Guess Who’s Coming To Free Mandela?

Surprise!  reaganthatcherdance_pic

The wonder-working ways of Ronald Reagan never cease to amaze, but this one’s really quite something:

Reagan Freed Mandela!

Or so one right-wing crank would have you believe.

“After eight years of Ronald Reagan’s policies of “constructive engagement” that worked to prepare the volatile nation to peacefully embrace true self rule, apartheid fell.”

This is glorious news.  Most of the Nelson Mandela tributes flooding all media have a moment when they pause to educate the youngsters, gently breaking it to them that not everybody was on board with the ANC’s struggle against Apartheid .

And Reagan’s halo may have been diminished by reminders of what he actually did in this era – align with South Africa to prop up messianic witch burner Jonas Savimbi in Angola, put the ANC on the State Department’s terrorist list, all the while criticising Apartheid  [mildly] while disparaging its opponents, and resisting any action to do anything about it.

Chummy!  Reagansavimbi

The ever ongoing effort to prove Reagan’s saintly mastery of all things can never stop, lest a crack appear in the facade. Hordes of Gipperitists mobilized to brush off the threat posed by “The Butler” film, and racist actions and associates are cleaned up daily.

But this time at least it all had a happy ending:

“Nelson Mandela proved himself more than deserving of the opportunity Ronald Reagan and others had given him and his reborn nation.”

Beats of No Nation

 

Ronald Reagan Really Racist?

Four Telling The Defense         
   
Your Washington Post op/ed page outdid itself this past Sunday, cementing its role as the home for thoughtful conservative refutations of arguments never seen in the Post.
This week four clowns identified as “Ronald Reagan historians” went on at great length, trying to refute accusations of Reagan’s racism found in contemporary cinema classic “The Butler.”
The Charge: Reagan’s enthusiasm for South Africa’s aparthied regime reflected something other than fear Castro’s armies would reach the Cape of Good Hope.  Here’s where the Right’s frenzied creation of “facts” on the ground and in their own minds really earn the honoraria.  The Right’s dense layers of hackery, resident scholarship and dead horse beating pay off in the form of robot armies available for instant mobilization.
Your Voices of Outrage:
                                            Steven F. Hayward  Haywardreagan
From his climate denialist American Enterprise institute day job, Hayward sallies forth to write Reagan books and muse in the pages of the Weekly Standard about all things climate and  Churchillian.   Churchill is the giveaway: Imperial Nostalgia is self explaining.
                                           Paul Kengor  kengorreagan
The author of  “What Bush and Moses Have in Common” flirted with birthers while promoting his book “The Communist,”  explaining Obama’s evil as stemming from youthful consorting with Stalinists.  Kengor emits a steady stream of Reagan-ish tomes, notable even within the genre for their reverent tone. Reagan’s lifeguard duties are analyzed for seeds of greatness, and Reagan administration enthusiasm for Saddam Hussein is blithely minimized, with Kengor taking for gospel somewhat selective memories of our assistance to Saddam’s poison gassing Iranians.
                                           Craig Shirley  shirleyreagan
A fully paid up member of the vast right-wing conspiracy, Shirley has taken to cranking out Reagan bios when not busy with his pr firm Shirley & Banister.  The outfit has repped most right obsessions at some point in their birthing, including fanciful versions of Bill Clinton, John Kerry, and Barack Obama’s biographies, as well as premier Nixon apologist and renaissance man Ben Stein.  The Clinton book was authored by former FBI agent and serial fantisist Gary Aldrich, currently  “President & Founder” of the Patrick Henry Center for Individual Liberty.  Shirley serves on the advisory board, with the Board itself chaired by disgraced yet strangely buoyant Reagan henchman Ed Meese.
                                           Kiron K. Skinner  skinnerreagan
Skinner’s career has been dedicated  pummeling the reading public with endless Reagan mix tapes, repackaging the man’s every scribble for posterity.  But prolonged exposure to Reagan’s Own Hand, Path, Stories, and Voice tends to reinforce the negative images she hoped to overturn.  
Casual indifference to fascists? Sure!  Reagan’s radio scripts reveal a highly relaxed view of car bomb assassination in the streets of Washington.  When Pinochet’s men killed Chile’s former foreign minister in 1976, Reagan mused over “what appeared to be the murder of a leftist by someone on the right “, but swiftly moved to pleading for bringing back the House Un-American Activities Committee.
An inevitable point in Skinner’s Reagan excuse making  comes when she coquettishly informs us that ” I happen to be black,” ergo Reagan cannot be racist. A less intimate version of the Jack “he showered with them” Kemp clowning.
We’ve been through these hijinks before, with many of the same clowns explaining away Reagan’s ties to racist former States Rights Democrats transmogrified into Republicans.        

