Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Happy Reagan Day!

Ronald Reagan, our 40th president was born on this day in 1911.

In this election year, whatever one's positions or parties, what's clearly needed of the next Prez is back-to-basics leadership. Understand your values deeply. Believe in them steadfastly, but not blindly. Follow them courageously. Communicate them tirelessly. Engage (or re-engage) your fellow Americans ... and the rest of the world. Make it clear that they are responsible for themselves first and foremost. The next president, no less than every other American, needs to live and act with dignity as the best way of communicating their values.

Rather than spending your their breath telling us how Reaganesque they are or aren't, I wish the candidates would just quiet down and listen to him...

"Management is doing things right. Leadership is doing the right things."

"There are no easy answers but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right"

"when people have the right to make decisions as close to home as possible, they usually make the right decisions."

"We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions"

"If we love our country, we should also love our countrymen."

"Freedom is something that cannot be passed on in the blood stream, or genetically. And it's never more than one generation away from extinction. Every generation has to learn how to protect and defend it"

"I know in my heart that man is good. That what is right will always eventually triumph. And there's purpose and worth to each and every life"

And, if you happen to be philosophically aligned with him, you might remind yourself:

"Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem … Government does not solve problems; it subsidizes them ... I don't believe in a government that protects us from ourselves ... Concentrated power has always been the enemy of liberty"

"The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.'"

"Sometimes I think that government fits that old-fashioned definition of a baby: An alimentary canal with an appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other"

"Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it."

"growth, prosperity and ultimately human fulfillment, are created from the bottom up, not the government down"

"Millions of individuals making their own decisions in the marketplace will always allocate resources better than any centralized government planning process"

"there has been a fourth branch added to the traditional three: a vast federal bureaucracy that's now being imitated in too many states and too many cities, a bureaucracy of enormous power which determines policy to a greater extent than any of us realize, very possibly to a greater extent than our own elected representatives. And it can't be removed from office by our votes"

"Government always finds a need for whatever money it gets"

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