Streetwise: Favorite American president Around Town, posted by Editor, Danville Weekly Online, on Feb 17, 2012 at 6:54 am
As President Obama visits the Bay Area for campaign fundraisers, Danville residents take time to reflect on previous commanders-in-chief. This week, Roving Reporter Stan Wharton visited San Ramon Valley High School to ask students Who is your all-time favorite president?
Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, February 16, 2012, 11:39 AM
Posted by American, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Feb 17, 2012 at 7:38 am
When I was in undergraduate college, President Reagan came to speak, and he was amazing! By far the best overall President during my lifetime. He is responsible for bringing down the Berlin wall, defeating communism, and restoring pride in being American! When I look at this upcoming election, it is sad how much the probable candidates on both sides of the aisle are so pathetic compared to beloved President Reagan.
Posted by Jayne, a resident of the Alamo neighborhood, on Feb 17, 2012 at 12:35 pm
Being from Springfield,Illinois; I grew up learning about and working for Lincoln events, my entire life; while living there. What a great man! Never been another like him, for sure. Some try to identify with him; but can't come close.
The one, during my lifetime, as the other writer mentioned, Reagan; has to be my favorite now. I wish we had someone even sort of close; running now. It's frightening, how far we've come from the values, honest standards and morals of that era, and wonder if the people will wake up and see what is happening to us, as a nation. We are going downhill, big time.
Posted by Reagan Lover!, a resident of the Alamo neighborhood, on Feb 17, 2012 at 3:46 pm
Hey guys, remember when no reputable economist ever supported Reaganomics? And when he made the U.S. the largest debtor nation on earth? And when he seriously believed the Apocalypse was coming? And when poverty rose under him and he didn't do anything to combat AIDS? And when he began to side with the very same religious fanatics and bigots that are now running the Republican party in the ground? What fantastic values! He really had a good head on his shoulders.
Posted by Huh?, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Feb 19, 2012 at 4:23 pm
Ronald Reagan had as much to do with bringing down the Berlin Wall as a rooster has with causing the sun to rise in the morning.
He can take credit for being the father of the modern American national debt, though. 33% of GDP when he took office, 66% 12 years later at the end of his VP's four year term. Gotta love the "borrow and spend" mentality of the Republicans...
Posted by Danville Independent, a member of the San Ramon Valley High School community, on Feb 20, 2012 at 10:28 am
I can't BELIEVE the comments about Ronald Reagan being their favorite president! Did they LIVE, and have their eyes open during this time period? I don't know where to begin: "Defeating Communism?" Hey, capitalism defeated communism, it just so happened that if occurred on his watch, that's all. He did restore a 'down economy' but he did it with borrowed money (which STILL hasn't been repaid!), much like our current President. Yes, he WAS a Patriot, but so is each and every person who holds that office, including President Obama~ THAT shouldn't even come into the picture. There's a book out called "The Essential Wisdom of the Presidents" (by Carol Kelly-Gangi)that should be required reading for all students: it's an eye opener to our Presidents thoughts and directions. Who is MY favorite President (in case anybody cares!): quite obviously Abraham Lincoln: Right man at the right time!
Posted by JRM, a member of the Vista Grande Elementary School community, on Feb 20, 2012 at 1:32 pm
My vote would be Thomas Jefferson, what a fascinating and brilliant individual. I have read that having dinner with President Jefferson at Monticello was an evening one never forgot. Concerning the fall of communism, I feel it was the music of the Western youth that shredded the Iron Curtain. At one point having a Beatles album in your posession was illegal in Russia, the albums were smuggled in and the Russian youth realized there was abundant life in the West they had no idea existed. The Velvet Underground, The Beatles and the Rolling Stones all manifested the freedom of artistic expression and personal liberties that helped galvanize the Russian youth. Just my take. Lastly, I am also a big Reagan fan and if you have not visited his Presidential Library in Simi Valley I strongly suggest you do so, and plan on a full day, there is lots to see.
Posted by Derek, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Feb 21, 2012 at 8:01 am
@ Danville Independent-
Thus, my snarky comment about delusional people. I'm not even sure I would agree about the economy under Reagan. I lived in CA during his reign, and through the majority of it silicon valley did very poorly.
