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Franklin D. Roosevelt: Address at the Democratic State Convention, Syracuse, N.Y.

Franklin D. Roosevelt: Address at the Democratic State Convention, Syracuse, N.Y. | History of America | Scoop.it

the American Presidency Project


Franklin D. Roosevelt: Address at the Democratic State Convention, Syracuse, N.Y.


Transcription of Speech:


Ladies and gentlemen:


From force of long habit I almost said, "My fellow delegates."


Tonight you and I join forces for the 1936 campaign.


We enter it with confidence. Never was there greater need for fidelity to the underlying conception of Americanism than there is today. And once again it is given to our party to carry the message of that Americanism to the people.


The task on our part is twofold: First, as simple patriotism requires, to separate the false from the real issues; and, secondly, with facts and without rancor, to clarify the real problems for the American public.


There will be—there are—many false issues. In that respect, this will be no different from other campaigns. Partisans, not willing to face realities, will drag out red herrings as they have always done—to divert attention from the trail of their own weaknesses.


This practice is as old as our democracy. Avoiding the facts—fearful of the truth—a malicious opposition charged that George Washington planned to make himself king under a British form of government; that Thomas Jefferson planned to set up a guillotine under a French Revolutionary form of government; that Andrew Jackson soaked the rich of the Eastern seaboard and planned to surrender American democracy to the dictatorship of a frontier mob. They called Abraham Lincoln a Roman Emperor; Theodore Roosevelt a Destroyer; Woodrow Wilson a self-constituted Messiah.


In this campaign another herring turns up. In former years it has been British and French- and a variety of other things. This year it is Russian. Desperate in mood, angry at failure, cunning in purpose, individuals and groups are seeking to make Communism an issue in an election where Communism is not a controversy between the two major parties.


Here and now, once and for all, let us bury that red herring, and destroy that false issue. You are familiar with my background; you know my heritage; and you are familiar, especially in the State of New York, with my public service extending back over a quarter of a century. For nearly four years I have been President of the United States. A long record has been written. In that record, both in this State and in the national capital, you will find a simple, clear and consistent adherence not only to the letter, but to the spirit of the American form of government.


To that record, my future and the future of my Administration will conform. I have not sought, I do not seek, I repudiate the support of any advocate of Communism or of any other alien "ism" which would by fair means or foul change our American democracy.


That is my position. It always has been my position. It always will be my position.


There is no difference between the major parties as to what they think about Communism. But there is a very great difference between the two parties in what they do about Communism.


I must tell you why. Communism is a manifestation of the social unrest which always comes with widespread economic maladjustment. We in the Democratic party have not been content merely to denounce this menace. We have been realistic enough to face it. We have been intelligent enough to do something about it. And the world has seen the results of what we have done.


In the spring of 1933 we faced a crisis which was the ugly fruit of twelve years of neglect of the causes of economic and social unrest. It was a crisis made to order for all those who would overthrow our form of government. Do I need to recall to you the fear of those days—the reports of those who piled supplies in their basements, who laid plans to get their fortunes across the border, who got themselves hideaways in the country against the impending upheaval? Do I need to recall the law-abiding heads of peaceful families, who began to wonder, as they saw their children starve, how they would get the bread they saw in the bakery window? Do I need to recall the homeless boys who were traveling in bands through the countryside seeking work, seeking food —desperate because they could find neither? Do I need to recall the farmers who banded together with pitchforks to keep the sheriff from selling the farm home under foreclosure? Do I need to recall the powerful leaders of industry and banking who came to me in Washington in those early days of 1933 pleading to be saved?


Most people in the United States remember today the fact that starvation was averted, that homes and farms were saved, that banks were reopened, that crop prices rose, that industry revived, and that the dangerous forces subversive of our form of government were turned aside.


A few people- a few only—unwilling to remember, seem to have forgotten those days.


