Category Archives: Thomas Paine

Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address Translated in Time

WHERE  HAS  COMMON  SENSE  GONE? NO. 22 Thomas Paine, August 2012Eleven score and sixteen years ago our founding fathers brought forth a new nation, conceived in individual liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with individual rights and freedoms and protection from harm by others.

Continue reading →

Revising Entitlements – Time to Quit Shouting Against a North Wind

WHERE  HAS  COMMON  SENSE  GONE?  No. 21 Thomas Paine

June  2011 –  The politically accepted definition of the word entitlement is another progressive creation. The progressive interpretation of the word entitlement, which liberals love to use freely, (no pun intended) can be stated in many ways but is best summarized as “…being free from not having something that someone else has just because the someone else worked for it.” WHERE HAS COMMON SENSE GONE?

Continue reading →

Why More Able Men are not Chosen President


 WHERE  HAS  COMMON  SENSE  GONE?  No. 20, Thomas Paine – May 2011-

In response to Where Has Common Sense Gone, No.19 “ Where are the Elephants” a very good friend of mine gave me a copy of an article that appeared in “Influential and Controversial Readings in American Politics”. It was extracted from The American Commonwealth  pp.58-64, authored by James Bryce and  published in 1899.

The gist of the article answers the question of the missing elephants by clearly stating there are none in American political circles today. By “today” the author meant The Year of OUR LORD – 1899. I was struck by the reasons given and the resulting recognition that many of the same reasons, persist to this day, along with a few new ones.  How is it that a lack of statesman-like, competent, moral, honest and God fearing politicians can persist when the evident need for them is so great? Continue reading →

Where are the Elephants?

WHERE  HAS  COMMON  SENSE  GONE? No. 19 Thomas Paine – April  2011 –

I see the Tent, I have seen the Clowns, ………..but where are the Elephants?

I have been watching the Federal Government Circus on television. I have no doubt many other concerned citizens have also been watching. We have been subjected to posturing, half-truths, outright lies and a pitiful display by Harry Reid the Senate Majority Whiner.

We have been a country without any actual leadership for over two years. The present administration has stumbled from mistake to confusion to outright deceit without providing any clear direction for the country along with the details of how to follow that direction until clearly articulated goals have been reached. Continue reading →

The Governments Dilemma – Is there a Way Out or is it a Catch 22

WHERE  HAS  COMMON  SENSE  GONE, No. 18, Thomas Paine – March  2011

Economists have a well recognized axiom used to describe one aspect of production activity. It is called the “Law of Diminishing Returns”.

The law states “that we will get less and less extra output when we add additional doses of an input while holding other inputs fixed. In other words, the marginal product of each unit of input will decline as the amount of that input increases holding other inputs constant.”

What does this axiom really mean? A simplified example can be used to illustrate what is meant.

Suppose a farmer has typically harvested 100 units of crop for every 100 pounds of seed he has planted in his field. This ratio has held steady for years with only minor variances due to generally benign weather conditions year to year. The 100 units of crop can be considered the economic production. The inputs are the amount of seed sown, the available amount of land, the amount of fertilizer applied, the number of days of sunshine and normal temperature and the amount of rain that falls. Continue reading →

The Budget Discussions – Rod Serling Would be Proud

WHERE  HAS  COMMON  SENSE  GONE?  No. 17  Thomas Paine – March  2011

Where to start a discussion……..the Twilight Zone is the Twilight Zone no matter where you enter it. One might add….Common Sense is in short supply once inside the Twilight Zone.   I had a brief flashback to an old Rod Serling Twilight Zone episode when, a couple of nights ago, I watched Minnesota Representative Michele Bachman (RTP) try to discuss certain aspects of the Obama budget and Unfunded Liabilities.

