American Government in Contrast to Lao-Tzu and Machiavelli Essay

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American Government in Contrast to Lao-Tzu and Machiavelli 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…show more content…
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 believes a government should be miserly with its own goods. That is not to say you can’t steal the goods of conquered countries and be liberal with them. Try not to be too generous, however. A quote I once read says “remember to pillage before you burn.” This reminds me a lot of the ideas of Machiavelli. According to him, one should say one thing just to make the people happy, and do another. He believes one should only keep his word if it is for the benefit of the nation. Six words: “read my lips, no new taxes,” come to mind. George H.W. Bush said these words, but acted differently. Machiavellian? Maybe. Bush shortly after had the largest tax hike in the nation's history to try to save us from the worst recession since the Great Depression. I believe this is the sort of thing Machiavelli is talking about. Do whatever you can to keep the people happy, but when it comes down to it, what makes them happy may not be best for the state as a whole. He believes that people are generally bad and greedy, so they will take whatever you give them. Lao-Tzu is not exactly polar opposite of Machiavelli, although he is close. He believes that man in a state of nature is generally good and not greedy. What makes man greedy is overemphasis on material
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