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The United States of America owes its existence in part to the incendiary ...
The United States of America owes its existence in part to the incendiary brilliance of the work. Common Sense challenged the authority of the British government and the royal monarchy and was the first document to openly ask for independence.
The extensive introduction describes the background of the American Revolution; the life, career, and ideology of Paine; and the argument of Common Sense.
Of the Origin and Design of Government in General. With Concise Remarks on the English Constitution
Some writers have so confounded society with government, as to leave little or no distinction between them; whereas they are not only different, but have different origins. Society is produced by our wants, and government by our wickedness; the former promotes our happiness positively by uniting our affections, the latter negatively by restraining our vices. The one encourages intercourse, the other creates distinctions. The first is a patron, the last a punisher.
Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamities are heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer. Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built on the ruins of the bowers of paradise. For were the impulses of conscience clear, uniform, and irresistibly obeyed, man would need no other lawgiver; but that not being the case, he finds it necessary to surrender up a part of his property to furnish means for the protection of the rest; and this he is induced to do by the same prudence which in every other case advises him out of two evils to choose the least.
Posted February 3, 2010
I find the book itself to be an interesting historical read. What I do not like is how the introduction is written with the author's opinion which is 26 pages long. I think this is far too long and can sway how the reader takes some of what Thomas Paine means in his writting. If a company wants to reprint a book, it should be printed the way it was originally printed. If someone wants to add an introduction, it should not be telling what the writter means politically, or otherwise. Keep your political/cultural opinions to yourself.
18 out of 20 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 26, 2009
Every library must contain this book. This is a must read for anyone High School age or older to understand the freedoms each American Citizen is supposed to have today, and why it is his duty to pass them along to succeeding generations.
17 out of 17 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 5, 2009
These are the words that set US apart from all other nations! It should be read, and if already read, re-read it. We have a republic not a democracy.
10 out of 14 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 11, 2009
Where have all the great people gone. Thomas Paines Common Sense is still relevant today, every one should read it. I will be reading all his other books.
8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted September 7, 2009
Anyone interested in understanding how it has come to be that many feel the United States is well on it's way to becoming a socialist society should read Common Sense. Does society drive government, or does government drive the development of our society.
Gives great insigtht into the minds that formed this nation. One for the permanent library and to spark an interesting conversation.
8 out of 11 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 14, 2008
One of the finest works ever penned. With the eloquence of Shakespeare and the fury of a firebrand preacher, Paine rails against tyranny and monarchy while espousing the virtues of freedom, independence and representative government. Written in January of 1776 at the onset of the Revolutionary War, Common Sense brought to print with naked prejudice the unspoken sentiment that America's day had come and independence was her rightful state. Highly recommended for those eager to learn more about America's heritage and founding ideals.
8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 19, 2011
In Philadelphia in early 1776, Thomas Paine (1737-1809) anonymously published a booklet called Common Sense. His impassioned plea for American independence and his anti-government tirade directed at King George III sold 100,000 copies within three months. Eventually, a half-million copies circulated in an America with only two million literate citizens. Paine's clear, concise writing, intended for the masses, sacrifices no rhetorical grandeur. As contemporary Americans look back to their Founding Fathers for inspiration, Paine's reasoned, ardent words carry even greater meaning. getAbstract highly recommends this building block of the United States of America to all modern students of history.
3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 22, 2010
I can't say that I liked this one, but I didn't hate it and I actually found it fairly interesting. It was intriguing and as Paine made his arguments for why we should revolt I kept having to remind myself of the time that this was written. It really made me think had we not had people like Paine in our history where would we be today? How different of a world would we live in if there had not been revolutionists?
The language took me a bit to get used to. I realized how nice the dictionary feature on the nook really is... There were quite a few times that I had to look something up because I was lost as to what Paine was trying to get across.
Overall I think it was a compelling piece of literature. At the very least it was thought provoking and gave me a better idea of the place America was in politically and socially before the revolution.
2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 18, 2009
Posted April 17, 2013
Think of and compare Capitalism vs. Monarchy. Then think of and compare Kings vs. Corperate and Fame Giants. Ya know, the big dogs at the top whose families inherit generations of wealth, ownership, land, and fame. Now think about how carefully interagrate and infused Capitalism has been introduced into not just politics but also the direction of the Progress of a People of not just our nation but as entire global regions; not just of our own constitution but as theirs or any hope for theirs as well... People should remember the firey desire of our forefathers for freedom. All the struggles they forced themselves to confront and suffer through just for a Freedom of the People... For a better tomorrow. Our forefathers were of not just a few but of an entire generation of free thinking men and women. Our forefathers bled in more ways then imagined on any battlefield. THEY BLED NOT FOR RICHES OR FAME BUT FOR AN IDEA! The Idea that ALL men are equal, all are worthy of equal opportunity and consequence regardless of the riches or rank of power they hold. No man less important then the next. No man deprieved of any available opportunity currently at the current pace of Civilization as the next man. I hold the torch of ALL my forefathers before. Learn from humanities story that has been told thus far..
1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 29, 2013
The author is clearly a skilled writer and persuasive debater.
I was impressed with the overall argument for independence. This is an artfully constructed document
with articulate ideas.
Nonetheless, I was disappointed to read a variety of short sighted and discriminatory views in a
frequently praised historical American document.
Paine continually uses his religion to justify arguments against the King of England and Jewish
persons. Also, the hypocrisy of the colonialist oppression pales in comparison to the plight of their
In sum, this is an important read for historical purposes. In my opinion I do not believe this early
document can be found fully relevant today or used to pioneer the future course of our nation. Perhaps
his success was due to a relatively small amount of homogeneous colonists who shared
the dream of leaving their homeland in search of a better life. If this document hd been written today,
I feel that intellectual minds could see many discrepancies and stimulate thoughtful debate.
Posted September 17, 2013
Posted August 24, 2013
This work played a key role in beginning the Revolutionary War. While young compared to his peers, Paine offered thought provoking insight as to why revolution was the only answer to the problems the colonies faced in dealing with a monarchy.
In spite of his open anti-Semitic views, Paine makes valid points about the huge flaws in the British monarchy of the time. Student and/or friend to such notables as Franklin and Jefferson, Paine gathered the threads of their thoughts and wove a tapestry readable by the average person. Information became public in a brief and readable style born of the mind of Mr. Paine. He is the line that connects the founding fathers to the typical citizen.
A valued addition to any Revolutionary War buff's library, this is highly recommended.
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