In the summer of 1933, a nice old gentleman wearing a silk hat fell off the end of a pier. He was unable to swim. A friend ran down the pier, dived overboard and pulled him out; but the silk hat floated off with the tide. After the old gentleman had been revived, he was effusive in his thanks. He praised his friend for saving his life. Today, three years later, the old gentleman is berating his friend because the silk hat was lost.


Why did that crisis of 1929 to 1933 pass without disaster?


The answer is found in the record of what we did. Early in the campaign of 1932 I said: "To meet by reaction that danger of radicalism is to invite disaster. Reaction is no barrier to the radical, it is a challenge, a provocation. The way to meet that danger is to offer a workable program of reconstruction, and the party to offer it is the party with clean hands." We met the emergency with emergency action. But far more important than that, we went to the roots of the problem, and attacked the cause of the crisis. We were against revolution. Therefore, we waged war against those conditions which make revolutions—against the inequalities and resentments which breed them. In America in 1933 the people did not attempt to remedy wrongs by overthrowing their institutions. Americans were made to realize that wrongs could and would be set right within their institutions. We proved that democracy can work.


I have said to you that there is a very great difference between the two parties in what they do about Communism. Conditions congenial to Communism were being bred and fostered throughout this Nation up to the very day of March 4, 1933. Hunger was breeding it, loss of homes and farms was breeding it, closing banks were breeding it, a ruinous price level was breeding it. Discontent and fear were spreading through the land. The previous national Administration, bewildered, did nothing.


In their speeches they deplored it, but by their actions they encouraged it. The injustices, the inequalities, the downright suffering out of which revolutions come—what did they do about these things? Lacking courage, they evaded. Being selfish, they neglected. Being short-sighted, they ignored. When the crisis came—as these wrongs made it sure to come—America was unprepared.


Our lack of preparation for it was best proved by the cringing and the fear of the very people whose indifference helped to make the crisis. They came to us pleading that we should do, overnight, what they should have been doing through the years.


And the simple causes of our unpreparedness were two: First, a weak leadership, and, secondly, an inability to see causes, to understand the reasons for social unrest—the tragic plight of 90 percent of the men, women and children who made up the population of the United States.


It has been well said that "The most dreadful failure of which any form of government can be guilty is simply to lose touch with reality, because out of this failure all imaginable forms of evil grow. Every empire that has crashed has come down primarily because its rulers did not know what was going on in the world and were incapable of learning."


It is for that reason that our American form of government will continue to be safest in. Democratic hands. The real, actual, undercover Republican leadership is the same as it was four years ago. That leadership will never comprehend the need for a program of social justice and of regard for the well-being of the masses of our people.


I have been comparing leadership in Washington. This contrast between Democratic and Republican leadership holds true throughout the length and breadth of the State of New York. As far back as the year 1910, the old Black Horse Cavalry in Albany, which we old people will remember, was failing to meet changing social conditions by appropriate social legislation. Here was a State noted for its industry and noted for its agriculture—a State with the greatest mixture of population- where the poorest and the richest lived, literally, within a stone's throw of each other—in short a situation made to order for potential unrest. And yet in this situation the best that the Republican leaders of those days could say was: "Let them eat cake." What would have happened if that reactionary domination had continued through all these hard years?


Starting in 1911, a Democratic leadership came into power, and with it a new philosophy of government. I had the good fortune to come into public office at that time. I found other young men in the Legislature—men who held the same philosophy; one of them was Bob Wagner; another was Al Smith. We were all joined in a common cause. We did not look on government as something apart from the people. We thought of it as something to be used by the people for their own good.


New factory legislation setting up decent standards of safety and sanitation; limitation of the working hours of women in industry; a workmen's compensation law; a one-day-rest-in-seven law; a full train-crew law; a direct-primary law—these laws and many more were passed which were then called radical and alien to our form of government. Would you or any other Americans call them radical or alien today?


In later years, first under Governor Smith, then during my Governorship, this program of practical intelligence was carried forward over the typical and unswerving opposition of Republican leaders throughout our State.


