Michael Reagan has captured the essence of President Reagan’s values, fiscal policy, and tough-minded leadership in his book, The New Reagan Revolution. The sub-title should jolt any thinking American – “How Ronald Reagan’s Principles Can Restore America’s Greatness.” Clearly, we have drifted far from President Reagan’s vision for America. The city of the hill that he so loved has descended into the swamp of relativism and pragmatism that tolerates abortion on demand, celebrates homosexual marriage, and applauds big government and out-of-control spending.
The author walks readers on a path that traces Reagan from his days as a Democrat to his final days in the White House. Readers learn that Reagan was a man of unwavering conviction. He believed in a “banner of bold, unmistakable colors, with no pale pastel shades.” The author adds, “Every leader who waves a banner of bold colors has plenty of critics. If no one is criticizing you, you’re not being bold enough. Ronald Reagan never worried about his critics. He didn’t care what other people thought of him or said about him or wrote about him.” Reagan’s son continues, “Pale pastel people try to straddle both sides of every issue in an attempt to get everyone to like them. They try not to be too bold, because they fear offending others or drawing criticism … Ronald Reagan knew he would never please everybody, so he staked out bold positions on the issues – then he proved he was right.” This is the kind of leadership that brought the former Soviet Union to its knees. This is the kind of bold leadership America needs now – bold, decisive, and unwavering in the face of adversity!
The author rightly portrays his father as the great communicator. “Every leader,” writes the younger Reagan, “must communicate his vision in a way that persuades and inspires.” And while Reagan truly inspired America in his two terms as president, he did not compromise his cherished values. Nor did he play both sides for the middle in order to gain the loyalty of special interest groups. The great communicator spoke with clarity and conviction. He knew how to capture the heart of America. He knew the power of the spoken word.
Additionally, the author portrays President Reagan as the great unifier. The president once said, “We’ve got to quit talking to each other and about each other and go out and communicate to the world … We must go forth from here united, determined.” Reagan worked to find common ground with his political opponents and even forged a friendship with his nemesis, Tip O’Neal. America is in search of a leader who unifies like Ronald Reagan.
Finally, the author demonstrates the love that his father had for freedom. Reagan was fond of saying, “Freedom is never more than a generation away from extinction.” One wonders what he would say today. One wonders what the former president would say about excessive regulation and a socialized health care system. The author encourages readers to advance the New Reagan Revolution by “boldly standing up for the original Reagan Revolution. Let everyone around you know the truth about Ronald Reagan, the Founding Fathers, the Declaration of Independence, and the U.S. Constitution.”
The New Reagan Revolution is a book that should be devoured by every American. President Reagan is an inspiration for anyone who loves freedom, limited government, a strong military, and lower taxes. The younger Ronald Reagan is on target when he says, “There will never be another Ronald Reagan.” But we can certainly return to a day where the principles that President Reagan believed in are weaved into the fabric of American culture.