With Friends Like This

In his article The Future for Whites in a Post-Trump America, Arthur Kemp alludes to the 40th President, Ronald Wilson Reagan with quite a lot of criticism for his apparent “failures,” especially the “immigration” law passed during his presidency.

Frankly, I am sick to death of conservatives damning Reagan without including even the faint praise that at least used to be part of the narrative. Indeed, as the years have gone by, Reagan – eternally despised by the Left – has also been dismissed by his own political comrades as an “amiable dunce,” pointing to the tragedy of Alzheimer’s that overtook him as a consequence of a serious head injury after he left office. This post-presidential condition has been used as a convenient means of dismissing anything and everything Reagan did not only by liberals but even by those whom he respected and befriended. How sad it is to see a good man decried and debunked by those “unworthy to loose his sandals” as John the Baptist once declared. I daresay, Mr. Kemp and his fellow conservatives would have applauded Reagan’s refusal to sign such immigration laws even if that futile gesture had cost us the cold war without preventing the desired invasion. After all, it’s the intention that counts, not the reality of the matter under consideration! Better to lose all than make a gain at the cost of “purity” – or so many conservatives reason.

I was 39 years old when Ronald Reagan took office but apparently few remember the situation extant or the man’s own efforts to secure “his” party’s nomination or serve in the office he twice overwhelmingly won. Therefore, I believe it behooves me to bring both to the fore at least superficially. Let’s begin with his efforts to secure the nomination. After Vice President Spiro Agnew had been forced to resign on a charge that could have been laid to most of those serving in office at that time, President Richard Nixon, knowing what was to come, appointed Gerald Ford to that office to prevent a vacant presidency when he, too, was ultimately forced out of office. Thus, Ford became the nation’s first “appointed” President. As the election of 1976 approached, Ford assured his party and the American people that he would not seek the nomination as the sitting President given  his unique situation.

That “promise” lasted only until Ronald Reagan, former governor of California, sought the nomination himself. Reagan was immensely popular with most conservatives. Furthermore, he had none of the baggage that would prove problematic after Nixon. Of course, the GOP understood that any hope of retaining the presidency required a candidate who could not be tarred with the Nixon brush of scandal and disgrace! Under those circumstances, Reagan should have been the perfect candidate to field – but it was soon apparent that such was not the case. When the convention was held for the purpose of choosing a nominee, it became obvious that the Party leadership did not want Reagan! As a result, Gerald Ford reneged on his promise and the battle between the two men for the nomination began.

In the end, as a result of what has been claimed to be considerable chicanery, Ford prevailed. But Reagan’s supporters, believing that they had been cheated, made noises about deserting the party. To prevent this, Reagan asked to appear on the last night of the convention and gave a most gracious speech (as only he could) in which he pleaded with the faithful to support the Republican party and Ford. At the end of the speech, one Ford supporter was heard to say, “I think we chose the wrong candidate!” In any event, the Republican “leadership’s” rejection of Reagan was the election of Jimmy Carter – and all that followed as a result. Four years later, Reagan prepared again to seek the nomination. This time, the Party elites knew that they had no chance to defeat him and although they did produce a host of other candidates, when Reagan prevailed, they grudgingly went along. They were, however, able to foist establishment figure George H. W. Bush – who had also run for the nomination – onto the ticket as Vice President.

Now, few perhaps remember this country under Jimmy Carter! Interest and inflation rates were 21% and 18% respectively, there were long gas lines and other shortages! America had become a global joke while Carter allowed the military to deteriorate to the point at which there weren’t enough spare parts to fix our war planes! Meanwhile, the Soviet Union moved from strength to strength around the world! In the  midst of this situation, Carter spoke of a “national malaise” blaming the people for his own failures. But then, out of the West, along came happy, strong, confident, optimistic Ronald Reagan, a man who believed Americans could do anything! Of course, he was elected in a landslide! He also came into office with a Republican Congress something that led the pundits to predict he would get all that he wanted as president! This should have been everything that the GOP wanted – but it was not. Why? Because Ronald Reagan was not the choice of his own party! (Sound familiar?)

When Mr. Kemp speaks of Reagan’s immigration policy, he neglects to mention that the President’s most immediate concern was the rebuilding of the military that Carter had allowed to degenerate and so end the victorious march of the Soviet Union across the globe. To Reagan, nothing else was so important although he was able to lower the tax rates and resuscitate the economy, something for which he receives insufficient credit to my mind. Of course, many today openly wonder why Reagan didn’t do more! He was exceptionally popular; his party had the Congress and he was feared by the Soviets – so why were his triumphs not greater? Well, just as with Trump, Reagan’s own party despised him! The liberal “Rockefeller wing” of the GOP – today called RINOS – preferred Tip O’Neal to Ronald Reagan. Indeed, had it not been for the so-called “blue dog” Democrats (formerly the Dixiecrats) like Phil Graham of Texas, Reagan would have been pretty much stymied in Congress. In fact, it took an unsuccessful assassination attempt to force the Democrats to give to him that which they did give to him!

In the end, he had to sign such legislation as tax increases and flawed immigration bills – always with a promise from the Democrats that they would cut spending and not ask for anything else – to get what he needed to rebuild the military and stop the Soviets. Of course, the Democrats lied and did not do as they promised, but that wasn’t Reagan’s fault! He would have been blamed if the military remained weak and the Soviets strong while the Democrats – with the help of the GOP as Congress’s “loyal opposition” – would have gotten their pork and social programs anyway! Yet, today apparently, it was all Ronald Reagan’s fault!

By the way, those who don’t believe that the GOP was anti-Reagan should look at the 1988 campaign of his former Vice President, George H. W. Bush. From the beginning Bush’s campaign was more anti-Reagan than anti-Democrat! It wasn’t until sinking poll numbers showed that Reagan remained popular with Americans that Bush toned it down and ran on instead of against Reagan’s record. Bush won, but only because he changed his tactics. However, when his administration proved to be a return to politics as usual, four years later he was replaced by the first of the openly questionable modern presidents, Bill Clinton.

The treatment of Ronald Reagan by conservatives even while he was in the White House brought again to my attention a problem that I still have with those on “our side” of these issues. A month or so after Reagan was elected, I was perusing a conservative publication when I came upon an article written about the man. The well-meaning writer was calling for him to be tarred and feathered and ridden out of Washington on a rail! Why? Because Reagan hadn’t immediately overcome the years of big government policies he had inherited! For several minutes I thought I was reading a political parody, but no, the writer was quite serious! For unlike liberals, conservatives demand perfection from fellow conservatives. Liberals will “lie down” with anyone in pursuit of their cause. Muslims reach out to gays and feminists, Jews embrace blacks and so forth. Of course, once they prevail, each group will turn on the others to destroy them, but as long as the battle rages, they will remain close allies. Conservatives? Ah, not so much.

Years ago, my mother had a small, framed motto that, to me, sums up the conservative mindset. Two Puritans were pictured in their quaint garb with long faces filled with disdain. Above them appeared the sentiment: “No one is perfect but me and thee – and I’m not so sure about thee!” That, alas, is the conservative movement in a nutshell! If a fellow conservative isn’t “pure,” he is a worse than Josef Stalin! And in order to avoid giving “aid and comfort” to such a traitor, conservatives will either go with the other side or simply leave the field. Anyone who has watched our movement succeed only to fail over the years understands this recurring scenario. And although they are not conservatives, per se, much the same actions with regard to “unacceptable allies” is seen in the Republican Party. For as with Reagan, the “Republican Party” hated Donald Trump and cared not what he wanted to do – or even what he succeeded in doing! – preferring to lie down with the Pelosis and the Schumers and the rest of the Communist left! Of course, as with Reagan, they were more than happy to use him to raise funds for their own political aspirations that are, from what I have seen, little (if any) different than those of the Democrats!

Mr. Kemp blames both Trump and Reagan for failing to “support whites.” To begin with, Trump even more than Reagan was already condemned and vilified by the media which today is far worse than in Reagan’s day – and that’s saying something! Both Presidents had to be very careful what they said and did to avoid being destroyed by those who lurked around them wishing nothing more than to bring about their destruction. For instance, Reagan did not believe that Martin Luther King, Jr. deserved a day of recognition. But he also knew that to object to such a “day” would hurt not King, but himself – and therefore he decided it was not “a hill to die on.” Yet conservatives did – and do – look upon his actions in this matter not as a judicious determination of what was important, but as bowing to leftist blacks!

It was the same with Donald Trump! Trump has been called a Nazi and a white supremacist without ever openly supporting whites as Mr. Kemp gleefully points out! On the other hand, Trump, as did Reagan, supported decent and good Americans, their race notwithstanding and as a result, both men were supported by decent and good Americans of all races.

I firmly believe that the defense of the white race, Western Civilization and Christianity – all of which I acknowledge are under violent attack – requires more than the open support of popular leaders like Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump. It requires that today’s conservatives stop passing judgement on fellow conservatives, and put aside those differences that perennially exist within any group, standing together to fight for our survival! Anything else will assure that the race that brought man from the cave to the stars will suffer the fate of the dinosaur – extinction.

The post With Friends Like This appeared first on LewRockwell.

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