“Entrepreneur’s Credo: Thomas Paine


“Entrepreneur’s Credo

I do not choose to be a common man,
It is my right to be uncommon … if I can,

I seek opportunity … not security.

I do not wish to be a kept citizen.
Humbled and dulled by having the
State look after me.

I want to take the calculated risk;
To dream and to build.
To fail and to succeed.
I refuse to barter incentive for a dole;

I prefer the challenges of life
To the guaranteed existence;

The thrill of fulfillment
To the stale calm of Utopia.

I will not trade freedom for beneficence
Nor my dignity for a handout

I will never cower before any master
Nor bend to any threat.

It is my heritage to stand erect.
Proud and unafraid;
To think and act for myself,
To enjoy the benefit of my creations
And to face the world boldly and say:

This, with God’s help, I have done
All this is what it means
To be an Entrepreneur.”

— Thomas Paine (Common Sense)


    • And I might add that Paine certainly knew what it was like to fail as an entrepreneur. Jefferson welcomed him back to the United States in Paine’s final years, where he died virtually penniless in 1809.

      • Penniless and free! Better than being a dog on his master’s chain and eating scraps in my book.

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