When I started this blog sometime ago, I mentioned that the title, Upon Reflection, came from a column I wrote for the campus newspaper, the UWM Times. It was a conservative paper. I was the black sheep on the staff. Oh, I wrote conservative articles to keep them placated, but if you read between the lines, you could see I was often tongue-in-cheek. And strangely enough, my article was very popular on campus, giving me carte-blanche to pretty much write the way I wanted to.
And if I recall, I promised an article from those days every now and again. Here then is an article I wrote back in January 1990. Here then, without further ado, is a Past Reflection:
Usually this is my annual track the SuperBowl hype article. I was half way through it when my editor came up to me and said, we’re doing a special Conservatism in the ’80s end of decade issue.
“But what about my SuperBowl article?” I asked.
“Save it for next week,” he said, not realizing there is such a thing as timeliness.
“My column usually runs 650 words,” I said.
“Fine, just cover the major points then,” he said, misinterpreting my comment to mean I had too much to say about conservatism and it wouldn’t fit in only a 650-word column.
“Fine,” I said, realizing I had lost this argument the last time they wanted me to write a pro-Reagan piece. Editors never understand.
So boys and girls, time travel back with me to the frolicking ’80s and remember those days as only I am able.
Remember 1980? Remember Jimmy Carter? Remember hostages in Iran? Remember our crippled military? Remember helicopters burning in the sands? Remember wheat embargoes? Remember boycotting the Moscow Olympics.
Boy, we sure were tough then, aina? We had those commies on the ropes. Too bad it was because of stomach cramps from laughing so hard at us.
Peanut shells and beer cans were strewn all over the White House as America blushed crimson over the zany antics of the First Family. Look out for that killer rabbit!
Then we voted in Ronnie. (Actually, I voted for Anderson, but that’s besides the point.) Reagan. The Actor. The Great Communicator. He didn’t pull any punches. He branded the USSR as the Evil Empire it was and he was determined to show them that the American Way was the only way.
He gave us a military we could be proud of and instilled lost pride in our honorable Vietnam Veterans. Remember the dogfight over Lebanon? Remember the bombing of Muammar Qaddafi’s headquarters? Remember Grenada? And of course, most recently, Panama. Ah, military life became exciting and worthwhile again.
Conservatism brought us back to major power status militarily. Some projects were a bust, like the B1 bomber, some were financial dreamland, like Star Wars, but they all sent out one message clear and strong, the USA was sick and tired of being everyone’s punching bag.
Conservatism brought us a new prosperity. People were buying things again. Houses, cars, you name it, we weren’t afraid of being in debt. If the good old USA could run at a deficit, by gosh or by golly, so could we as individual citizens of this great nation.
The Dow Jones was hitting new highs, and except for Black Monday or whatever they’re calling it now, stocks were the place to be.
Under conservatism, money was no longer a dirty word. Being rich was once again in vogue and no one looked down on you for it. Even the hippies of the radical ’60s were the yuppies of the conservative ’80s. Case in point, ex-Yippie Jerry Rubin is now a Wall Street mogul.
But, most importantly, conservatism brought the return of power to the NFC where it belongs. The NFC is football. The AFC may have dominated the SuperBowl in the ’70s, the Steelers were 4-0 while the Vikings were 0-4, but the ’80s belonged to the NFC and with the game this Sunday, the 49ers will be 4-0 and the Broncos will be 0-4.
It’s the way Lombardi would have wanted it, and it’s the way Conservatives and true football fans everywhere cheer for.