And today the great tradition of a liberal, progressive Democratic Party has been carried still further by your present Governor, Herbert H. Lehman. He has begun a program of insurance to remove 'the spectre of unemployment from the working people of the State. He has broadened our labor legislation. He has extended the supervision of public utility companies. He has proved himself an untiring seeker for the public good; a doer of social justice; a wise, conscientious, clear-headed and businesslike administrator of the executive branch of our Government. And be it noted that his opponents are led and backed by the same forces and, in many cases, by the same individuals who, for a quarter of a century, have tried to hamstring progress within our State. The overwhelming majority of our citizens, up-state and down-state, regardless of party, propose to return him and his Administration to Albany for another two years.


His task in Albany, like my task in Washington, has been to maintain contact between statecraft and reality. In New York and in Washington, Government which has rendered more than lip service to our Constitutional Democracy has done a work for the protection and preservation of our institutions that could not have been accomplished by repression and force.


Let me warn you and let me warn the Nation against the smooth evasion which says, "Of course we believe all these things; we believe in social security; we believe in work for the unemployed; we believe in saving homes. Cross our hearts and hope to die, we believe in all these things; but we do not like the way the present Administration is doing them. Just turn them over to us. We will do all of them- we will do more of them we will do them better; and, most important of all, the doing of them will not cost anybody anything."


But, my friends, these evaders are banking too heavily on the shortness of our memories. No one will forget that they had their golden opportunity—twelve long years of it.


Remember, too, that the first essential of doing a job well is to want to see the job done. Make no mistake about this: the Republican leadership today is not against the way we have done the job. The Republican leadership is against the job's being done.


Look to the source of the promises of the past. Governor Lehman knows and I know how little legislation in the interests of the average citizen would be on the statute books of the State of New York, and of the Federal Government, if we had waited for Republican leaders to pass it.


The same lack of purpose of fulfillment lies behind the promises of today. You cannot be an Old Guard Republican in the East, and a New Deal Republican in the West. You cannot promise to repeal taxes before one audience and promise to spend more of the taxpayers' money before another audience. You cannot promise tax relief for those who can afford to pay, and, at the same time, promise more of the taxpayers' money for those who are in need. You simply cannot make good on both promises at the same time.


Who is there in America who believes that we can run the risk of turning back our Government to the old leadership which brought it to the brink of 1933? Out of the strains and stresses of these years we have come to see that the true conservative is the man who has a real concern for injustices and takes thought against the day of reckoning. The true conservative seeks to protect the system of private property and free enterprise by correcting such injustices and inequalities as arise from it. The most serious threat to our institutions comes from those who refuse to face the need for change. Liberalism becomes the protection for the far-sighted conservative.


Never has a Nation made greater strides in the safeguarding of democracy than we have made during the past three years. Wise and prudent men- intelligent conservatives—have long known that in a changing world worthy institutions can be conserved only by adjusting them to the changing time. In the words of the great essayist, "The voice of great events is proclaiming to us. Reform if you would preserve." I am that kind of conservative because I am that kind of liberal.

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Notable Quotes to Ponder | Facebook

Notable Quotes to Ponder | Facebook | History of America | Scoop.it

Historical, political, satirical and inspirational quotes to reflect upon. With each, I have provided the source information for you to be able to do your own research.

We see so many quotes on Facebook that are inaccurate or invented, so with each of these, I wanted to give the reader a little history to share. [Click to View]

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Antiscience Beliefs Jeopardize U.S. Democracy: Scientific American

Antiscience Beliefs Jeopardize U.S. Democracy: Scientific American | History of America | Scoop.it

The United States faced down authoritarian governments on the left and right. Now it may be facing an even greater challenge from within

 

It is hard to know exactly when it became acceptable for U.S. politicians to be antiscience. For some two centuries science was a preeminent force in American politics, and scientific innovation has been the leading driver of U.S. economic growth since World War II. Kids in the 1960s gathered in school cafeterias to watch moon launches and landings on televisions wheeled in on carts. Breakthroughs in the 1970s and 1980s sparked the computer revolution and a new information economy. Advances in biology, based on evolutionary theory, created the biotech industry. New research in genetics is poised to transform the understanding of disease and the practice of medicine, agriculture and other fields.

