Essay about Political Writings And Aristotle 's Politics

1498 Words Nov 18th, 2016 6 Pages
Thomas Jefferson proclaimed that the “freedom and happiness of man…are the sole objects of all legitimate government” (Jefferson). Many different kinds of governments have existed throughout history. These various governments were formed for different purposes, and they achieved these purposes through different means. But what should the purpose of government be and how do we achieve it? These questions can be answered with the help of Machiavelli’s Selected Political Writings and Aristotle’s Politics. There seem to be many answers to the aforementioned questions; however, the most important object of government is to protect the freedom and happiness of man, which is most effectively done through democracy.
The purpose of government has been questioned throughout its history. But the answer is simple. The goal of good government should be to make its people happy and ensure their freedom. In Politics, Aristotle argues that the “city exists not only for the sake of living but rather primarily for the sake of living well” (Aristotle 79). Freedom and happiness are keys to living well. This means that people should have the freedom to act how they will, as long as that is within the scope of law. When people are free to act as they will, they are better able to reach happiness. People without these fundamental ideas cannot “live happily and finely” (Aristotle 77). Governments must ensure their subjects these ideas to attain the status of good government. Freedom and happiness…

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