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Carter vs. Reagan
Transcript of Carter vs. Reagan
Operation Eagle Claw- Attempt to end the Iranian hostage situation. Ended in a total failure and lost the US much worldwide prestige. It also was one of the reasons Carter lost the 1980 Presidential Election. The circumstances made the operation necessary; however it failed miserably and the use of force did not benefit the US at all.
Carter cut spending on the Navy and decided not to build the B-1 Bombers to replace the B-52 bombers because it was too costly. Carter’s motives were confusing to congress and many times confused carter. He advocated for more military spending due to the Soviets increases in their navy and army Overall Grade: D- Reagan: Guardian of Economy By increasing the federal funds rate to an all-time high of 20%, Reagan successfully combated double digit inflation, but this increase in interest rates also led to an initially high unemployment rate. Overall however, Reagan succeeded immensely, reducing inflation rates from 10.4% in 1980 to 4.2% in 1988 and unemployment from 7.0% in 1980 to 5.4% in 1988. Concerning trade, Reagan lessened the price controls on oil, natural gas, cable TV, and oceanic shipping, but he increased import barriers substantially. Four major points comprised Reagan’s economic policy, also known as Reaganomics. These points were the reduction of government spending, the reduction of income and capital gains taxes, reducing regulation imposed on the economy by the federal government, and controlling money supply to reduce inflation. This policy was also referred to as supply-side or trickle-down economics because it suffered a decrease in revenue from initial tax cuts to broaden the tax base and increase revenue through a stronger economy later on. Reagan reformed the American tax code greatly during his presidency by cutting the highest income tax rate for the wealthiest Americans from 70% to 28% and by decreasing corporate tax rates from 48% to 34%.
From 1980 to 1982, Reagan’s administration experienced a period of recession, but Reagan turned the economy around and displayed steady growth for the remainder of the presidency.
Reagan’s supply-side economics approach decreased unemployment, reduced inflation, and increased American fiscal production, so Reagan can be seen as sustaining the social contract and expanding economic opportunites for all Americans. Inheriting a massive recession, Reagan certainly improved the economic infrastructure with his economic policies, but he did not bring about the Reagan Revolution he hoped for.
Reagan did improve the performance of the economy as unemployment fell alongside inflation, but his administration significantly restricted trade and added to the national debt against campaign promises. Furthermore, against his own policy, Reagan actually increased government spending over the course of his presidency rather than decreasing it. He poured many funds into the defense budget and refused to cut programs like Medicare and Social Security. Overall Grade: B+ Carter: Guardian of Economy Upon entering office Carter inherited an economy slowly emerging from recession; inflation and unemployment were at staggering numbers. Inflation started at 4.8% at the start of his term and when he left was at 12%. The deficit was around 59 billion dollars, which he pledged to eliminate, and unemployment was a 7.7%
Once inflation soared he delayed tax cuts and vetoed the spending programs that he himself proposed to the Congress. Carter then tried to ease inflation by reducing money supply and raising interest rates. All of his efforts proved to be unsuccessful. Inflation and interest rates soon reached their highest levels since World War II.
All of Carter’s attempts to save the economy failed. At a few periods recovery could be seen; however after the 1979 Energy Crisis the economy went back into shambles.
Due to substantially higher inflation rates and unemployment Carter did not expand the economy. These were the highest rates since WWII which was the worst the American Economy had been since then. Carter did not improve anything to do with the economy. Overall Grade: D Reagan: Chief Diplomat Carter: Chief Diplomat Reagan & Carter: Chief Legislators Overall Assessment Reagan regarded Communism as an immoral and destructive ideology and believed that the Soviet Union was bent on world domination. He strongly opposed communism of all kinds.
Reagan believed that SALT II was not working and the Soviets were continuing their nuclear dominance. He then began a military buildup with three goals in mind: strengthening the military in case of war, persuading European allies that the United States would not abandon them, and encouraging the Soviets to come to the bargaining table.
Reagan also called for more military spending based on the fact it wasn’t part of the budget but it was necessary. This lead to the greatest peacetime military spending in history.
Neither the US or the Soviets were taking the idea of decreasing nuclear weapons seriously so Reagan unveiled the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), also known as "Star Wars.” This project envisioned a shield outer space to protect the United States from incoming missiles.
Reagan believed that it was necessary for the United States to combat the spread of Soviet-backed Marxist regimes around the world such as Afghanistan. Because of this, he implemented the Reagan Doctrine. Overall Grade: A- Carter believed that the nation’s foreign policy should reflect its highest moral principles. He believed we fought fire with fire and failed in the past.
Carter refused to look over civil rights abuses of our own allies. He ended more than 30 years of U.S. political and military support to one of President Somoza of Nicaragua who was one of Latin America’s most abusive leaders.
In 1978, he finished what the Nixon Administration started and brought relations with mainland China back to normal.
Carter aided the creation Camp David Peace Accords between Israel and Egypt. This caused progress in the Middle East and ended the hostilities between the two sides.
Carter also persuaded Senate to approve a treaty to return the Panama Canal to Panamanian control in 1979.
Carter came to an agreement with the Soviet leader called SALT II, a treaty that limited the deployment of nuclear missiles. It was never fully ratified in Washington or Moscow but the two sides abided by it. Overall Grade: C Reagan:
-used his veto power sparingly
-decreased inflation and unemployment
-united the nation under a strong economy
Overall Grade: A- Carter:
-used his veto power a lot (31 times)
-legislation increased inflation
-alienated many members of his own party
Overall Grade: D+ Reagan embodied success in his roles as Commander-in-Chief, Guardian of the Economy, Chief Diplomat, and Chief Legislator. Carter, on the other hand, proved a dismal excuse for a president, failing in a large majority of his endeavors. Therefore, the final grades for each president are as follows: Reagan Final: A Carter Final: D Sources http://us-presidents.findthedata.org/compare/4-13/Jimmy-Carter-vs-Ronald-Reagan