I like Michele Bachman. She presents herself well and exudes civility and dignity to a degree not demonstrated by many of the other elected representatives we, as a nation, have sent to Washington. I think she has some future potential in politics, but that potential won’t last long if she continues to address issues on which she is woefully ignorant. This is doubly bad if it happens to be an issue she is likely to be involved in for most of her working days as an elected official. Her attempts to address certain issues in Obama’s budget must have been embarrassing to many viewers. My concern however is this…..Was this spectacle, where she kept repeating the same words even though it was obvious she was lost to any comprehension of the message she was trying to deliver, representative of the knowledge base most elected representatives have to draw from when they engage in budget solutions and government finances in general? Continue reading →

Recognizing Government Hypocrisy

WHERE HAS COMMON SENSE GONE? No. 16, Thomas Paine – February 2011

I have continued to wonder about the Federal moratorium on offshore oil drilling. The courts have found the moratorium to be illegal. This has been viewed by the present Administration as a setback and accordingly emphasis has shifted to dramatically extend the Permit to Drill process, in effect negating the findings of the court. Now it appears the Minerals Management Branch will issue an occasional permit so to avoid the appearance of total non-compliance with the court finding.  Is this bureaucratic chicanery or merely bureaucratic bungling and ineptitude? Sometimes it is pretty hard to tell the difference since the various levels of Government have such a poor track record in responding to major events in a timely and appropriate manner. One need only look back as far as Hurricane Katrina to find an example of even more death, damage and disruption than was caused by the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster. The Government’s response to Katrina was subjected to justified criticism at the time. Even though the cause of the Katrina disaster was quickly diminished the significant after effects remain to this day. Continue reading →

Global Warming Revisited

WHERE HAS COMMON SENSE GONE? No. 15 Thomas Paine – December 2010 C.S. No. 8 referenced the subject of Global Warming being discredited by some obviously falsified information. My level of expertise does not extend to climate change, so, as I pointed out at that time it was not my intent to support or rebuke global warming issues. My purpose then was to use global warming as an example of how notion can run rampant over fact, especially when some elements of academia forgo their integrity in order to help prove a point they are having difficulty proving by using only validated data. That same notion becomes even more pervasive when the public is subjected to a seemingly endless stream of news clips and television segments aimed at supporting the idea conveyed by the notion, while those same information sources further abet the process by ignoring contrary comments and valid, supporting, contrary evidence.

Now it seems as though global warming has been placed on a back burner along with the current administration’s Cap and Trade aspirations. This should not be taken to indicate climate change will never produce some troublesome effects in the coming decades. Common sense reminds us to beware of assigning a single causation to complex system reactions. Continue reading →

Recognizing the Reality of Political Systems

WHERE HAS COMMON SENSE GONE? No. 14 Thomas Paine – November 2010

Obama has often been referred to as a socialist and sometimes even a communist. He probably is neither, but it is possible he could be something worse!  Obama could unwittingly be a fascist.

I say this even while believing that Obama is at best nothing more than an absentee president. He seems totally unable to take a firm position, based on reasoned thought, on any subject. He talks too much but says little of any value. He has surrounded himself with persons who have proved to be as inconsistent in constructive thought as he is. However, this should not be construed to mean that as a group they are not harmful.  They are likely very dangerous to our national interests. Their attention is focused mostly on a few select, self-serving  internal matters while not nearly  enough attention is given to the festering international situations facing our nation at present. Continue reading →

Slip Slidin’ Away

WHERE HAS COMMON SENSE GONE? No. 13 Thomas Paine – November  2010

Paul Simon covered a lot of ground in his highly popular song, but he left out probably the most important thing…..liberty and the freedom from tyranny. I have no idea what his political persuasion was at the time he wrote Slip Slidin’ Away, but in fairness to him I will say he had not yet seen some of the excesses of a derelict judiciary, none of us had.  Some of the excesses we have now been so adversely exposed to that have been detrimental to the national interest. The Earl Warren court was just then in the process of opening a new pathway that established as a precedent it was not always necessary to reach a high court decision based on constitutional grounds. “Social Fairness” should be given appropriate consideration. Continue reading →