The most important Bible teaching that I remembered when I was in the Navy and when I was Commander-in-Chief, was that we worshipped The Prince of Peace. Jesus Christ is The Prince of Peace. So, I considered myself, as a submarine officer, as helping to preserve the peace. And I felt the same way when I was president.
It would be almost politically suicidal for members of Congress to espouse a balanced position between Israel and Palestine, to suggest that Israel comply with international law or to speak in defense of justice or human rights for Palestinians. If they did so, they couldn't be reelected.
I first came into the labor force in 1941 when the minimum wage was 40 cents an hour, and that was my first job. And each time that we've tried to boost the lower level of salary for the most underpaid workers, there have been predictions of catastrophe. But each time, in [m]y opinion, the change has helped our Nation and its economic strength.
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At the beginning of this year also, I called upon the North Korean side to open dialog between the responsible authorities of the South and the North at any place, at any time, and at any level, in order to prevent a recurrence of war and to cooperate to speed up the peaceful unification of our fatherland. However, no sincere response has yet been made by North Korea.
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With this new stupid Supreme Court ruling, secret money can come in on an unlimited level from corporations. Nobody knows where it comes from. That distorts the political situation in our country tremendously. Most of that money is spent on negative advertising that is tearing down the character and reputation of your opponent, and it works, although most American people say, "We don't like negative advertising," it works.
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On human rights, civil rights and environmental quality, I consider myself to be very liberal. On the management of government, on openness of government, on strengthening individual liberties and local levels of government, I consider myself a conservative. And I don't see that the two attitudes are incompatible.
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Great American power and responsibility are not unprecedented, and have been used with restraint and great benefit in the past. We have not assumed that super strength guarantees super wisdom, and we have consistently reached out to the international community to ensure that our own power and influence are tempered by the best common judgment.
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In a nation that was proud of hard work, strong families, close-knit communities, and our faith in God, too many of us now tend to worship self-indulgence and consumption. Human identity is no longer defined by what one does, but by what one owns. But we've discovered that owning things and consuming things does not satisfy our longing for meaning. We've learned that piling up material goods cannot fill the emptiness of lives which have no confidence or purpose.
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I have nothing against a community that is made up of people who are Polish, or who are Czechoslovakians, or who are French Canadians or who are blacks trying to maintain the ethnic purity of their neighborhoods. This is a natural inclination. [..] Government should not break up a neighborhood on a numerical basis. As soon as the Government does, the white folks flee.
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Prostitution thrives in the United States. We focus in this country on punishing the girls. For every brothel owner or pimp or male customer, there are 50 girls who are arrested for being prostitutes. Other countries have tried the other way around, and it works beautifully...they bring the charges against the brothel owners and the pimps and the male customers, and they do not prosecute the girls, who quite often are brought into that trade involuntarily. It works quite well, by the way.
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All my playmates were black. I lived in a little community called Archery (ph) in a rural area. And I didn't have any white neighbors at all. So all my kids with whom I fought and wrestled and went fishing and worked in the field and so forth were African-Americans. And that was my life. So when I got to be school age, we had to separate during the daytime, but I always felt like I was in an alien environment when I was in Plains, Georgia with white kids. I was eager to get back where I belonged with my black playmates.
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I think that, regardless of our culture, age, or even personal handicaps, we can still strive for something exceptional. Why not expand our sights instead of restricting our lives and accepting the lowest common denominator of a dormant existence? Faith. . . will permit us to take a chance on a new path, perhaps different from the one we now follow. It may be surprising where it leads.
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