I laid aside this morning's Editorial Pages (April 23) with a renewed conviction that the man occupying the Oval Office is both stupid and ignorant, that he is obtuse and insensitive, and that, above all, he is a liar.
Saul Landau and Daniel Siegel ("Reagan's Penchant for 'Stretchers' ") refrained from using the word "liar," but they left no doubt as to what they meant.
Even their generous comparison to Huck Finn was withdrawn when they said that "Unlike Mark Twain's character, Reagan's deception is not a case of benign fibbing." That the President has "a boundless habit for telling stretchers," that he and his Cabinet "have deliberately, if not obsessively, misstated the nature of Central American realities," that he has sounded "exaggerated alarms," that the Administration has "fabricated quotes," that a "vast deception" has been practiced by the Reagan Administration, that "Congress has been deceived and misled" 77 times, according to a report by Sens. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and John M. Kerry (D-Mass.), all add up to a picture of an unconscionable liar.
Columnist Joseph Kraft ("Virtuous Motives Stumble Over a Tragedy of Errors") was equally discomfiting when he described Reagan as a "cheerful, shallow" man who suffers from "moral flabbiness." It is not reassuring to be told that our President has good intentions when we are informed that he "has frequently said silly things about the German visit, including the observation that most Germans didn't remember World War II" or that he made his shockingly offensive remark that the SS men "are victims of Nazism . . . just as surely as the victims in the concentration camps" three times before his moral blindness caught up with him. And I can only cringe at the ignorance of a man who believes "that most Germans didn't remember World War II."