Friday, November 1, 2019

Machiavelli's and Plato's political thoughts Essay

Machiavelli's and Plato's political thoughts - Essay Example But what does the science of running the state imply? Lots of people ruminated about this question. Plato started from the fact that there is an ideal state, a perfect specimen, and its multiple repetitions are simple distortion in the real world of things. In Plato's view, expressed in his treatise â€Å"The Republic†, the main basis of any ideal state is justice. Plato argues that every citizen is given a special class, the most suitable to his or her nature, i.e. justice is correspondence of a real thing with its idea; the state is ideal, when each citizen acts in accord with his own essence. Since there are individual differences between people, Plato proposes the division of society into several estates: the philosophers - the rulers, warriors – the guardians and craftsmen – manufacturers (Pangle, 1980). The ideal system is when every citizen’s interests are identical with the public ones, when personality does not claim for individual self-worth and complete autonomy in actions. Plato’s state and civil society are represented in a single, homogenous, holistic, undifferentiated concept. Plato points out the following forms of government: the royal regime (monarchy), the aristocracy, timocracy, oligarchy, democracy and tyranny. The most right and reasonable, he believes, is aristocracy. Other forms of government are consistent deviations from the ideal state. Aristocracy is a rule of the best, approved by the people. The person, who is reputed to be brave and wise, should have power and rule the state. The basis of this form of government is equality by birth. In Plato's view, a real governor should not seek for power; he is not willing to rule the country and corrects the vices of other people (Kochin, 2002). People, guided by ambition, fame and money are not suitable for this role. The dialogue "Laws" is the last work of Plato. Estate division of citizens is replaced with gradation of property qualification. Along with t he recognition of slavery Plato demonstrates his disdainful attitude towards productive work. Ideal state structure, by Plato, is combining of democracy and monarchy (Pangle, 1980). The thinker of the Renaissance Niccolo Machiavelli expressed his own opinion on state structure and described an ideal state governor. In modern history, Machiavelli was the first thinker, who began talking about the economy of the state as an integral part of its prosperity. Summing up the historical experience, Machiavelli observes that those rulers, who sought to be generous, spent all their wealth and savings on support the glory of generous rulers. Thus, generosity ruins sovereign’s authority and country, causes the resentment of many. Thus, Machiavelli was accused of cruelty. However, such accusations are groundless. After all, Machiavelli never wrote that a good ruler should always apply fierce measures. On the contrary, he warned that the new sovereign should not be gullible, suspicious an d quick to slaughter (Baron, 1961). He should be restrained, cautious and kind, so that excessive credulity not to turn into recklessness and excessive distrust not to embittered citizens (Machiavelli, 1998). In contrast to Plato, who in his early works advocated for equality and justice, in income distribution, in particular, Machiavelli saw

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