Prentiss Riddle: Causes

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So Ronald Reagan is finally gone and I'm trying to figure out how he turned into Lady Di. Even the NPR coverage is a nauseating pile of collective amnesia.

My disgust with Ronnie Raygun goes back to my formative political years, when I was a college peacenik and he was president. Where to begin? As if it weren't enough that he put an anti-environmental radical in charge of the EPA and an anti-justice radical in charge of Justice, tried to escalate the arms race with Star Wars, broke the bank on military spending while claiming to be for smaller government, dumped the mentally ill to fend for themselves on our city streets, slept through cabinet meetings, lied, cheated, and stole -- as if all that weren't enough, he funded two brutal and pointless wars in Central America, siding in each case with the least morally defensible faction. To find a worse president one has to go back to 19th-century genocidalists -- or forward to George W. Bush.

Ronald Reagan = muerte

I don't gloat over the death of anyone, but I'll be damned if I'll respect in death someone who didn't deserve it in life. So I'll answer the idiocy of the eulogies with the low humor of the Austin Lounge Lizards. You can try this buggy bit of audio or if that doesn't work you'll just have to imagine it accompanied by banjo music and cracks of the Rawhide whip.

The Ballad of Ronald Reagan

They tell me that he came from Illinois
They say he was the All-American boy
Then he went out to Hollywood to make himself a name
And he went on to minor motion picture fame

He starred in movies with a chimpanzee
And in a western series on TV
He spoke for Goldwater with rhetorical zip
And he coasted to the California governorship

They call him Ron
Ronald Reagan

Taxes got entirely out of hand
But he was held over by popular demand
If it took a bloodbath to stop student unrest
Then that's what the ungrateful little bastards would get

'Cause he was Ron
Ronald Reagan

   The Democrats had them a candidate
   Destined to go down in flames
   He said that Ronald would drop the bomb
   While imitating John Wayne
   ("Mine's bigger than yours, Rusty")
   He wanted to be LBJ
   Or Harry Truman at least
   But with his partner Mondale
   Jimmy Carter suffered defeat

The military budget grew obese
And justice was entrusted to Ed Meese
He supported South Africa, sold missiles to Iran
A strategic initiative to kill his fellow man

He was Ron
Ronald Reagan

The lobbysists are counting their loot
From the man with the died hair and the teflon suit
He's our good old president and I am so pleased
'Cause he knows that pollution comes mainly from trees

He's our good old president
He's star of the show
He'll balance the budget
In a million years or so

He's our good old president
I think he's really swell
But if he wants me in Nicaragua
Then he can go to hell

He's our gun-running president
He's slippery as a squid
He's stupid if he didn't know,
Dishonest if he did

He's our good old president
His policies I curse
But at least he's not Nixon
He's even worse

Yes he's Ron
Ronald Reagan
Big Ron
causes 2004.06.08 link