Yet despite its history and today's unprecedented riches from science, the U.S. has begun to slip off of its science foundation. Indeed, in this election cycle, some 236 years after Jefferson penned the Declaration of Independence, several major party contenders for political office took positions that can only be described as “antiscience”: against evolution, human-induced climate change, vaccines, stem cell research, and more.

 

 


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A Lost Civilization

A Lost Civilization | History of America | Scoop.it
The Republican tribe is being wiped out, and not by plague, drought or Conquistadors.
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Notes of a private

Notes of a private | History of America | Scoop.it

(Open Library)


A personal narrative from the notes of  a confederate soldier. Private John Milton Hubbard details his life during the Civil War.

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ℋistory Тube - YouTube

ℋistory Тube - YouTube | History of America | Scoop.it

Amazing documentaries on History Tube. Find your interests...

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Letter from Alexander Hamilton, concerning the public conduct and character of John Adams, esq., president of the United States. (Open Library)

Letter from Alexander Hamilton, concerning the public conduct and character of John Adams, esq., president of the United States. (Open Library) | History of America | Scoop.it
Letter from Alexander Hamilton, concerning the public conduct and character of John Adams, Esq., President of the United States by Alexander Hamilton, 1809,Printed by E. G. House, No. 5, Court street.
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Mark Twain in His Times Homepage

Mark Twain in His Times Homepage | History of America | Scoop.it

This interpretive archive, drawn largely from the resources of the Barrett Collection, focuses on how "Mark Twain" and his works were created and defined, marketed and performed, reviewed and appreciated. The goal is to allow readers, scholars, students and teachers to see what Mark Twain and His Times said about each other, in a way that can speak to us today. Contained here are dozens of texts and manuscripts, scores of contemporary reviews and articles, hundreds of images, and many different kinds of interactive exhibits. For a quick overview, you can go to "Sample This Site." If you'd like help navigating the site, start with "Piloting Lessons" in "About This Site."

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Our Story of America

Our Story of America | History of America | Scoop.it

by JOHN CASHON


Why is there so much division in the United States today? This question is one that I have constantly been exploring to try to find answers, and though I may have found cultural, religious or traditional reasons, I cannot understand why divisive and partisan ideas continue to grow even if they are proven untrue beyond any shadow of doubt.


Why hold on to these beliefs when all evidence points out they are incorrect?


While watching one of the videos that Annabel Park and Eric Byler released from their upcoming Story of America: A Nation Divided documentary, a white, southern man from Mecklenburg, Virginia states, “the Constitution tells us that if you don’t work, you don’t eat.”


Hearing this struck a nerve for me because in my area of Western Kentucky, this is a common theme being expressed by many people, and they are proud of their beliefs. The Virginian continues by stating, “We’re divided because we are intentionally divided. Okay? If you can divide a country, while you are fighting amongst yourselves, they can take your country over, just like what’s happening.”


When he was asked why there was so much rhetoric directed today towards President Obama in the last four years, he immediately began to bring up the same talking points that some of the national figures have been saying, “I’ll tell you why, because he has never pulled out his thesis paper from college. He borrowed money from the government. Okay? And he is not an American citizen. Okay? He’s a Muslim.”


I have heard these talking points many times, and when asked if any evidence could be produced to prove these assertions, none are found or given, except excerpts and quotes from far right media sources that also provide no proof.


It doesn’t matter if these ideas make no sense or are misinformed by the rhetorical talking points directed towards the President, because they are staunch in their holding on to these beliefs and will adamantly stand their ground against anyone that may question their ideology.


Just the other day, I was talking with one of my friends that is a republican, and somehow the conversation steered into my friend exclaiming in disgust, “Obama is trying to close down the coal industry in Kentucky, all because of this made up theory of climate change.”


