Friday, January 02, 2009

The Gift of Ronald Reagan for Christmas

As a parent I love to watch my children enjoy the presents they receive. When you have as many kids as my wife and I, gifts to one another are simply not a priority. The most memorable gift I may have received was from a couple we know (Archie and Robin Arredondo). There is a huge group of friends that participates as "secret Santas" made up of a families we know. Archie was my secret Santa. We know around Thanksgiving who has who. A few weeks ago, Archie and Robin asked my wife what I like. Wisely, she said "anything with Ronald Reagan." She naturally thought -- as would I -- that I might get a great tribute book (like my daughter gave me a couple of years ago) or a T-Shirt (like my sons gave me on a Father's Day). Archie would have none of it, he went on a quest at eBay.

What I received was a Ronald Reagan action figure. Move over GI Joe, here comes the Gipper. Okay, it was more like a talking doll with a push button instead of a string, but it was one of the most thoughtful gifts I have ever received and it is the type of gift that keeps on giving. Americans, everywhere, should be familiar with the quotes of Reagan and this gift was full of them. The following are a few examples from the "Great Communicator."

* "Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today's world do not have."

The statement was even more powerful when delivered two decades ago when our primary enemy -- the Soviet Union -- had become weakened after decades of brainwashing and lies from its bloodthirsty regime.

* "Entrepreneurs and their small enterprises are responsible for almost all the economic growth in the United States."

Where was wisdom such as this when the federal government decided to bailout Wall Street, while taxing the backs of Main Street?

* "Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free."

Bravo! Most parents enjoy giving their children the fruits of our freedom, but are not doing enough to pass it on to the next generation. This is a message that must be conveyed.

* "The government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it."

One of my favorite Reagan quotes.

When I was a kid the "in thing" was a GI Joe action figure. I think every child should be given a Reagan action figure so we can raise another generation of adults who enjoy freedom. A Reagan action figure is the gift that keeps on giving.

Kevin Price is a syndicated columnist whose articles frequently appear at ChicagoSunTimes.com, Reuters.com, USAToday.com, and other national media. Kevin Price is Host of the Price of Business (M-F at 11 AM on CNN 650) and Publisher of the Houston Business Review. Hear the show live and online at PriceofBusiness.com. Visit the archive of past shows here.

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