Zitate von Gerald Ford

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Gerald Ford

Geburtstag: 14. Juli 1913
Todesdatum: 26. Dezember 2006

Gerald Rudolph Ford, Jr. war von 1974 bis 1977 der 38. Präsident der Vereinigten Staaten. Er war Mitglied der Republikanischen Partei und wurde 1965 Fraktionsvorsitzender seiner Partei im Repräsentantenhaus, dem er von 1949 bis 1973 angehörte.

Nach dem Rücktritt von Vizepräsident Spiro Agnew am 10. Oktober 1973 nominierte Präsident Richard Nixon Ford zum neuen Vizepräsidenten. Der US-Senat stimmte dem am 27. November zu, das Repräsentantenhaus der Vereinigten Staaten am 6. Dezember. Im August 1974 trat Präsident Nixon selbst im Zuge der Watergate-Affäre zurück. Ford wurde auf diese Weise Präsident, und zwar als einziger, der weder als Präsidentschaftskandidat noch als Vizepräsidentschaftskandidat durch das Wahlmännerkollegium gewählt wurde. Die Präsidentschaftswahl im November 1976 verlor er in einer knappen Entscheidung gegen den Demokraten Jimmy Carter. Fords Präsidentschaft endete am 20. Januar 1977. Mit 93 Jahren erreichte Ford das bislang höchste Alter aller US-Präsidenten. Seine 895 Tage währende Präsidentschaft ist die kürzeste aller US-Präsidenten, die nicht im Amt verstorben sind.



Zitate Gerald Ford

„Unser langer nationaler Albtraum ist zu Ende.“

—  Gerald Ford

bei seiner Antrittsrede am 9. August 1974; New York Times: Gerald Ford, 38th President, Dies at 93 http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/27/washington/27webford.html, 27. Dezember 2006, abgerufen am 12. Spril 2010; Übersetzung: Wikiquote
Original engl.: "Our long national nightmare is over."
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„I do believe that right makes might and that if I am wrong, 10 angels swearing I was right would make no difference.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Remarks on pardoning Nixon (1974)
Kontext: My conscience tells me it is my duty, not merely to proclaim domestic tranquillity but to use every means that I have to insure it.
I do believe that the buck stops here, that I cannot rely upon public opinion polls to tell me what is right.
I do believe that right makes might and that if I am wrong, 10 angels swearing I was right would make no difference.
I do believe, with all my heart and mind and spirit, that I, not as President but as a humble servant of God, will receive justice without mercy if I fail to show mercy.
Finally, I feel that Richard Nixon and his loved ones have suffered enough and will continue to suffer, no matter what I do, no matter what we, as a great and good nation, can do together to make his goal of peace come true.

„Government exists to create and preserve conditions in which people can translate their ideas into practical reality. In the best of times, much is lost in translation. But we try.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, State of the Union Address (1975)
Kontext: Government exists to create and preserve conditions in which people can translate their ideas into practical reality. In the best of times, much is lost in translation. But we try. Sometimes we have tried and failed. Always we have had the best of intentions.
But in the recent past, we sometimes forgot the sound principles that guided us through most of our history. We wanted to accomplish great things and solve age-old problems. And we became overconfident of our abilities. We tried to be a policeman abroad and the indulgent parent here at home.
We thought we could transform the country through massive national programs, but often the programs did not work. Too often they only made things worse. In our rush to accomplish great deeds quickly, we trampled on sound principles of restraint and endangered the rights of individuals. We unbalanced our economic system by the huge and unprecedented growth of Federal expenditures and borrowing. And we were not totally honest with ourselves about how much these programs would cost and how we would pay for them.

„I am a little late getting around to it, but confession is good for the soul. I have sometimes voted to spend more taxpayer's money for worthy Federal projects in Grand Rapids, Michigan, while I vigorously opposed wasteful spending boondoggles in Oklahoma.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Address to Congress (12 August 1974)
Kontext: I am a little late getting around to it, but confession is good for the soul. I have sometimes voted to spend more taxpayer's money for worthy Federal projects in Grand Rapids, Michigan, while I vigorously opposed wasteful spending boondoggles in Oklahoma. [Laughter]
Be that as it may, Mr. Speaker, you and I have always stood together against unwarranted cuts in national defense. This is no time to change that nonpartisan policy.

„The oath that I have taken is the same oath that was taken by George Washington and by every President under the Constitution. But I assume the Presidency under extraordinary circumstances never before experienced by Americans.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: The oath that I have taken is the same oath that was taken by George Washington and by every President under the Constitution. But I assume the Presidency under extraordinary circumstances never before experienced by Americans. This is an hour of history that troubles our minds and hurts our hearts.
Therefore, I feel it is my first duty to make an unprecedented compact with my countrymen. Not an inaugural address, not a fireside chat, not a campaign speech — just a little straight talk among friends. And I intend it to be the first of many.