I asked if she didn’t believe in the science and her reply was, “It’s not true and the only reason why Obama keeps talking about it is to give him more power by regulating things like the coal industry and losing everyone their jobs.” There was no doubt that she honestly believed that the President was intentionally doing this.


I began to counter but we both decided to agree to disagree, which has been our way for many years. We both understand we have major differences when it comes to the government and politics, as do all of my friends here in my area.


I still want to find an answer to this though. It perplexes me how people can stubbornly hold onto their beliefs, no matter the facts. Whenever I ask them for evidence, I am told that it is something they were told. It is like having a faith in an ideology so profound that it never matters about the facts. It just is.


I very much doubt there is anything that I could write or say that could persuade them to go against these beliefs. It will take more than that.


This is why I think an important step forward is the making of this documentary, The Story of America: A Nation Divided. Not only are they going around the country and interviewing Americans of all stripes and colors, but they have also setup, on their website, a place for everyday people to tell their own story of America, and hearing these stories can help promote an understanding of different people’s situations and beliefs. Watching and reading these compelling stories opens eyes and hearts where there may have been a self-imposed wall standing between people.


These are such crazy times in this country and finding any quick solutions to ending the division in America may never happen, but one thing is for sure, without dialog and understanding, it has no hope of being possible. It will require the nation to reflect on what it means to be American, and with one little step at a time, we all can begin to envision a day when all the hatreds and divisions are finally healed.


To do that though, it may just take one story at a time.


[WATCH - Why are we so divided? A voter from Mecklenburg, Virginia from Story of America: A Nation Divided]


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A little history – Martin Luther King

A little history – Martin Luther King | History of America | Scoop.it

'I Have a Dream’ Speech


One of the most moving, uplifting and rallying speeches that I have ever heard. It is truly a marvel to behold.


I have put Martin Luther King’s speech beneath the video to allow you to read along. You will notice that Martin Luther sometimes went away from his prepared speech as he was speaking.

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Bull Moose! Reviving Progressive Conservatism

Bull Moose! Reviving Progressive Conservatism | History of America | Scoop.it

by MICHAEL STAFFORD, Cagle Post


The great American conservative thinker Russell Kirk once observed that some disasters are so catastrophic they require a re-examination of first principles. On Election Day, the Republican Party suffered such an existential shock.


The corporate wing of the GOP was decisively rejected by the voters because it offered nothing but obsolete ideas driven by a bankrupt libertarian ideology that would actually exacerbate the problems America is facing. It cravenly serves the interests of the rich through an agenda composed of tax cuts for the wealthy, deregulation for large corporations, crony capitalism, and climate change denial coupled with attacks on the existing social contract. These outmoded, unappealing, elite-friendly policies are marketed to mainstream Americans mixed with a toxic stew of nativism, misogyny, racism, and fear.


The time is ripe for a new alternative — progressive conservatism. Progressive conservatism would offer a fresh perspective- a synergy of populist economics, social justice, environmental stewardship, communitarianism, and traditional values that addresses the concerns of the common people.


The re-establishment of a progressive conservative voice in American politics within the GOP would create a true opposition capable of keeping the Democrats honest, the rest of the Republicans sane, and the plutocracy firmly in check.


Although many are loath to admit it, a class war has been raging in America for decades. The rich have been the aggressors and, so far, they are winning. America’s working and middle classes have been the victims of an unprovoked assault — a massive wealth and power grab fueled by boundless greed. As a result, our economy has been looted and hollowed out, our environment imperiled, our civil liberties curtailed, and our political process captured, by a rent-seeking elite whose only concern is to increase its own take from, and special privileges in, an increasingly rigged and corrupt system. [MORE]


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The Men Who Built America — Full Episodes — History.com Videos

The Men Who Built America — Full Episodes — History.com Videos | History of America | Scoop.it
Railroads, oil, steel and electricity have all been harnessed in less than 50 years, but the face of America is changing and will never be the same.
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The Confederacy of Takers

The Confederacy of Takers | History of America | Scoop.it

by DANA MILBANK, The Washington Post


President Obama’s opponents have unwittingly come up with a brilliant plan to avoid the “fiscal cliff.” They want to secede from the union.


