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Agrarian Justice Opposed to Agrarian Law, and to Agrarian Monopoly; Being a Plan for Meliorating the Condition of Man
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Agrarian Justice Opposed to Agrarian Law, and to Agrarian Monopoly; Being a Plan for Meliorating the Condition of Man

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  112 ratings  ·  9 reviews
The 18th century was a wealth of knowledge, exploration and rapidly growing technology and expanding record-keeping made possible by advances in the printing press. In its determination to preserve the century of revolution, Gale initiated a revolution of its own: digitization of epic proportions to preserve these invaluable works in the largest archive of its kind. Now fo ...more
Paperback, 32 pages
Published May 29th 2010 by Gale Ecco, Print Editions (first published 1796)
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Gavin
Jun 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thomas Paine does not get enough credit for being forward thinking. Sure everyone knows he has common sense, but working out a way to improve the daily life of man?

First off I cannot resist pointing out that Paine understood how good a life hunter gathers had:

"The life of an Indian is a continual holiday, compared with the poor of Europe; and, on the other hand, it appears to be abject when compared with the rich. Civilization, therefore, or that which is ſo called, has operated two ways, to mak
...more
Kommissar Kircheis
Aug 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have to say one of my favorite and one of his most underrated works of Thomas Paine. This book continues the standard of his radical thinking for the time (even to the present) and his universal writing style that is not difficult to read in modern times. The book main focus is to advocate for a welfare state to help fight against a large amount of inequality (as he explains come from private property) but also in its small, yet solid critiques about the inadequacy of philanthropy to fix this ...more
Kevin McDonagh
Before the French revolution, American independence or Karl Marx, here's a 'founding father' postulating not on minimum wage, but a universal basic income for men and women. He reasoned why should some of the country be born on to cultivatable lands but not others? Man created the very construct of land ownership and government, why have the same constructs it not eased the cruelty inflicted by the gene pool lottery of life? No one should be born into the world less fortunate as a result of a sy ...more
David
Jan 30, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: society-politics
This is by Thomas Paine, the author of Common Sense. It was written while Paine was in France during the 1790's while the social dynamics following the French Revolution were still going on.

Paine argues that land property has two elements: the natural land which belongs equally to all, and the improvements made to it by humans over time. While Paine accepts land ownership based on human contributions, and that ownership can be passed down to heirs, he tells us that not all of the benefits should
...more
Zach Vaughn
Apr 30, 2013 rated it liked it
Interesting work in which Paine proposes establishing a fund for old age/disabled pensions, as well as a one-time payment to individuals reaching adulthood. And to do all this, exacting something roughly analogous to an estate tax. Clearly a man ahead of his time.
Joan Conklin
I'm interested in seeing where the basic income movement goes. Agrarian Justice lays out some of the first guidelines for not only that but also Social Security. Paine's liberalism feels pretty contemporary. He supported an equal payout for women too!
Frank
Mar 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this twenty page pamphlet Paine lays out his personal plan for an estate tax, a social security, a very rudimentary basic wage, and he does it in a simple and heart felt way, using both logic and reason, and illustrating why it's morally justified to implement his estate tax.

At first I was thinking "taxes are bad" and I still have a problem with taxes, but Paine lays out a solid foundation for why requesting the taxation is acceptable, and it works.

It's a piece of brilliance, where when goi
...more
Ben Edsall
Apr 10, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: history, philosophy
Paine wanders into some socialist theories here suggesting communal ownership of land and the abolition of rights of inheritance. While I appreciate the great mind, spirit and contributions to humanity of Paine I think that he was likely influenced by Plato's Republic and other works of that kind. He didn't have the perspective we now do of the failures of socialism as it has failed everywhere it was tried.

One look at Colonial history and a cursory reading of Bradford's History of the Plymouth
...more
Craig
Dec 22, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Paine outlines a plan for social aid, based on demographics available with the idea of allowing for ability to progress while acknowledging the lack of landed property (land originally being the gift of the creating deity for all to use--cultivation changing that to owned land with the advantages of civilization--read those how ye may).
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Thomas Paine 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 Patriots in 1776 to declare independence from Britain. His ideas reflected Enlightenment-era rhetoric of transnational human rights. He has been called "a corset maker by trade, a journalist ...more

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“It is, perhaps, impossible to proportion exactly the price of labor to the profits it produces; and it will also be said, as an apology for the injustice, that were a workman to receive an increase of wages daily he would not save it against old age, nor be much better for it in the interim.” 1 likes
“Civilization, therefore, or that which is so-called, has operated two ways: to make one part of society more affluent, and the other more wretched,than would have been the lot of either in a natural state.” 1 likes
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