Political Crime

Political Crime


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The theme of M. Proal's interesting and valuable book is that politics cannot be divorced from morality. Science without conscience, Rabelais has said, is the ruin of the soul; and M. Proal endevors to enforce the maxim that politics divorced from morality is the ruin of society. In the opening chapter of his volume M. Proal points out that immoral political maxims date much farther back than the times of Machiavelli. The doctrine of two moralities - one for public and another for private affairs - is a doctrine which has come down to the modern world from Greek and Roman times. All that Machiavelli did was to state this theory and to show how craft and treachery might be utilized to acquire and retain political authority. [...] Reasons of state is the modern form which this ancient maxim has assumed. Injustice is defended on the ground that in the particular circumstances the welfare of the state demanded it. Politicians are accustomed to use this expression as a cloak for every iniquity. [...] Cicero says, "it is by absolute justice and justice alone that it is possible to govern states." A Nemesis overtakes nations which allow themselves to be governed by reasons of state. It is a policy which on purely utilitarian grounds does not pay in the end. Many instances of the truth of this will be found in M. Proal's pages. [...] M. Proal very truly points out that the moral standard of political rulers is determined by public opinion. It therefore rests with the public to purify the political atmosphere where it has become polluted by refusing to support unscrupulous candidates for power, and unscrupulous methods of political action. But in order to do this effectively, the public themselves must be permeated and animated by genuine and deep moral principles. At the present moment, the clash of national interests and of class interests is in many ways a menace to civilization. The only manner in which these conflicting interests can ultimately be reconciled and harmonized is by bringing the combatants together on the common meeting ground of justice. All other methods are more or less Machiavellian in character and can only terminate in confusion and strife. - W. D. Morrison, International Journal of Ethics, Vol. 9, No. 1, pp. 109-111

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781542482301
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 01/12/2017
Pages: 346
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.77(d)

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