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Mike Stark somehow managed to get on Rush Limbaugh's radio show yesterday. After confronting Limbaugh with Reagan's actual "accomplishments", Stark asked how on earth Limbaugh and conservatives could possibly support Reagan. The response (or lack thereof) was just classic radio, not to be missed.
You just have to love this: "I want to know why an amnesty-giving, tax-raising, cut-and-running, negotiating-with-terrorists kind of guy is a hero to the conservative movement."
Rush has no answer other than to blame Media Matters and suggest that liberals "just wouldn't understand." Predictably, he turns it into proof that liberals just need to be destroyed:
So you, sir, a nice individual, I'm sure you're a fine guy (probably not too much fun at a ball game, unlike Bill Clinton), but still, you illustrate that people like you just have to be defeated, not met halfway and gotten along with. I mean politically.
Stark's question has been my question. I can point to a lot of Reagan damage, but by today's conservative standards, Reagan would be considered too liberal for their movement. The Social Security payroll tax had to go up. Had it not been raised, Social Security would have been bankrupt within 10 months. There was no option. The trade-off for that was the increase in Social Security retirement age, which could have been averted had the wage base for Social Security been determined in a way that kept up with the rise in wages.
This weekend, conservatives are descending on Santa Barbara, California, for the Grand Celebration of Reagan's 100th birthday. That's right up the road from me. Sarah Palin is the keynote speaker tonight. Cheney will be speaking tomorrow. It's an extravaganza! I hope to survive the pollution that comes with all these prominent "conservatives" hanging out in my neighborhood, and wonder how it is that they can dance so delicately around the fact that Ronald Reagan was no conservative, at least not as they define it.
The full transcript is at the end of Stark's post here. It has some of the most amazing contradictions I've ever seen. I wonder how it must have pained Limbaugh to twist himself up like a pretzel in order to go where he went.