If Obama were serious about being a good steward of the nation’s finances, he’d let them.


The White House, in one of those astro-turf efforts that make people feel warm about small-d democracy, launched a “We the People” program on its Web site last year, allowing Americans to petition their government for a redress of grievances. Any petition that receives 25,000 or more signatures within 30 days is promised a response (though not necessarily a favorable one) from the Obama administration.


And so a large number of patriotic Americans, mostly from states won by Mitt Romney last week, have petitioned the White House to let them secede. They should be careful about what they wish for. It would be excellent financial news for those of us left behind if Obama were to grant a number of the rebel states their wish “to withdraw from the United States and create [their] own NEW government” (the petitions emphasize “new” by capitalizing it).


Red states receive, on average, far more from the federal government in expenditures than they pay in taxes. The balance is the opposite in blue states. The secession petitions, therefore, give the opportunity to create what would be, in a fiscal sense, a far more perfect union.


Among those states with large numbers of petitioners asking out: Louisiana (more than 28,000 signatures at midday Tuesday), which gets about $1.45 in federal largess for every $1 it pays in taxes; Alabama (more than 20,000 signatures), which takes $1.71 for every $1 it puts in; South Carolina (26,000), which takes $1.38 for its dollar; and Missouri (22,000), which takes $1.29 for its dollar.


Since the effort gained attention this week, copycats in all but a few states have joined the petition drive. To be fair, White House officials could refuse the secession petitions of states Obama won, such as New York (which gets only 79 cents on its tax dollar), Michigan (85 cents) and Colorado (79 cents).


What would be left is a Confederacy of Takers, including relatively poor states such as Alaska, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas and Mississippi. One of the few would-be Confederacy members that pays more than it receives is Texas, which because of oil money is roughly break-even at 94 cents of benefits for its tax dollar. (The statistics, from an analysis of tax and revenue data by the nonpartisan Tax Foundation, were published in 2006, but the broad pattern doesn’t vary much over time.) [MORE]


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Which State Wants Out of the U.S the Most?

Which State Wants Out of the U.S the Most? | History of America | Scoop.it

Documenting the Absurdity:


by JEN DOLL, the Atlantic Wire


You know how you and your best friend took a vow that you'd move to Canada if the presidential candidate you couldn't stand actually won? (Except, of course, you really wouldn't do that?) Now states are getting in on this game ... except states can't move to Canada. So instead, they want to become their own Canadas, sort of. The "secession movement," as posted by petitions on The White House's We the People site, now involves 21 U.S. states— many of them using the same "peacefully grant ... to withdraw" language below.


WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:


Peacefully grant the State of ______ to withdraw from the United States of America and create its own NEW government.
As the founding fathers of the United States of America made clear in the Declaration of Independence in 1776:


"When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."


"...Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and institute new Government..."


Despite an apparent eagerness to conform to one another in terms of the language used in their individual petitions to secede, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Texas (whose language is different), Kentucky, North Carolina, North Dakota, Indiana, New York, New Jersey, Colorado, Montana, and Missouri are among those apparently fired up enough to start petitions claiming they want to go it alone.


So, which state wants it the most? We looked at numbers of signatures on a state-by-state level to create the following chart ranking states on a desire-to-secede level. Note: There are two different Georgia and Missouri petitions. In those cases, we've taken the petition with the highest number of signatures. [MORE]

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Men by their constitutions are naturally divided into two parties:…

Men by their constitutions are naturally divided into two parties:… | History of America | Scoop.it
Men by their constitutions are naturally divided into two parties:

1. Those who fear and distrust the people, and wish to draw all powers from them into the hands of the higher classes.

2. Those who identify themselves with the people, have confidence in them, cherish and consider them as the most honest and safe, although not the most wise depositary of the public interests.

