"For all things change when the expectations generated by political discourse shift. In recent months, conservatives have argued that tax reform and tax cuts have made it difficult for politicians coming after Reagan to Postulate the necessity for creative spending; to insist that government, if properly concerned for the unfortunate, should throw money at social problems. For a time I shared that opinion. Now I doubt its validity. Leftism is a virus in the bloodstream of our body politic, present in authoritative appeals to tolerance and peace, fairness, charity, and a natural right to the property of others. It will not go away. It has a ground in envy and resentment, which are the fashionable modern responses to eminence and distinction of every kind.
Yet the political success of Ronald Reagan has forced the contemporary Left to disguise the intransigent emotional core of its world view behind talk of heart-rending circumstances and imminent disasters, which by reason of their severity cancel every consideration of means or ends. Assuredly, the task that President Reagan set for himself has not been completed. The practical consequences of his triumphs have been adumbrated by continuing Democratic power on Capitol Hill, by a press overwhelmingly on the left, and by the timidity of too many of his servants. We must remember that he was allowed to govern for only one term. The rest has been a holding action, undercut by concern for respectability and by a preoccupation with the 'Judgment of history'."
08 November 2012
M.E. Bradford on Reagan: