Politicians don't actually matter all that much. Armageddon didn't happen on Reagan's watch, so I guess that makes him a success.
What lingers is the image. The husk. In terms of his myth Reagan was the most successful post-war president after Kennedy. Kennedy's myth was a lie, and I expect Reagan's will turn out to be a lie too. But myths survive their debunking. John Waybe actually hated horses. Yeah, but...
One thing that makes me love Reagan in spite of everything? He made jokes against himself.
"Would you like to go into space, Mr President?"
"I've been in space for years."