Monday, February 16, 2015

Words from Presidents Past

I had a middle-of-the-night brainstorm over the weekend, remembering that this Monday (today) would be Presidents’ Day—celebrated in a big way at our house with Mr. Spherical Model painting the guest bathroom. Anyway, the brainstorm was, I could just go through my rather huge quote file and share some wisdom from our presidents with February birthdays: George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.
I gathered the quotes. And then I thought I should check and make sure I wasn’t doing too much repetition from my tours of Washington, D.C., last fall. And I just casually checked to see what I’d done in the past for Presidents’ Day. Turns out I've had this brainstorm before. So I have several options: be repetitious, or just decide that doing quotes from Washington and Lincoln is a new tradition for Presidents’ Day. I think I’ll go with that option. What I’ll do is include a few that were not included last year. (And who knows how the tradition will continue next year. They said a lot of wise things.)
We give thanks to George Washington and Abraham Lincoln for their wisdom, which still directs us toward freedom, prosperity, and civilization. And may I add a prayer that our next president embodies this timeless wisdom.

George Washington

in the museum at Mt. Vernon
It is impossible to govern a nation without God and the Bible. 

Your love of liberty, your respect for the laws, your habits of industry,
and your practice of moral and religious obligations,
are the strongest claims to national and individual happiness.

A good moral character is the first essential in a man….
It is therefore highly important that you should endeavor not only to be learned but virtuous.
Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains taken to bring it to light.

Abraham Lincoln

Lincoln Memorial
We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the Courts,
not to overthrow the Constitution but to overthrow the menwho would pervert the Constitution.
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help the wage earner by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by encouraging class hatred. You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than you earn. You cannot build character and courage by taking away man’s initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.—attributed to Abraham Lincoln, but possibly came from Rev. William John Henry Boetcker (1873-1962), in a pamphlet called “The Ten Cannots.”
Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision.
If they decide to turn their back on the fire and then burn their behinds,
then they will just have to sit on their blisters.
Nearly all men can stand adversity,
but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.

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