Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: Here’s how you do a convention. We’re going back to July 17, 1980, in Detroit, Michigan, the convention which nominated Ronaldus Magnus. At this convention, Jimmy Carter (who was the sitting president) was eviscerated. Now, Jimmy Carter wasn’t black, and so at that time there were no allegations that criticizing Carter equaled racism. But I’ll guarantee you that, at that time, Republicans were every bit as racist as they are today, according to allegations of the media and the Democrats.

I paid close attention in 1980. I paid close attention all during the eighties. Reagan was every bit as despised as George W. Bush or any other Republican. Reagan was a racist, sexist, bigot, homophobe. Reagan was responsible for AIDS, by the way. And do you know why Reagan was responsible? ‘Cause he didn’t talk about it — and because he didn’t talk about it, the disease kept on spreading.

They said this!

My point is they did everything they could to shut up Reagan. They did everything they could to frighten Reagan. They did everything they could to get Reagan to be quiet about Jimmy Carter. The only thing they couldn’t do was call it racism ’cause Carter wasn’t black. Here’s Ronald Reagan telling the nation (on July 17, 1980) the truth about Jimmy Carter, the Democrat Party, and the country…

REAGAN: The major issue of this campaign is the direct political, personal, and moral responsibility of Democratic Party leadership in the White House and in the Congress for this unprecedented calamity which has befallen us.

CONVENTION: (cheers and applause)

REAGAN: I will not stand by and watch this great country destroying itself under mediocre leadership that drifts from one crisis to the next, eroding our national will and purpose. Back in 1976, Mr. Carter said, “Trust me,” and a lot of people did. And now many of those people are out of work.

RUSH: By the way, it was “Mr. Carter” throughout this speech, not “President Carter.” The Democrats and the media all demand that Obama be referred to as “Mr. President” and “President Obama.” That’s not how Reagan did it. Here’s the next sound bite…

REAGAN: Many have seen their savings eaten away by inflation. Many others on fixed incomes, especially the elderly, have watched helplessly as the cruel tax of inflation wasted away their purchasing power. And today, a great many who trusted Mr. Carter wonder if we can survive the Carter policies of national defense. “Trust me government” asks that we concentrate our hopes and dreams on one man, that we trust him to do what’s best for us. Well, my view of government places trust not in one person or one party, but in those values that transcend persons and parties.

CONVENTION: (wild cheers and applause)

RUSH: Why, folks, notice how relevant that speech remains? This is Ronaldus Magnus in 1980 rejecting the idea that we should put our hopes and dreams in one man. Back then it was Jimmy Carter. Today it’s “Barack Hussein Obama! Mmm! Mmm! Mmm!” And yet that’s what the Democrats’ message is: Put your hopes and your dreams and your trust in one man like you did four years ago. And Reagan said (summarized), “The hell with that! We don’t put our hopes and dreams and trust in one man or in government.

“We invest our hopes and dreams in ourselves. We are the ones who make them happen. Mr. Carter is not going to make your dreams come true, nor is Mr. Obama. The United States government is not going to make your dreams come true. Only you can do that.” That was Reagan’s simple message, and it still applies. Amazingly so. Now, this convention was held during the Iranian hostage crisis. There were 54 Americans being held hostage at the US embassy in Tehran. Reagan was not afraid to criticize Carter and call him a liar, and he certainly would not have let a rainstorm stop him.

REAGAN: We are given weakness when we need strength, vacillation when the times demand firmness. The Carter administration lives in a world of make-believe, every day drawing up a response to that day’s problems — troubles — regardless of what happened yesterday and what will happen tomorrow. But you and I live in a real world where disasters are taking our nation without any real response from Washington. This is make-believe, self-deceit — and, above all, transparent hypocrisy.

RUSH: Wow, it doesn’t sound like Reagan was dialing it back any. It doesn’t sound like Reagan was afraid to tell the truth about Jimmy Carter. It doesn’t sound like Reagan was afraid to tell the American people what their options were, what their choices were in that election. It doesn’t sound to me like Reagan backed off. It doesn’t sound to me like Reagan was afraid of what the media was going to say about him after the speech.

I’ll tell you, it was in Detroit in 1980, July 17th, when Reagan made this speech. There was nothing good about Jimmy Carter at that convention. The Republicans didn’t spend time talking about what a nice guy he was. They didn’t spend time talking about what a good old jovial guy he was, a guy who just didn’t know what he was doing. There wasn’t any of that. Jimmy Carter had not one good thing said about him in that election — and, if you’ll recall, Reagan won that election in a landslide. If you had to attach a theme to the Republican convention in 1980, it would be: “We’ve had enough of Jimmy Carter.”

Here’s Reagan one last time…

REAGAN: Can anyone look at the record of this administration and say, “Well done”?

CONVENTION: (boos) Nooooooo!

REAGAN: Can anyone compare the state of our economy when the Carter administration took office with where we are today and say, “Keep up the good work”?


REAGAN: Can anyone look at our reduced standing in the world today and say, “Let’s have four more years of this”?


REAGAN: I believe the American people are going to answer these questions as you’ve answered them in the first week in November, and their answer will be, “No, we’ve had enough!”

CONVENTION: (wild cheers and applause)

RUSH: That’s Ronaldus Magnus in 1980, in Detroit, July 17th, at the Republican National Convention. Everyday language. Everyday language. Not what you would call soaring rhetoric, but everyday language. It was Reagan that came up with our “Are you better off today than you were four years ago?” But can anybody say, “We want more of this”? Does anybody out there say, “We want four more years of this”? Is anybody out there saying, “Well done” to any of this? And, of course, no! Nobody is saying “well done” to any of it.

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