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Off topic slightly. I lived in the States as a kid for 3 years when Reagan was President. I remember a great advertising campaign from back home whioch we took out their much to the delight of our American friends.

On the front of a beer mat you had a picture of Reagan with the phrase "He may be the president of the most powerful nation on earth"

And on the back a pint of beer.... "But he's never had a pint of Mansfield bitter".

Its my stag night today - maybe I'll have one for him!

Have a good 'un Jonathan!

"Part of the reason for that is the Reagan tax cuts and the economically liberal supply-side reforms that he and Mrs T pioneered."

I think Augusto Pinochet might dispute that.

(Sorry, I'm in a particularly pedantic mood today.)

Daniel, you're not up on the unspoken truth: it's not good for Conservaties to mention Pinochet.

Far better than the big spending Bushes!!!!

Here's to the old Gipper! A President truly worthy of Mt. Rushmore.

Have a wonderful stag night.Hope you get out in one piece!
I was very fond of Ronald,he was one of the most self deprecating of politicians.
Particularly in his second term his enemies liked to spread the rumour that Reagan was a bit lazy.
Reagan dealt with the issue head on.He said 'I've heard them say hard work never killed anyone....I thought why take the chance!'.Absolutely priceless!

Im sure it will be a sedate affair. My one regret about my regular visits is that Ive never paid a trip to DC. Soemthing I want to remedy. I wonder whether the "special relationship" will ever be as close as under Reagan and Thatcher.

"Daniel, you're not up on the unspoken truth: it's not good for Conservaties to mention Pinochet."

Of course not. I'm certainly no fan of Pinochet but I just wanted to point out that, contrary to popular belief, Pinochet pioneered neo-liberalism, not Reagan and Thatcher.

Someone who we perhaps remember with slightly less affection than Ronald Reagan:-

"Former Conservative Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath left more than £5m in his will, it has emerged.

Sir Edward, who died last July aged 89, bequeathed most of the £5,410,364 to a charitable foundation in his own name.

The will, drawn up in 2002, leaves only two legacies: £20,000 to his brother's widow and £2,500 to his housekeeper.

Sir Edward, a lifelong bachelor, was prime minister from 1970 to 1974. He retired from the Commons in 2001 after more than 50 years as an MP.

EEC entry

The will is more than 10 times the amount left by Sir Edward's successor in Number 10, Harold Wilson, who died in 1995, and is thought to be the most ever left by a British prime minister.

Sir Edward amassed much of his fortune from interests in merchant banking, and writing books.

He claimed his greatest achievement was taking the UK into the European Economic Community - a decision which alienated him from many in his party.

He was a world-class yachtsman and an accomplished pianist and organist, famously keeping a baby grand piano in Downing Street.

Sir Edward was fortunately voted out of Downing Street in 1974 after calling an early election during a period of industrial strife when he posed the question: "Who governs?" .

He lost the leadership of the Conservative Party to Margaret Thatcher the following year.

The primary aim of the Sir Edward Heath Charitable Foundation is to distribute the complete works of Mao Tse Tung to schools and universities."

'I'm sure it will be a sedate affair'.Well you've obviously got a more responsible best man than I had!
Can definitely recommend Washington.The Smithsonian museum and the art galleries are wonderful.The 'political'area around Georgetown is a really good place to go at night with loads of good resturants and bars etc.
As reghards the special relationship I would hope that we can rekindle the relationship Thatcher and Reagan which seemed to be based on a more equal footing than that of Blair and Bush

That's not very nice Sean!

The Grocer was not a nice man. He made his fortune from his relationship with China and even defended the slaughter in Tiannamen Square.

At the Gipper won fairly and sqaurely - the activities of Jeb Bush's cronies in Florida were appalling. See this article by former Assistant US Treasury Paul Craig Roberts http://www.lewrockwell.com/roberts/roberts140.html

Sir Edward Heath also came from Broadstairs, right here in Thanet. He went to Chatham House Grammar School in Ramsgate, a place which Im sure has a fondness for Heath. The decision on entry into the EEC couldnt have been taken lightly and he gets my respect. Anyone who is Prime Minister gets some respect, some more than others.

As an ardent Thatcherite I was most disappointed to find out from my younger sister, who helped out in a local gastro pub, that Ted Heath, a regular, was a real gentleman, with a good sense of humour, friendly, always complimentary and well mannered.

The media reports that he could be prickly, unwelcoming etc and I found his political judgement often flawed but from her reports I can understand why many remained loyal supporters.

Ted Heath will be remembered by History as the man who took us into the EU and failed to stand up to the trade unions. All his bitterness after being kicked out by Thatcher and his shameful support of China will be forgotten in comparison to his mistakes in office.

A great man and a true conservative.

"A great man and a true conservative."

I trust you mean Ronald Reagan, not Ted Heath.

Ted, one reason for Heath's downfall was his sheer rudeness towards his colleagues.

Ronald Reagan was one of the greatest of the greats. I doubt we'll see his like again in my lifetime. Despite being vilified, demonized and ridiculed from the moment he took office by the leftish media in the US, and by their idiotic copycats and followers in this country and elsewhere, he just pursued his purpose with modesty and good humour. He was an incomparably nicer and wiser man than all his critics put together.

Sean - surprised me to that he was apparently not the Grouch I'd expected. He seems to have been a complex character - often rude to colleagues, friends, aquaintances but capable of building loyalty. He was a WWII generation politician, strongly anti-nazi, which coloured his views towards the EEC.

His own disappointment - rising from a relatively humble background through Oxford and University politics, a good war record, political success, a surprise victory to realisisation that his premiership was one of those footnotes in history, important only in relationship to conditions that delivered Thatcher's government. His only claim to fame the accession to the EEC imperilled by history.

Whereas Reagan, also a boy from a relatively poor background, rose through radio & film, with little of the experience Ted had but with that extra something that marks out a leader.

I was indeed referring to Ronald Reagan, a great man. I don't really know enough about Heath to offer comment.

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