Thursday, February 3, 2011

Ronald Reagan in His Own Words

"Now we are trying to get unemployment to go up, and I think we're going to succeed."

-----GOP fundraiser, 1982

"We think that we are helping the forces that are supporting human rights in El Salvador."

-----Reagan on the death squad government that achieved one of the worst human rights records in the world (March 6, 1981)

"Well, I learned a lot. . . . I went down [to Latin America] to find out from them and [learn] their views. You'd be surprised. They're all individual countries."

-----reporting a geographic revelation, December 6, 1982

"We should declare war on North Vietnam . . . We could pave the whole country and put parking strips on it, and still be home by Christmas."

-----October 10, 1965

"I have a feeling that we are doing better in the [Vietnam] war than the people have been told."

-----October 10, 1967, a few months before the Tet Offensive demonstrated that the U.S. was doing far worse than the American people had been told

Question: "Do you think there could be a battlefield exchange [of nuclear weapons] without having buttons pressed all the way up the line?"

Reagan: "Well, I would - if they realized that we - if we went back to that stalemate, only because our retaliatory power, our seconds, or our strike at them after their first strike would be so destructive that they couldn't afford it, that would hold them off."

-----October 17, 1981

"Those [nuclear weapons] that are carried in ships of one kind or another, or submersibles, you are dealing there with a conventional type of weapon or instrument, and those instruments can be intercepted. They can be recalled."

-----Reagan on how to stop a nuclear war after it's started, May 13, 1982

"Incidentally, the first man who proposed the nuclear freeze was in February 21st, 1981, in Moscow - Leonid Brezhnev."

-----December 10, 1982

"You have to remember, we don't have the military industrial complex that we once had, when President Eisenhower spoke about it."

-----January 5, 1983

"We were told four years ago that 17 million people went to bed hungry every night. Well, that was probably true. They were all on a diet."

-----TV speech, October 27, 1964

"Approximately 80% of our air pollution stems from hydrocarbons released by vegetation, so let's not go overboard in setting and enforcing tough emission standards from man-made sources."

-----September 10, 1980

"Air pollution has been substantially controlled."

-----Press release, October 8, 1980

"Isn't it substantially under control? I think it is."

-----Time, October 20, 1980

"A tree's a tree. How many more do you need to look at?"

-----Sacramento Bee, March 12, 1966

" . . . a faceless mass, waiting for hand-outs."

-----Description of Medicaid recipients, 1965

Source: Mark Green & Gail MacColl, There He Goes Again - Ronald Reagan's Reign of Error, (Pantheon, 1983)

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