those who seek only the opportunities of freedom from those who would subvert freedom.

Fort Hood, Boston, and San Bernadino happened since this article was written, so how's that working out for you, Ed?

And it is valuable to have Muslims here so they can conince their friends in the "old country"!  As I pointed out, there are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world.  That having a few million moderates in the new world is going to have any effect on the Muslim world is unbelievable.  The head of the FBI said recently that the Muslim community in the US was providing no intelligence on extremists.  The San Bernadino couple had a bomb making facility in their garage and none of the Muslim visitors knew anything about it?


Coming back to Ed's point ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

I agree that it was sickening that Western leaders covered up great works of art so as not to offend that stinking superstitionist from Iran. I'm delighted Ed called that entity a "blood-drenched theocratic savage." (I assume this was a SOLO-specific post by Ed, since he doesn't normally speak that way, alas. Smiling ) It surprises me therefore that Ed doesn't endorse my policy of "Not One Muslim," the one adopted by the Republican front-runner several weeks after I advocated it here. Smiling

I endorse 100% Ed's comments about Reagan. Whatever Ronnie got wrong was inadvertent. What he got right was deliberate, and a hell of a lot more than anyone else. Doug's apparent expectations are as utopathological (that's the adjective from the pathology of utopianism) as the most rationalistic OrgOist's! It was a joy to have Ronnie as President. It was an unmitigated pleasure for me personally, as a youngster with a burgeoning broadcasting career then unfolding, to have to say the words "President Reagan" often. When all his advisers were telling him he had to "manage" the Cold War, he said, "Hell, no, I'm going to win the Cold War." And he did. When his advisers begged him to delete the words "Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall" from his most famous speech, he refused. He said those words. And eventually the wall came down. Oh, and there was the little matter of an economic boom fuelled by the policies Congress told him would be "dead on arrival."

Aside from all that, one beautiful human being.

I agree Doug II

gregster's picture

Muslims contaminate the west with the Islam virus which should not be confused with a religion. It is a supremacist ideology for cavemen and it needs to be shovelled like shit back over the borders. Yeah—borders, we still have them, thank fuck.

Thank You VSD

Luke Setzer's picture

I have wondered the same myself.

Has Doug nothing better to do?

Some people have too much time (and hatred) on their hands.

I do wonder

VSD's picture

why you keep reading (and posting) if you think this is all 'Milquetoast' for you? perhaps you just need a venue to vent your hatred of other groups (especially race, religion and politics) and the Austrians have kicked you out being so close to Germany?
but to each their own ... keep spouting

Stop Deifying Reagan

Doug Bandler The Second's picture

He was not the force of liberty you and Lindsay think he was. Read Rothbard's 1987 critique of his economic policies, specifically his tax cuts, to see the truth about Reaganomics (he wasn't that much better than Carter in actual fact).

Also, Reagan was a slave to the egalitarian ideology dominating the post 1960s West; ie multiculturalism. He gave us the 1986 Amnesty Bill which will be considered the nail in the coffin of the American Republic as it forever undermined the only racial demographic capable of fighting for the original American conception of republican liberty; ie it paved the way for the racial demographic dispossession of whites. Thanks Ronnie.

In foreign policy, Reagan's administration helped create Al-Qaeda which has spawned ISIS and thus is still with us. As for South Africa, look how that turned out. SA was better under Apartheid; for whites and blacks - look at the data.

Its essay's like these that ensure the Objectivist movement will be considered worthless. The analysis that Objectivists give of American history is risible. The Austrians produce infinitely better material on American history.

Ed, if you want to do something good for your Randian institute, I suggest you model Tom Woods of Austrian acclaim. Try to duplicate what he does with his podcast. He offers a far better analysis of politics and history then anything I've seen from Objectivism. These Milquetoast essays you write are cringeworthy.

Oh and BTW, it seems you are trying to encourage pride in Western culture and boldness in defending that culture. OK. How about writing an essay in which America and all Western European countries out migrate ALL Muslims and recognize that Islam is inherently a political movement which is incompatible with the Western culture that you allegedly love. The West will therefore ban Islam as a perpetual solicitation of war (ie "threat of initiatory force"), remove Muslim populations which are a 5th column, and therefore preserve its culture of liberty and prevent its women, who are the future of that culture, from being raped or intimidated.

How about that for a bold defense of Western Culture Ed? Or are you more interested in showing that you don't discriminate against blacks and Jews?

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.