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Reagan, Bush, Clinton, G. W. Bush. Triumph, Tragedy, and Stupidity. Ronald Reagan capitalized on the public's frustration. When he ran for the presidency against Carter in 1980, he asked Americans, "Are you better off than you were four years ago?“

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Reagan, Bush, Clinton, G. W. Bush


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    1. Reagan, Bush, Clinton, G. W. Bush Triumph, Tragedy, and Stupidity

    2. Ronald Reagan capitalized on the public's frustration. When he ran for the presidency against Carter in 1980, he asked Americans, "Are you better off than you were four years ago?“ With annual inflation at 18 percent, the answer was a resounding "No." The Reagan Revolution

    3. The Reagan Revolution • Reagan won a landslide victory, carrying 43 states and almost 51 percent of the popular vote compared to Carter's 41 percent. • In addition, the Democrats lost the Senate for the first time since 1954.

    4. The Reagan Revolution • 1980 presidential campaign, Reagan drew strong support from white Southerners, suburban Roman Catholics, evangelical Christians, and particularly, the New Right. • The New Right was a confederation of disparate political and religious groups bound together by their concern over what they believed were the erosion of values in America

    5. Conservatism Gains Support(cont.) • The Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade, which made abortion a constitutional right, and the Supreme Court decisions to limit prayer in public schools shocked deeply religious Americans. • Religious conservatives included many different faiths, with the largest being evangelical Protestant Christians. • The new conservative coalition of voters shared the belief that American society had lost its way. (pages 862–864)

    6. Conservatism Gains Support(cont.) • Americans had lost faith in their government, lost confidence in the economy, and longed for stability and a return to a better time. • After World War II, a religious revival began with Protestant ministers like Billy Graham creating a national following. (pages 862–864)

    7. Conservatism Gains Support(cont.) • Television enabled Christian evangelicals to reach nationwide audiences. • Televangelists, as they were called, included Pat Robertson, who founded the Christian Broadcasting Network, and Jerry Falwell, who used his show The Old-Time Gospel Hour to create the movement he called “Moral Majority.” (pages 862–864)

    8. Televangelist for President In 1986, CBN leader Pat Robertson announced his candidacy for President of the United States in 1988. His campaign promises included outlawing pornography and eliminating the Department of Education. Although considered a long-shot, he actually won the Iowa caucus over eventual Republican nominee George H. Bush.

    9. Jerry Falwell v. Larry Flint and the Teletubbies In 1983, Hustler magazine ran a parody of an ad that said that Jerry Falwell had lost his virginity to his mother in an outhouse. Falwell sued its publisher Larry Flint for slander, but the Supreme Court decided that the ad was protected by the First Amendment. In 1999 Falwell turned his attention to children’s television by claiming that Tinki-Winki was in fact a gay role model due to the fact that the character was purple (a gay pride color) and had a triangle (gay pride symbol).

    10. God the Extortionist? In 1987, televangelist Oral Roberts, based out of Tulsa, Oklahoma, claimed that if he did not raise $8 million in three months, then God was going to “call him home”. He was able to raise $9.1 million and then later claimed that God had given him the ability to raise people from the dead, and in 1988 his son claimed to have witnessed this event. In 1988, the IRS had discovered that millions of dollars endowed to Oral Roberts University had been used to support his own lavish lifestyle.

    11. The Reverend and the Secretary In 1987 it was revealed that PTL leader Jim Bakker had paid his secretary Jessica Hahn $279,000 so she would not report that he allegedly raped her. In 1989 it was reported that he took $3.4 million from his church for himself and his wife’s (Tammy Faye) lavish lifestyle and he was also sentenced to prison that year for mail fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy.

    12. The Reverend and the Prostitute The televangelist that exposed Jim Bakker in 1987 was a rival by the name of Jimmy Swaggart from Louisiana. Yet in 1988 another rival televangelist took pictures of Swaggart in a motel room with a hooker. Swaggart appeared on his TV show to repent and place himself on a three month suspension. Yet he returned to the pulpit four weeks later claiming that if he did not return “millions of people would go to hell”. In 1991 Swaggart was caught with another prostitute in California. When addressing his followers after this tryst he told them "The Lord told me it's flat none of your business.”.

    13. Reaganomics • Promised to rebuild the nation's defenses • Restore economic growth, • trim the size of the federal government by limiting its role • in welfare • education • housing.

    14. Reaganomics • Reagan blamed the nation's economic ills on declining capital investment and a tax structure biased against work and productive investment. • To stimulate the economy, he persuaded Congress to slash tax rates. • In 1981, Congress cut taxes 5 percent in 1981 • 10 percent in 1982 and 1983 • In 1986, another tax bill, which reduced tax rates of the wealthiest Americans to 28 percent, while closing a variety of tax loopholes

    15. Reaganomics • August 1981, Reagan dealt blow to organized labor by firing 15,000 striking air-traffic controllers • Strengthened the nation's defenses, doubled the defense budget--to more than $330 billion by 1987 • Deregulated the banking and natural gas industries and lifted ceilings on interest rates • Department of the Interior opened up large areas such as offshore oil fields, to private development.

    16. Reaganomics • Reagan's laissez-faire principles affect approach to social programs • Cut spending on a variety of social welfare programs • Aid to Families with Dependent Children • food stamps • child nutrition • job training for young people • programs to prevent child abuse • mental health services.