In every country these two parties exist, and in every one where they are free to think, speak, and write, they will declare themselves. Call them, therefore, liberals and serviles, Jacobins and Ultras, whigs and tories, republicans and federalists, aristocrats and democrats, or by whatever name you please, they are the same parties still and pursue the same object.

The last appellation of aristocrats and democrats is the true one expressing the essence of all.

Thomas Jefferson
Letter to Henry Lee (August 10, 1824)
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The American Presidency Project

The American Presidency Project | History of America | Scoop.it
The American Presidency Project contains the most comprehensive collection of resources pertaining to the study of the President of the United States. Compiled by John Woolley and Gerhard Peters
John Cashon's insight:

This is an excellent resource in finding documents and transcripts of speeches.

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John Cashon's Musings

John Cashon's Musings | History of America | Scoop.it
A southern gentleman's historical perspective on politics and life in the United States.
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To have served under General Marquis de Lafayette

To have served under General Marquis de Lafayette | History of America | Scoop.it

by JOHN CASHON


This is a story about my 5th great grandfather David Cashon and how he served under General Marquis de Lafayette in the Revolutionary War. David was 18 years old when he enlisted to serve as a minuteman serving out of Chesterfield Country, Virginia in 1775, and how, at the end of the war, had the fortune of serving under General Marquis de Lafayette.

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Watch now: John Muir in the New World | American Masters | PBS Video


Program: American Masters
Episode: John Muir in the New World
Preservationist, naturalist, author, explorer, activist, scientist, farmer, John Muir (4/21/1838 - 12/24/1914) was all these things and more. Explaining his impact then and now, this 90-minute documentary delves into Muir's life with reenactments filmed in the majestic landscapes he visited: Wisconsin, Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada, the Alhambra Valley of California, and the glaciers of Alaska.

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Yay Eleanor

Yay Eleanor | History of America | Scoop.it

Via Margaret Reeve Panahi
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Mark Twain quotations

Mark Twain quotations | History of America | Scoop.it
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A little history – Will Rogers

A little history – Will Rogers | History of America | Scoop.it

Will Rogers had a way of speaking, through his storytelling, that instantly made people smile. His humor gave comfort to the millions of ordinary people that were struggling through the Great Depression.


I have found three videos on You Tube that highlight his life and his philosophizing. He had a wisdom that was recognized by politicians and millions of Americans alike.

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A little history – Theodore Roosevelt

A little history – Theodore Roosevelt | History of America | Scoop.it

Teddy Roosevelt was a wise man. These are videos and recordings of Theodore Roosevelt’s speeches on the internet to gain insight into his thinking and how his points could have been spoken today. Each includes the transcripts from the Library of Congress to read along while listening.

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Bethlehem Steel, The People Who Built America

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Musing on secession from a liberal dissident in Republican lands

Musing on secession from a liberal dissident in Republican lands | History of America | Scoop.it

by JOHN CASHON


Petitions for secession from the United States of America have been submitted to the WhiteHouse.gov site from 22 States including my grand state of Kentucky. As a historian, I am having a case of deja vu. I keep thinking I have seen this before. Oh yeah, the Civil War. I almost forgot.


To those that are so quick to call for secession, I have a question for you. Concerning our soldiers fighting overseas, who are they fighting and dying for? A red state? A Blue? Let's say they are from Kentucky but their mother's family is from New York. This brings up too many difficult questions to answer. I find it not very realistic when there are bombastic, ignorant calls to break over two hundreds years of history and tradition, all for some deluded illusion of a world without government in their lives.


Imagine what would happen if small local municipalities decided they did not want the State Government intruding on their lives with a tax collector, and decided to secede from the State. Unquestionably, the states would have to tax more because there would be no central government backup.


Imagine if a catastrophe occurs that is beyond the scope of that state government to cope from the damage. Calls for help could go unheeded. Maybe alliances with other states could be drawn up for these contingencies or better yet, another confederacy. My how history has come full circle.


I wanted to get a sampling of some the thoughts from those advocating secession so I went to my local television station website and found the national story about the secession petitions, and they asked the question of where the people stood on the issue.


