Reader Bill Harnsberger of Portland paints Republicans and Democrats with a broad brush: All economic policies of the Democrats are, by definition, good; and all policies of the Republicans are evil (“Letter to the editor: Republicans create prosperity for all? Yeah, when elephants fly,” Feb. 18).

If only the distinction were that easy. But before he speaks, he should consider the following:

The nation experienced unprecedented economic growth and prosperity during the Eisenhower years. Eisenhower was a Republican.

Lyndon Johnson ignited the inflation fires during the late 1960s as a means of paying for his dirty little war in Southeast Asia. Johnson, of course, was a Democrat.

With the inflation fires raging, all Jimmy Carter (a Democrat) could do was wave a flag of surrender.

Does Mr. Harnsberger deny that the nation experienced enormous prosperity and growth resulting from Ronald Reagan’s presidency? Come on!

The seeds of the Great Recession were planted during Democrat Bill Clinton’s administration, when Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were ordered to open the door for low-income home ownership. This triggered the real estate bubble that, when it popped, impoverished many of the people it was intended to help. Barney Frank (a Democrat) wrote the legislation.

As for the current president “fixing” the problems of the Great Recession, one must understand that this is the slowest and weakest economic recovery in the United States on record.

Michael A. Smith