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Reagan wasn't very smart but smart people gravitated to him. Reagan didn't know what the eff was going on. He was an actor and literally played a role when the cameras were on. There was an excellent article, I think in either Salon or Vanity Fair, in the words of the people who was with him and loved him, about how he was and it was scary to think he was running the country. Well, not him but the people around him and after he was shot, Nancy was the de facto president. She basically was the only way to Reagan and she was basically his chief of staff and would tell people "Ron said this and that" when it was her. Scary shit but shit got done because what ever you think of their politics they were all very smart and capable. 

In the present administration, its like that to some extent although Trump is smarter than Reagan I think. The big difference is Reagan listened to his people and took their advice, TRmp doesn't. He thinks his instincts are good and sometimes they are but he's a bit of an idiot savant. He can read a room like no other, great insights into things like political mood, but be completely oblivious to things we all see. 

I am not sure his own dad would have voted for him. No joke. 

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2 hours ago, chocolat steve said:

Reagan wasn't very smart but smart people gravitated to him. Reagan didn't know what the eff was going on. He was an actor and literally played a role when the cameras were on.

Factually untrue, according to a primary source.

Jerry Pournelle was a professor of political science at Pepperdine University back when Reagan was Governor of California.  Reagan and his people came through on a "get acquainted" visit, and various professors presented talks on their work, Jerry among them.  When Jerry got to the traditional "Are there any questions?" point, Reagan said "Yes, professor, I have two questions."  Reagan asked the questions, and Jerry was shocked.

Reagan's questions demonstrated two things.  First, he completely understood everything Jerry had discussed, in detail, and second, Reagan's knowledge of that field was not far behind Jerry's.  Jerry asked, unable to control himself, how Reagan had learned that much, and Reagan replied "There is a lot of downtime on a TV or movie set, and I'm a quick study, so I don't have to spend much time learning lines.  So I read books, to pass the time.  I daresay, Professor, I've probably read almost as many books as you have."

Jerry wrote the story up, for his online column, years later, when Reagan became President.

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Behind the Ronald Reagan myth: "No one had ever entered the White House so grossly ill informed"


No Democratic adversary would ever constitute as great a peril to the president’s political future, his advisers concluded, as Reagan did himself. Therefore, they protected him by severely restricting situations where he might blurt out a fantasy. His staff, one study reported, wrapped him “in excelsior,” while “keeping the press at shouting distance or beyond.” In his first year as president, he held only six news conferences—fewest ever in the modern era. Aides also prepared scores of cue cards, so that he would know how to greet visitors and respond to interviewers. His secretary of the treasury and later chief of staff said of the president: “Every moment of every public appearance was scheduled, every word scripted, every place where Reagan was expected to stand was chalked with toe marks.” Those manipulations, he added, seemed customary to Reagan, for “he had been learning his lines, composing his facial expressions, hitting his toe marks for half a century.” Each night, before turning in, he took comfort in a shooting schedule for the next day’s television- focused events that was laid out for him at his bedside, just as it had been in Hollywood.

His White House staff found it difficult, often impossible, to get him to stir himself to follow even this rudimentary routine. When he was expected to read briefing papers, he lazed on a couch watching old movies. On the day before a summit meeting with world leaders about the future of the economy, he was given a briefing book. The next morning, his chief of staff asked him why he had not even opened it. “Well, Jim,” the president explained, “The Sound of Music was on last night.”


His team devised ingenious ways to get him to pay attention. Aware that he was obsessed with movies, his national security adviser had the CIA put together a film on world leaders the president was scheduled to encounter. His defense secretary stooped lower. He got Reagan to sign off on production of the MX missile by showing him a cartoon. Once again, the president made a joke of his lack of involvement: “It’s true that hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance?” Cannon, who had observed him closely for years and with considerable admiration, took his lapses more seriously. “Seen either in military or economic terms,” he concluded, “the nation paid a high price for a president who skimped on preparation, avoided complexities and news conferences and depended far too heavily on anecdotes, charts, graphics and cartoons.”


Subordinates also found Reagan to be an exasperatingly disengaged administrator. “Trying to forge policy,” said George Shultz, his longest- serving secretary of state, was “like walking through a swamp.” Donald Regan recalled: “In the four years that I served as secretary of the treasury, I never saw President Reagan alone and never discussed economic philosophy....I had to figure these things out like any other American, by studying his speeches and reading the newspapers. . . . After I accepted the job, he simply hung up and vanished.” One of his national security advisers, General Colin Powell, recalled that “the President’s passive management style placed a tremendous burden on us,” and another national security adviser, Frank Carlucci, observed: “The Great Communicator wasn’t always the greatest communicator in the private sessions; you didn’t always get clean and crisp decisions. You assumed a lot. . . . You had to.

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...and he wasn't the most "open minded" person either. Not only the following tape of him, but also he opened his 1980 campaign in Philadelphia, Mississippi. Which is only known for one thing and one thing only and that is the murder of civil rights activists. He is from California. Most candidates with very few exceptions announce it from their home town and state. No one has ever given a reasoned explanation of why Philadelphia, Mississippi of all places was chosen. Signalling is what it was.  Says it all. 


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Anyway, I apologize to the others for making this the Ronald Reagan thread. 

I'm reading all kinds of things about covid. Seems those who partake of that little blue pill may help in the symptoms 😄


How a discovery that brought us Viagra could help those battling the coronavirus

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