Barger for US Senate

Official campaign website of Al Barger, 2004 Indiana Libertarian Party candidate for US Senate

"It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man who knows that the law is today, can guess what it will be tomorrow. Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that be a rule, which is little known, and less fixed?" - James Madison, Federalist #62

Friday, June 11, 2004

Reagan was OK

So we just buried President Reagan today. Seems like a good place to start with this campaign. I was nominated by the Central Committee of the Libertarian Party of Indiana as our candidate for United States Senate on June 6, a few hours after the passing of the president.

I never voted for Reagan. I turned 18 in October of 1980, but I was already a committed purist Libertarian Party supporter, passing out Ed Clark literature door to door a good year before I ever met another self-described Libertarian. Sure, it SOUNDED good when candidate Reagan said he was going to cut government, but I didn't think any Republican (or Democrat) would ever really do such a thing. Would that he were the budget slashing monster of pinko nightmares.

I was correct in that judgment, despite my tender years. For all the squalling and bawling about Reagan killing the poor and "slashing" the budget, he never so much as actually proposed even a trim. The budget went UP every year. He added MORE cabinet level departments rather than getting rid of them. Plus, I really did not appreciate the drug war.

On the other hand, he did cut some tax rates, and did a few things in a regulatory relief vein that helped, and kept the government from getting a whole lot bigger and grabbier. Beat a sharp stick in the eye.

He was, of course, quite effective in dealing with the Soviets. I probably did not fully appreciate that at the time.

On the other hand, we could look at some flaws. I understand how he might have been thinking he was doing right, but he got us into bed with a lot of lowlife scummy dictator types that gave him the Iran-Contra heartburn, and ended up setting up the likes of Bin Laden. That cut and run in Beirut was a very costly mistake for the nation in the long run.

Still, he stood down the Soviets, and set the economy back in the right direction. He won his war. We'll will win this one.

Moreover, Reagan was a good guy. He tried to be honest and straight and do what was right and decent. Just purely as a human being, Ronald Reagan was outstanding. Among all the American political leaders of my lifetime, he's about the number one best pick whom I would like to have foreigners look at as our exemplar. THAT is the kind of people Americans are. The only politician in my lifetime that I would rate higher would be Reagan's hero Barry Goldwater.

Ronald Wilson Reagan was pretty good- we could (and have) done a lot worse. That's about as high a praise as you're likely to ever hear me utter for a big time politician. He probably did about as good as anyone could have, and still actually get elected.

Also, that was a beautiful final ceremony at his library. The children were great, even especially Patti Davis and her story about the goldfish. The pageantry and spectacle were perfect- not a gross display of military might with thousands of troops, but a quiet and dignified ceremonial with a dozen or so soldiers paying the nation's respects. The setting, the hills, the sunset- just breathtaking. Bonus image: Governor Schwarzenegger sitting on the front row next to Margaret Thatcher. That brief site of Maggie bowing to his coffin made a good quiet climax to the event.

This funeral made for a perfect final display of Reagan's pride in his country, and a final affirmation of Reagan's faith in the American people. Heck, even I was a little choked up.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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