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Fwd: Harry Gives 'em Hell

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  • Greg Cannon
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 23, 2005
      > Date: 23 Jun 2005 08:58:18 -0000
      > From: HSTSociety@yahoogroups.com
      > To: HSTSociety@yahoogroups.com
      > Subject: [HSTSociety] Digest Number 2
      > There is 1 message in this issue.
      > Topics in this digest:
      > 1. Harry Gives 'em Hell
      > From: "Hank" <hankpiano@...>
      > Message: 1
      > Date: Wed, 22 Jun 2005 23:40:32 -0000
      > From: "Hank" <hankpiano@...>
      > Subject: Harry Gives 'em Hell
      > Address in Philadelphia Upon Accepting the
      > Nomination of the
      > Democratic National Convention
      > July 15, 1948
      > I AM SORRY that the microphones are in the way, but
      > I must leave them
      > the way they are because I have got to be able to
      > see what I am doing--as I am always able to see what
      > I am doing.
      > I can't tell you how very much I appreciate the
      > honor which you have
      > just conferred upon me. I shall continue to try to
      > deserve
      > it.
      > I accept the nomination.
      > And I want to thank this convention for its
      > unanimous nomination of
      > my good friend and colleague, Senator Barkley of
      > Kentucky. He is a great man, and a great public
      > servant. Senator
      > Barkley and I will win this election and make these
      > Republicans like it--don't you forget that!
      > We will do that because they are wrong and we are
      > right, and I will
      > prove it to you in just a few minutes.
      > This convention met to express the will and reaffirm
      > the beliefs of
      > the Democratic Party. There have been differences of
      > opinion, and that is the democratic way. Those
      > differences have been
      > settled by a majority vote, as they should be.
      > Now it is time for us to get together and beat the
      > common enemy. And
      > that is up to you.
      > We have been working together for victory in a great
      > cause. Victory
      > has become a habit of our party. It has been elected
      > four
      > times in succession, and I am convinced it will be
      > elected a fifth
      > time next November.
      > The reason is that the people know that the
      > Democratic Party is the
      > people's party, and the Republican Party is the
      > party of
      > special interest, and it always has been and always
      > will be.
      > The record of the Democratic Party is written in the
      > accomplishments
      > of the last 16 years. I don't need to repeat them.
      > They
      > have been very ably placed before this convention by
      > the keynote
      > speaker, the candidate for Vice President, and by
      > the
      > permanent chairman.
      > Confidence and security have been brought to the
      > people by the
      > Democratic Party. Farm income has increased from
      > less than
      > $2 ΒΌ billion in 1932 to more than $18 billion in
      > 1947. Never in the
      > world were the farmers of any republic or any
      > kingdom or
      > any other country as prosperous as the farmers of
      > the United States;
      > and if they don't do their duty by the Democratic
      > Party,
      > they are the most ungrateful people in the world!
      > Wages and salaries in this country have increased
      > from 29 billion in
      > 1933 to more than $128 billion in 1947. That's
      > labor, and
      > labor never had but one friend in politics, and that
      > is the
      > Democratic Party and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
      > And I say to labor what I have said to the farmers:
      > they are the most
      > ungrateful people in the world if they pass the
      > Democratic
      > Party by this year.
      > The total national income has increased from less
      > than $40 billion in
      > 1933 to $203 billion in 1947, the greatest in all
      > the history
      > of the world. These benefits have been spread to all
      > the people,
      > because it is the business of the Democratic Party
      > to see that
      > the people get a fair share of these things.
      > This last, worst 80th Congress proved just the
      > opposite for the
      > Republicans.
      > The record on foreign policy of the Democratic Party
      > is that the
      > United States has been turned away permanently from
      > isolationism, and we have converted the greatest and
      > best of the
      > Republicans to our viewpoint on that subject.
      > The United States has to accept its full
      > responsibility for
      > leadership in international affairs. We have been
      > the backers and the
      > people who organized and started the United Nations,
      > first started
      > under that great Democratic President, Woodrow
      > Wilson,
      > as the League of Nations. The League was sabotaged
      > by the Republicans
      > in 1920. And we must see that the United Nations
      > continues a strong and growing body, so we can have
      > everlasting peace
      > in the world.
      > We removed trade barriers in the world, which is the
      > best asset we
      > can have for peace. Those trade barriers must not be
      > put
      > back into operation again.
      > We have started the foreign aid program, which means
      > the recovery of
      > Europe and China, and the Far East. We instituted
      > the
      > program for Greece and Turkey, and I will say to you
      > that all these
      > things were done in a cooperative and bipartisan
      > manner.
      > The Foreign Relations Committees of the Senate and
      > House were taken
      > into the full confidence of the President in every
      > one of
      > these moves, and don't let anybody tell you anything
      > else.
      > As I have said time and time again, foreign policy
      > should be the
      > policy of the whole Nation and not the policy of one
      > party or
      > the other. Partisanship should stop at the water's
      > edge; and I shall
      > continue to preach that through this whole campaign.
