Thomas Paine (January 29, 1737 – June 8, 1809) was an English-American political activist, author, political theorist and revolutionary. As the author of two highly influential pamphlets at the start of the American Revolution, he inspired the America Patriots in 1776 to declare independence from Britain. His ideas reflected Enlightenment era rhetoric of transnational human rights. He has been called "a corsetmaker by trade, a journalist by profession, and a propagandist by inclination."
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“Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one.”
—Thomas Paine (17371809)