One year ago today, Ron was diagnosed with Stage Four pancreatic cancer. His journey on this mortal coil ended December 19, 2011.
Despite the ravaging deadly disease, he remained brilliant to the very end. He knew death was the intended consequence of life and he faced it with great courage and openness.
He died peacefully in his sleep at home.
It was a devastating loss to our family and those we affectionately called “our radio family”.
Ron touched thousands and thousands of lives on the airwaves and in print. He loved his work and often said he had the smartest audience in all of talk radio.
He didn’t want people to think like he did, he just wanted them to think, to be aware of what was really going on and to read between the lines.
Ron was passionate about history politics, and the constant struggle between various theories and the hard, cold facts of reality.
He often said “Reality always wins in the end.”
In his final Baltimore Sun column on November 18, 2011, Ron wrote, “Throughout my life, I’ve been motivated by curiosity, always eager to find out what happens next. As I exit, our society faces grave crises and it’s clear that the current political leadership of both parties is incapable of fixing them. I would have liked to witness the next great unfolding of events, even though I believe these will prove catastrophic.
“What must be done will not be done, not at least until all the normal dodges have undeniably failed.”
He had just finished reading Pat Buchanan’s Suicide of a Superpower: Will American Survive to 2025? and said it laid out “what has let us to the current unsustainable circumstances that bedevil us.”
He recommended the book to “anyone interested in understanding what likely lies ahead.”
Ron went on to say that in his lifetime, America had been transformed from a cohesive society — the greatest country of modern times — into what Buchanan called ‘A multiracial, multicultural, multilingual, multiethnic stew of a nation that has no successful precedent in the history of the world”.
“The country is torn asunder,” Ron wrote, “between those who perceive a profound decline and those who believe passionately that there is no decline at all, but rather the beginnings of a march into a progressive utopia. That all previous utopian schemes have failed utterly is ignored.”
Amid what we are currently experiencing, we are witnessing “the next great unfolding of events.”
Our foreign policy is in tatters. Our Secretary of State is nowhere to be found.
Mitt Romney says Obama’s foreign policy “has left the U.S. less respected and less powerful in the world.”
The Middle East is falling apart. “Arab Spring” is heading into “Arab Winter”.
James Lewis claims “al-Qaeda is very much alive, and America is a paper tiger” in his informative and chilling piece in the American Thinker, “Benghazi: Osama’s Revenge on Obama.”
Lewis writes that “America is asleep at the switch, and Islamic fascists are on the march.”
“U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice is still running the same lies Obama told two weeks ago. Hillary and the State Department are telling different lies every day; Obama is blaming the intelligence agencies, who are leaking right back; and somebody is blaming the Pentagon today,” says Lewis. He details the Benghazie situation, the thinking of the Muslin world, and writes about Afghanistan and adds that “If Americans can’t figure this out, the bad guys will. They already know. Only the ignorant and foolish don’t get it.”
It is a must read:
Here in the U.S., after 43 straight months of 8% or higher unemployment, the number recently dropped to 7.8%. That .2% decrease didn’t include the number of the “long-term” unemployed. According to the U.S. Labor Department Bureau of Statistics, “In August, the number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 5.0 million.”
According to the U.S. National Debt Clock, the “Outstanding Public Debt as of 15 Oct 2012 at 02:43:07 PM GMT is $16,172,637,681,648.64.“The estimated population of the United States is 313,689,430 so each citizen’s share of this debt is $51,556.21.
“The National Debt has continued to increase an average of $3.89 billion per day since September 28, 2007!”As for economic recovery, Janet Yellen, Fed Chair Bernanke’s “no. 2 at the central bank’s board”, said last week that “Spillovers from Europe and a still-depressed housing market also help account for our tepid recovery and elevated unemployment.”
Spillovers? Tepid? Really? But I digress…
Obamacare wasn’t designed to cut health care costs; rather, to eliminate private insurance coverage and create a Socialist-style government-run system. Side effects may include— but will not be limited to—negatively affecting younger Americans with higher premiums, possible loss of coverage, and penalties. The estimated cost of the plan of $1.5 trillion over the next ten years will be added to their tab.
Medicaid will be impossible to sustain. The Federal government share paid to the States will decrease, adding an additional $64 billion (from the official report prepared by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) to the already over burgeoned state budgets. And that’s just an estimate.
Entitlement programs and out-of-control spending will be cut.
Conveniently, after the election, Congress will return to Washington to “debate” automatic spending cuts and the estimated $536 billion tax increases—nearly 20%— for 2013.
There’s no way to accurately predict what awaits us, what threatens us, or what will adversely affect us but given the circumstances, most likely, the crystal ball will remain cloudy with a chance of major storms.
In late November, Ron said, “It doesn’t matter who wins the election. We’re still screwed.”
He truly was the Voice of Reason. I miss him so very much.
June Smith is the widow of Ron Smith, WBAL Talk Show Host, Emmy® Award winner, and Baltimore Sun columnist, who was a media titan in Maryland area and beyond for almost forty years. Her tribute website, founded in his memory, is www.friendsofronsmith.com. She is working diligently to raise one million dollars for the Ron Smith Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund at Johns Hopkins. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org