Sunday, February 12, 2006

Plains, Houston, and Atlanta

Byron York has this piece about the non-story being shopped around by Media Matters. It seems that David Brock (former conservative and eternal liar) and his group are outraged that anyone would think that the funeral of Coretta Scott King was politicized. Why, the funeral of Ronald Reagan was much more politicized, according to Media Matters. Here is the quote from President Bush's eulogy that supposedly proves the point:

He came to office with great hopes for America. And more than hopes. Like the president he had revered and once saw in person, Franklin Roosevelt, Ronald Reagan matched an optimistic temperament with bold, persistent action.

President Reagan was optimistic about the great promise of economic reform, and he acted to restore the rewards and spirit of enterprise. He was optimistic that a strong America could advance the peace, and he acted to build the strength that mission required.

He was optimistic that liberty would thrive wherever it was planted, and he acted to defend liberty wherever it was threatened.

And Ronald Reagan believed in the power of truth in the conduct of world affairs. When he saw evil camped across the horizon, he called that evil by its name.

There were no doubters in the prisons and gulags, where dissidents spread the news, tapping to each other in code what the American president had dared to say. There were no doubters in the shipyards and churches and secret labor meetings where brave men and women began to hear the creaking and rumbling of a collapsing empire. And there were no doubters among those who swung hammers at the hated wall that the first and hardest blow had been struck by President Ronald Reagan.

The bold emphasis is supplied by Media Matters. The group also sniffs that no Democrats were invited to speak at the funeral (planned by the Reagans over 20 years ago). But it is interesting where Media Matters chose to excerpt from President Bush's speech. Here is the whole speech. The line right before the Media Matters snippet is as follows:

Ronald Reagan's moment arrived in 1980. He came out ahead of some very good men, including one from Plains, and one from Houston. What followed was one of the decisive decades of the century, as the convictions that shaped the President began to shape the times.

So Bush managed to honor both his father AND President Carter, Reagan's primary and general election opponents, while celebrating the 1980 victory. Contrast this with the speakers at the King funeral, who went out of their way to embarrass Bush as he sat behind the pulpit.

Class: some have it, some don't.

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