Friday, October 8, 2010

Shades of Reagan

If we look to the past to try to understand the future, we need to look no further than to the Jimmy Carter presidency between 1976 and 1980. The results of high unemployment, general unhappiness with big government and the failing policies of the Carter administration guided the American people toward a new direction. Ronald Reagan was a product of an America looking for a stronger leader on the economy and national defense. The same could be said today.

It was about this time during the Carter years (around 1978) that inflation and high energy prices became an issue. Today, Fed officials are mulling inflation as a fix. And if that isn't enough to give you a dose of Carter redux, then check out the piece today on Investor's Business Daily: As Fed Prints Money, Gold, Oil Soar.

It's a remake of the same movie. Only Barack Obama is Jimmy Carter and Reagan's character is played by a woman. The parallels are amazingly similar. Consider even that people are talking about Hillary Clinton running much the same way they spoke of Teddy Kennedy running in 1980. My prediction on that is if she is not placated with the VP spot, you will see Hillary run. History says so.

Governor Palin is well in tune with the parallels. In West Palm Beach, she "implicitly addressed questions about her own electability by noting that critics also said Ronald Reagan couldn’t win in 1980," three attendees told POLITICO (h/t Conservatives4Palin). "Pointing out that the knock on Reagan was that he was also too far to the right, the former Alaska governor repeatedly invoked the 40th president and conservative icon, at one point citing the quotation he was most fond of: that America is a 'shining city on a hill.'”

Conservatives4Palin points out that "Governor Palin is a lot closer to Obama now than Reagan was to Carter at a much later stage in the election as Carted led by a "comfortable margin of about 25%" in 1980, not 1978."

Palin is playing her potential presidential run directly from the Reagan playbook. And why not? The key to being successful is to find a successful person that you admire and emulate them. If Palin has mastered this success principle, the world is more than her oyster.

"In the latest and clearest example of her plans, Palin met with some 50 national conservative leaders Wednesday in Palm Beach, Florida where she discussed economic and diplomatic policy and led some to declare that she's in the race" according to Paul Bedard of US News and World Report.
"This was an indication that she's strongly considering running," said one insider. "She was very knowledgeable and gave intelligent answers, despite how she's been characterized," added the insider. "And she was extremely charming."
This leads me to the conclusion that the whole dumb meme was simply a result of "I fear you, therefore I must smear you." These conservative big wigs obviously did not find anything lacking in Sarah Palin's evolution as a potential presidential candidate.

We can turn the clock back to turn it ahead. In 2012, Sarah Palin will be more than ripe, a political behemoth in her own right - an example of how someone from a small town like Dixon, Monmouth and Galesburg Illinois Wasilla Alaska can do the work required to become a great speaker, knowledgeable in policy and in touch with the people to the point where they can become president of the greatest country on earth.

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