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Old January 19th, 2010, 01:45 AM   #1
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Default Grover Cleveland... best Democrat ever?

This is an excerpt from Glen Beck's book "Arguing with Idiots."

In 1887, Congress passed a bill appropriating money to Texas farmers who were suffering through a catastrophic drought. These days, that funding would not only be authorized, it would probably be done so under an emergency program that gave more money to the farmers than they ever dreamed of. But not in 1887. Not with Grover Cleveland as president.

Here's how he answered Congress' request:

"I feel obliged to withhold my approval of the plan, as proposed by this bill, to indulge a benevolent and charitable sentiment through the appropriation of public funds for that purpose. I can find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution, and I do not believe that the power and duty of the General Government ought to be extended to the relief of individual suffering which is in no manner properly related to the public service or benefit. A prevalent tendency to disregard the limited mission of this power and duty should, I think, be steadfastly resisted, to the end that the lesson should be constantly enforced that though the people support the Government the Government should not support the people."

Time out. Maybe you need to pause and catch your breath. Go get a glass of water if you need to, and then read that paragraph again. When you're finished, read the rest of his response:

"The friendliness and charity of our countrymen can always be relied upon to relieve their fellow-citizens in misfortune. This has been repeatedly and quite lately demonstrated. Federal aid in such cases encourages the expectation of paternal care on the part of the Government and weakens the sturdiness of our national character, while it prevents the indulgence among our people of that kindly sentiment and conduct which strengthens the bonds of a common brotherhood."

Wow. Even more impressive was that Cleveland (who was a Democrat!) turned out to be a hundred percent right. Those "fellowcitizens" he put so much trust in donated ten times more money to those farmers than the amount the president had vetoed, once again proving that when individuals personally sacrifice to help each other, it not only makes us better people, it makes us a better country. It forces us to notice need instead of simply hiring corrupt politicians to notice it only when they can exploit, publicize, or politicize it.

Unfortunately, Cleveland's unwavering belief in the individual didn't last long. It was squashed just a few years after his second term when progressive Republican Teddy Roosevelt took over and said idiotic things like: "Every man holds his property subject to the general right of the community to regulate its use to whatever degree the public welfare may require it." (See the "U. S. Presidents" chapter for a lot more on Teddy.)

It just goes to show you that the "R" and the "D" are meaningless -- what really matters is whether someone believes in the spirit and unending compassion of the individual, or instead in the destructive power of the collective.
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Old January 19th, 2010, 08:11 AM   #2
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make a modern day dumbocrat read that and they would surely shrivel up like the wicked witch of the west.
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Old January 19th, 2010, 08:57 AM   #3
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That book should be required reading for all the people in all 3 branches of government. Maybe then they wouldn't consider using our constitution for toilet paper when the roll is used up.
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Old January 20th, 2010, 12:34 AM   #4
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Just started reading that book. So far so good.
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