In his two volume set The Age of Reagan, author Steven Hayward chronicles the rise of Ronald Reagan from his electrifying speech at the 1964 Republican Presidential Convention to the end of his second term as President in 1989. The first volume was a fascinating account of what he calls the "fall of the old liberal order" and this book (not for the faint or heart) offers a detailed account of the rise and fall of LBJ and his "Great Society" after his 1964 landslide victory over Barry Goldwater.
The book is part narrative history, part policy analysis and part political biography of Reagan and his career progression as he serves two terms and California governor. Hayward sometimes goes into nauseating detail on the detrimental effects of LBJ's social policies and his feckless handling of the Vietnam War. There are some REALLY amazing parallels to another wayward socialist, our current President and his lackeys on Capital Hill who believe that more government, more regulation and more social spending will cure our ongoing recession and give everyone universal health care without bankrupting our country.
Hayward pulls no punches and his analysis of the 1976 Presidential Race where Reagan almost grabbed the nomination from Gerald Ford was very eye opening to me. But destiny does indeed wait for the man and it likely took, as the wags say, a Jimmy Carter to bring out a Ronald Reagan. Carter is an even bigger buffoon than LBJ, not that Hayward is kind to Nixon either, and there are definite parallels to Obama here too, particularly the complete disaster that was Carter's foreign policy.
So, the question is...who will be the Reagan to replace the Carterbama? I must say I am not sold on any Republican yet...but there are some true believers out there...I have to think the bullpen is deep and practically anyone would be better than Carterbama....could an outsider Governor from a western frontier state rise again??? Time will tell.....