Category Archives: government

Melanchthon on Slavery and Natural Law

“Also in civil law, as they call it, there are many things that reflect human affections instead of natural laws.  For what it more foreign to the law of nature than slavery?….a good man will fashion civil constitutions according to … Continue reading

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Playing the Tyrant

“The nobles had played the tyrant often enough in the past; but now the proletariat was on top and showed itself as arrogant as they had been.” Sallust, Chap. 5 in The Jugurthine War, trans. S. A. Handford (London: Penguin, 1963), … Continue reading

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Exchanging Tyrants

“This is clear at once to the dullest-witted man in Rome that, so far from having escaped from tyranny, they had only exchanged one tyrant for another.  As for the elder Marius, he had always had a savage character, and … Continue reading

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The Show Must Go On

“Finally, make sure that your entire campaign is full of pomp, glamorous, eye-catching, and popular, that it has the maximum visibility and prestige.  Also, be sure if at all possible that your competitors acquire a bad reputation for vice, or … Continue reading

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Ruling the World Through Reading Books

“The world is indeed a sick thing; it is the kind of fur on which neither hide no hair is any good.  The healthy heroes are rare, and God provides them at a dear price.  Still the world must be … Continue reading

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Sallust on the Danger of Using Force

“Of these various paths to fame, it seems to me that the holding of civil and military posts, and indeed all political activities, are in these days the least desirable.  For the deserving do not obtain the honours of office; … Continue reading

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Dr Luther on the Soldier’s Obedience and Just War

“A second question: ‘Suppose my lord were wrong in going to war.’  I reply: If you know for sure that he is wrong, then you should fear God rather than men, Acts 4 [5:29], and you should neither fight nor … Continue reading

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Cicero on Just War

“Something else that must very much be preserved in public affairs is the justice of warfare.  There are two types of conflict: the one proceeds by debate, the other by force. Since the former is the proper concern of a … Continue reading

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Swine for the Slaughter

“God gives the ungodly mighty kingdoms, riches, lands and houses, making them to enjoy greatness and abundance.  But when swine are fed and fat, the question of bacon and sausage introduces a struggle.  A slaughterer–a sausage-maker–appears, perchance, to slaughter the … Continue reading

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Alexis de Tocqueville on Government and War

“I think that extreme centralization of government ultimately enervates society and thus, after a length of time, weakens the government itself; but I do not deny that a centralized social power may be able to execute great undertakings with facility … Continue reading

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