It seems that Barack Obama is much less a narcissist than Ronald Reagan was

In a  comment I ran across on Facebook yesterday, an acquaintance of mine declared in familiar — and grossly mistaken — right-wing fashion that President Obama “is a narcissist.” What a laugh. Of course, there’s at least a whiff of racism in that narcissism rap against Obama. It suggests that the black man in the White House is a bit uppity. But never mind that angle. Let’s focus instead on the roots of the narcissism charge against Obama and the lack of evidence to support it. This whole business arose a...

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The sight of black folks toting guns prompted Ronald Reagan to oppose open-carry

In my seven-plus years as a blogger, I’ve had a lot of fun debunking the many myths about Ronald Reagan widely believed among today’s right-wing Republicans. These people generally are surprised, for example, to learn that Reagan was an advocate of gun control. Even more surprising is the story of how the Gipper became such an advocate when he was governor of California in the late 1960s. The Black Panthers were a big deal in California in those days, and their militancy scared the hell out of much of the white populace....

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Much of what passes for conservatism these days would have appalled even Ronald Reagan

On the 20th anniversary last month of Timothy McVeigh’s bombing of a federal building in Oklahoma City, syndicated columnist Leonard Pitts wrote this: Twenty years ago, the idea of anti-government resistance seemed confined to a lunatic fringe operating in the shadows beyond the mainstream. Twenty years later, it is the mainstream, the beating heart of the Republican Party. And while certainly no responsible figure on the right advocates or condones what he did, it is just as certain that McVeigh’s violent antipathy toward Washington,...

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Right-wing foes of deal with Iran are like critics of Reagan’s nuclear treaty with Russians

From generation to  generation, pseudo-patriotic right-wingers are usually pretty much the same. They almost always prefer brinksmanship, if not outright war, to the negotiation of treaties with America’s foes.  Talk is for sissies in striped pants, they say.  The tough-guy approach is for real men, they say. As I write these words, right-wing pundits and politicians are calculating their angry responses to the deal reached today regarding nuclear policies in Iran. They’ll accuse President Obama and his foreign-policy team of...

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Former aide to Ronald Reagan says today’s right-wingers are stupid and not very well-read

Bruce Bartlett (above), a former economic adviser to Ronald Reagan during his presidency, is at it again — denouncing the far-right wing of today’s Republican Party. In a television interview the other day, Bartlett responded thusly to a question about how Reagan might have been treated at last week’s Conservative Political Action Conference: “I think he probably would be booed out of the crowd,” Barlett said, “if only because he gave amnesty to illegal aliens back in 1986. Nativists like Representative...

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