Sick With Power: What Ron Paul Really Thinks of Ronald Reagan


Ron Paul attacked Rick Perry today in an ad juxtaposing photos of a young Paul and Ronald Reagan, with snap-shots of the GOP frontrunner, Perry, in his days as campaign manager for the noxious and obnoxious Al Gore.

As pictures of beloved American President Reagan flash across our screen, we hear:

The establishment called him extreme and unelectable.  They said he was the wrong man for the job.  That’s why a young Texan named Ron Paul was one of only four Congressmen to endorse Ronald Reagan’s campaign for President, believing in Reagan’s message of smaller government and lower taxes.  Now America must choose who to trust; Al Gore’s Texas cheerleader, or the one who stood with Reagan.

Ronald Reagan himself was once a Democrat who, as he narrates in his glorious autobiography, An American Life, was slowly brought to a better understanding of the logic of conservative principles.  This switching of parties was the subject of one of Reagan’s most endearing and enduring quips when he agreed with then White House Press correspondent, Sam Donaldson that he, Reagan, was indeed partially responsible for the economic woes of the Country since he had been, “for many years a Democrat.”  (Not a bad book title for Perry, now that I come to think of it!)

The question is not what Rick Perry did before coming to identify himself as a conservative, but what he has done since.  If his actions are generally and substantively those of a small-government, pro-free market conservative now, well then, hallelujah!  After all, isn’t the billion-dollar conservative talk-show industry all about presenting rational beings with information in the hope that a better understanding will transform liberals into conservatives?  The record of Perry’s actions as a Republican is all that matters now, just as it did for Reagan.  Whether or not Rick Perry is a donkey with a duct-taped trunk is a matter for Michelle Malkin to discuss…and she does!

What I would like to bring to the attention of those considering Ron Paul, is how frankly despicable this decking himself in the trappings of a Reagan devote is in light of the eternal Congressman’s true thoughts about Reagan.

Ode to Youtube:  Ah, Youtube, thou revealer of secrets long-thought buried.  From the realm of the netherworld, thou, much to our chagrin, cast back upon the ever  parched and gnawing beaches of today’s blogosphere, those ghosts and cadavers we would fain consign to oblivion! 

In other words, Ron, the jig is up.

In the heady days of 2007, long before Rand Paul became Senator, the good doctor spent months on the campaign trail for himself…er, his father, Ron Paul.  At the 2007 New Hampshire Straw Poll, Rand Paul tells the following about his father’s real opinion of the Reagan Revolution:

1980 the Reagan Revolution, Reagan wins in a landslide…what happened?  The deficit went through the roof under Reagan.  So how long did it take Ron Paul to figure out that the guy he had liked, endorsed, campaigned for – the very first budget.  Ron Paul voted ‘No” against the very first Reagan Budget.  How much guts does it take a Republican Congressman to vote ‘No’ against a popular Republican President?  He continued that throughout the 80′s, he was discouraged that the Revolution never really came to its fruition.  In 1994, when the Republicans took the House and the Senate, we think good things were coming, the things we thought were coming with Reagan that never did.  The Republicans ran on the same platform and the same thing happened…they got sick with power.

One can discuss the effects of Reagan’s proposing a budget that plunged the nation into greater debt.  The point I am trying to make here is that Ron Paul doesn’t tell us in his attack against Rick Perry that he, Ron Paul, felt that Reagan duped him and that the Revolution never took place because, basically, Reagan was a sell-out.  Paul shamelessly tucks his anti-Reagan sentiments in a box in order to clothe himself in the credibility his early endorsement of the great President will bring.

I know that the stump speech was given by Rand and not Ron, but the speaker is Ron Paul’s son and it is highly unlikely that, were Ron Paul still “the man who stood with Reagan,” in 2007, his son would use the Congressman’s disappointment with Reagan as part of the Campaign message. We see clearly that, in 2007, instead of vaunting his association with Reagan, Paul was trying to curry favor by distancing himself from the man he now hypocritically embraces.  

Ron Paul stock in trade is an image of the “anti-government” candidate…the Mr. Smith who poses as he who is above the muck of politics and yet, in truth, is this not the muck of muck?  No, Ron Paul was not Reagan’s “last best hope,” and Rand (whom no-one had muzzled at the time,) tells us that his father had long since viewed Reagan as such.

“The highest felicity of the human mind is the contemplation of truth.”  Aristotle.  May we all have the strength to be true, even when judging our favorite candidates.

Rand Paul’ comments concerning his father’s disappointment in Reagan begin at 0:45.