      > I would like to say a word or two now on what I
      > think the Republican
      > philosophy is; and I will speak from actions and
      > from
      > history and from experience.
      > The situation in 1932 was due to the policies of the
      > Republican Party
      > control of the Government of the United States. The
      > Republican Party, as I said a while ago, favors the
      > privileged few
      > and not the common everyday man. Ever since its
      > inception,
      > that party has been under the control of special
      > privilege; and they
      > have completely proved it in the 80th Congress. They
      > proved it by the things they did to the people, and
      > not for them.
      > They proved it by the things they failed to do.
      > Now, let's look at some of them--just a few.
      > Time and time again I recommended extension of price
      > control before
      > it expired June 30, 1946. I asked for that extension
      > in
      > September 1945, in November 1945, in a Message on
      > the State of the
      > Union in 1946; and that price control legislation
      > did not
      > come to my desk until June 30, 1946, on the day on
      > which it was
      > supposed to expire. And it was such a rotten bill
      > that I
      > couldn't sign it. And 30 days after that, they sent
      > me one just as
      > bad. I had to sign it, because they quit and went
      > home.
      > They said, when OPA died, that prices would adjust
      > themselves for the
      > benefit of the country. They have been adjusting
      > themselves all right! They have gone all the way off
      > the chart in
      > adjusting themselves, at the expense of the consumer
      > and for the
      > benefit of the people that hold the goods.
      > I called a special session of the Congress in
      > November 1947--November
      > 17, 1947--and I set out a 10-point program for the
      > welfare and benefit of this country, among other
      > things standby
      > controls. I got nothing. Congress has still done
      > nothing.
      > Way back 4 1/2 years ago, while I was in the Senate,
      > we passed a
      > housing bill in the Senate known as the
      > Wagner-Ellender-Taft bill. It was a bill to clear
      > the slums in the
      > big cities and to help to erect low-rent housing.
      > That bill, as I
      > said, passed the Senate 4 years ago. It died in the
      > House. That bill
      > was reintroduced in the 80th Congress as the
      > Taft-Ellender-Wagner bill. The name was slightly
      > changed, but it is
      > practically the same bill. And it passed the Senate,
      > but it
      > was allowed to die in the House of Representatives;
      > and they sat on
      > that bill, and finally forced it out of the Banking
      > and
      > Currency Committee, and the Rules Committee took
      > charge, and it still
      > is in the Rules Committee.
      > But desperate pleas from Philadelphia in that
      > convention that met
      > here 3 weeks ago couldn't get that housing bill
      > passed. They
      > passed a bill they called a housing bill, which
      > isn't worth the paper
      > it's written on.
      > In the field of labor we needed moderate legislation
      > to promote labor-
      > management harmony, but Congress passed instead that
      > so-called Taft-Hartley Act, which has disrupted
      > labor-management
      > relations and will cause strife and bitterness for
      > years to
      > come if it is not repealed, as the Democratic
      > platform says it ought
      > to be repealed.
      > On the Labor Department, the Republican platform of
      > 1944 said, if
      > they were in power, that they would build up a
      > strong
      > Labor Department. They have simply torn it up. Only
      > one bureau is
      > left that is functioning, and they cut the
      > appropriation of that
      > so it can hardly function.
      > I recommended an increase in the minimum wage. What
      > did I get?
      > Nothing. Absolutely nothing.
      > I suggested that the schools in this country are
      > crowded, teachers
      > underpaid, and that there is a shortage of teachers.
      > One of
      > our greatest national needs is more and better
      > schools. I urged the
      > Congress to provide $300 million to aid the States
      > in the
      > present educational crisis. Congress did nothing
      > about it. Time and
      > again I have recommended improvements in the social
      > security law, including extending protection to
      > those not now
      > covered, and increasing the amount of benefits, to
      > reduce the
      > eligibility age of women from 65 to 60 years.
      > Congress studied the
      > matter for 2 years, but couldn't find the time to
      > extend or
      > increase the benefits. But they did find time to
      > take social security
      > benefits away from 750,000 people, and they passed
      > that
      > over my veto.
      > I have repeatedly asked the Congress to pass a
      > health program. The
      > Nation suffers from lack of medical care. That
      > situation
      > can be remedied any time the Congress wants to act
      > upon it.
      > Everybody knows that I recommended to the Congress
      > the civil rights
      > program. I did that because I believed it to be my
      > duty
      > under the Constitution. Some of the members of my
      > own party disagree
      > with me violently on this matter. But they stand up
      > and
      > do it openly! People can tell where they stand. But
      > the Republicans
      > all professed to be for these measures. But Congress
      > failed
      > to act. They had enough men to do it, they could
      > have had cloture,
      > they didn't have to have a filibuster. They had
      > enough
      > people in that Congress that would vote for cloture.
      > Now everybody likes to have low taxes, but we must
      > reduce the
      > national debt in times of prosperity. And when tax
      > relief can
      > be given, it ought to go to those who need it most,
      > and not those who
      > need it least, as this Republican rich man's tax
      > bill did
      > when they passed it over my veto on the third try.
