Macchiavelli's Advice On Power Essay

1362 words - 5 pages

When running for Presidential office, there are a lot of steps that must be taken in order to be a successful ruler. Machiavelli, a great political philosopher wrote The Prince, to advise princes of his time on how to rule. Although written in 1513, the advice he gives is directly relatable to present day. With his assistance any president can become a successful and powerful ruler.
The basis of Machiavelli’s theory and ideas came from his most famous quote, “It is better to be feared than loved, if you cannot be both.” He has a very strict policy as to how a prince should act. Rather than being caring, he believes in strong punishment. He has a “Sit in the corner and think!” type attitude towards the people. His ideas were extreme, but they have been proved to work. They are effective and learning from Machiavelli is something any ruler should do. In his book he explains all the things a ruler shouldn’t do and balances it with all the things that should be done.
Machiavelli teaches to only rely on oneself. A president should only allow wise advisors to speak, and don’t always “take their word for it.” To prove to be capable of success, a ruler has to be self reliant. Depending on prowess instead of anyone else, will build a firm foundation for the country. Using prowess will make it difficult to obtain the wanted position, or in this case the presidential position. But once it is obtained, it will be easier to maintain. According to the book, men are ungrateful, fickle and covetous. Never be dependent on people, promises or money. If a ruler trusts more than just himself, he gives opportunities to others to ruin what he has created. All the available information that officials can get a hold of, there’s no wonder why Machiavelli does not think a prince should trust anyone else. No one wants to worry if their administrators will go behind their back and release information, obtain other information, or any other matter that could jeopardize ones ruling. It is the rulers job to be deceptive. It is the rulers job to be cunning and crafty. Not anyone else‘s. If a ruler only puts his trust in himself, that will be one less worry on a presidents mind.
Although Machiavelli says to be feared not loved, he makes it clear to avoid being hated. To do this, a ruler must keep the people happy. First and foremost, honoring the word of oneself will guarantee praise. Empty promises cause distrust in the ruler and they will want a new one. Also, if one cannot honor his word, he will be labeled as a liar. After found guilty of this, trying to gain the trust of the citizens back is almost irretrievable. Taking away possessions will also infuriate citizens. Never confiscate women, or property. Rather than asking people to change their old ways, a ruler must adjust to change. Citizens are used to their way of life and will not want to change that because of a new ruler. Orders will not be followed if people have to sacrifice their own well being....

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