Monday, August 9, 2010


Gordon Bishop On The Issues

I was pleased to see that Ronald Reagan's speech writer, Peggy Noonan, wrote a column endorsing New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

This might be a good template for how Republicans approach the Tea Party as the election approaches 2010.

Peggy Noonan is a 'Jersey Girl,' girl who grew up in Rutherford, Bergen County, NJ. She was born Margaret Ellen Noonan on September 7, 1950 in Brooklyn, New York.

I can relate to Peggy Noonan because I also grew up in Bergen County, Hackensack, the Seat of Bergen. We both became authors, journalists and columnists.

Noonan is a graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson Unniversity at its Teaneck campus. My wife of more than 48 years, Jeanne Reed Bishop, grew up in Teaneck.

Five of Noonan's books have been New York Times bestsellers. She is a trustee of the Manhattan Institute. She has been awarded honorary doctorates from Miami University; St. John Fisher College; her alma mater, Fairleigh Dickinson University; Adelphi College, and Saint Francis. She was nominated for an Emmy Award for her work on America: A Tribute to Heroes.

In her political writings, Noonan frequently cites the political figures she admires, including Ronald Reagan, Abraham Lincoln, and Edmund Burke.

Noonan married Richard W. Rahn, who was then chief economist at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in 1985. They lived in Great Falls, Virginia. Their son was born in 1987.

Noonan and her husband were divorced after 5 years of marriage. In. 1989, she returned with her son to her native New York. In 2004, according to an interview with Crisis Magazine, she lived in a brownstone in Brooklyn Heights with her son, who attended the nearby Saint Ann's School. She is a Roman Catholic.

Noonan currently lives in New York City. In 2010, she bought an apartment on the Upper East side of Manhattan.

In 1984, Noonan , as a speechwriter for President Reagan, authored his "Boys of Pointe du Hoc" speech on the 40th anniversary of D-Day. She also wrote Reagan's address to the nation after the Challenger explosion, drawing upon the poet John Magee's famous words about aviators who "slipped the surly bonds of earth..and touched the face of God." The latter is ranked as one of the 10 best American political speeches of the 20th Century, according to a list compiled by professors at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Texas A&M and based on the opinions of "137 leading scholars of American public address.. "The Pointe du Hoc' speech ranges as the 60th best speech of the century.

She also worked on a tribute Reagan gave to honor John F. Kennedy at a fundraising event held at the McLean, Virginia home of Senator Edward M. Kennedy in the spring of 1984.

Later, while working for then Vice President George H. Bush, Noonan coined the phrase "a kinder, gentler nation" and also popularized "a thousand points of life," two memorable catchphrases used by Bush.

Noonan also wrote the speech in which Bush pledged: "Read my lips: no new taxes" during his 1988 presidential nomination acceptance speech in New Orleans (Bush's subsequent reversal of this pledge is often cited as a reason for his defeat in his 1992 re-election campaign.)

Before the Reagan years, Noonan worked as the daily CBS Radio commentary writer for anchorman Dan Rather at CBS News, who she called "the best boss I ever had."

Noonan is now an author, a columnist for the Wall street Journal, and a commentator on news shows.Chris Christie should hire Peggy Noonan as his 'Jersey Girl' speechwriter, since Noonan thinks he would make a great Republican contender in the next Presidential election.

Noonan's right. Christie has my vote in 2012.

(Gordon Bishop is a 'Who's Who in the World' national award-winning author, historian, syndicated column and New Jersey's First "Journalist-of-the-Year"--1986/New Jersey Press Association, founded in 1857.)