Thursday, May 26, 2016

Books read in 2016: No. 18 -- Common Sense

by Thomas Paine

Started: May 24
Finished: May 26

Notes: Considering the political craziness that is currently going on in my native land, I thought it not a bad idea to look back at some of the writings of the Founding Fathers, especially concerning the philosophies of such. I've read some of this book before, and I'm obviously aware of its importance to American history, but this will be the first time I've read the whole thing beginning to end.

Mini review: An interesting read, much of its focus upon why America should be independent from Britain. Much of it made perfect sense, of course, but there were a few paragraphs concerning the nature of government which I don't necessarily agree with, at least no fully. For instance, Paine refers to government of any type as evil, though a necessary evil, one that should be limited. While I understand and agree with his notions of limiting government, I disagree that government in and of itself is an evil. Government is a tool, and to some extent a convenience, and just like any other tool, it can be used for good or evil despite its particulars. But Paine was living in a far different world than the one we face today, so our variance in opinions is more than understandable. Still, this would be a good book for many Americans to read.

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