HOW WELL DO YOU KNOW YOUR PRESIDENTS? (Part I)

June 27, 2013  By Jack Jodell.

Ahhhh – misconceptions. As Michele Bachmann’s ill-fated attempt last year at securing the Tea Party-infested reactionary Republican Party’s nomination for President amply proved, our society and even some of our Congresspersons are full of them! Especially because of her stature as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Bachmann’s lack of knowledge about her own country’s history was appalling and shocking, and wholly inexcusable as well. Her ignorance (incorrectly stating where the first shots of the Revolutionary War were fired, for one), and that of many of her fellow Tea Partiers, led me to research and feature what you see below. It is a presentation consisting of two or more  quotes from each of the country’s Presidents, beginning with George Washington and ending with Barack Obama. You will undoubtedly find some of these to be revealing, and even a few to be stunning – I know I sure did! Most surprising of all, especially to those on the religious right who have mistakenly assumed and argued that our Founding Fathers set out to form a Christian nation, is the anti-religious stance favoring the separation of church and state many of them took. How well do YOU know the Presidents? Let us see…

As this presentation will be lengthy, I have decided to break it into 3 parts, featuring quotes from 14-15  different Presidents, in the chronological order in which they served. Here is part I:

1). GEORGE WASHINGTON (1789-1797) – INDEPENDENT
“Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force! Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master!”
“Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains taken to bring it to light.”

2). JOHN ADAMS (1797-1801) – FEDERALIST
“The happiness of society is the end of government.”
“We should begin by setting conscience free. When all men of all religions…shall enjoy equal liberty, property, and an equal chance for honors and power… we may expect that improvements will be made in the human character and state of society.”

3). THOMAS JEFFERSON (1801-1809) – DEMOCRATIC-REPUBLICAN
“Religious institutions that use government power in support of themselves and force their views on persons of other faiths. or of no faith, undermine all our civil rights. Moreover, state support of an established religion tends to make the clergy unresponsive to their own people, and leads to corruption within religion itself. Erecting the ‘wall of separation between church and state’ therefore, is absolutely essential in a free society.”
“I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial by strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country.”

4). JSMES MADISON (1809-1817) – DEMOCRATIC-REPUBLICAN
“The purpose of separation of church and state is to keep forever from these shores the ceaseless strife that has soaked the soil of Europe for centuries.”
“The problem to be solved is, not what government is perfect, but which of the forms is least imperfect?”

5). JAMES MONROE (1817-1825) – DEMOCRATIC-REPUBLICAN
“The public lands are a public stock, which ought to be disposed of to the best advantage for the nation.”
” The American continents… are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European power.”

6). JOHN QUINCY ADAMS (1825-1829) – DEMOCRATIC-REPUBLICAN
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, then you are a leader.”
“Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.”

7). ANDREW JACKSON (1829-1837) – DEMOCRATIC
“Internal improvement and the diffusion of knowledge, so long as they can be diffused by the constitutional acts of the Federal Government, are of high importance.”
“It is to be regretted that the rich and powerful too often bend the acts of government to their own selfish purposes.”

8). MARTIN VAN BUREN (1837-1841) – DEMOCRATIC
“It seems proper, at all events, that by an early enactment like that of other countries the application of public money by an officer of Government to private uses should be made a felony and visited with severe and ignominious punishment.”
“It is easier to do a job right than to explain why you didn’t.”

9). WILLIAM HENRY HARRISON (1841) – WHIG
“We admit to no government by divine right…the only legitimate right to govern is an express grant of power from the governed.”
“A decent and manly examination of the acts of the Government should not only be tolerated, but encouraged.”

10). JOHN TYLER (1841-1845) – WHIG
“Popularity, I have always thought,  may aptly be compared to a coquette – the more you woo her, the more apt is she to elude your embrace.”
“Patronage is the sword and cannon by which war may be waged on the human race.”

11). JAMES K. POLK (1845-1849) – DEMOCRATIC
“Though I occupy a very high position, I am the hardest working man in the country.”
“With me, it is exceptionally true that the presidency is no bed of roses.”

12). ZACHARY TAYLOR (1849-1850) – WHIG
“For more tha half a century, during which kingdoms and empires have fallen, this Union has stood unshaken. The patriots who formed it have long since descended to the grave; yet still it remains, the proudest monument to their memory.”
“I have always done my duty. I am ready to die. My only regret is for the friends I leave behind me.”

13).  MILLARD FILLMORE (1850-1853) – WHIG
“It is not strange… to mistake change for progress.”
“An honorable defeat is better than a dishonorable victory.”

14), FRANKLIN PIERCE (1853-1857) – DEMOCRATIC
“A Republic without parties is a complete anomaly. The histories of all popular governments show absurd is the idea of their attempting to exist without partirs.”
“The storm of frenzy and faction must inevitably gash itself in vain against the unshaken rock of the Constitution.”

15). JAMES BUCHANAN (1857-1861) – DEMOCRATIC
“I have seldom met an intelligent person whose views were not narrowed and distorted by religion.”
“The ballot box is the surest arbiter of disputes among freemen.”

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Part II will display quotes from Abraham Lincoln – Herbert Hoover. Watch for it in a few more days!

            

About jackjodell53

I am an American Dissident trapped in a country where poor and middle class people are constantly being exploited and lied to by a very rigid and conservative plutocratic elite. I believe in government OF, FOR, and BY the people, not one controlled as it now is by corporations and special interests.
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4 Responses to HOW WELL DO YOU KNOW YOUR PRESIDENTS? (Part I)

  1. Jackie says:

    This is fantastic Jack , thank you.  Because I’m not a US citizen I would  appreciate if you could mention what Party each President stood for. I also believe that many Americans don’t remember also.!        Thanks , Jackie     xox  

    • jackjodell53 says:

      You’re welcome, Jackie. Per your request, I have added that information to this post and will also include it in the subsequent posts.

  2. thevalolsoncos says:

    Powerful quotes, interesting too. Thanks for doing this compilation. You’re good at compilations. Hope you are well. I’m all better now. V

    ________________________________

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