Morality Vs Machiavelli

1161 Words5 Pages
Socrates, however, asserts the importance of morality and ethics in a ruler, and argues that soul craft is ideal for an effective leader. Socrates contends, “Wealth does not bring goodness, but goodness brings wealth and every other blessing, both to the individual and the state” (Apology, 30b). Indeed, in opposition to Machiavelli, Socrates asserts that following one’s intuition and making decisions based on “goodness” will never lead a ruler and his state astray. Additionally, Socrates emphasizes the importance of the laws and the profound role they play in maintaining stability in society and giving human beings an avenue for socialization. Since socialization is the method by which human beings develop cultural norms and values,…show more content…
However, Socrates would still reject this Prince and a political system led by him due to the fact that the Prince acquires his power from the people. Socrates would argue that, by being dishonest to his subjects, the Prince values himself over the people. He no longer has any regard for the consent of the governed. Therefore, when the Prince no longer values the consent of the governed, the social contract between the Prince and his subjects is broken. Socrates would assert that the people have a moral obligation to rise against this Prince as he no longer makes decisions that benefit the state. Socrates asserts that a ruler will experience the most self-growth and will be able to make prudent decisions for the state only through introspection and self-realization. The ruler must realize how little he knows and how little he is truly capable of. Socrates states, “The wisest of men is he who has realized, that in respect of wisdom he is really worthless” (Apology, 23b). Indeed, Socrates asserts that the wisest of men is he who realizes how little he truly knows. Thus, he must not deceive his people with falsehoods and must strive to continue learning. In essence, Socrates argues for universality and believes all of the ruler’s subjects must be provided for, even if it requires sacrifice and hardship for the ruler. As mentioned earlier, Socrates perceives the laws as parental figures who are responsible for instilling cultural and societal values in human
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