I’d like to just put this here:
The person who posted it to Twitter works for MSNBC, a network which has a long history of supporting Democrats. Their bias, however, does not enable them to force President Trump to say things.
In this instance, Trump is explaining that the Soviet Union was not taken down by Reagan & Bush’s promotion of the missile defense system nor of the work performed by the trio of Reagan, Thatcher and Pope John Paul II to counter the Soviet message throughout the free world. In Trump’s view, the Russian position – that it was bankrupted fighting terrorists in Afghanistan – is the correct one, and the Reagan legacy is propaganda.
This isn’t the first time Reagan’s legacy has been attacked or derided by the Trump coalition. Mark Levin, who has used his low-level position in the Reagan administration as a keystone in his image as a staunch conservative pundit, has taken to defending Trump as the most conservative President since Reagan.
Somehow the fact that President Bush served as Reagan’s VP and continued most of Reagan’s policies has escaped Mr. Levin. Reagan’s conservatism has been redefined by Levin not to be his promotion of life, his insistence on equality for all, his belief that government is an impediment to the individual, but rather that Planned Parenthood is sacrosanct, a national healthcare system is necessary and that Russia should be trusted over our law enforcement agencies and NATO. Reagan spoke against fascists and dictators. Trump warmly embraces Jair Bolsonaro and Kim Jong Un and castigates Angela Merkel and Theresa May.
None of this matters. In the Levin wing of the Republican Party, it is not enough to ignore Reagan; he must have his legacy redefined and history revised, lest Trump look pathetic by comparison.
Let’s go back to the clip for a moment. In this new history, the Soviet Union was not invading Afghanistan in an effort to gain territory and consolidate with what was then effectively a client nation, India. Now it’s that terrorists were invading Russia. This is said because the freedom fighters of Afghanistan, after being abandoned by the U.S., decided that the U.S. was to blame for their troubles and decided to form what became Al Qaeda.
One could learn an obvious lesson here: don’t abandon allies, even after the task (in this case, repelling a Russian invasion) is done. But that’s not what’s being stated here; if it was, it would undermine Trump’s preferred “cut and run” foreign policy. Instead, it’s that Russia was justified, it wasn’t even invading; rather, that there were existing terrorists, and who funded them? Oh, that’s right, Reagan and Bush.
Reagan brought the country back from the doldrums of sky-high mortgage rates, constant inflation, and a perception that perhaps the office had become too complex for any one person to handle. He did so after doing things like risking his political future to stand against gays being disallowed from teaching positions in California, under the Briggs Initiative. He was not always as conservative as Coolidge, one of his heroes, but he strove to do the best he could with the cards he was dealt – in Reagan’s case, a strong Democrat majority in both House and Senate and a populace still distrustful of Republicans following the Nixon administration’s problems. Even though a small faction resented him, Reagan united the country.
Trump, on the other hand, is one of the most divisive figures in the history of American politics. And, contrary to the way his fans wish to portray that as being the fault of an aggressive Democrat-friendly media and “fake news”, the simple fact is that a considerable part of it is Trump’s embrace of division… from the efforts to consolidate and recruit the various white supremacist groups by campaign manager Steve Bannon all the way through to throwing Reagan and Bush under the bus in the clip from yesterday.
Stephen Moore, the economist who remains locked in sycophantic praise of Trump even after being kicked to the curb for failing to adequately embrace tariffs, reportedly told House Republicans in 2016 they were no longer the conservative party of Reagan but rather the populist party of Trump. This statement has borne out over the past two years. What he did not say was that Reagan and all prior conservatives would have to be demeaned, diminished and dismissed in favor of the new face of the party.
That is a lesson which is still in the process of being taught. Regrettably, most Republicans seem to be eager to learn it.