Monday, October 17, 2005

when Teddy speaks, dave listens

I steal this from Kung Fu Monkey. It is words of wisdom from Teddy Roosevelt, often "emulated" when some president wants to look more ruggedly individualistic. Teddy felt that the president was, ultimately, a public servant, so said this in 1918:
He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able and disinterested service to the nation as a whole.

"Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile.

"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or anyone else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else."
I've been carrying the last paragraph of this quote around in my wallet for a year or two, since I saw it in the newspaper. I liked it so much that I cut it out and saved it. KFM gets it from the Daily Kos, who gets it from Madison Wisconsin's Capital Times which got it from the Chicago Tribune.
Arent these daisy chains fun!

It was brought about by a man named Theodore Roosevelt Heller, 88, a veteran and patriot, who, upon his death, requested that "In lieu of flowers, please send acerbic letters to Republicans."

Somebody send that man a New Orleans-style jazz band good-bye!

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