Machiavelli's Teachings

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President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500

January 17, 2003

Dear Mr. President,

My name is Clifford I. Cazeau and I am writing to you to advise you about the way your politics are working. In my ninth grade World History course we have been studying the ways and politics of Machiavelli. As an assignment in the class, we are required to advise you about your troubles of not being the president that you want to be. I have been informed to advise you in the ways of Machiavelli and explain to you how you should take into consideration the way that you run your military, the values of fear from the people over love of the people, and how you should keep your promises.

According to Machiavelli, military was the most important factor in running a government that functions properly. In order to make the right decisions that favor you and your people, you must rely on your military. To keep order in the country, you should make every time war time. Always keep your people in check and understand the art of war. Another suggestion is that you should always keep yourself armed. According to Machiavelli, "A ruler who does not understand military matters cannot be highly regarded by his soldiers, and cannot trust them." In other words, if you are not praised and honored by your armed forces and don't understand them, they can turn against you and become your worst enemy. Another teaching of Machiavelli affirmed that it is better to be feared than loved. What Machiavelli means by this is that it is difficult to achieve both love and fear from the people, but if a leader absolutely had to choose one over the other, it should be fear. Machiavelli says that "Men are less hesitant about offending or harming a ruler who makes himself loved than one who inspires fear." To gain the fear of the people, Mr. President, you must strike fear into them and affirm your authority to them by making examples of one...
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