"Beware the greedy hand of government, thrusting itself into every corner and crevice of industry."
Thomas Paine (1737-1809)
One of the most influential Founding Fathers, as regards the populace anyway, was Thomas Paine. He has been called, variously, "a corset maker by trade, a journalist by profession, and a propagandist by inclination."
His famous (or infamous) pamphlets did much to sway public opinion at the onset of American desire to separate from British tyranny.
Having little influence on the Continental Congress or the writing of the Declaration of Independence, his pamphlets were read aloud in groups large and small. We forget, or were never taught, that barely a THIRD of the populace was really behind a revolution! One third was totally against it and worshiped the crown, and another was apathetic.
OUR REVOLUTION CAME ABOUT BECAUSE OF ABOUT ONE-THIRD OF THE POPULATION! And Thomas Paine has a lot to do with that group's fervor!
What we forget is that this group of early Americans had to deal with real tyranny! Not the soft, albeit ever-encroaching, tyranny that is affecting us today. His life was influenced by a self-absorbed, power-hungry, king and Parliament that had no ears to hear its subjects complaints.
AND VALID COMPLAINTS THEY WERE!
We are experiencing a soft tyranny today. One which is indeed thrusting itself into every corner and crevice of industry.
And what gives our three branches of checking-and-balancing gubment the opportunity, or even the over lording ability or "right," to make it so difficult for business to conduct BUSINESS?
Simple! A misused clause in the Constitution, like the "commerce" clause, has grown so beyond its original intent that its legislative use and influence would be unrecognizable to Paine. He would certainly write a pamphlet on that!
An activist court (at all levels) that makes law, rather than interpreting it, because it would not be passed if left to the populace to do so legislatively. Our courts have also grown in power unrecognizable to Paine. He would certainly write a pamphlet on that!
A press that has become the virtual voice of one arm of gubment, intending to influence rather than report. And that part of the press that does try to report is reviled as "reactionary," "dangerous," or "treasonous." It tries to destroy some for minor this and that, while excusing or failing to report others they find "favorable" after major thises and thats! The press has gotten to the point where it is NOT free, and its power would be unrecognizable to Paine. He would certainly write a pamphlet on that!
Today Thomas Paine would for sure be considered a PAIN to our increasingly tyrannical gubment!
Where is our Thomas Paine today? In gubment? On the radio? In industry? Writing our children's textbooks? We need one! WE NEED SOME COMMON SENSE!