Skip to comments.George Washington Was Not One to Enact Your Silly Dares On (Don't Screw With GW!)
Posted on 05/06/2012 7:11:14 AM PDT by Lazamataz
The result of the meetings at the Constitutional Convention in 1787 was the United States Constitution, placing the Convention among the most significant events in the history of the United States.
The delegates elected George Washington to preside over the convention. He was a towering figure, already considered the 'Father of His Country', and the most respected person there. Even men of high stature were nervous to approach him.
But one story goes at this: Alexander Hamilton dared his fellow delegate Gouverneur Morris to clap General Washington on the shoulder and offer him a hearty greeting. Taking the dare, Morris placed his hand on Washingtons shoulder, and declared that he was happy to see his dear General looking so well; Washington removed his hand and silently, but sternly glared at him. Morris shrunk and retreated back into the crowd to the amusement of Hamilton.
George Washington never really died. His soul hibernated, and came back on March 10, 1940. In order to avoid publicity, it changed his name.
His soul’s new name: Chuck Norris.
Great job at avoiding publicity, Chuckles!
My FAVORITE president! George, we need you. Shoot, we could even use somebody with 1/1000th of your character and guts.
Too much to ask for.
Tough times create tough people. Soft times create soft people. We have nothing but soft people now, but I suspect the next year will start creating tough people again.
***Washington removed his hand and silently, but sternly glared at him.***
I have read that GW preferred to give a gentlemanly bow to each other and not shake hands.
My favorite story about GW was about his conduct at Princeton. The British were attacking and the Patriot forced was wavering. Washinton rode and on his white horse and as a junior officer might, got them to form a line. He sat there not moving as bullets whized past him, and his men, encouraged by his example, sent volley and volley back at the Red Coats and repelled their attack. As he had proved earlier at Trenton, as tactical commander, he was superb. No movie director would dare stage this fight as it occured for fear of being laughed at.
True! But people involved in the tought times of the great depression, the 1930s, were largely graced with good character.
The overall character of today's population is largely ... questionable.
We shall see.
Thanks for the ping...I had never heard this story, and it is likely true, from what I could find out. Washington liked Morris a lot...but, his reaction is true to his personality at that time.
Can you imagine what a change would be wrought if every American who calls themselves "conservative" would simply adopt George Washington's attitude towards politics?
-- George Washington
"If, to please the people, we offer what we ourselves disprove, how can we afterwards defend our work? Let us raise a standard to which the wise and the honest can repair. The event is in the hand of God."
-- George Washington
Mitt Romney would get about ten per cent of the vote in November.
I think you may be right....there won't be a choice in the matter.
My advice is to kill absolutely everyone you see.
That’s been my strategy since 2008. The kill count this morning is one fat guy on a lawnmower and two hoodlums blasting a car stereo.
I warn you, I'm competitive, and I like to have a higher body count than my wife.
I have two stories about George Washington that paint the man for me:
In Cambridge, during the winter of the siege of Boston there is an apocryphal story that he broke up a violent riot involving hundreds of men that was started a snowball fight between bored and undisciplined men from different units from around the colonies. Taunting escalated to a snowball fight, that escalated to a full blown riot. Washington rode in on his big white horse, jumped off throwing the reins to someone and grabbed the two biggest men fighting with each other in each of his fists and screamed at them.
Apparently, everyone was so shocked, the riot stopped immediately.
The night before the crossing of the Delaware, he had done all he could do, delegated all he could delegate, and was sitting at a desk, writing something on little scraps of paper, over and over again. One fell on the floor, and when one of his aides picked it up and read it, it said “Victory or Death”. He was writing the passphrase on pieces of paper to pass the time.
A few bits about GW.
1) He was intensely aware of the dignity of the office of the President. This was why he would not shake hands nor affably greet others once elected. At the same time, he was also intensely aware of the risks of an “Imperial Presidency”; so it took intense lobbying by Hamilton to convince him to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion, needed to assert federal authority and keep the states from further division.
