Friday, July 10, 2015

The Common Sense of an Uncommon Man: The Wit, Wisdom, and Eternal Optimism of Ronald Reagan

The Common Sense of an Uncommon Man: The Wit, Wisdom, and Eternal Optimism of Ronald ReaganThe Common Sense of an Uncommon Man: The Wit, Wisdom, and Eternal Optimism of Ronald Reagan by Ronald Reagan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ronald Reagan is my favorite President of all time. His adopted son, Michael, put this book together. It is mostly quotes (just a little commentary from Michael) from the President. The quotes are divided by categories. There are 62 categories. Most of the quotes have the places and dates of where and when Reagan said them. If you know President Reagan you know he was a fantastic communicator. His quotes are well-known and inspiring. His quotes also are just as true today as they were the day he said them. I have listed just a few of the quotes below:

Someone told my old boss Jack Warner that I'd announced for governor. And Jack thought about it for just a second, and then he said, "No, Jimmy Stewart for governor, Ronald Reagan for best friend.

If I'm ever in need of any transplants, I've got parts they don't make anymore.

I believe this blessed land was set apart in a very special way, a country created by men and women who came here not in search of gold but in search of God. They would be free people, living under the law, with faith in their Maker and their future.

When White House aid Lyn Nofziger told Reagan [after Reagan had been shot in the assassination attempt], "You'll be happy to know that the government is running normally while you're in the hospital." Reagan instantly quipped: What makes you think I'd be happy about that?

Bureaucrats favor cutting red tape - lengthwise.

You can't be for big government, big taxes, and big bureaucracy and still be for the little guy.

I'm just a citizen temporarily in public service.

The Marxist vision of man without God must eventually be seen as an empty and a false faith - the second oldest in the world - first proclaimed in the Garden of Eden with whispered words of temptation: "Ye shall be as gods."

I have one question for those rulers: If communism is the wave of the future, why do you still need walls to keep people in and armies of secret police to keep them quiet?

Conservatives were brought up to hate deficits and justifiably so. We've long thought there are two things in Washington that are unbalanced - the budget and the liberals.

I don't think that making it difficult for law-abiding citizens to obtain guns will lower the crime rate - not when criminals will always find a way to get them.

We will always remember. We will always be proud. We will always be prepared, so we may always be free.

The great rediscovery of the 1980s has been that, lo and behold, the moral way of government is the practical way of government: Democracy, the profoundly good, is also the profoundly productive.

My whole family were Democrats. As a matter of fact, I had an uncle who won a medal once for never having missed voting in an election for fifteen years ... and he'd been dead for fourteen.

We need true tax reform that will at least make a start toward restoring for our children the American dream that wealth is denied to no one, that each individual has the right to fly as high as his strength and ability will take him.

A friend of mine was asked to a costume ball a short time ago. He slapped some egg on his face and went as a liberal economist.

Yours is a sacred mission. In the words of Henry Adams, "A teacher affects eternity." Each of you, as tiring and routine as your daily duties may sometimes seem, is a keeper of the American dream, the American future. By informing and exercising young minds, by transmitting learning and values, you are the vital link between all that is most precious in our national heritage and our children and grandchildren, who will some day take up the burdens of guiding the greatest, freest society on Earth.

What America needs is spiritual renewal and reconciliation - first, man with God, and then man with man.

Whatever happens now, I owe my life to God and will try to serve Him in every way I can. Diary entry after being released from the hospital following the 1981 assassination attempt

Freedom prospers only where the blessings of God are avidly sought and humbly accepted.
When the liberals say "family" they mean "Big Brother in Washington." When we say "family" we mean "honor thy father and mother."

The right of parents and the rights of family take precedence over those of Washington-based bureaucrats and social engineers.

Man is not free unless government is limited. There's a clear cause and effect here that is as neat and predictable as a law of physics" As government expands, liberty contracts.

For two hundred years we've lived in the future, believing that tomorrow would be better than today and today would be better than yesterday. I still believe that.

Let us be frank. Evil still stalks the planet. Its ideology may be nothing more than bloodlust; no program more complex than economic plunder or military aggrandizement. But it is evil all the same. And wherever there are forces that would destroy the human spirit and diminish human potential, they must be recognized, and they must be countered.

Government is like a baby - an alimentary canal with a big appetite at one end and no sense of responsibility at the other.

Nothing lasts longer than a temporary government program.

Either you will control your government, or government will control you.

If you want to make sure crime doesn't pay, let the government run it.

Once upon a time, the only contact you had with government was when you went to buy a stamp.

