A Comparison of the True Philosopher Kings

Topics: Thomas Hobbes, Political philosophy, Government Pages: 6 (2071 words) Published: December 10, 2012
Political Philosophy 349|
Exam 1|
A comparison of the true Philosopher kings|
Joseph Roszhart|
California State University at Northridge |


So many way and myriad of themes to compare Plato’s Republic and Hobbes Leviathan; one of the most striking points to be made is that the share philosophical similarities once you get passed their differences. Most of us can agree that they share the same thought of that a government is essential and that humans can be destructive; but these philosophers differ on how the perceives humans, their roles in society and they have dramatic different views on human nature all together. Plato and Hobbes fundamental disagreements on human nature and its impacts of society and there for every aspect of life, these to have their opposing views. Both agree that the state is necessary, but the manner and their reasoning’s for its setup and equality are different. Plato has a positive outlook on human nature and Hobbes has a more cynical view of the laws of human nature. Both of them realize that without some sort of hierarchy that society would fall and the citizens would give into their desires. Plato’s division of labor will fall and destroy his ideal state and his idea of justice, moral and political guidance system for the “Classes;” The leaders, “the philosopher kings,” the military “guardian class” and bronze the working class. Plato states that each individual plays a role in society and has a job best suited for them which helps give the citizens the best possible quietly if products. The guardian classes, according to Plato, have certain traits that make them politically, morally and more just the others. The guardian class represents truth and justice, Plato thinks this is necessary because humans will fall to their desires. The ladders, “philosopher kings,” are dealt with the task of determining true justice and law. With their training in politics they would be the sovereign of the state. In Plato’s design there is no class that has complete possession of “truth” and as a result the political system is different, that the role of the state is a necessary entity. Without a government to rule society, humans beings would have no way of regulating the treaties they formed with one another and mass chaos would spread. Hobbes and his pessimistic view of mankind thinks that humans live in a “continual fear and danger of violent death , and the life of man [is] solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short” this is why Hobbes believes that a state is required. Although both Hobbes and Plato agree that there needs to be a state the both have opposing views on how to create and maintain a sovereign state. First both of them have different views on the nature of human beings, Plato states the humans want what is intrinsically good, whereas Hobbes states that humans desires what best protects them and that the state if nature us living in a state of chaos because of human desires. Unlike Hobbes, Plato thinks that humans want what is best and would listen to the “philosopher kings” and there higher calling. Hobbes does not believe that humans can have possession of any truth and thus does not see the state as being an entity that is qualified to pass down moral judgment. In fact, he doesn’t seem to believe morality should even be in a hierarchy; that the role of a governing body is to simply enforce the rights of its people and avoid bodily harm to keep society at a peaceful state. The driving difference between these two are that Hobbes believes that man are constantly at war with each other because no man is ever happy with what they own; whereas Plato thinks that man want what is called a just life. Another main issue that these two differentiate on is equality. Plato states that man can be divided into three categories as I mentioned above; Gold (philosopher kings), Silver (guardian class) and Bronze (working class). Plato’s political system supports...
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