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Mr. Ulmschneider's Forums > AP Government: Madison, Paine, and Politics

I can actually understand him - Paine

posted Dec 18, 2012 01:50:34 by ryanneighbors95
Thomas Paine, famed author of "Common Sense" is one of the most famed authors in history. "Common sense is the most radical and important pamphlet written in the American Revolution and one of the most brilliant ever written in the English language." Paine is best known as a writer, not a founding father. His legacy is one of words in his various politically minded essays, not in his diplomacy with others. While he expressed that he had an opinion on certain matters, he conveyed it with the pen rather than with words. However, Paine was more a man of a desire for peace than for creating policy. Paine is best known as a writer that the common man can understand. By writing pieces that your average-Joe can relate with, Paine served as an effective mouth-piece to the American people. He took the founders political ideas and helped the Revolution in the best way he could...with his skill of words. Paine wasn't a founding father because he believed in peace, but was less interested in the diplomacy and policy.
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3 replies
JillianMiles said Dec 18, 2012 02:26:48
I agree with you; I think that the most powerful thing that Paine did was by far the extension of his beliefs (shared with the founders) to the more general public. I think that his approach was smart in gaining support of the revolution because by getting the average people to join forces with the cause, it expands the power of the argument, and necessary tactics and adjustments (such as the revolution) can be successful. His legacy does live on through his words, but at the time it reached far beyond just what he was saying.
ryanneighbors95 said Dec 18, 2012 02:37:18
Exactly. His biggest influence was creating a support group behind the Revolution, and he did this with his skill as a writer. He served as an effective middle-man between the founders and the general public, so they could stay informed as well as see the cause that was taking shape at the hands of the founding fathers. While efforts greatly aided the revolution, Paine is no founding father. Without Paine, the Revolution may have failed.
cdashley94 said Dec 18, 2012 03:55:08
I agree with you also Ryan. I think that Paine was a great thinker and revolutionary. However, he was not a politician. So much of the public's view of you depends on how you act and your politics. Paine was unconcerned with his image in the public light, and more concerned with conveying his ideas to the up and coming country. This is proven as he goes into the French Revolution. Paine had no preference for America, but simply a preference for the ideas he supported.
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