From Library Journal
Between his campaign against President Gerald Ford in 1975-76 and his entry into the race that resulted in his election victory over President Jimmy Carter in 1980, Reagan delivered more than 1000 radio broadcasts, running about three minutes apiece, writing nearly all of them himself. A major archive of these recordings and other prepresidential material has now been opened by the Reagan Library and the Hoover Institution Archives, and the impact is breathtaking. Anyone who listens to these, except for the most dazed mind captivated by one anti-Reagan ide fixe or another, will find it virtually impossible to dismiss Reagan as a shallow thinker, captive of handlers and inattentive to detail. Instead, we encounter a man who is master of a wide array of public policy issues, his facts researched and at hand, his overall philosophy shaping his interpretation of those facts, and his orderly mind arranging them into powerful and lucid verbal deliveries to a vast audience. Most of the themes of his presidency are represented here: the Soviet Union, the failures of big government, and foreign policy particulars, as well as more personal commentary on marriage, religion, holidays, war, and death. Along the way we hear the voices of the editors, and also Nancy Reagan, Michael Deaver, Richard V. Allen, and various other Reagan-era notables as they introduce particular segments. On these tapes we find the Great Communicator in full flower at a crucial moment in his political history, and any audio library representative of the recent historical past should view these as a necessary purchase. Don Wismer, Cary Memorial Lib., Wayne, ME
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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