Today is the birthday of the man who taught me all I ever needed to know about politics, Niccolo Machiavelli. Before a unified Italy, Niccolo was a rising star of Florence courts. His dream and ambition was to be a courtesan, serving the Medici family. Rising to the position of Diplomat, he met the political movers and shakers of his day, including Cesare Borgia, who became the prototype for his most known work; The Prince. Returning home, he was branded a traitor, imprisoned and tortured. He wrote The Prince trying to win back favor from the Medici court. The pamphlet had the opposite effect, not only angering the Medici’s, but the way the book describes how to be a “Perfect Leader” angered the public, and Niccolo had to flee for his life.
Machiavelli thought that by writing The Prince as an expose of the House of Borgia would get him back into the good graces of their main rivals, the House of Medici. It may be the descriptions of regal politics struck too close to home for Medici, or it was showing truths not meant to be known by the ‘vulgar class.’ Whatever the case Machiavelli had to flee Florence for his life. The Prince would not be published in book form until after Machiavelli’s death, and even then against the will of almost every Ruling House in Medieval Europe. Coining the term “The End Justifies The Means”, today the book serves as a primer to any person who aspires to political office today.
For those that asked; The more things change, they more they don’t. If you want to understand politics today, you must understand the politics of 500 years ago. The only difference is that instead of serving rich families, we serve parties. Instead of the Houses of Borgia and Medici we have Democrats and Republicans. I ask you, does any of this sound familiar?
And I’ll leave you with the one thought I wish ideologues would learn today. You ask why I do not ( at this time) support the reelection of our current administration;
From a Treasury Secretary that can’t figure out Turbo-Tax, to an Attorney General that sends thousands of automatic weapons into Mexico and loses them. It doesn’t matter how smart, or visionary our president is. He has surrounded himself by clowns. Doesn’t say much for his judgement does it?
Think about it.