Sunday, March 28, 2010

Thomas Paine on writing and writers

"Universal empire is the prerogative of a writer. His concerns are with all mankind, and though he cannot command their obedience, he can assign them their duty." Thomas Paine, The American Crisis, 1777.

Tea-Party, Tea-baggers, tea-pee

Glenn Beck and his tea-bagger brigade continue to invoke Thomas Paine, but Paine would have loathed their hateful, discourteous demeanor, spitting, name-calling and ignorance. Most of Beck's assumptions about Paine are the result of his having never read more perhaps than Common Sense. The fact is that Paine's ideology evolved over time -- he started out a strong Federalist (something the tea-bagging crowd would hate) and ended up a staunch anti-Federalist with a strong social welfare component (see Agrarian Justice). 

Collection of "undiscovered" works by Thomas Paine

A new collection of "unknown" works of Thomas Paine edited by Hazel Burgess turns out to be a dud. Complete book review will publish first in the Journal of Radical History (UK) -- stand by for details and later posting to this blog.

Thomas Paine on Time and Reason.

"Time makes more converts than reason." Thomas Paine, Common Sense, 1776

Monday, March 8, 2010

Thomas Paine on error.

"Error, like guilt, is unwilling to die." T. Paine, To the Opposers of the Bank, 1787.