Monday, June 14, 2004

Who were they talking about; Reagan or Bush?

Katherine Jean Lopez at The Corner on National Review Online has and interesting little quiz. 20 Quotes are provided, and we are to figure out whether they were referring to Reagan or Bush. For posterity, I am posting them below. If you want to work it out on your own, then go to the original post referenced above, as I am also posting the original source of the quotes, again, for a single source reference for myself. If you just want to know, read on.

1)“European discomfort with the President, however, goes beyond the political differences that preceded and will outlast his presidency. It has, as well, a personal basis. He appears to Europeans to be ill equipped for the responsibility that he bears, a kind of cowboy figure, bellicose, ignorant, with a simplistic view of the world… [Michael Mandelbaum, Foreign Affairs, ”America and the World 1985”]

2)“[The President] came to Europe to persuade people that he is not the shallow, nuclear cowboy of certain unkind assessments. Said [a] White House spokesman … on the eve of departure, ‘Some in Europe do not know or understand him.’ But now that the president has been among them… Europeans may think they got him right the first time.” [Mary McGrory, Washington Post, June 10, 1982]

3)“For many Europeans… America has become paranoid… [which has] led them to take their distance from us… Mutual recrimination becomes political action. Both sides of the Atlantic, writes … an editor of the influential Hamburg weekly Die Zeit, are ‘losing interest in each other.’ … The estrangement has not come naturally. The communality of heritage and beliefs between the United States and Europe is old and powerful and has withstood frequent vicissitudes. However, an accumulation of events and developments has built up enough discord to threaten the most solid of foundations.” [New York Times, May 9, 1982]

4)“The anti-American theme, a popular subject for campaigning politicians, is aimed mostly at U.S. policy and the [U.S.] administration. This country is pictured as a French David standing up to an American Goliath. [The French foreign minister] warned during the … controversy: ‘There is a progressive divorce between Washington and Europe …. The U.S. seems totally indifferent to our problems.’” [US News & World Report, December 20, 1982]

5)“In a day of protests across Western Europe, hundreds of thousands of people demonstrated against the [American policy]… The protest organizers said about 1.2 million people took part in the demonstrations…. Hundreds of thousands jammed central London in what was said to be the largest protest of its kind in British history. In Rome, an estimated 350,000 marchers paraded through the center of the city.” [James M. Markham, New York Times, October 23, 1983]

6) “Europe Sees U.S. Foreign Policy As Out Of Control” – Los Angeles Times headline [Los Angeles Times headline, December 4, 1986]

7) “Speaking to members of the American Stock Exchange, [Senator Edward] Kennedy said, ‘Our present course is taking the United States toward unilateral intervention … toward a war, whether we want it or not, whether we like it or not, (that) will inevitably involve American forces in combat. But surely, an American invasion… would plunge us into the most unwanted, unnecessary and unjustified war in our history,’ Kennedy said…. Kennedy said Congress must propose ‘an alternative policy with a real prospect of success.’ ‘So, as a first step, we must call off the dogs of war,’ he said.” [United Press International, June 11, 1985]

8)“[W]e have a President who is obsessed by the subject. [Nicaragua for Ronald Reagan – or Iraq for George W. Bush] is his Moby Dick. Like a political Ahab, he pursues it beyond reason, beyond humanity, beyond safety. In his frustration, he spews out rage and hate, fear and falsehood.” [Anthony Lewis, New York Times, March 24, 1986]

9) “[The President] has substituted a mindless militarism for a foreign policy… frightening our friends… Already, the cost of [the President’s] policies is devastating to our country in economic strength, in diplomatic influence, in national security, in moral stature.” [John B. Oakes, former senior editor, New York Times, November 1, 1981]

10) “‘This has been a foreign policy without a guiding star,’ said… a former official in Republican administrations… ‘It has been the most ideological administration of U.S foreign relations I've seen and the least conceptual, in terms of a clear vision of what the world ought to be like and what we would do to get there.’” [Don Oberdorfer, Washington Post, November 20, 1983]

11)“The tangible achievements of his first term have been relatively modest. His economic program, in the judgment of many experts, has succeeded almost in spite of itself – and the current recovery is built on record deficits that will burden the nation for a generation. His foreign policy has lacked coherence…” [Tom Morganthau, Newsweek, August 27, 1984]

12) “Unilateral intervention by a truculent and trigger-happy Uncle Sam might delight some U.S. citizens – frustrated by events, eager for easy answers – but elsewhere… it would only serve to reaffirm the worst fears…” [Editorial, Los Angeles Times, August 7, 1985]

13) “The United States has a myopic, ideological foreign policy that really isn't a policy at all, but a collection of maneuvers produced by prejudice and instinct. The men responsible for American diplomacy, it seems, often fail to grasp they have put us into grave trouble around the world…. [The President] has angered and undermined his closest ally in Europe, [the British Prime Minister], and he has aggravated the gravest problem facing the United States, a problem symbolized by the largest protest demonstrations in Europe since World War II...” [Robert Kaiser, Washington Post, October 30, 1983]

14)“To win that vote [congressional vote to authorize support for its foreign policy goals], the Administration is now reduced to McCarthyite tactics: the insinuation that foes of its … policy are … stooges or worse. Can Congress be whipped by these tactics into a policy of such moral, military and political degradation?” [John B. Oakes, New York Times, March 7, 1986]

15)“When a politician claims that God favors his programs, alarm bells should ring… If there is anything that should be illegitimate in the American system, it is such use of sectarian religiosity to sell a political program. And this was done not by some fringe figure, but by the President of the United States.” [Anthony Lewis, New York Times, March 10, 1983]

16)“What is the world to think when the greatest of powers is led by a man who applies to the most difficult human problem a simplistic theology – one in fact rejected by most theologians?... What must the leaders of Western Europe think of such a speech? … The exaggeration and the simplicities are there not only in the rhetoric but in the process by which he makes decisions.” [Anthony Lewis, New York Times, March 10, 1983]

17)“Perhaps even more dangerous, [the President’s] smug view, if further inculcated in Americans, will preclude self-examination, humility, a willingness to concede error. Are we so clearly a God-directed, chosen people that we have no need to question our virtue, or the evil of our rivals? If [the President] really thinks so, he has shaken off the strongest restraints on human conduct – doubt and fear.” [Tom Wicker, New York Times, March 15, 1983]

18) "[Pollster Lou Harris] believes that [the President] is polarizing the country more than any president since Franklin D. Roosevelt and that, when such strong political polarization occurs, it tends to lead to a greater voter turnout. That would benefit the Democrats…" [Haynes Johnson, Washington Post, January 29, 1984]

19) "'[The President] has been a divider, not a uniter… The American people will reject four more years of danger, four more years of pain,’ [a leading congressional Democrat] said." [The Associated Press, January 30, 1984]

20) "[One state Democratic chairman] said: '[The President] has a lot of problems. The less he does, the better he does; the more he does, the worse he does. He keeps polarizing the voters, and the Republican Party is not big enough to allow that. An incumbent President must unite the country, not divide it. It’s unbelievably bad strategy on their part.'" [Dom Bonafede, The National Journal, May 5, 1984]

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