Essay on Thomas Paine's Common Sense

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Thomas Paine's "Common Sense"

Thomas Paine is responsible for some of the most influential pamphlets about the colonial situation in the 1700’s. He found himself in the right position and time to make his opinions known through his writing. He was a journalist in Philadelphia when the American relationship with England was thinning and change was on the horizon. Paine became famous at this time for writing Common Sense, as well as his sixteen Crisis papers. Through his particular style of reasoning and vehemence, Paine’s Common Sense became crucial in turning American opinion against Britain and was instrumental in the colonies' decision to engage in a battle for complete independence.

Part of the effectiveness of Paine’s Common
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Paine is quick to explain that reconciliation is not an option and has already passed away “like an agreeable dream,” and so it is only right to examine the other options now left. Being connected and dependent on Britain is not beneficial. Paine denounces the argument that America’s prior connection to Great Britain has been a positive thing and so would continue as such by giving the example of a child who has been living on milk never moving on to eating meat.

Paine moves on to talk about society and government. To Paine, society is everything good that the people can accomplish by joining together. Paine makes it clear that he is not particularly fond of government, whose only purpose is "restraining our vices". One theme throughout this work is Paine’s view of government as a necessary evil. Paine says that government has its origins in the evil of man, and that its sole purpose is to protect life, liberty and property, and that a government should be judged on the extent to which it accomplishes this goal. His reasoning for this is that he feels the “natural state” of man is to live without government, so there should only be government to alleviate the problems of man. If a government fails in this task, it is blameworthy. And in this

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