Except from ‘Common Sense (Attack On Paper Money Laws), Thomas Paine,1786

Paper Money, Paper Money, and Paper Money! is now, in several of the states, both the bubble and the inequity of the day.  That there are some bad people concerned in schemes of this kind cannot be doubted, but the far greater part are misled.  People are got so bewildered upon the subject that they put and mistake one thing for another.  They say Paper Money has improved the country – Paper Money carried on the war, and Paper Money did a great many other fine things.

Not one syllable of this is truth; it is all error from beginning to end.  It was CREDIT which did these things, and that credit has failed, by non-performance, and by the country being involved in debt and the levity and instability of government measures.

We have so far mistaken the matter that we have even mistaken the name.  The name is not Paper Money, but Bills of Credit:  But it seems as if we are ashamed to use the name, knowing how much we have abused the thing.  All emissions of paper for government purposes is not making of money, but making use of credit to run into debt by.  It is anticipating or forestalling the revenue of future years, and throwing the burden of redemption on future assemblies.  It is like a man mortgaging his estate and leaving his successors to pay it off.  But this is not the worst of it, it leaves us at last in the lurch by banishing the hard money, diminishing the value of the revenue, and filling up its place with paper, that may be like something to-day and to-morrow nothing.

One thought on “Except from ‘Common Sense (Attack On Paper Money Laws), Thomas Paine,1786

  1. Re: “It is like a man mortgaging his estate and leaving his successors to pay it off.”

    And isn’t this what we have today? Shakin’ my effin’ head. This (and a thousand other nefarious things) is why our people and most especially our kids are runnin’ in all directions tryin’, no longer to ‘achieve the dream,’ but rather to somehow make ends meet. We inherited a legacy of debt and that debt keeps increasing. Who can relax in that pressing pressure? And who just wants to live a simple life of knowing there’s enough? Can’t wait ’till we’re out from under, the uprising behind us, victory won, and there’s “enough.”

    More from Paine:

    “The slavery of fear had made men afraid to think.”

    “The greatest tyrannies are always perpetuated in the name of the noblest causes.”

    “When all other rights are taken away, the right of rebellion is made perfect.”

    “To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.”

    “Our greatest enemies, the ones we must fight most often, are within.”


Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published.