Examine their [politics’] influence on the happiness of the people. Take every possible occasion for entering the houses of the laborers, and especially at moments of their repast [meals]; see what they eat, how they are clothed, whether they are obliged to work too hard; whether their government or their landlord takes from them an unjust proportion of their labor; on what footing stands the property the call their own, their personal liberty, etc., etc.
Source: Travelling Notes for Mr. Rutledge and Mr. Shippen, June 3, 1788
From Koch and Peden’s Selected Writings, P. 137-9
Patrick Lee’s Explanation
Compassionate leaders study the effects of government on the people.
We return to one of the eight areas an American visitor should study in other countries and look at it in detail. Next to agriculture, this might have held the highest priority.
1. Do the politics of a country make people happy or unhappy?
2. Do the people have adequate housing?
3. Do they have enough decent food to eat?
4. Are they properly clothed?
5. Do they have to work too many hours just to survive?
6. Do their leaders (macro-government) or their landlords (micro-government) take too much from them?
7. Do the people hold their property and liberty as natural rights or as favors of the government?
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The Moral Liberal Thomas Jefferson Editor, Patrick Lee, is a professional speaker, actor and writer. Since 1990, he has inspired, entertained and educated audiences from Maine to Hawaii with his authentic, first person leadership presentations as President Thomas Jefferson, Frontiersman Daniel Boone, and Lewis & Clark Co-Leader William Clark. He also appears as himself, The Hopeful Humorist™, with a program of motivational humor, patriotism and inspiration.