Birthday Tribute: President Ronald Reagan

President Ronald Reagan 1911-2004 (Official Portrait - Wikimedia)

President Ronald Reagan 1911-2004 (Official Portrait – Wikimedia)

This week we honor the life of Ronald Reagan (February 6, 1911 – June 5, 2004, age 93), 40th President of the United States, Governor of California, Army officer, President of the Screen Actors Guild, movie actor, TV host, rancher, husband to Nancy, and father of five.

His presidency was marked by his diplomatic successes along with his staunch advocacy for limited government, lower taxes, and a strong national defense. Along with Britain’s Prime Minister Thatcher and Pope John Paul II, he is credited with helping end the Cold War against the former Soviet Union. It was called the Cold War because it involved no conventional battles.

Along with Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Ronald Reagan is considered one of the two most influential presidents of the 20th Century. Historians also consider The Gipper, a nickname attributable to his role in the movie, Knute Rockne, as one of the top 10 greatest presidents of all time.

Also nicknamed, The Great Communicator, one of his most famous speeches was delivered in front the Berlin Wall and included the famous line, “Mr. Gorbachev, (the Soviet Leader at the time) tear down this wall!” This is considered one of the greatest speeches of all-time. (Read background and commentary here.) Although he was subject to a failed assassination attempt in 1981, President Reagan lived until 2004.

 Selected Quotations

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction.

One of the traditional methods of imposing statism or socialism on a people has been by way of medicine.  It’s very easy to disguise a medical program as a humanitarian project.

Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other.

We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.

Welfare‘s purpose should be to eliminate, as far as possible, the need for its own existence.

I’m convinced that today the majority of Americans want what those first Americans wanted: A better life for themselves and their children; a minimum of government authority.

Politics is supposed to be the second oldest profession. I have come to realize that it bears a very close resemblance to the first.

Ronald Reagan as host of General Electric Theater, 1954-62 (Courtesy Reagan Library - Wikimedia)

Ronald Reagan as host of General Electric Theater, 1954-62 (Courtesy Reagan Library – Wikimedia)

With regard to the freedom of the individual for choice with regard to abortion, there’s one individual who’s not being considered at all. That’s the one who is being aborted. And I’ve noticed that everybody that is for abortion has already been born.

They say the world has become too complex for simple answers. They are wrong. There are no easy answers, but there are simple answers. We must have the courage to do what we know is morally right.

We will always remember. We will always be proud. We will always be prepared, so we may always be free.

Above all, we must realize that no arsenal or no weapon in the arsenals of the world is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women.

In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem.

We must act today in order to preserve tomorrow.

Ronald Reagan at his Rancho Del Cielo in California circa 1976 (Michael Evans - WH - Wikimedia)

Ronald Reagan at his Rancho Del Cielo in California circa 1976 (Michael Evans – WH – Wikimedia)

Trust, but verify.

Regrettably, we live at a time when some persons do not value all human life. They want to pick and choose which individuals have value.

The nine most terrifying words in the English language are “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.”

I hope we once again have reminded people that man is not free unless government is limited.

To make and online visit to the Reagan Ranch, click here.

To make an online visit to The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation & Library, click here.

Source: White House, Wikiquotes, Wikipedia

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