 

9 AM EST Thursday: No More Bush Library Jokes!

Instead, we can focus on how come all the fancy Decision Points® Theatre interactivity doesn’t give us a “choice” on the real question: stopping the Florida recount.

 

 Like a very fancy high school.

George W. Bush: The Decorous War Criminal

 Fashion Statement bush-jacket

Not resting on his laurels from making the Associated Press a Washington punchline, Ron Fournier seems committed to dragging the National Journal down too. Sensing the change in the seasons, Fournier felt compelled to mark Bush Library Week with a thoughtful wad of pap entitled ‘Go Ahead, Admit It: George W. Bush Is a Good Man’

For proof, look no further than the Dignity of the Office dress code Bush strictly enforced:

“The same sense of dignity compelled Bush to forbid his staff to wear blue jeans in the White House. Male aides were required to wear jackets and ties in the Oval Office.

This is a very tired old lie, exploded moments after former Bush Chief of Staff Andy Card made the claim in 2009 as part of an attack on those lax Obama staffers.  It has had a vigorous half life among idiots, but Fournier seems determined to strike at the National Journal’s reputation too.

He is everything awful about Washington:

“Fournier wants you people to remember that politeness is always measured by the thank you notes that a person sends, not the people that one indiscriminately bombs without provocation.”

He’s an old hand at this, having offered Karl Rove solace and advice in his difficult work faking up the Pat Tillman death narrative.

George W. Bush Library: Memories Are Made Of This

 It’s Like They Never Left  brooksbrosriot

It’s almost Bush Library Eve, and the witches are emerging to cast their spells, trying to persuade a reluctant public that it really wasn’t as bad as all that.  Part of the coven is Stephen F. Knott,  author of “Rush to Judgment: George W. Bush, the War on Terror and His Critics.”

Knott is a long time fan of executive action, weeping for presidential powers lost when the Supreme Court pointed out that Bush couldn’t just wing it at Guantanamo. He dismisses criticism of Bush era torture by pointing [pg 125] to the Truman administration’s wholesale mobilization of ex-Nazis to fight the Commies, so Hitler!

He whines about pundits ganging up on poor George in the pages of the Washington Post, whose editorial page is adorned with not one but two former Bush speech writers – Michael Gerson, the nice one, and the unspeakable Mark Theeson, portly torture enthusiast.

Knott goes after  historians sullying themselves as pundits, calling for careful archival research in the long twilight of power. He’s a professor at the U.S. Naval War College,  but he’s more then just an intellectual adornment of the Navy’s White Walkers. Among Knott’s achievements is a stint co-directing the University of Virginia’s Reagan administration oral history project, where the grizzled veterans whiled away the hours not answering toothless questions.  [see bottom graphs]

Knott quotes Sean Wilentz’s claim for Bush’s uniqueness:

“No other U.S. president “failed to embrace the opposing political party” in wartime, Wilentz claimed, despite numerous examples to the contrary, such as when Franklin D. Roosevelt compared his Republican opponents to fascists in 1944.”

Roosevelt had Republican Secretaries of the Navy and of War, and Knott doesn’t specify where FDR made these shameful claims, but I have an idea where he’s coming from.

 

Not Roosevelt, but his supporters, engaged in a lot of war and election melding, with domestic enemies denouncing “Roosevelt’s War” morphing into Hitler, rooseveltswar and cartoon workingmen called on to ” sidetrack defeatist limited.”

 

The ’44 Dewey campaign made an early run at what would soon become a Republican perennial, charging that the Democrats were but a front for the Reds.  Dewey elaborated on  the theme in a Boston speech, with the added frisson of Jew baiting in the form of that year’s “You Didn’t Build That.”  Much of the GOP campaign was built around a Roosevelt quote from the smoke filled rooms birthing Harry Truman.  FDR had his minions feel out CIO union leader Sidney Hillman about dumping Vice President Henry Wallace for James F. Brynes,  Hillman wouldn’t go along, and somehow Harry Truman emerged, along with the immortal phrase “Clear It With Sidney” clear it with sidney

Republicans had great fun with “Sidney”, a clear marker for Jews. The comment sections of World Net Daily were sadly not yet available, so their mouth breathing followers entertained themselves  scribbling laughtastic limerick suggestions:

 

“Political pots have a lid,

Beneath which the cooking is hid.

But it’s easy to tell

From the Bolsehvik smell

Which stew was concocted by Sid.”

Dewey was called out by Roosevelt’s Interior Secretary Harold Ickes, accusing the Governor of toying with red baiting, fascism and  “desperate, contemptible fanning of the flames of religious hatred.

 

One president did flat out Nazi bait Dewey, that nice Harry Truman in a 1948 episode of “feistiness.”

deweyhitler