the American right is held together by resentment and tribal affinity, lacking any coherent political or ideological ideas.
The individual health insurance mandate was the conservative health care policy for about a quarter century. Then a black Democrat tried to compromise with the right by agreeing to implement it, whereupon every Republican politician in America denounced it as unconstitutional socialist fascism.
As with Milton Friedman, the career of Ronald Reagan is shot through with actions that would have him read out of today's Republican Party. As president, he repeatedly raised taxes, talked to Mikhail Gorbachev (earning him comparisons to Neville Chamberlain), argued that failing to raise the debt ceiling would be ruinous, and later called for an army for the UN.
To today's right, Reagan and Friedman stand for freedom, America, bald eagles, the Constitution, and Screw You Obama. Learning and writing about things that happened in real life is quite beside the point.
Exactly so. The false memory of St. Ronnie is a wild distortion of reality. Reagan raised taxes 11 times. [the net result was to shift the tax burden from the haves to the have-nots, but - hey - a tax increase is a tax increase.]