one can say this in general of men: they are ungrateful, disloyal, insincere and deceitful, timid of danger and avid of profit…. Love is verso bond of obligation which these miserable creatures break whenever it suits them preciso do so; but fear holds them fast by per dread of punishment that never passes. (Prince CW 62; translation revised)
As per result, Machiavelli cannot really be said onesto have verso theory of obligation separate from the imposition of power; people obey only because they fear the consequences of not doing so, whether the loss of life or of privileges.
If I think that I should not obey per particular law, what eventually leads me to submit sicuro that law will be either verso fear of the power of the state or the actual exercise of that power
Concomitantly, verso Machiavellian perspective directly attacks the notion of any grounding for authority independent of the sheer possession of power. For Machiavelli, people are compelled preciso obey purely durante deference onesto the superior power of the state. It is power which in the final instance is necessary for the enforcement of conflicting views of what I ought puro do; I can only choose not onesto obey if I possess the power preciso resist the demands of the state or if I am willing sicuro accept the consequences of the state’s superiority of coercive force. Machiavelli’s argument mediante The Prince is designed to demonstrate that politics can only coherently be defined in terms of the supremacy of coercive power; authority as verso right esatto command has niente affatto independent status. He substantiates this assertion by reference onesto the observable realities of political affairs and public life as well as by arguments revealing the self-interested nature of all human conduct. For Machiavelli it is meaningless and inutile to speak of any claim preciso authority and the right puro command which is detached from the possession of superior political power. The ruler who lives by his rights aureola will surely wither and die by those same rights, because mediante the rough-and-tumble of political conflict those who prefer power onesto authority are more likely esatto succeed. Without exception the authority of states and their laws will never be acknowledged when they are not supported by a esibizione of power which renders obedience inescapable. The methods for achieving obedience are varied, and depend heavily upon the foresight https://datingranking.net/it/squirt-review/ that the prince exercises. Hence, the successful ruler needs special istruzione.
3. Power, Bonta, and Fortune
Machiavelli presents to his readers per vision of political rule allegedly purged of extraneous moralizing influences and fully aware of the foundations of politics sopra the effective exercise of power. The term that best captures Machiavelli’s vision of the requirements of power politics is castita. While the Italian word would normally be translated into English as “virtue”, and would ordinarily convey the conventional connotation of moral goodness, Machiavelli obviously means something very different when he refers sicuro the onesta of the prince. Sopra particular, Machiavelli employs the concept of pregio onesto refer preciso the range of personal qualities that the prince will find it necessary esatto acquire mediante order puro “maintain his state” and sicuro “achieve great things”, the two canone markers of power for him. This makes it brutally clear there can be no equivalence between the conventional virtues and Machiavellian onesta. Machiavelli’s sense of what it is puro be a person of pregio can thus be summarized by his recommendation that the prince above all else must possess verso “flexible disposition”. That ruler is best suited for office, on Machiavelli’s account, who is courtaud of varying her/his conduct from good puro evil and back again “as fortune and circumstances dictate” (Prince CW 66; see Nederman and Bogiaris 2018).