Thinking Citizen Blog — Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890–1969): “Humanity Hanging On A Cross Of Iron”

John Muresianu
4 min readMay 21, 2023

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Thinking Citizen Blog — Sunday is Political Process, Campaign Strategy, and Candidate Selection Day

Today’s Topic: Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890–1969): “Humanity Hanging On A Cross Of Iron”

Dwight D. Eisenhower is known for being a general and a president. He is known for what he did, not for what he said. But two days ago on “Art Day” I came across a portrait of Ike by Oswald Birley and unearthed some things Ike said that struck me as worth remembering and included them in the post under Birley’s portrait. Today, I have decided to devote an entire post to sayings by the kid who was born in Denison, Texas but grew up in Abilene, Kansas. This is the fifth in a series on sayings by US Presidents. The first four: Reagan, Johnson, Clinton, Coolidge. Experts — please chime in. Correct, elaborate, elucidate.

NO ONE HATES WAR MORE THAN GENERALS — THEY KNOW IT BEST

1 “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.”

2. “This world in arms in not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.”

3. “This is not a way of life in any true sense.”

NB: “Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron.”

SCAPEGOATS, PRISON, MOTIVES, PESSIMISM, THE URGENT AND THE IMPORTANT

1. “The search for a scapegoat is the easiest of hunting expeditions.”

2. “If you want security, go to prison. There you’re fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking…is freedom.”

3. “Never question another man’s motive. His wisdom, yes. Not his motives.”

NB: “Pessimism never won any battle.”

“I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent.” (see footnote on the Eisenhower matrix)

BOOK BURNERS, PEOPLE YOU DON’T LIKE,

1. “Don’t join the book burners. Don’t think you’re going to conceal faults by concealing evidence that they ever existed. Don’t be afraid to go to your library and read every book.”

2. “Never waste a minute thinking about people you don’t like.”

3. “In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless but planning indispensable.”

NB: “Leadership is about getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.” “Extremes to the right and left of any issue are always wrong.”

FOOTNOTE — THE EISENHOWER MATRIX

Dwight D. Eisenhower — Wikipedia

Dwight D. Eisenhower Quotes (Author of Crusade in Europe)

Quotes | Eisenhower Presidential Library

Time management — Wikipedia

QUOTE OF THE MONTH

“Make your own Bible. Select and collect all the words and sentences that in all your readings have been to you like the blast of a trumpet.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

My spin — then periodically review, re-rank, and exchange your list with those you love. I call this the “Orion Exchange” because seven is about as many as any human can digest at a time. Game?

LAST FOUR YEARS OF POSTS ORGANIZED THEMATICALLY

PDF with headlines — Google Drive

ATTACHMENTS BELOW:

#1 A graphic guide to justice (9 metaphors on one page).

#2 “39 Songs, Prayers, and Poems: the Keys to the Hearts of Seven Billion People” — Adams House Senior Common Room Presentation, (11/17/20)

YOUR TURN

Please share the coolest thing you learned in the last week related to political process or campaign strategy or 2020 candidate selection or anything else for that matter.

This is your chance to make some one else’s day or change their thinking. Or to consolidate in your own memory something worth remembering that might otherwise be lost. Or to clarify or deepen your own understanding of something dear to your heart. Continuity is key to depth of thought.

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John Muresianu

Passionate about education, thinking citizenship, art, and passing bits on of wisdom of a long lifetime.