The unemployment rate remains between 9 and 10 percent, leaving millions of Americans scrambling for work. American confidence around the world is at an all-time low. The federal government is mandating that each American buys health insurance, which many consider unconstitutional. And now Egypt, one of our only allies in the Middle East, is on the verge of imploding.
It all leaves me to wonder... "What would Reagan do?"
This past weekend we celebrated what would have been Ronald Reagan's 100th birthday. We were left remembering the good old days when nations feared us and small business owners were not afraid to expand their businesses. We were left reflecting on the days that we had a president who wasn't afraid to call evil what it is... evil.
It also left us wondering how Reagan would have handled the crisis in Egypt. What he would have to say about the Muslim Brotherhood and their desire to influence the Middle East, and possibly the United States, toward Sharia Law. What he would have said about radical extremists who want to eliminate Israel and the Jewish people.
So, imagine my shock when I saw the cover of a recent issue of Time Magazine that featured a picture of Reagan superimposed with his arm around a smiling Barack Obama. One of the titles on the cover read: "And What He's (Obama) Learned From Him."
We know that Obama has been reading up on the life and times of the beloved Reagan. The cover really made me wonder what, if anything, Obama has learned from the Reagan legacy. I wonder what Obama thought when he read quotes such as, "Entrepreneurs and their small enterprises are responsible for almost all the economic growth in the United States" and "Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits in deciding to protect us from ourselves."
It's a good thing for the president that Reagan is no longer alive. Imagine a meeting in the Oval Office with both presidents sitting across the desk from one another. Imagine how small Obama would have felt had Reagan had the chance to tell him that, "You got me all wrong."
Obama would have received a stern lecture from a president whose tax-friendly approach encouraged American small business. Obama might have actually understood the message that it's the private sector, not the public sector, that creates the majority of meaningful employment.
Reagan would have explained to Obama the importance of understanding who our enemies are and speaking the truth about them. How will the rest of the world view our stance on terrorism when we don't call it terrorism? How serious do you sound when you refer to terrorism as man-caused disasters? There is no doubt in my mind how Reagan would have referred to them - evil.
Reagan also believed that we should hold dear to our values and protect those who share in them. Is it surprising that Israel is concerned over how this president has handled the crisis in Egypt and the rest of the Middle East for that matter? If Reagan was still president, things would not be perfect, but there would be no doubt in the minds of Jewish people that America had their backs.
We all remember the popular "What Would Jesus Do" bracelets that took the country by storm a few years ago. They were designed to make us think what and how Jesus would handle each situation we faced in our busy everyday lives. Perhaps, Obama should have his administration wear "What Would Reagan Do" bracelets to make them pause and consider how one of our greatest American presidents would handle our fragile economy and volatile national security issues that threaten our way of life.
Michael Weinstein is co-host of the "The Mike & Winey Show" and can be heard Sundays from 7-8 a.m. on KFYI (550 AM) and at firstname.lastname@example.org.