Presidential Eloquence

October 31, 1993

Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God, and each invokes His aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God's assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men's faces, but let us judge not, that we be not judged. The prayers of both could not be answered. That of neither has been been answered fully. The Almighty has His own purposes.

-- Abraham Lincoln, Second Inaugural Address, 1865.

So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself -- nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror, which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.

L -- Franklin Delano Roosevelt, First Inaugural Address, 1933.

Now, this conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every statehouse, every office in the federal government. In the consuls of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought unsought, by the military-industrial complex.

-- Dwight David Eisenhower, Farewell Address, 1961.

And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you -- ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man.

-- John F. Kennedy, Inaugural Address, 1961.

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