Machiavelli vs. Lao-Tzu

Topics: George H. W. Bush, United States, Political philosophy Pages: 3 (1167 words) Published: October 3, 2006
In comparing and contrasting the governmental philosophies of the great thinkers Lao-Tzu and Machiavelli, I have found a pleasant mix of both of their ideas would be the best for America today. Lao-Tzu's laisse-faire attitude towards the economy, as well as his small scale military is appealing to my liberal side, while Machiavelli's attitude towards miserliness which causes low taxes appeals to the right wing. These great thinkers contradict the popular saying "all great thinkers think alike." They have several ideas, such as taxes, that are the same, while other ideas, like the involvement of government in citizens' everyday lives are totally opposite. I shall start with the ideas of Machiavelli, then move on to Lao-Tzu's, and finally a comparison and application into American life. Niccolo Machiavelli believes in a strong government. The leader should be strong and feared. I believe he gets this idea from the fear of God; no one is supposed to question God because he is so feared, and in the same sense, no one should question a strong leader. Machiavelli realizes that the leader should be feared, but not hated. A hated leader will probably be killed in a rebellion. One also can not be loved. Any compassion towards your citizens will make them believe you are weak, and they will rebel. He thinks a very strong military is necessary at all times, and that powerful arms should be available and in hand. This idea is similar to that of right wing America and our friends, the National Rifle Association, who believe assault rifles are America's pastime. The nation should always be prepared for war, and should always be searching for new lands to conquer. This is much like our cold war with the USSR and the new lands to conquer would be anything Communist. These wars should go on without high taxes. High taxes as well cause rebellion. Case in point: the high taxes levied against America by the British, as well as other strong factors, led to the American revolution. He...
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