Sunday, June 13, 2004I watched the McLaughlin Group this morning and could only feel disgust. The entire episode was about the "greatness" of Reagan. Greatness is not the same as goodness. He was among our more influential Presidents, but his influence was in precisely the wrong direction. Reagan changed the public debate in America, but by pitting us one group against the other and teaching us to think that our problems were beyond our ability to solve. That's what you mean when you say government is the problem. And let's not even discuss the disastrous fiscal policy, superficial religiosity, and hypocritical "optimism" that Bush seems so anxious to imitate. Modern conservatism is a jackboot with a smiling face.
And it is a travesty to suggest that Reagan replace Hamilton on the 10 dollar bill. Hamilton is our forgotten founder. He established the foundation for a strong military, an industrial economy, and a central government capable of defending not just our security but our liberty. He was the champion of everything Reagan opposed. To erase his memory is an insult.