"When I contemplate the natural dignity of man; when I feel ... for the honor and happiness of its character, I become irritated at the attempt to govern mankind by force and fraud, as if they were all knaves and fools, and can scarcely avoid disgust at those who are thus imposed upon."
Thomas Paine
(1737-1809) US Founding father, pamphleteer, author
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- J Carlton, Calgary      
Well said Mr. Paine, well said.
 -- Anon     
    brilliant and so apt
     -- janie still, worcester park     
    Was he referring to what happened in the Gore/Bush debacle?
     -- Waffler, Smith     
    Perfectly sums up my feeling for our current arrogant, overbearing government: they think we are drooling idiots who don't have the ability to live our own lives. They must act as the parent to the idiot child, and of course they must do so by any means necessary. If that means lying, cheating, stealing, or I'm sure eventually even killing us for our own good, then that will be just fine with that; because in the end it is not about their caring for the idiot children, it is about the power and wealth they can gather to themselves.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    Force and fraud,continued by Lincoln and still going strong. It's a shame that many still believe that the "Civil War" was about slavery.Read "Lincoln Unmasked" or "The Real Lincoln" for the lowdown on "Honest Abe".
     -- jim k, Austin     
    Ken,Allyn, you have it right.
     -- jim k, Austin     
    The idea that society somehow NEEDS government is as common in America today as it is incorrect. Government can only hinder a free society.
     -- Justin, Elkland     
    You hit it right on the head Jim K.
     -- cal, lewisville, tx     
    Yes, for once I agree. Lincoln should have left the South alone... A perfect reflection of the Bush/Obama era.
     -- RBESRQ     
    To govern men by force and fraud, sounds like our current administration . To understand the natural dignity one would understand natural affection. Sound doctrine brings sound words of wisdom. The rock upon which the republic rest.
     -- R. Pittman, Salem OR     
     -- Abigail      
    Waffler, Let it go. America has lost the last six presidential elections.
     -- Justin, Elkland     
    Brilliant! My sentiments exactly!
     -- E Archer, NYC     
     -- jim k, Austin      
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