My young friends, history is a river that may take us as it will. But we have the power to navigate, to choose direction, and make our passage together.

There's nothing as good for the inside of a man as the outside of a horse.

[Once, as governor of California, someone suggested to Reagan that he might build rapport with the young people if he rode a motorcycle. His reply:]I'll have to stick to horseback. You see, there is the matter of security. When I go anyplace, I'm one of a group. We might look like Hell's Angels with all of us there on motorcycles.

A leader, once convinced a particular course of action is the right one, must have the determination to stick with it and be undaunted when the going gets rough.

We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give.

All of these men were different, but they shared this in common: They loved America very much. There was nothing they wouldn't do for her. And they loved with the sureness of the young. Arlington Cemetery, May 25, 1986

We stand on a lonely, windswept point on the northern shore of France. The air is soft, but forty years ago at this moment, the air was dense with smoke and the cries of men, and the air was filled with the crack of rifle fire and the rear of cannon. At dawn, on the morning of the sixth of June 1944, two-hundred and twenty-five Rangers jumped off the British landing craft and ran to the bottom of these cliffs. Their mission was one of the most difficult and daring of the invasion: to climb these sheer and desolate cliffs and take out the enemy guns. The Allies had been told that some of the mightiest of these guns were here they would be trained on the beaches to stop the Allied advance.

The Rangers looked up and saw the enemy soldiers - at the edge of the cliffs, shooting down at them with machine guns and throwing grenades. And the American Rangers began to climb. They shot rope ladders over the face of these cliffs and began to pull themselves up. When one Ranger fell, another would take his place. When one rope was cut, a Ranger would grab another and begin his climb again. They climbed, shot back, and held their footing. Soon, one by one, the Rangers pulled themselves over the top, and in seizing the firm land at the top of these cliffs, they began to seize back the continent of Europe. Two-hundred and twenty-five came here. Another two days of fighting only ninety could still bear arms.

Behind me is a memorial that symbolizes the Ranger daggers that were thrust into the top of these cliffs. And before me are the men who put them there.

These are the boys of Point du Hoc. These are the men who took the cliffs. These are the champions who helped free a continent. These are the heroes who helped end a war. You can listen to this speech, The Boys of Pointe Du Hoc.

The crew of the space shuttle Challenger. honored us by the manner in which they lived their lives. We will never forget them nor the last time we saw them, this morning, as they prepared for their journey and waved good-bye and "slipped the surly bonds of earth" to "touch the face of God." This speech can also be watched online. You can watch the takeoff and explosion here!

Die-hard conservatives thought that I couldn't get everything I asked for, I would jump off the cliff with the flag flying - go down in flames. No, if I can get seventy or eighty percent of what it is I'm trying to get ... I'll take that and then continue to try to get the rest in the future.

We intend to keep the peace - we will also keep our freedom.

Professional politicians like to talk about the value of experience in government. Nuts! The only experience you gain in politics is how to be political.

Free enterprise has done more to reduce poverty than all the government programs dreamed up by Democrats.

My friends, some years ago the federal government declared war on poverty - and poverty won.

I'll confess that I've been a little afraid to suggest what I'm going to suggest, what I'm going to say. But I'm more afraid not to. Can we begin our crusade joined together in a moment of silent prayer? [The audience rises, with heads bowed, for a few silent moments, after which Ronald Reagan concludes:] God bless America! ~Republican National Convention, Detroit, Michigan, July 17, 1980

We don't lump people by groups or special interests. And let me add, in the party of Lincoln there is no room for intolerance and not even a small corner for anti-Semitism or bigotry of any kind. Many people are welcome in our house, but not the bigots.

I, too, have always believed that God's greatest gift is human life and that we have a duty to protect the life of an unborn child. Until someone can prove the unborn child is not a life, shouldn't we give it the benefit of the doubt and assume it is?

I know that some believe that voluntary prayer in schools should be restricted to a moment of silence. We already have the right to remain silent - we can take our Fifth Amendment.

Republicans believe every day is the Fourth of July, but Democrats believe every day is April 15.

Anyone who seeks success or greatness should first forget about both and seek only the truth. The rest will follow.

We didn't discover our values in a poll taken a week before the convention.

The doctor's fight against socialized medicine is your fight. We can't socialize the doctors without socializing the patients.

I think the best possible social program is a job.

We don't celebrate dependence day on the Fourth of July. We celebrate Independence Day.

Nations crumble from within when the citizenry asks of government those things which the citizenry might better provide for itself.

I recommend this book for anyone who enjoys history!

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