    17. Reaganomics • The Reagan administration eliminated • welfare assistance for the working poor • reduced federal subsidies for child-care services for low-income families • allow ketchup to be counted as a vegetable in school lunches.

    18. Reaganomics • Reagan left office while the economy was in the midst of its longest post-World War II expansion. • The economy was growing faster, with less inflation, than at any time since the mid-1960s. • Adjusted for inflation, disposable personal income per person rose 20 percent after 1980. • Inflation fell from 13 percent in 1981 to less than 4 percent annually. • Unemployment was down to approximately 5 percent

    19. Reaganomics • Massive federal budget deficit, which increased $1.5 trillion during the Reagan presidency--a deficit that was three times the debt accumulated by all 39 of Reagan's presidential predecessors. • The growing income gap between rich and poor. • the expensive consequences of reduced government regulation • namely, cleaning up federal nuclear weapons facilities • bailing out the nation's savings and loans industry.

    20. Reagan and the Evil Empire • Reagan described the Soviet Union as "an evil empire" and called for a space-based missile defense system, derided by critics as "Star Wars." • Soviet money and Cuban troops came to Grenada • U.S. troops invaded Grenada, killed or captured 750 Cuban soldiers, and established a new government

    21. Reagan and the Evil Empire • In Afghanistan, the United States was provided aid to anti-Soviet freedom fighters, ultimately, helping to force Soviet troops to withdraw • Nicaragua and the Sandanistas – Daniel Ortega • Iran Contra Scandal • CIA, Oliver North

    22. Reagan and the Evil Empire • Mikhail Gorbachev at 54 becomes the new Soviet leader • called for sweeping political liberalization (glasnost) and economic reform (perestroika) • legalized small private business cooperatives, relaxed laws prohibiting land ownership, and approved foreign investment within the Soviet Union. • He cut the Soviet defense budget, withdrew Soviet troops from Afghanistan and Eastern Europe

    23. Reagan and the Middle East • Lebanon • Bombing raid on Libya • Iran Contra • Support for Taliban • Support for Sadaam Hussein

    24. Reagan Legacy • He dampened inflation • Restored public confidence in government • Presided over the beginning of the end of the Cold War. • Doubled the defense budget • Named the first woman to the Supreme Court • Launched a strong economic boom • Created a heightened sense of national unity. • “Just Say No!”

    25. Reagan Naysayers • Criticized him for a reckless use of military power and for circumventing Congress in foreign affairs. • Fostered greed and intolerance. • Ripped the social safety net and skimped on the government's regulatory functions. • Insensitive on racial issues. • During the Reagan years, the national debt tripled, from $909 billion to almost $2.9 trillion • Corporate and individual debt also soared. • During the early 1990s, the American people consumed $1 trillion more goods and services than they produced. • The United States also became the world's biggest debtor nation, as a result of a weak dollar, a low level of exports, and the need to borrow abroad to finance budget deficits.

    26. The Bush Presidency (41) • Election of 1988 • Michael Dukakis (D) • George H. W. Bush (R) • Main issues: • taxes • building a “kinder America” • the “wimp” factor • 1,000 Points of Lights

    27. Domestic Issues • Supreme Court becomes more conservative • toughened laws dealing with the death penalty • restricted situations in which women could have abortions • Flag-burning • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) • NAFTA

    28. War on Drugs • Illegal drug use becomes a national issue • Bush tries to stop traffic from Colombia and Panama • Manuel Noriega

    29. AIDS Epidemic • AIDS - Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome • Caused by HIV • Virus destroys the body’s ability to fight off disease or infection • Virus is transmitted through the exchange of bodily fluids

    30. Economic Woes • High National Debt • Savings and Loan Crisis • “Read my lips, no new taxes!”

    31. A New World Order • Reforming Communist Societies in the West • Poland • Eastern Europe • Berlin Wall

    32. Fighting for Democracy • China • Large demonstrations in Tianenmen Square in Beijing • Thousands of students arrested • Still unknown how many were killed - current estimate is 3,000

    33. South Africa • Apartheid - laws that force the segregation of whites and blacks • Laws help maintain white minority rule • Nelson Mandela and the ANC

    34. World of Technology • Birth of Email and the Internet • Genetic engineering • Environmental changes • global warming • deforestation • acid rain

    35. The Persian Gulf WarOperation Desert Storm January 16 – February 28, 1991

    36. Background: The Iran–Iraq War • 1979 – Saddam Hussein becomes leader of Iraq • Sept 1980 – Iraq invades Iran; Hussein predicts a two-week war • July 1988 – Iran accepts terms of cease-fire • Iraq wins but now has $500 billion war debt

    37. World Oil Reserves (1990)

    38. The Invasion of Kuwait • August 2, 1990 • Saddam Hussein announces his intent to annex Kuwait

    39. Building an International Coalition • Economic Sanctions • Use of Military Force • US and allies deploy massive military force along the Kuwaiti and Saudi border • 690,000 troops (425,000 American) President Bush and King Fahd of Saudi Arabia

    40. A Line in the Sand • November 29, 1990 – UN authorizes military action to expel Iraq from Kuwait, if they do not withdraw by January 15th • January 16, 1991 – Allied forces begin to attack

    41. World’s Largest Armies (1990)