Friday April 26, 2013
Machiavelli and Hobbes understood the natural state of the world to be conflict. How does this shape their understanding of human beings, politics, ethics, and morality? Does this idea and itself towards liberal or conservative ideas? Explain.
Machiavelli’s understanding of the natural state of the world to be conflict causes him to look and access the world differently than others. His understanding of the natural state of the world bleeds over into his understanding of human beings, politics, ethics, and morality. His belief of human beings is that they are simple-minded fickle creatures, whose attention span is almost non-existent. He also believes that politics and ethics and morality cannot coexist. A politician cannot be a very ethical or moral person and a highly ethical or moral person will not make a good politician, because cruelty is something that can ever be made to look ethical or moral. Machiavelli separates ethics and morality from politics, he is one of the first philosophers to do so. Many of his instructions go against moral decisions. His advocating of the use of cruelty as the best means to gain power, no matter how true it may have been, is unethical and immoral. His writing displays politics to be amoral, and not one for a person who is unwilling to trade their eternal happiness for historical immorality. His extensive advocating of destruction and cruelty leaves no room for any form of morality or ethics. In his book he gives numerous different ways to take over a republic or a monarchy. And he often believes the best to gain power over a territory is through cruel acts. For example he explains, that the easiest way to take over a republic is by demolishing the city, because the ones that survive will be too afraid and intimated to revolt against the new ruler, and to take over a kingdom it is key to kill off all the royal family in order to keep complete control over the kingdom, and...
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