Thursday, September 6, 2012

Paine -- society vs. government

Richard Samuelson on "government is the only thing we all belong to." He quotes Thomas Paine:

“SOME writers have so confounded society with government, as to leave little or no distinction between them; whereas they are not only different, but have different origins. Society is produced by our wants, and government by our wickedness; the former promotes our happiness positively by uniting our affections, the latter negatively by restraining our vices. The one encourages intercourse, the other creates distinctions. The first is a patron, the last a punisher.’

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