2) His greatest skill was as a spymaster, running a large network of agents, many of them women, with only one ever being captured (Nathan Hale). The list of these spies has never been released because even today it might prove deeply embarrassing to the British government and nobility.
3) As the commander of the Virginia Regiment in 1755 he led his unit in some vicious fighting against the Indians in the West. In 10 months units of his regiment fought 20 battles, suffering 1/3rd casualties while inflicting a lot more on their enemy.
LOL, well, I have no problem with the man being the head of the house.
From what I have read of Hamilton and Washington, this has the ring of truth to me.
Hamilton knew full well from being in close contact with Washington for so long, exactly how Washington was likely to react to a gesture such as being clapped on the shoulder. And Hamilton was apparently not beyond setting someone up like that.
Didn’t know that Hamilton was a part-time SOB.
I didn’t know any of those.
"Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet."
(Note: This quote has been attributed to Gen. "Mad Dog" Mattis, but...I don't know for sure)
You may attribute this to me.
From what I have read, daring someone to do that and knowing full well the likely result was not beyond him.
I like Hamilton. He was flawed in many ways, and I think he is being unfairly painted as the father of todays federal government, but I submit he would be aghast at the Federal Government today, not the least for the complete and total lack of fiscal responsibility.
Hamilton does not get enough credit for managing the money matters of our country in its infancy to ensure it was not strangled in the cradle.
That reminds me of another story about Washington that I thought told a lot about him. (I may not have the facts exactly right, because it has been a while since I read it, but the flavor is the same)
During his second administration, stories began appearing about how Washington was out of touch, a doddering old man who couldn’t make a decision about anything, and was being led around by the nose particularly by a man like Hamilton. (Sound familiar? Ronald Reagan, perhaps?)
Washington had unimpeachable evidence that it was Thomas Jefferson who had been fostering this meme in the public eye. The story goes, met with Jefferson face to face, and in no uncertain terms, told him he knew exactly what had been going on, and why he unarguably had the truth in a matter Jefferson had outright deceived him about.
From that time on, they were estranged, and didn’t go beyond polite greetings in public.
Hahahahahah, I like it...:)
Shouldn't be too unreachable a target. Unless of course you just like beards.
Oh, Laz likes beards all right. You often see him out on a date with one at his arm.
Washington’s greatest attribute, sorely needed for our time, was his ability to give up power.
He had the good sense to prefer the quiet solitude of farming to politics, and upon his election as president, he blurted out to a close friend that he must, bid adieu to happiness, as public life will be a more distressing one than any I have known yet.
Giving up the power of the presidency after eight years was the best gift he could have given the United States, and his example lasted almost 150 years, until the power hungry administration of FDR.
This was the main reason he was so admired in Europe by such celebrities as Napoleon and, believe it or not, George III of England who said he could hardly believe it, but if true, Washington should be regarded as “the greatest man in the world.”
I left that door wide open, didn’t I? LOL
Washington helped to save the colonies for Britian then he went home to his private life. A few years later he strpped forward and helped to bring this nation into being and then went home to his private life. Later he turned down a crown but did accept the burden of leadership to put this nation on a firm footing then he went home to his private life.
Very few people who gain such power actively seek to put it down as Washington did. Therein is his greatness and the evenhandness of his administration.
I’m currently reading a new biography about GW, which continues to be enlightening.
Sounds interesting. What are you reading?
Washington’s true servant heart is one of the qualities I love most about him. Even near the end of his life, when they came back and begged him, he gave more of himself to his country-—though he’d already given more than enough. All he wanted was to stay home on his farm, but his sense of duty won out.
I have only two things to say.
2. Are we still on tonight?
Oh, so it’s gonna be THAT kind of marriage! Tuesdays and Thursdays reserved for “the boys”.....
Not quite. Saturdays and Mondays are 'the boys', Sundays are 'the koalas', Tuesdays are 'the vaccuum cleaners', Fridays are 'the cats and dogs', Thursdays are 'the smoking women who wear sharp dangerous high heels and fetish clothing who stomp small animals to death', and Wednesdays are the 'internet porn covering all the above' days.
