February 27, 2014

President George Washington on Strength and Security

Following publication of my preceding post about the root challenges to our national security, a friend reminded me of George Washington's "Farewell Address" written "To the people of the United States" in September of 1796, in which he announced he would not seek a third term as President. Among his many wise cautions and loving encouragements, I thought this one stood out as especially germane to our current situation:
"As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public credit. One method of preserving it is to use it as sparingly as possible, avoiding occasions of expense by cultivating peace, but remembering also that timely disbursements to prepare for danger frequently prevent much greater disbursements to repel it; avoiding likewise the accumulation of debt, not only by shunning occasions of expense, but by vigorous exertions in time of peace to discharge the debts which unavoidable wars may have occasioned, not ungenerously throwing upon posterity the burden which we ourselves ought to bear."
Our government, and us as individuals too, would be well served to follow his advice.

No comments:

Post a Comment