Good Ol' Harry

@clrumfelt (5424)
United States
October 23, 2008 10:58pm CST
Not my commentary, but very interesting. Whether you admired him as a President or not, the following is a good commentary on how things have changed in our country. Harry Truman, from Missouri, was a different kind of President. He probably made as many important decisions regarding our nation's history as any of the other 42 Presidents. However, a measure of his greatness may rest on what he did after he left the White House. Historians have written the only asset he had when he died was the house he lived in, which was in Independence, Missouri. On top of that, his wife inherited the house from her mother. When he retired from office in 1952, his income was a U.S.O. Army pension reported to have been $13,507.72 a year. Congress, noting that he was paying for his stamps and personally licking them, granted him an 'allowance' and,later, a retroactive pension of $25,000 per year. After President Eisenhower was inaugurated, Harry and Bess drove home to Missouri by themselves. There were no Secret Service following them. When offered corporate positions at large salaries, he declined, stating, 'You don't want me. You want the office of the President, and that doesn't belong to me. It belongs to the American people and it's not for sale.' Even later, on May 6, 1971, when Congress was preparing to award him the Medal of Honor on his 87th birthday, he refused to accept it, writing, 'I don't consider that I have done anything which should be the reason for any award, Congressional or otherwise.' Modern politicians have found a new level of success in cashing in on the Presidency, resulting in untold wealth. Today, many in Congress also have found a way to become quite wealthy while enjoying the fruits of their offices. Political offices are now for sale. And the best for last: Good old Harry Truman was correct when he observed, 'My choices early in life were either to be a piano player in a hore house or a politician. And to tell the truth, there's hardly any difference.
1 person likes this
2 responses
• United States
24 Oct 08
I'll tell you a true story of one of the last (maybe the last) interviews of Harry Truman as a renowned former President by the media for the public. The subject of civil rights came up, which Harry Truman was in favor of, but President Truman did not like Martin Luther King and criticized him. The interviewer was just shocked. He stumbled for words. Finally he blurted, "But Martin Luther King won the Nobel Prize!" To which President Truman replied, "I did not give it to him!". LOL... Ol'give'm hades Harry was unPC before there was such a thing.
1 person likes this
@clrumfelt (5424)
• United States
24 Oct 08
He earns my admiration for that. It's hard(if not impossible) to find politicians of his ilk today.
@suspenseful (40316)
• Canada
25 Oct 08
Being president of the United States is a temporary priivlege, and at the end you return to your former occupation or former life. If everyone accepted pay after the end of their term, America would be farther in debt. If he was rich before that, then he has his former occupation or career to go back to. That is why the candidates have money. Also it was not as dangerous then as it is now. So they have to have secret service men guarding them. It is the sign of the times.
1 person likes this