|From Album 5|
That's Rick Perlstein's description of Ronaldus Magnus, and looks like I'll be adding his latest book to a reading list that's expanding almost as fast as my midsection. I'm just old enough to remember the man Steve Martin described as someone "who can make this country what it once was: a frozen wasteland covered in ice."
More seriously, I also recall the Gipper getting remarkably little flack at the time for his appalling visit and endorsement of States Rights in Philadelphia, Mississippi…a number of stories instead focused on Jimmy Carter mistakenly calling the town "the birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan." Hmmm.
Anyway, Perlstein points out we're living with the consequences of Reagan's liturgy of absolution, from Central American refugees fleeing a region destabilized in the name of "fighting communism" to the head-in-the-sand-denial of climate change ("trees cause pollution") to blaming the poor for economic problems (as if the poor had that kind of money and power to begin with)…But I guess that's what happens when you've got a substantial number of people who flee reality for the comfort of cozy myths…