Tear Down This Myth

Tear Down This Myth

How the Reagan Legacy Has Distorted Our Politics and Haunts Our Future

Book - 2009
Average Rating:
Rate this:
In this provocative new book, award-winning political journalist Will Bunch unravels the story of how a right-wing cabal hijacked the mixed legacy of Ronald Reagan, a personally popular but hugely divisive 1980s president, and turned him into a bronze icon to revive their fading ideology. They succeeded to the point where all the GOP candidates for president in 2008 scurried to claim his mantle, no matter how preposterous the fit.With clear eyes and an ever-present wit, Bunch reveals the truth about the Ronald Reagan legacy, including the following:Despite the idolatry of the last fifteen years, Reagan's average popularity as president was only, well, average, lower than that of a half-dozen modern presidents. More important, while he was in office, a majority of Americans opposed most of his policies and by 1988 felt strongly that the nation was on the wrong track. Reagan's 1981 tax cut, weighted heavily toward the rich, did not cause the economic recovery of the 1980s. It was fueled instead by dropping oil prices, the normal business cycle, and the tight fiscal policies of the chairman of the Federal Reserve appointed by Jimmy Carter. Reagan's tax cut did, however, help usher in the deregulated modern era of CEO and Wall Street greed.Most historians agree that Reagan's waste-ridden military buildup didn't actually "win the Cold War." And Reagan mythmakers ignore his real contributions -- his willingness to talk to his Soviet adversaries, his genuine desire to eliminate nuclear weapons, and the surprising role of a "liberal" Hollywood-produced TV movie.George H. W. Bush's and Bill Clinton's rolling back of Reaganomics during the 1990s spurred a decade of peace and prosperity as well as the reactionary campaign to pump up the myth of Ronald Reagan and restore right-wing hegemony over Washington. This effort has led to war, bankrupt energy policies, and coming generations of debt.With masterful insight, Bunch exposes this dangerous effort to reshape America's future by rewriting its past. As the Obama administration charts its course, he argues, it should do so unencumbered by the dead weight of misplaced and unearned reverence.
Publisher: New York : Free Press, 2009
Edition: 1st Free Press hardcover ed
ISBN: 9781416597629
Branch Call Number: History 973.927 BUN


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Nov 25, 2015

“Not Even a Hedgehog – The stupidity of Ronald Reagan”
by Christopher Hitchens (1949-2011)

greglibrary Nov 21, 2015

All it takes are life’s experiences...follow the money cartel in California that put him in Sacramento...then watch as R.R. dismantles a public educational system [best in the nation and some say the world], ...quotes film monologues to make America feel good about itself then brings the same ‘act’ to Washington. The ‘teflon president’ amazed other world leaders’ sharing their dialogues opining his lack of and depth of knowledge. Was it not Gorbachev who remarked that R.R. was a good man who made a better neighbor but never a world leader?
Read the ‘Nixon Tape’ transcripts from N. and Kissinger’s meeting with him in the oval office. Even they remarked that R.R. was too shallow and would never [likely] become president.
Fairly good book... however old news to those of us who were watching.

Jun 03, 2015

I always hate reading about Reagan, a former progressive, who embraced wicked capitalism and his 2nd wife's wealth, changing his once honorable ways. Great book!


Add Age Suitability

EuSei Jan 04, 2016

EuSei thinks this title is suitable for 1 years and under

DebAK Nov 23, 2015

DebAK thinks this title is suitable for 1 years and under


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at PPL

To Top