„It is believed that a trial of Richard Nixon, if it became necessary, could not fairly begin until a year or more has elapsed. In the meantime, the tranquility to which this nation has been restored by the events of recent weeks could be irreparably lost by the prospects of bringing to trial a former President of the United States.“

—  Gerald Ford, Presidential Proclamation 4311 of September 8, 1974, by President Gerald R. Ford granting a pardon to Richard M. Nixon. (NAID 299996)

Proclamation 4311, granting a pardon to former President Richard Nixon (8 September 1974)
1970s
Kontext: It is believed that a trial of Richard Nixon, if it became necessary, could not fairly begin until a year or more has elapsed. In the meantime, the tranquility to which this nation has been restored by the events of recent weeks could be irreparably lost by the prospects of bringing to trial a former President of the United States. The prospects of such trial will cause prolonged and divisive debate over the propriety of exposing to further punishment and degradation a man who has already paid the unprecedented penalty of relinquishing the highest elective office of the United States.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States, pursuant to the pardon power conferred upon me by Article II, Section 2, of the Constitution, have granted and by these presents do grant a full, free, and absolute pardon unto Richard Nixon for all offenses against the United States which he, Richard Nixon, has committed or may have committed or taken part in during the period from January 20, 1969 through August 9, 1974.

„My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over.
Our Constitution works; our great Republic is a government of laws and not of men. Here the people rule.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: My fellow Americans, our long national nightmare is over.
Our Constitution works; our great Republic is a government of laws and not of men. Here the people rule. But there is a higher Power, by whatever name we honor Him, who ordains not only righteousness but love, not only justice but mercy.
As we bind up the internal wounds of Watergate, more painful and more poisonous than those of foreign wars, let us restore the golden rule to our political process, and let brotherly love purge our hearts of suspicion and of hate.

„A strong defense is the surest way to peace. Strength makes détente attainable. Weakness invites war, as my generation—my generation—knows from four very bitter experiences.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Address to Congress (12 August 1974)
Kontext: A strong defense is the surest way to peace. Strength makes détente attainable. Weakness invites war, as my generation—my generation—knows from four very bitter experiences. Just as America's will for peace is second to none, so will America's strength be second to none. We cannot rely on the forbearance of others to protect this Nation. The power and diversity of the Armed Forces, active Guard and Reserve, the resolve of our fellow citizens, the flexibility in our command to navigate international waters that remain troubled are all essential to our security.

„I deeply believe in equal justice for all Americans, whatever their station or former station. The law, whether human or divine, is no respecter of persons; but the law is a respecter of reality.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Remarks on pardoning Nixon (1974)
Kontext: I deeply believe in equal justice for all Americans, whatever their station or former station. The law, whether human or divine, is no respecter of persons; but the law is a respecter of reality.
The facts, as I see them, are that a former President of the United States, instead of enjoying equal treatment with any other citizen accused of violating the law, would be cruelly and excessively penalized either in preserving the presumption of his innocence or in obtaining a speedy determination of his guilt in order to repay a legal debt to society.
During this long period of delay and potential litigation, ugly passions would again be aroused. And our people would again be polarized in their opinions. And the credibility of our free institutions of government would again be challenged at home and abroad.

„I once told you that I am not a saint, and I hope never to see the day that I cannot admit having made a mistake.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Address to Congress (12 August 1974)
Kontext: I once told you that I am not a saint, and I hope never to see the day that I cannot admit having made a mistake. So I will close with another confession.
Frequently, along the tortuous road of recent months from this chamber to the President's House, I protested that I was my own man. Now I realize that I was wrong.
I am your man, for it was your carefully weighed confirmation that changed my occupation.
The truth is I am the people's man, for you acted in their name, and I accepted and began my new and solemn trust with a promise to serve all the people and do the best that I can for America.
When I say all the people, I mean exactly that.
To the limits of my strength and ability, I will be the President of black, brown, red, and white Americans, of old and young, of women's liberationists and male chauvinists — and all the rest of us in-between, of the poor and the rich, of native sons and new refugees, of those who work at lathes or at desks or in mines or in the fields, of Christians, Jews, Moslems, Buddhists, and atheists, if there really are any atheists after what we have all been through.
Fellow Americans, one final word: I want to be a good President. I need your help. We all need God's sure guidance. With it, nothing can stop the United States of America.

„In all my public and private acts as your President, I expect to follow my instincts of openness and candor with full confidence that honesty is always the best policy in the end.“

—  Gerald Ford

Ford is known to have used the words "truth is the glue that holds government together" several times prior to this.
1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: I believe that truth is the glue that holds government together, not only our Government but civilization itself. That bond, though strained, is unbroken at home and abroad. In all my public and private acts as your President, I expect to follow my instincts of openness and candor with full confidence that honesty is always the best policy in the end.

„My concern is the immediate future of this great country.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Remarks on pardoning Nixon (1974)
Kontext: It is not the ultimate fate of Richard Nixon that most concerns me, though surely it deeply troubles every decent and every compassionate person. My concern is the immediate future of this great country.
In this, I dare not depend upon my personal sympathy as a long-time friend of the former President, nor my professional judgment as a lawyer, and I do not.
As President, my primary concern must always be the greatest good of all the people of the United States whose servant I am. As a man, my first consideration is to be true to my own convictions and my own conscience.

