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Quotations From FRANKLIN D ROOSEVELT

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  • 31.
    Don't forget what I discovered—that over ninety percent of all national deficits from 1921 to 1939 were caused by payments for past, present, and future wars.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. president. Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Search for Victory: American- Soviet Relations, 1939-1945, p. 27, Scholarly Resources, Inc. (1990). PSF II, Departmental Files, State Department, 1940-1941, Box 22, Franklin D. Roosevelt Library, Hyde Park, New York, FDR to Adolph A. Berle, Jr. (June 21, 1941). This was a theme FDR harped on throughout his presidency. A first obligation of the President was to attempt arms limitation; failing this, the first obligation was to arm for defense.

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  • 32.
    General de Gaulle was a thoroughly bad boy. The day he arrived, he thought he was Joan of Arc and the following day he insisted that he was Georges Clemenceau.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. president. letter, Feb. 13, 1943, to John A. Roosevelt. The Roosevelt Letters, vol. 3, p. 457, ed. Elliott Roosevelt, George G. Harrup & Co., Ltd. (1952). FDR disliked de Gaulle; he thought him pompous and arrogant. This was an opinion which was re-enforced by the General's demeanor at the Casablanca Conference to which this letter referred.
  • 33.
    The forgotten man at the bottom of the economic pyramid.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. Democratic politician, president. Radio broadcast, April 7, 1932. Public Papers and Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt, vol. 1 (1938).
  • 34.
    Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. Democratic politician, president. Speech, July 2, 1932. repeated in his first inaugural address, March 4, 1933. The expression has numerous precedents, including the Duke of Wellington, Montaigne and the Bible, and was used by Sir Winston Churchill during World War II.

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  • 35.
    War is a contagion.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. Democratic politician, president. speech, Oct. 5, 1937, Chicago. Quoted in The Wit and Wisdom of Franklin D. Roosevelt, "War," ed. Maxwell Meyersohn (1950).

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  • 36.
    But while they prate of economic laws, men and women are starving. We must lay hold of the fact that economic laws are not made by nature. They are made by human beings.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. Democratic politician, president. Speech, July 2, 1932, to Democratic national convention, accepting presidential nomination.

    Read more quotations about / on: women, nature
  • 37.
    The United States Constitution has proved itself the most marvelously elastic compilation of rules of government ever written.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. Democratic politician, president. Radio broadcast, March 2, 1930.
  • 38.
    Tax avoidance means that you hire a $250,000-fee lawyer, and he changes the word 'evasion' into the word 'avoidance.'
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. president. Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., The Politics of Upheaval, p. 333, Houghton Mifflin Co. (1960).
  • 39.
    In our personal ambitions we are individualists. But in our seeking for economic and political progress as a nation, we all go up—or else all go down—as one people.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. president. FDR Speaks authorized edition of speeches, 1933-1945 (recordings of Franklin Roosevelt's public addresses), side 3, second inaugural address—"One Third of a Nation" (March 4, 1937), ed. Henry Steele Commager, Introduction by Eleanor Roosevelt, Washington Records, Inc. (1960).

    Read more quotations about / on: people
  • 40.
    [D]rilling and arming, when carried on on a national scale, excite whole populations to frenzies which end in war.
    Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945), U.S. president. Letter to Ramsay MacDonald, Prime Minister of Great Britain. U.S. Department of State, Foreign Relations of the United States, Diplomatic Papers: General, 1933, vol. 1, p. 210, Washington: Government Printing Office (1950).

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