By Judy Reiss
If you are anything like me, you must be sick and tired of politics, regardless of which candidate or party you are voting for. And as I was ready to gag, I started to think about other candidates and other elections our country has needed to live through. And then I received an article from a friend about Harry Truman our 43 President and it opened my eyes about what once was and what could be!
Good ole Harry was our 33rd President and he made more important decisions as any of the 32 Presidents preceding him. However, a measure of his greatness rests on what he did after he left the White House.
The only asset he had when he died was the house he lived in, which was in Independence, Missouri. His wife, Bess, had inherited the house from her parents and other than the years they spent in the White House, they spent their entire lives there.
When he retired from office in 1952, his only income was his army pension of $13,507.72 a year. Congress noted that he was paying for his own stamps and personally licking them, then 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 was no Secret Service following them!
When he was offered corporate positions with 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 is not for sale!”
Later on, on May 6, 1971, Congress was preparing to award him the Medal of Honor on his 87th birthday. He refused to accept it, saying, “I don’t consider that I have done anything which should be the reason for any award, Congressional or otherwise.”
As president, he paid for his own travel expenses and his own food.
Today, our 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.
Good old Harry was correct when he observed, “My choices in life were either to be a piano player in a whorehouse or a politician. And to tell the truth, there’s hardly any difference!”
What do you think? We should dig him up and clone him!
Do you ever wonder why we don’t hear more about Harry Truman? Well, I think it is because we no longer have even one politician like good old Harry. He didn’t run for President because of the money he could make or how deep he could feather his nest! Nope, he actually believed that the Presidency should be respected and that he wanted to be regarded as an honest man who wanted his time in office to be considered as our constitution expected him to be. Wow! That sure isn’t the goal of our politicians today! There really isn’t such a thing as a poor or middle class politician!
The amount of money that has already bas been spent on running for a good year by each and every candidate, is over a billion dollars, so far! Think what that money could do. We could lower the national debt or pay our military more or I’m sure you could think of some way to spent it other than to pay for even more commercials! God, forbid!