Monday, July 06, 2009

A Vision Realized

When thinking of renaissance visionary prose, most people immediately think of Nostradamus. But just one generation before him there lived a quintessential political scientist, by the name of Niccolò Machiavelli. One of the more poignant passages he wrote was this:

Each candidate behaved well in the hope of being judged worthy of election. However, this system was disastrous when the city had become corrupt. For then it was not the most virtuous but the most powerful who stood for election, and the weak, even if virtuous, were too frightened to run for office.

How prophetic does this sound?

Today, the city that I see as corrupt is Washington. Just let a person like me try to run for President or any other office and see how much dirt they can dig up about my past. Granted, it's nothing that would result in criminal charges. But if it wasn't juicy enough, rest assured they'd make something up along the way. Just look at how they treat Sarah Palin.

Since there are no perfect people, it stands to reason there are no perfect candidates. So, if this is the case, why do we get stuck with the most morally depraved of all people, to lead us? I think Machiavelli has provided us with the answer.


Mustang said...

Machiavelli’s genius was in his understanding of human nature. I’m sure he wasn’t the first person to sit down and think about the political nature of man, but he was the first to put it into writing. He continues to be relevant today, even as there are some who think that Machiavelli is actually the genesis of human conflict; so much for the value of a public school education.

I find it interesting that both conservatives and liberals subscribe to Machiavellian principles; the difference is that conservatives boast about using them, and liberals feign offense by them. Of course, we know liberals to be masters of deception; there is no other way to explain why large numbers of blacks continue to support the party that enslaves them more than 140 years after the civil war. I guess P. T. Barnum was right all along.

You are right: there are no perfect candidates. There are no perfect people. It occurs to me that if we stopped placing these politicians on pedestals, maybe they’d begin to behave as servants of the people. Perhaps when these imperfect people topple from the pedestal, they won’t have so far to fall. Judging from the never-ending Palin saga, we have yet to learn this lesson.

Leslie said...

Very well stated, the both of you. Sunsett, that quote could not be more perfect for today.

When a strong, upstanding candidate rises from the conservative end of the spectrum, the attack dogs are relentless until they utterly destroy said candidate. It takes a much tougher individual to run as a conservative than it does for any liberal to slip into the job.

It comes down to a question, sometimes, of who wants to go through all that? Who wants to have their lives attacked so violently in order to hold a conservative political position? This may be one of the reasons we see many "conservatives" appeasing and 'reaching across the aisle' and such mush, when they ought to be standing strong on founding principles.

So we must see a melting. Rather than a weak candidate who is moral, we need a combination candidate who is strong, determined, and moral...much like the founding fathers. Look at all they sacrificed, struggled through, and succeeded in.

Were they afraid? I'm sure they had some fear, for being without some fear can lead you into ignorance, yet living in total fear means dying in ignorance.

Yet, we can see they stood strong in the face of all storms brought against them. Where are they now? Where are the strong men and women who are willing to forge through the tangles of progressive non-sense, political correctness, and entitlement philosophies? We need them more now than ever...

*I thank you again for letting me fill up your comment section.

Chuck said...

Good quote LA. I agree with both Mustang and Leslie. Politicians today are products of two factors, apathetic voters and a disturbingly slanted media.

Politicians have only one thing to fear, a motivated electorate. Fortunately they do not have to contend with this in our current society.

Partly this is due to gerrymandering and many of them living in "safe" districts. Even this doesn't explain it though because of the primary system.

The real shield for corrupt politicians therefore is the incredibly poor turnout in primaries.

With many of our Congressmen living in these safe districts, the primary is often the real election. Voters do not realize the importance of primaries.

The second factor is a dead horse but well worth beating. The majority of the media is so far in the tank for the left at this point that it will be difficult for the right to maintain a strong presence nationally.

There can be no other explanation for why the majority of the country agrees with many of the stances of the right but vote for the left.

Part of this is incompetence by the leadership of the Republican party. In their defense though it is hard to play on the current playing field.

Reality is though that the right will not ressurect itself until we get a strong leader with a very thick skin. They will have to have the personal presence to blare through the noise coming from the far left media combined with the moral and intestinal fortitude to stand before the onslaught from the same media and keep themselves standing.

This is one glaring difference between the right and the left, the left does not have to follow the same rules because the media runs intereferance for them. (see Barack Obama)

Ronald Reagan is obviously the prototype but sadly he is dead. Sarah Palin has the public appeal but I fear she does not have the thick skin. John McCain showed that he was lacking in the moral fortitude to stand firm on his principles.

Looking at the lanscape on the right, there is not an obvious choice right now. Time will tell.

As with Leslie, thanks for letting me run on. I can be long winded at times.

Leslie said...

Very good point about the primaries, Chuck. I agree, many people don't even pay attention to them. But the system is also cracked in the way primaries are set up...take the 2008 elections for example: by the time primaries rolled around to Indiana, we had no one to vote for. Of course, we didn't have many to choose from in the first place, but still...

LASunsett said...

Thanks to all for your input. I have always known I have the smartest readers in the world, even if they are only but a few.

L'Amerloque said...

Hi LAS !

The nickname of Francois Mitterand, the Socialist, elected President of the French Republic in 1981, was 'Le Florentin', i.e, The Florentine. He did, after all, fake an attemted 'assassination' on himself in 1957 (grin).