From the Guardian today:
"Obama's conservative style – the fact that he invented a new tradition this year, by speaking at inauguration eve dinners in honour of Colin Powell and John McCain – gives him the space to act differently where it matters, on the substance.
There is a precedent, albeit indirect, for this trick. It comes from the man Obama hailed during the 2008 campaign as a "transformational" president: Ronald Reagan. Once elected, Reagan did not look over his shoulder at the previous consensus. Instead he seized the moment to drive through his own small government agenda, assuming the public would soon come around. He did not feel obliged to meet the centre-left halfway. And yet he wrapped it all in a warmth and charm that ensured it was not threatening. He too was a radical on substance, no matter how cosily traditional his style."
I think that's about right. Any admiration of Reagan will be of the style tricks, not - thankfully! - the policies that brought deficits, inequality, and military adventureship. Hmm. That would be a subset of the farcical idiocies that GWB brought. More of that from BHO? I think not.
The comment I responded to noted that "Knowing Reagan is one of Obama's heroes gives me hope that I know I'm not wrong. Thank God for that" and I could not resist a taunt:
Hey, I gave the guy a day of peace in honour of the inauguration, but how much restraint do you want here? :)