Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Ronald Reagan!

Ronald Reagan ... 40th president of the United States of America, served as president between 81 and 89. A president you either love or hate. And that is probably why, on the internet, the debate will still live on with websites and pages either stating how amazing a president he was, or how awful he really was.
I personally would have to say I did not believe he was that great of a president, but I acknowledge that everyone has a different opinion on the matter.

So this week, we had to identify two web pages that dealt with Reagan admiration and Reagan hatred. So my first pick, which is clearly an example of hagiography, comes from conservapedia. When I came across the website, I knew I had found my holy grail in terms of Reagan hagiography!! Let's face it, if you are a conservative, chances are you will like Reagan. So a whole website that has a clear conservative tendency, I could only find what I was looking for.
The page is constructed like any other page on a wiki-type website, so if you are unfamiliar, a good example of that type of website is wikipedia. There is a brief summary of who Reagan was, his life in big lines, and then a series of subparts detailing certain aspects of his life, such as his childhood, family background, etc...
The view on Reagan, his life and his presidency are clearly biased right from the start. Indeed, instead of detailing his life in an objective, descriptive way; words such as "universally hailed" and "one of the greatest presidents" appear early on. The only reason the website seem to give for such greatness is his conservatism. Indeed, let me bet that if Reagan had been a democrat and things had he done the same things (well, there would have been a slight difference if his political inclination had been different, but well..), conservatives would dis him simply for being a liberal. It is as simple as that apparently.
So from this website, I did learn things about his life which I did not know beforehand, such as his career in television and film, and I also learned that "his success became the model for Republicans into the 21st century".

my second link is to a blog and the blogpost is very simply entitled "I hate Ronald Reagan". Can't really get any simpler than that. And to find it, I simply googled Ronald Reagan hate haha.
The blogpost dates back from 2005, thus under the Bush presidency. The blogger lists reason why she hates Ronald Reagan. Most of his reasons have to do with taxes and how corporations are taxed at a lower rate than individuals and, of course, the difference is paid by individuals' tax money.
He also talks about the similarities between George W. Bush's president and Reagan's. Are also mentioned, the tax diminution for the rich and how unjust that is for the rest of the citizens. And both presidents also increased government spending through the increase of military spending. 
At the end of the argument, the author concludes that all of the things both presidents have done, Reagan as well as Bush, is weaken the government and give more power to the corporations.
The fact that I agree with most things mentioned here is irrelevant (or is it?), but this proves that hatred for Reagan is still running deep in today's America, and that he is even being compared to George W. Bush. I am not sure other presidents have provoked such vivid debates, especially still years after their presidency. 
So, love or hate, the Reagan debate has yet to die off.

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