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Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The Story of the Four Freedoms.

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Once upon a time in this land we, the people, of the United States had a president, FDR, who was very, very smart. Shortly before the beginning of his third term in office, on January 6, 1941, he delivered a speech to the 77th U.S. Congress and the nation. This president was performing his constitutional duty to "give to the Congress information of the state of the union,". We were at peace, but the muffled drumbeat of war could be heard in the distance. He presented many strategic ideas to prepare our country for the possibility of war at that time. He spoke also of the four freedoms. Maintaining our freedom being the reason, the only basis, for going to war.

He recognized the people of the U S of A "take pride pride in the fact that we are soft-hearted; but we cannot afford to be soft-headed." He said, "We must always be wary of those who with sounding brass and tinkling cymbal preach...". He advised the nation to be ever wary "of that small group of selfish men who would clip the wings of the American eagle in order to feather their own nests."

This wise president reminded the citizens and the leaders that "every member of the executive branch of the government and every member of the Congress face great responsibility-- great accountability."

An erudite president was FDR who said, "We know that enduring peace cannot be bought at the cost of other people's freedom." He further stated, "...our national policy in internal affairs has been based upon a decent respect for the rights and the dignity of all of our fellow men within our gates, so our national policy in foreign affairs has been based on a decent respect for the rights and the dignity of all nations, large and small. And the justice of morality must and will win in the end."

"The nation takes great satisfaction and much strength from the things, which have been done to make its people conscious of their individual stake in the preservation of democratic life in America. Those things have toughened the fiber of our people, have renewed their faith and strengthened their devotion to the institutions we make ready to protect. Certainly this is no time for any of us to stop thinking about the social and economic problems, which are the root cause of the social revolution, which is today a supreme factor in the world. For there is nothing mysterious about the foundations of a healthy and strong democracy.

The basic things expected by our people of their political and economic systems are simple. They are :
    Equality of opportunity for youth and for others.
    Jobs for those who can work.
    Security for those who need it.
    The ending of special privilege for the few.
    The preservation of civil liberties for all.
    The enjoyment of the fruits of scientific progress in a wider and constantly rising standard of living.

These are the simple, the basic things that must never be lost sight of in the turmoil and unbelievable complexity of our modern world. The inner and abiding straight of our economic and political systems is dependent upon the degree to which they fulfill these expectations."
Next Post: The Story of the Four Freedoms Continues Plus New 21st Century Freedoms Explored.

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