Posted by American, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Feb 21, 2012 at 10:49 am
Derek: During Reagan's presidency, employment at Lockheed, which is in Sunnyvale(silicon valley)was booming and they were constantly having a difficult time even filling all the jobs related to the military industrial complex. There were also many other employers in Santa Clara County during the Reagan years who had military contracts related to the Bradley tanks and other defense projects, and employment was very high. These were good paying, professional jobs, for engineers, cad operators, accountants, M.B.A.'s, electricians, other skilled trades, that kept the economy booming, with led to the rise in property values and stock market.
President Reagan was able to overcome the 21% interest rates and other economic failures of President Carter, create good paying jobs, that led to confidence at home, and ultimately the defeat of communism.
More than anything else, President Reagan installed faith in the American dream, that through hard work, you could achieve your dreams, and government was not going to get in your way with neverending red tape, bureacrats, and punishing taxes.
I was blessed to hear him speak in person, and even his bitter policy foes, would comment that it was hard not to like him as a person, as he was charming, kind, and a very good person. There was a story years ago in the paper about how they polled many retired secret service agents, and President Reagan was voted as the most sincere, pleasant, and likeable President they ever protected.
Saying that President Reagan had nothing to do with the fall of the Berlin wall is like saying Joe Montana had nothing to do with his team's super bowl victories.
JRM, I have not yet had the pleasure of going to his Presidential library, but plan to do so in the near future.
Posted by [removed], a resident of another community, on Feb 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm
With some humor, my favorite President is Chelsea Clinton, 2024-2028. I have always imagined myself preincarnated!
Let me join others in this exchange in recommending a visit to the Reagan Library. What the exceptional history on display will show is global leaders joining together, inside and outside of the USSR, to create a new global economy and relationships. There were many that made Reagan's years a political success and many within our government that made the debt burden a continuing global result.
It is interesting to examine the progression of Presidents from Kennedy through Clinton and realize how globally our world changed during that period. Global economies came to Russia, China, much of Asia and even our country. We had focus on global humanity in our relationships and exceptional economic growth. It is that global model we lost in this century that defines our needs for representatives in all levels of our governments without the gridlock of politics.
Posted by Derek, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Feb 21, 2012 at 2:53 pm
Allow me to specifically address some of your delusionist dreams of better days past:
I worked in a sales and retail management position in the south bay through the entire run of "Raygun days", so there is nothing you can inform me about it's employment levels in tech. The company I worked for sold (and rented some) products into architectural firms, military contractors, and immense numbers of i.c. makers. Carter's reign was a disaster, and interest rates probably could not have gone much higher, but after 1982 or early 1983, hiring also slowed plenty, and we saw our business from a huge variety of clients drop with the drop in the economy. The heyday was over. No more free in-house gyms and massage therapists at ForTran.
Raygun's trickle-down Bull$#!T never amounted to any more than so much peeing on our collective legs after that point, and the only way you could think CA - especially the south bay tech area - remained strong after 1982 is if you did not live or work there. I WAS there, working from 1977 until 1992 in industries whose sales were a very complete litmus test of the general health of the silicon valley's health. And I have many friends who were employed at Lockheed and even had an early temp job myself at FMC on Coleman Road, so I know reality from your revisionist fairy tales. The rest of the country, maybe, but not northern California.
Of course, you naturally assume that if I cast dispersions on the righty's fave hero, I must in fact just love Clinton, Carter, and big O. Well, if it pleases you to believe that, knock yourself out. They are all profoundly flawed people whose strings are pulled by those who really control our country, and I doubt we will ever have a good president, much less a great one again. And that's why if I have to vote, I vote green or indie.
Oh, and by the way American, CAD drafting was only barely started in the time period you mention.
Posted by American, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Feb 21, 2012 at 8:01 pm
Derek: Sunnyvale's employment expanded from 80,000 in 1976, to 136,000 by 1987, an increase of 70%, with extensive growth in companies benefiting from military defense complex contracts under President Reagan, including Lockheed, ESL, Westinghouse, Argo Systems, Being and Ford Aerospace. These stats are directly from the City of Sunnyvale annual reports, which you can google to obtain. In January of 1988, Lockheed was still the largest employer in the city of Sunnyvale, wtih over 24,500 local employees, and two other military defense companies made the top 8, including Westinghouse Eletric Marine, and Ford Aerospace. If your retail job in Silicon Valley lost clients during the Reagan years,it was the exception, not the rule, and hardly could be blamed on President Reagan's policies, which created huge job growth, in Silicon Valley, and throughout the entire country. Your statement that "if you have to vote, you vote green or indie", may also explain why your retail business did not prosper in a then conservative county. Just curious, since the question in this blog was what President do you most admire, tell me which President you admired, and why?