Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Agrarian Justice ~ Thomas Paine

"It is a right, and not a charity, that I am pleading for."

Thomas Paine

When I began this blog for the sake of mass appeal I planned to avoid getting political. Obviously it is too late for that now. As far as presidential candidates go I have not gone any further to the right than Hillary Clinton. I’ve had no complaints. This has emboldened me.

As I promised, I will be getting back to my Island History very soon. But first, I have one more political post (for now). Yesterday morning I heard Harvey J. Kaye, author of Thomas Paine and the Promise of America on KUOW’s Weekday. Kaye mentioned a work of Paine’s that I was unfamiliar with, Paine’s pamphlet Agrarian Justice. I read it this morning and the idea resonates with me. I think it would be an ideal plan for San Juan County if not the entire nation. It is a plan to end poverty and I think it is a good one.

I care not how affluent some may be, provided that none be miserable in consequence of it. But it is impossible to enjoy affluence with the felicity it is capable of being enjoyed, while so much misery is mingled in the scene. The sight of the misery, and the unpleasant sensations it suggests, which, though they may be suffocated cannot be extinguished, are a greater drawback upon the felicity of affluence than the proposed ten per cent upon property is worth. He that would not give the one to get rid of the other has no charity, even for himself.
Thomas Paine

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