„I have not subscribed to any partisan platform. I am indebted to no man, and only to one woman — my dear wife — as I begin this very difficult job.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your President by your ballots, and so I ask you to confirm me as your President with your prayers. And I hope that such prayers will also be the first of many.
If you have not chosen me by secret ballot, neither have I gained office by any secret promises. I have not campaigned either for the Presidency or the Vice Presidency. I have not subscribed to any partisan platform. I am indebted to no man, and only to one woman — my dear wife — as I begin this very difficult job.

„The founding of our Nation was more than a political event; it was an act of faith, a promise to Americans and to the entire world. The Declaration of Independence declared that people can govern themselves, that they can live in freedom with equal rights, that they can respect the rights of others.“

—  Gerald Ford

Memorial Day address, Arlington National Cemetery (31 May 1976) http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=6071
1970s
Kontext: The founding of our Nation was more than a political event; it was an act of faith, a promise to Americans and to the entire world. The Declaration of Independence declared that people can govern themselves, that they can live in freedom with equal rights, that they can respect the rights of others.
In the two centuries that have passed since 1776, millions upon millions of Americans have worked and taken up arms when necessary to make that dream a reality. We can be extremely proud of what they have accomplished. Today, we are the world's oldest republic. We are at peace. Our Nation and our way of life endure. We are free.

„My conscience tells me it is my duty, not merely to proclaim domestic tranquillity but to use every means that I have to insure it.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Remarks on pardoning Nixon (1974)
Kontext: My conscience tells me it is my duty, not merely to proclaim domestic tranquillity but to use every means that I have to insure it.
I do believe that the buck stops here, that I cannot rely upon public opinion polls to tell me what is right.
I do believe that right makes might and that if I am wrong, 10 angels swearing I was right would make no difference.
I do believe, with all my heart and mind and spirit, that I, not as President but as a humble servant of God, will receive justice without mercy if I fail to show mercy.
Finally, I feel that Richard Nixon and his loved ones have suffered enough and will continue to suffer, no matter what I do, no matter what we, as a great and good nation, can do together to make his goal of peace come true.

„I have not sought this enormous responsibility, but I will not shirk it.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: I have not sought this enormous responsibility, but I will not shirk it. Those who nominated and confirmed me as Vice President were my friends and are my friends. They were of both parties, elected by all the people and acting under the Constitution in their name. It is only fitting then that I should pledge to them and to you that I will be the President of all the people.

„I believe that truth is the glue that holds government together, not only our Government but civilization itself.“

—  Gerald Ford

Ford is known to have used the words "truth is the glue that holds government together" several times prior to this.
1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: I believe that truth is the glue that holds government together, not only our Government but civilization itself. That bond, though strained, is unbroken at home and abroad. In all my public and private acts as your President, I expect to follow my instincts of openness and candor with full confidence that honesty is always the best policy in the end.

„It is not the ultimate fate of Richard Nixon that most concerns me“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, Remarks on pardoning Nixon (1974)
Kontext: It is not the ultimate fate of Richard Nixon that most concerns me, though surely it deeply troubles every decent and every compassionate person. My concern is the immediate future of this great country.
In this, I dare not depend upon my personal sympathy as a long-time friend of the former President, nor my professional judgment as a lawyer, and I do not.
As President, my primary concern must always be the greatest good of all the people of the United States whose servant I am. As a man, my first consideration is to be true to my own convictions and my own conscience.

„If you have not chosen me by secret ballot, neither have I gained office by any secret promises.“

—  Gerald Ford

1970s, First Presidential address (1974)
Kontext: I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your President by your ballots, and so I ask you to confirm me as your President with your prayers. And I hope that such prayers will also be the first of many.
If you have not chosen me by secret ballot, neither have I gained office by any secret promises. I have not campaigned either for the Presidency or the Vice Presidency. I have not subscribed to any partisan platform. I am indebted to no man, and only to one woman — my dear wife — as I begin this very difficult job.

„There can be only one Commander in Chief. In these times crises cannot be managed and wars cannot be waged by committee, nor can peace be pursued solely by parliamentary debate.“

—  Gerald Ford

State of the Union Address (12 January 1977) http://www.ford.utexas.edu/library/speeches/761057.htm
1970s
Kontext: The exclusive right to declare war, the duty to advise and consent on the part of the Senate, the power of the purse on the part of the House are ample authority for the legislative branch and should be jealously guarded. But because we may have been too careless of these powers in the past does not justify congressional intrusion into, or obstruction of, the proper exercise of Presidential responsibilities now or in the future. There can be only one Commander in Chief. In these times crises cannot be managed and wars cannot be waged by committee, nor can peace be pursued solely by parliamentary debate. To the ears of the world, the President speaks for the Nation. While he is, of course, ultimately accountable to the Congress, the courts, and the people, he and his emissaries must not be handicapped in advance in their relations with foreign governments as has sometimes happened in the past.

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