“Free speech does not live many hours after free industry and free commerce die…”
Thus spoke Herbert Hoover, October 31, 1932, in his campaign for President. He continued:
“No man who has not occupied my position in Washington can fully realize the constant battle which must be carried on against…tyranny of government expanded into business activities.”
Hoover had coordinated relief to millions when the Mississippi River levees broke during the 1927 flood, and he organized feeding 300 million in 21 countries of Europe and Russia following World War I.
His entire life he refused payment for public service.
In 1928, Hoover was elected the 31st U.S. President in a landslide victory. His Vice-President, Charles Curtis, was the first Native American to hold that office.
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In his Inaugural Address, March 4, 1929, he stated:
“I assume this trust in the humility of knowledge that only through the guidance of Almighty Providence can I hope to discharge its ever-increasing burdens.”
In The Challenge of Liberty, 1934, Herbert Clark Hoover declared:
“While I can make no claim for having introduced the term, ‘rugged individualism,’ I should be proud to have invented it. It has been used…in eulogy of those God-fearing men and women of honesty whose stamina and character and fearless assertion of rights led them to make their own way in life.”
“Freedom is an open window through which pours the sunlight of the human spirit and of human dignity. With the preservation of these moral and spiritual qualities and with God’s grace will come further greatness for our country.”
Born in 1874, his Quaker mother taught Sunday School and spoke at Friends Meetings before dying when he was ten.
Hoover lived on an Indian Reservation in Oklahoma before moving to Oregon.
He worked his way through Stanford University doing laundry, delivering papers, and working for the U.S. Geological Survey.
He served under Presidents Wilson, Harding, Coolidge, Truman, and Eisenhower.
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At the onset of the Depression, in an address at Valley Forge, May 30, 1931, President Hoover stated:
“If those few thousand men endured that long winter of privation and suffering…held their countrymen to the faith, and by that holding held fast the freedom of America, what right have we to be of little faith?”
On October 18, 1931, in an address which began a nation-wide drive to aid the private relief agencies, Hoover stated:
“This civilization…which we call American life, is builded and can alone survive upon the translation into individual action of that fundamental philosophy announced by the Savior nineteen centuries ago.”
On September 15, 1932, to leaders of the “national drive” committee for voluntary relief agencies, President Hoover stated:
“We maintain the spiritual impulses in our people for generous giving and generous service – in the spirit that each is his brother’s keeper.”
On April 5, 1945, President Franklin Roosevelt wrote a letter to the Saudi King promising not to recognize a Jewish State. A week later, Roosevelt was dead.
The next President, Harry S Truman, recognized Israel.
Herbert Hoover proposed a solution to the Middle East crisis which was reported in a Scripps-Howard Press interview, November 19, 1945:
“In ancient times the irrigation of the Tigris and Euphrates Valleys supported probably 10 million people in the kingdoms of Babylon and Nineveh.
The deterioration and destruction of their irrigation works by the Mongol invasion centuries ago, and their neglect for ages, are responsible for the shrinkage of the population to about 3,500,000 people in modern Iraq.
Some 30 years ago, Sir William Willcocks, an eminent British engineer, completed a study of the restoration of the old irrigation system. He estimated that about 2,800,000 acres of the most fertile land in the world could be recovered at a cost of under $150,000,000.
Some progress has been made under the Iraq government but their lack of financial resources and the delay of war have retarded the work greatly…
My own suggestion is that Iraq might be financed to complete this great land development on the consideration that it be made the scene of resettlement of the Arabs from Palestine.
This would clear Palestine completely for a large Jewish emigration and colonization.
A suggestion of transfer of the Arab people of Palestine was made by the British Labor Party in December, 1944, but no adequate plan was proposed as to where or how they were to go.
There is room for many more Arabs in such a development in Iraq than the total Arabs in Palestine. The soil is more fertile. They would be among their own race which is Arab-speaking and Mohammedan.
The Arab population of Palestine would be the gainer from better lands in exchange for their present holdings. Iraq would be the gainer for it badly needs agricultural population…
Today millions of people are being moved from one land to another. If the lands were organized and homes provided, this particular movement could be made the model migration of history. It would be a solution by engineering instead of by conflict.
I realize that the plan offers a challenge both to the statesmanship of the Great Powers as well as to the goodwill of all parties concerned. However, I submit it and it does offer a method of settlement with both honor and wisdom.”
After his term in office, Hoover proposed reorganizing the United Nations to exclude Communist countries, as he told the American Newspaper Publishers Association, April 27, 1950:
“What the world needs today is a definite, spiritual mobilization of the nations who believe in God against this tide of Red agnosticism. It needs a moral mobilization against the hideous ideas of the police state and human slavery…
I suggest that the United Nations should be reorganized without the Communist nations in it. If that is impractical, then a definite New United Front should be organized of those peoples who disavow communism, who stand for morals and religion, and who love freedom…
It is a proposal based solely upon moral, spiritual and defense foundations. It is a proposal to redeem the concept of the United Nations to the high purpose for which it was created. It is a proposal for moral and spiritual cooperation of God-fearing free nations.
And in rejecting an atheistic other world, I am confident that the Almighty God will be with us.”
Hoover spoke at a reception on his 80th birthday in West Branch, Iowa, August 10, 1954, warning:
“I have witnessed on the ground in 20 nations the workings of the philosophy of that anti-Christ, Karl Marx.
There rises constantly in my mind the forces which make for progress and those which may corrode away the safeguards of freedom in America…
Today the Socialist virus and poison gas generated by Karl Marx and Friedreich Engels have spread into every nation on the earth.
Their dogma is absolute materialism which defies truth and religious faith…
To this whole gamut of Socialist infections, I say to you…God has blessed us with another wonderful word – “heritage.” The great documents of that heritage are not from Karl Marx. They are from the Bible, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.
Within them alone can the safeguards of freedom survive.”
Hoover, who was a member of the Society of Friends, or Quakers, stated:
“The whole inspiration of our civilization springs from the teachings of Christ and the lessons of the prophets. To read the Bible for these fundamentals is a necessity of American life.”
Hoover, who died OCTOBER 20, 1964, signed a joint-statement during World War II with the widows of Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, Coolidge, Taft, Harrison, and Cleveland, which stated:
“Menaced by collectivist trends, we must seek revival of our strength in the spiritual foundations which are the bedrock of our republic.
Democracy is the outgrowth of the religious conviction of the sacredness of every human life.
On the religious side, its highest embodiment is the Bible; on the political side, the Constitution.”
Photo Credit: loc.gov
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