„Tom Paine has almost no influence on present-day thinking in the United States because he is unknown to the average citizen.“

—  Thomas Alva Edison, Context: Tom Paine has almost no influence on present-day thinking in the United States because he is unknown to the average citizen. Perhaps I might say right here that this is a national loss and a deplorable lack of understanding concerning the man who first proposed and first wrote those impressive words, 'the United States of America.' But it is hardly strange. Paine's teachings have been debarred from schools everywhere and his views of life misrepresented until his memory is hidden in shadows, or he is looked upon as of unsound mind. We never had a sounder intelligence in this Republic. He was the equal of Washington in making American liberty possible. Where Washington performed Paine devised and wrote. The deeds of one in the Weld were matched by the deeds of the other with his pen.
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Thomas Alva Edison14
inventore e imprenditore statunitense 1847 - 1931
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„I don't think that the United States are ready for a presidency as the one of Obama, at least because he would be the first black president.“

—  Gianfranco Fini Italian politician 1952
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„I never tire of reading Tom Paine.“

—  Abraham Lincoln 16th President of the United States 1809 - 1865
As quoted in A Literary History of the American People‎ (1931) by Charles Angoff, p. 270

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„It is probable that we should have had the Revolution without Tom Paine. Certainly it could not be forestalled, once he had spoken.“

—  Thomas Edison American inventor and businessman 1847 - 1931
Context: Looking back to those times we cannot, without much reading, clearly gauge the sentiment of the Colonies. Perhaps the larger number of responsible men still hoped for peace with England. They did not even venture to express the matter that way. Few men, indeed, had thought in terms of war. Then Paine wrote 'Common Sense,' an anonymous tract which immediately stirred the fires of liberty. It flashed from hand to hand throughout the Colonies. One copy reached the New York Assembly, in session at Albany, and a night meeting was voted to answer this unknown writer with his clarion call to liberty. The Assembly met, but could find no suitable answer. Tom Paine had inscribed a document which never has been answered adversely, and never can be, so long as man esteems his priceless possession. In 'Common Sense' Paine flared forth with a document so powerful that the Revolution became inevitable. Washington recognized the difference, and in his calm way said that matters never could be the same again.. It must be remembered that 'Common Sense' preceded the declaration and affirmed the very principles that went into the national doctrine of liberty. But that affirmation was made with more vigor, more of the fire of the patriot and was exactly suited to the hour. It is probable that we should have had the Revolution without Tom Paine. Certainly it could not be forestalled, once he had spoken.

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„The best reason I can think of for not running for President of the United States is that you have to shave twice a day.“

—  Adlai Stevenson mid-20th-century Governor of Illinois and Ambassador to the UN 1900 - 1965
As quoted in Bartlett's Unfamiliar Quotations (1971) by Leonard Louis Levinson, p. 237

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„I think the word of the United States has been as good as gold in its international dealings and its agreements.“

—  Condoleezza Rice American Republican politician; U.S. Secretary of State; political scientist 1954
News conference in Ottawa, Canada http://www.dailykos.com/story/2005/10/26/113322/93, October 26, 2005.

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„It is almost a definition of a gentleman to say he is one who never inflicts pain.“

—  John Henry Newman English cleric and cardinal 1801 - 1890
Discourse VIII, pt. 10. http://books.google.com/books?id=YdrJkVPhptwC&q=%22it+is+Almost+a%22+%22a+gentle+man+to+say+he+is+one+who+never+inflicts+pain%22&pg=PA208#v=onepage

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