Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Point to Ponder: The way honourable presidents live

We have had our budget presented recently, which speaks volumes on the perks and privileges for the president and the prime minister - and even allowances and security arrangements after they relinquish their offices. The sums so allocated are hefty and unimaginable - that is for a small country of ours. We have also seen countless people given medals of highest prestige in recent times, even when they never deserved.

Read below how Henry S Truman, the US president lived and retired, a post I received through e-mail. Something that is what our religion Islam even teaches us. But when we leave the religion, stuff our coffers as if we have never to die and be held accounted-for for the wealth amassed through illegal means, nations are doomed as it is we who elect our representatives and remain loyal to them even when we know of their deeds. 

And before you read, just one last example: an honourable minister who had to pay millions on account of electricity charges of the sugar mill the minister owned, the 'authorities' have very graciously allowed to pay the huge sum in installments of a few thousand rupees - which will take centuries for the loan to be returned. Did the 'authorities' also grant the minister that long age to complete the payment?

Now read how great people live and how their name remains even when they are no more.


Harry Truman was a different kind of President. He probably made as many, or more important decisions regarding our nation's history as any of the other 42 Presidents preceding him. However, a measure of his greatness may rest on what he did after he left the White House.

The only asset he had when he died was the house he lived in, which was in Independence Missouri. His wife had inherited the house from her mother and father and other than their years in the White House, they lived their entire lives there.

When he retired from office in 1952, his income was a U.S. Army pension reported to have been $13,507.72 a year. Congress, noting that he was paying for his stamps and personally licking them, granted him an 'allowance' and, later, a retroactive pension of $25,000 per year..

After President Eisenhower was inaugurated, Harry and Bess drove home to Missouri by themselves. There was no Secret Service following them.

When offered corporate positions at large salaries, he declined, stating, "You don't want me. You want the office of the President, and that doesn't belong to me. It belongs to the American people and it's not for sale."


Even later, on May 6, 1971, when Congress was preparing to award him the Medal of Honor on his 87th birthday, he refused to accept it, writing, "I don't consider that I have done anything which should be the reason for any award, Congressional or otherwise."

As president he paid for all of his own travel expenses and food.

Modern politicians have found a new level of success in cashing in on the Presidency, resulting in untold wealth. Today, many in Congress also have found a way to become quite wealthy while enjoying the fruits of their offices. Political offices are now for sale. (sic. Illinois).

Good old Harry Truman was correct when he observed, "My choices in life were either to be a piano player in a whore house or a politician. And to tell the truth, there's hardly any difference!"

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