This optimistic forward-looking outlook is the opposite of the depression that infects so many Democrats.
But Limbaugh’s real hero and constant role model is Ronald Reagan.
Limbaugh admires many aspects of Reaganism, but he is especially animated by his belief in American exceptionalism. “Reagan rejected the notion among liberals and conservatives alike who, for different reasons, believed America was in a permanent state of decline,” he wrote to me in an e-mail message. “He had faith in the wisdom of the American people. . . . He knew America wasn’t perfect, but he also knew it was the most perfect of nations. Reagan was an advocate of Americanism.”
The American exceptionalism, as espoused above by Reagan and Limbaugh, was articulated by Thomas Jefferson.