Nicholas Sine (if you read this please email me) Period Four April 5, 1998 Machiavelli "Society is always taken by surprise at any new example of common sense." Ralph Waldo Emerson knew exactly how our society thinks when he said those words. The Prince, written by Machiavelli, was made of his thoughts on being or becoming a ruler. Because Machiavelli's ideas were, like Emerson said," ... examples of common sense... ," people were shocked by them. Machiavelli's ideals for society reflect common sense.
It does not matter how loving a ruler is, if he / she is not aggressive, then he / she will not govern well. Machiavelli knew that to rule a society you need to be talented in using power. Power is a gift that not all people have. All of this proved to be common sense by the way the people rejected it.
This is like when Robespierre was revolted against during the French Revolution in the late 1700's. Machiavelli concluded that if you have power, you should use it in what ever way necessary to get what you need. Machiavelli stressed that it was not so important what the cause was, as what the effect could do. While the general public would like to dismiss this idea, common sense would encourage it.
If you need to be rash in order to do well, then being rash and crude was not a problem. Peter the Great was a tyrant who wanted St. Petersburg built and to do so he took many people's lives because it was such hard work. Machiavelli knew that for a society to survive, it had to have the smartest population. Teaching was important in society. Whoever holds the knowledge, holds the key to a strong civilization.
This was another idea of Machiavelli's that was common sense. Hierarchies, to Machiavelli, were the only way for a ruler to hav control. He described that a ruler needed power to control its people, and a hierarchy is the only way to accomplish that. The United States has a form of hierarchy and so does England. Both of these countries have been very successful. Even though the population will say this is wrong, it is in fact, the only way change can be accomplished.
Yet another idea of Machiavrelli's that was common sense was that in order to take effect, it was vital for laws to be strict. Law is the way a ruler can control his power and keep it in his / her 's own hands. While most disagree, it is common sense that fairness is not important. Just about all countries have some type of jail.
People go to jail because there are laws that they must have broken. As The Rolling Stones have said .".. You can't always get what you want, no you can't always get what you want, but if you try some times, you just might find, you get what you need... " To be fair is to give society what it wants, not what it needs. A ruler mustn't give the people any power becuase that would only lower the power of the ruler. Just because society thinks that ruling kindly is the proper way, does not validate it.
If everyone would simply understand what they know and not what they want, then it would be clear that Machiavelli's ideas consisted of nothing but truth and common sense.