General H. Norman SchwarzkopfGeneral H. Norman Schwarzkopf, (1934-2012) United States Army general

General H. Norman Schwarzkopf Quote

“The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it.”

General H. Norman SchwarzkopfGeneral H. Norman Schwarzkopf
~ General H. Norman Schwarzkopf

Ratings and Comments

Scarlet, Dallas

I thought this had lots of meaning to it!


It's actually easier to do the right thing if you are used to doing it -- it may be painful but the other way is more so.

E Archer, NYC

Liberty still requires doing the right thing. We are never free from responsibility.

Logan, Memphis, TN

What's the right thing? Did Hitler "know" the right thing? Is that what he did? This is philosophical rot. Are people justified in their actions just because they "knew" it was the "right" thing to do? If this quote were valid, we wouldn't even have a selmblance of the dilluted court system we already have. Criminals would be arguing the honestly perceived "rightness" of their actions, and getting away with it. I personally believe in absolute truth, but because the very tools we have to diagnose the absolute from the ever chaning are changing themselves, we can never arrive at an absolute anything. This quote justifies the unjustifiable.

Mike, Norwalk

Language is the tool that places pictures of freedom and liberty in our minds, hearts, and the beings of people. Today's language has been so completely perverted that freedom and liberty have little to do with the beings that form the majority. I also believe that the Light of Christ is in all beings so that freedom and liberty can never be eliminated completely. Clinton and Gore gave us excellent examples of how the tail wagging the dog is destructive to a nation and immoral to an extreme. Bush and Chaney have shown how torture, and the destruction of Constitutionally defined rights can be accepted by the general populous. While presidential candidates, such as pretty in pink Clinton, publicly announce that security is their primary job description, only Ron Paul is saying lets return to a government of laws limited by the Constitution, the individual soveregn's rights being supreme. The quote, while sounding nice, has little to no place in reality


Logan and Mike, really... it's rhetorical; it’s meant to come from your conscience and your heart – look and you will understand. As for Bush and his crony’s they have lead us down the path of self-destruction - a $9 trillion blow-job and the loss of thousands of lives, the destruction of cities, and the dollar on the slide - wow! let me think which I prefer... Clinton or Bush? Freedom and liberty have NOTHING to do with Christ - when will we be responsible for our own actions. Liberty and Freedom is there regardless of religion - Religion has abused its position in society and is totally out of control as is shown in its continual hypocrisy.

J Carlton, Calgary

The hard part isn't "doing it"...if you live by your conscience. Which rules out every one in every western government for the last 50 years.

Logan, Memphis, TN

Robert, thank you for proving my point. This statement cannot be taken rhetorically! It's impossible! You take it in totally different terms than I do, than Mike does, J Carlton does, Hitler, Saddam, Jesus Christ, or Buddha would. You are unique in your perspective, in that you have experienced life in totally different terms than any of us have. My view is not the same as Mike's, yours, Saddam's, Jesus Christ's, etc-- because I'm unique in my perspective. What is "right"? Obviously Americans have a TOTALLY different idea of "right" than do most middle-easterners. Ironically, due to mirror image, they perceive us largely in the same terms we perceive them-- We consider fundamentalists as cruel, immoral, inhuman, and radical fascists. They perceive us the same way, because of our foreign policy in the middle-east over the last 60 years. Both sides have valid claims; so, who's "right" do YOU adhere to? Americas or the middle-east's? They are two conflicting ideas, both thinking the same thing about each other. They both have thought AND acted on what they perceived as "right". This is only one of the near endless examples that show this quote as philosophical rot. Bush did what he felt was "right", but for who? himself? the country? both? Who's to say, you don't know the man -- anything you say is stipulation. You are a victim of your own defintion.


Thanks Logan, and yes, you have proved my point too: you are trying to tell me that when someone kills another human being they don't know in their heart that it is wrong, balderdash, poppycock, etc. we have a conscience and decide not to use it, that is the difference between right and wrong. Saddam, Hitler, Bush, etc. all knew darn well they were wrong in their actions but did because of power and greed - do not make the excuse that they don't know the difference just because you don't know -- read some of the war letters and you will understand my point of view. Read Wilfred Owen, a great WW1 poet 'Dulce et Decorum Est'. Even Mohammed knew the difference in his quote: "The ink of a scholar is more sacred than the blood of the martyr." While we continue this indifference between right and wrong we will remain as shadows on the walls of caves. Have a great Thanksgiving, Robert P.s

E Archer, NYC

Of course, 'right' is totally subjective. But the main point is that even when we THINK we know the right thing to do, we most often DO NOT DO IT. Thus the Christian dogma of "we are all sinners" because we 'know' the right thing to do, and don't do it. That is the distinction being made here -- not what is 'right'. Logan has a conscience as does Robert et al, but if you are anything like me or others I know, even WE do not always practive what we preach -- and that is the point. Talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, but do we act? RARELY! And that is the point -- the quote may as well be, "we are ALL full of shit." ;-)


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