Sunday, January 16, 2005

Ben Franklin, Blogger

I am almost done with the Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. Aside from his pursuit of virtue, the thing that stands out the most is his constant use of writing as a means to spur public action or sway public sentiment on different topics.

His skills with written argument were honed in a small group. From his youth he belonged to a club for mutual improvement called the Junto which consisted of twelve other select individuals. They met regularly and discussed and debated various topics. They also wrote and read papers on different questions and topics. Franklin published some of his papers written for the Junto in his newspaper.

Throughout his adult life Franklin used the power of the written word. He published pamphlets and articles in his paper in support of many public projects such as public libraries, hospitals, the University of Philadelphia and others. His writing skills actually helped him secure positions in the colonial assembly and on many boards of directors.

The point is that the arguments that he crafted in his written works helped him accomplish great things throughout his life. I think Blogging can do the same thing for a person if they put some thought into it.

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