Thomas Paine
THOMAS PAINE  Macroknow Library

Common Sense. "Government by kings . . .  was the most prosperous invention the Devil ever set on foot for the promotion of idolatry. . . Monarchy is ranked in scripture as one of the sins of the Jews, for which a curse in reserve is denounced against them"1a

American Crisis. "Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered . . . "1 TOCQUEVILLE

"'Tis surprising to see how rapidly a panic will sometimes run through a country."1c

Rights of Man. "The obscurity in which the origin of all the present old governments is buried, implies the iniquity and disgrace with which they began. . . Those bands of robbers having parcelled out the world, and divided it into dominions, began . . . to quarrel with each other. . . What at first was plunder, assumed the softer name of revenue . . .
From such beginning of governments, what could be expected, but a continual system of war and extortion? It has established itself into a trade."1d

Dissertation on First Principles. "The true policy . . . is to interest the whole by an equality of rights, for the danger arises from exclusions. It is possible to exclude men from the right of voting, but it is impossible to exclude them from the right of rebelling against that exclusion; and when all other rights are taken away, the right of rebellion is made perfect."1e

"When rights are secure, property is secure in consequence. But when property is made a pretence for unequal or exclusive rights, it weakens the right to hold property, and provokes indignation and tumult . . . "1f RAND

"The first aristocrats in all countries were brigands."1g* JEFFERSON


* Italics in the original.

1 Thomas Paine (1737-1809). Rights of Man, Common Sense and Other Political Writings. Edited with an Introduction by Mark Philp. Mark Philp, 1995. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 1995.
a Common Sense, at 11-12.
American Crisis, at 63.
c Ibid., at 64.
d Rights of Man (1792), Ch. 11, Of the Origin of the Present Old Governments, at 220-221.
e Dissertation on the First Principles of Government, at 399.
f Ibid., at 400.
g Ibid., at 401.