An American Life

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Simon and Schuster, 1990 - Biography & Autobiography - 748 pages
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No president in this century has achieved such popularity as President Reagan did in his eight years in office. For the first time he tells the story of his public life and private life, in a book which is frank, revealing, and compellingly readable. Photographs.

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This book delves into the public and private life of Ronald Reagan who was one of the most effective presidents America has ever seen. The book explores the humble blue collar beginnings of the Reagan family and journeys through his life to the White House.

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An excellent book everyone should read. Before I read this book I had a completely different view of President Ronald Reagan, probably based on the opinions of his opponents. Being President of the U.S.A. and leader of the West is the most difficult job in the World. It is a complete balancing act to keep peace between different factions, races, and religions. He pulled the U.S.A out of a serious recession some say a depression with the various programs he introduced, all the time being undermined by the opposition. There is no "free" lunch and one must work for a living and contribute to society. This is not to say that the sick and unemployable should not be looked after and he did his best to do this. I don't agree with all he did, but today I believe he was a great President and did his best under the circumstances. I hold much respect for him and every one should read this book to see what he was up against. It is too bad that current politicians aren't following his methods and advice!
Ed Majden - a Canadian Cold War Veteran


The First Year
Part V

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About the author (1990)

Ronald Wilson Reagan, 1911 - 2004 Ronald Reagan was born in Tampico, Illinois on February 6, 1911. He worked his way through Eureka College, where he studied economics and sociology. After graduation, he became a radio sports announcer for WOC, a small radio station in Davenport, Iowa. Reagan enlisted in the Army Reserve. An agent for Warner Brothers "discovered" him in Los Angeles in 1937 and offered him a seven-year contract. He played George Gipp in his most acclaimed film, "Knute Rockne -- All American" in 1940. In 1942, the Army Air Force called him to active duty and assigned him to the 1st Motion Picture Unit in Culver City, California, where he made over 400 training films. On December 9, 1945, he was discharged. During the next two decades he appeared in 53 films. As president of the Screen Actors Guild, he became embroiled in disputes over the issue of Communism in the film industry and his political views shifted from liberal to conservative. He toured the country as a television host, becoming a spokesman for conservatism. In 1966, he was elected Governor of California and was re-elected in 1970. For several months after his gubernatorial term ended in 1974, he wrote a syndicated newspaper column and provided commentaries on radio stations across the country. On November 20, 1975, Reagan announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination for president. He lost the party's nomination, but his showing laid the groundwork for the 1980 election. After winning the party's nomination in 1980, he chose George Bush as his running mate. Reagan won the election and was President of the United States from 1981 to 1989. At the end of his administration, the Nation was enjoying its longest recorded period of peacetime prosperity without recession or depression. In 1994, he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. He died on June 5, 2004.

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