      > The first one of these was so rotten that they
      > couldn't even stomach
      > it themselves. They finally did send one that was
      > somewhat
      > improved, but it still helps the rich and sticks a
      > knife into the
      > back of the poor.
      > Now the Republicans came here a few weeks ago, and
      > they wrote a
      > platform. I hope you have all read that platform.
      > They
      > adopted the platform, and that platform had a lot of
      > promises and
      > statements of what the Republican Party is for, and
      > what they
      > would do if they were in power. They promised to do
      > in that platform
      > a lot of things I have been asking them to do that
      > they
      > have refused to do when they had the power.
      > The Republican platform cries about cruelly high
      > prices. I have been
      > trying to get them to do something about high prices
      > ever
      > since they met the first time.
      > Now listen! This is equally as bad, and as cynical.
      > The Republican
      > platform comes out for slum clearance and low-rental
      > housing. I have been trying to get them to pass that
      > housing bill
      > ever since they met the first time, and it is still
      > resting in the
      > Rules
      > Committee, that bill.
      > The Republican platform favors educational
      > opportunity and promotion
      > of education. I have been trying to get Congress to
      > do
      > something about that ever since they came there, and
      > that bill is at
      > rest in the House of Representatives.
      > The Republican platform is for extending and
      > increasing social
      > security benefits. Think of that! Increasing social
      > security
      > benefits! Yet when they had the opportunity, they
      > took 750,000 off
      > the social security rolls !
      > I wonder if they think they can fool the people of
      > the United States
      > with such poppycock as that!
      > There is a long list of these promises in that
      > Republican platform.
      > If it weren't so late, I would tell you all about
      > them. I have
      > discussed a number of these failures of the
      > Republican 80th Congress.
      > Every one of them is important. Two of them are of
      > major concern to nearly every American family. They
      > failed to do
      > anything about high prices, they failed to do
      > anything about
      > housing.
      > My duty as President requires that I use every means
      > within my power
      > to get the laws the people need on matters of such
      > importance and urgency.
      > I am therefore calling this Congress back into
      > session July 26th.
      > On the 26th day of July, which out in Missouri we
      > call "Turnip Day,"
      > I am going to call Congress back and ask them to
      > pass
      > laws to halt rising prices, to meet the housing
      > crisis--which they
      > are saying they are for in their platform.
      > At the same time I shall ask them to act upon other
      > vitally needed
      > measures such as aid to education, which they say
      > they are
      > for; a national health program; civil rights
      > legislation, which they
      > say they are for; an increase in the minimum wage,
      > which I
      > doubt very much they are for; extension of the
      > social security
      > coverage and increased benefits, which they say they
      > are for;
      > funds for projects needed in our program to provide
      > public power and
      > cheap electricity. By indirection, this 80th
      > Congress has
      > tried to sabotage the power policies the United
      > States has pursued
      > for 14 years. That power lobby is as bad as the real
      > estate
      > lobby, which is sitting on the housing bill.
      > I shall ask for adequate and decent laws for
      > displaced persons in
      > place of this anti-Semitic, anti-Catholic law which
      > this 80th
      > Congress passed.
      > Now, my friends, if there is any reality behind that
      > Republican
      > platform, we ought to get some action from a short
      > session of the
      > 80th Congress. They can do this job in 15 days, if
      > they want to do
      > it. They will still have time to go out and run for
      > office.
      > They are going to try to dodge their responsibility.
      > They are going
      > to drag all the red herrings they can across this
      > campaign, but
      > I am here to say that Senator Barkley and I are not
      > going to let them
      > get away with it.
      > Now, what that worst 80th Congress does in this
      > special session will
      > be the test. The American people will not decide by
      > listening to mere words, or by reading a mere
      > platform. They will
      > decide on the record, the record as it has been
      > written. And
      > in the record is the stark truth, that the battle
      > lines of 1948 are
      > the same as they were in 1932, when the Nation lay
      > prostrate
      > and helpless as a result of Republican misrule and
      > inaction.
      > In 1932 we were attacking the citadel of special
      > privilege and greed.
      > We were fighting to drive the money changers from
      > the
      > temple. Today, in 1948, we are now the defenders of
      > the stronghold of
      > democracy and of equal opportunity, the haven of the
      > ordinary people of this land and not of the favored
      > classes or the
      > powerful few. The battle cry is just the same now as
      > it was in
      > 1932, and I paraphrase the words of Franklin D.
      > Roosevelt as he
      > issued the challenge, in accepting nomination in
      > Chicago:
      > "This is more than a political call to arms. Give me
      > your help, not
      > to win votes alone, but to win in this new crusade
      > to keep
      > America secure and safe for its own people."
      > Now my friends, with the help of God and the
      > wholehearted push which
      > you can put behind this campaign, we can save this
      > country from a continuation of the 80th Congress,
      > and from misrule
      > from now on.
      > I must have your help. You must get in and push, and
      > win this
      > election. The country can't afford another
      > Republican Congress.
      > NOTE: The President spoke at 2 a.m. in Convention
      > Hall in
      > Philadelphia. The address was carried on a
      > nationwide radio
      > broadcast.
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