So, do you smoke?
Another story, this one about Ben Franklin. When he was young, he was physically very powerful. When he was setting type he would pick up full trays of lead type, one in each army and carry then to where they would be put in the press. Each one weighed more than 50 lbs and he could do this all day.
Still another, this one about John Q. Adams: Very aloof fellow, probably the smartest man ever to be president. As President he was called upon to plant a ceremonial tree in the capital. They handed him a dinky little shovel and he tried to scoop up some dirt. He could barely break the sod. He tried a couple of times with no better result. Scowling, he then turned to a workman who who hold a real shovel, the one he was going to use to plant the tree. and asked to use it. He then took off his coat and unloosed his collar, handed it to an aid and began to attack the ground. The crowd was cheering him wildly as he dug. After awhile, he had dug a substantial hole. Satisfied, he handed the shovel back to someone and took his coat back from, his aid and put it back on. He then left, never once acknowledging the plaudits of the crowd. The person who reported this story informed us that back home he was used to such manual chores. Like his father he was a farmer and physically quite fit. The same guy who liked to swim naked in the Potomoc for exercise.
Washington was highly aware of his place and status in the Convention, and while he said little during its deliberations he knew what his presence meant. This clappy greeting was the eighteentth century equivalent to "stepping on Superman's cape!"
I liked the story of how after some battle, there was a stray dog in their camp. It turned out to be General Howe’s dog, and although the men wanted to keep it as “spoils”, Washington returned it under a flag of truce. A note by Washington was attached to the collar.
One website said Howe was not as ruthless against the colonists after that - but not sure about that. However, a very Gentlemanly thing to do. Of course Washington himself was a big dog lover, so it was an obvious thing to do.
And the formal greeting that Washington wanted - reminds me of how he supposedly would ride in a carriage for most of the way on a trip (when he was President), but the last little bit would ride in on his white horse, as that is what a leader was supposed to look like. (Perhaps a bit like Reagan wearing a suit in the Oval Office all the time).
Hamilton started the first party—the Federalist—from this root was born the Republican Party. To be that sort of organizer you need to be an SOB sometimes.
And supposedly Governor Morris went back to Hamilton and said "I'll not soon do THAT again." I think that is the quote.
I think we're both a little off.
One of the things I am fortunate in, is living in Massachusetts and being able to see the history of those times up close. I live within ten miles of The Old North Bridge in Concord, MA. Several years ago, a very important professional day arrived, taking a system live that I had been working on several years to implement.
I was pretty much worn to a nub, long working hours, lots of stress, and on the day we were to go live, I had the luxury of driving in a little later because I was going to be there all night.
It was the end of February, and a cold, bitter, windy day, yet crisp and clear. I drove through Concord taking the more leisurely drive to work, when I thought I would take a little bit longer drive that would take me through some nice horse country.
As I went down that road, it was closed off, bridge under construction. As I turned around, I stopped and realized I was in the parking lot for the The Old North Bridge. It was desolate looking, nobody around, the wind was blowing frozen granules of ice across the ground in waves.
I got out of my car and walked down to the bridge. This is what I saw:
It struck me how beautiful it was there with that golden morning light. I took out my phone and took this picture...I do love that era. So much strife. So much newness. The world was changing, and not this BS about hope and change. THAT stuff is simply tyranny.
Gods littles gift, which take us to the place that lifts up our spirits.
Howe was a gentleman, too. There was always talk that he really did not have the heart to wage war with the ruthlessless needed to suppress the Revolution.
“...and not this BS about hope and change. THAT stuff is simply tyranny.”
Lovely photo. It looks so quaint, so benign, so small. I suppose most revolutions are like that - they start like a snowball and become a huge rolling bulk once it gets going. And one could go just a bit farther back in our history that the Revolution DID start with a snowball. (A snowball kicked off the Boston Massacre).