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View Diary: What else is new? Joe Arpaio costs taxpayers another $975,000 (100 comments)

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    Mother Mags, JuliathePoet

    Too many people in this country somehow think Ronald Reagan ought to have his bust carved on Mt. Rushmore.  The guy was a two-bit Hollywood actor who made his biggest money as a TV flack for General Electric.  He was a corporate mouthpiece before he went into politics, and, as you point out, an exemplar for those who want all dissent suppressed by brute force.

    His respect for the rule of law was shown by the Iran-Contra affair.  His attitude toward public-employee unions was shown by his crushing of the air traffic controllers.  And it was on his watch that we got official acceptance of "supply-side" theory, aka Reaganomics or "voodoo economics"  It's still voodoo today, but there are thousands of right-wing witch doctors inside the Beltway prescribing economic bloodletting as a cure for economic anemia.

    Under Reagan, Wall Street (in the person of Donald Regan) took firm possession of the administrative branch, control which it has held through the Clinton, Obama and various Bush administrations.  Once Reagan and Regan took over, repeal of Glass-Steagal was just a matter of time.

    Dog-whistle politics, the Southern Strategy, the conversion of the SCOTUS into a right-wing legislative body:  some of it started with Goldwater and Nixon, but Reagan brought all that into the American mainstream.  When we watch the Tea Party and the US Chamber of Commerce battling for control of today's GOP, we are seeing two facets of Ronald Reagan's political personality at war with each other.

    And you mentioned "spending our money" on boy toys like tanks for use in busting cockfights.  Ronnie the Popular had his Strategic Defense Initiative, aka "Star Wars", which was demonstrably technically infeasible.  That didn't stop him from running up huge deficits paying for it and other "defense" overspending.

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