I found a wealth of material. There were many that were advocating for secession but I would like to highlight, first and foremost, the fact that there were plenty of people that had common sense and most importantly, factual comments. I loved it. There are other dissidents in these Republican lands where I reside.


For privacy, I am going to paraphrase the most ludicrous ideas expressed to the community and I noticed that they fell into the following categories: Race, Religion, Ignorance and Ideology.


Regarding race, with the comments that began right away by declaring they are sick of people telling them they are racist just because they think the President is a Kenyan born Muslim that wants to take away their guns, methinks they doth protest too much.


As for religion, many of the comments mentioned that President Obama was 'Godless' or better yet, the 'Antichrist'. This did not surprise me because I had already heard this many times from people that I know.


I am from the Bible Belt where it is a very important part of many people's lives and I see no problem with this at all, but this seems to be taking things too far. Historically, there was definitely a separation of church and state in the days of the founding of our country, and this has been forgotten, either conveniently or truthfully.


Let's use the motto 'In God We Trust'. There has been a lot of confusion saying that our country was founded by using this motto, but it became the national motto in 1956 and was printed on paper money in 1957 at the height of the Cold War. The communists of the Soviet Union promoted Atheism and the United States wanted to highlight our differences by showing that our culture was a Christian nation that believed in capitalism. This was the time of McCarthyism after all.


Originally, money was printed with the motto 'E Pluribus Unum' which means, "One from many." Some translate the phrase as, "Out of many, one." This referred to the forming of a single federal state from all of the colonies that later became the states, and John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson created the first design for the Great Seal of the United States that contained this motto. This design was rejected by the Congress in 1776, but the motto was used in the design that was accepted in 1782 and printed on some of the federal coins in 1795.


Ignorance was the theme of many others. These included references to terribly high taxes that do not exist or the liberal lies about global warming, even when all evidence to its existence is wailing from the storm sirens over their heads screaming, "it's real!"


Many had a far right ideology and they are angry because there are so many of the liberal takers that voted for President Obama. They are also angry that there are people that live off of welfare and food stamps while not having any intention to looking for a job, and the money to pay for all of this is coming out of taxes taken straight from their paychecks. Also, I can't leave out the fact that President Obama is flaunting his disregard of the Constitution of the United States with his socialist program 'Obamacare'.


In conclusion to my musing on secession, I find it very interesting that when one leaves comments, sometimes there is nothing hindering their compulsion to spew hate and derision. There is no little voice is in their head saying, "be nice", or maybe there is. I don't know.


I believe the same may be the case when people so easily advocate secession. They have no understanding of the ramifications of what they calling for. But then again, maybe they do.


Via John Cashon
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States petition to secede from union

States petition to secede from union | History of America | Scoop.it

Documenting the Absurdity:


by JAKE MILLER, CBS News


They don't want to take their country back. They just want to leave it behind.


As the dust settles in the wake of President Obama's decisive reelection last Tuesday, the White House petition website has been flooded by a series of secession requests, with malcontents from New Jersey to North Dakota submitting petitions to allow their states to withdraw from the union.


Most of the petitions submitted thus far have come from solidly conservative states, including most of the Deep South and reliably separatist Texas. But a handful come from the heart of blue America - relatively progressive enclaves like Oregon and New York.


All told, petitions have been filed on behalf of 20 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas.


Many of the petitions invoke the Declaration of Independence's dramatic assertion that "Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and institute new Government."


The petitions have been submitted through the White House's "We the People" website, which aims to give "all Americans a way to engage their government on the issues that matter to them." The White House promises that "If a petition meets the signature threshold, it will be reviewed by the Administration and we will issue a response." The threshold is 25,000 signatures in 30 days and, at the time of this article's publication, none of the secession petitions have reached the threshold (the Texas petition has received over 22,000 and needs to hit 25,000 by Dec. 9; Louisiana, with just under 15,000 signatures, needs to hit the threshold by Dec. 7.) [MORE]


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