Top News, Articles, and Interviews in Philosophy

Is Trump a Tyrant? Part II: Locke’s Tyrant

Philosophy News image
Is Trump a Tyrant? Part II: Locke’s Tyrant As I have stated strongly before, and just to reiterate, if Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey (I’ve done before!). –Trump In the previous essay I laid out the basics of the argument by definition. In this essay, I make good on my promise to present John Locke’s account of tyranny. Since Locke’s political philosophy is part of the foundation of American political philosophy, it makes considerable sense to use his account. Locke takes the view that people form government via a social contract and do so for the good of the people. That government exists for the people is a critical part of Locke’s theory and is essential to his account of tyranny. Those who believe that government exists to serve other purposes are likely to take issue with Locke. Now, to his account. Locke takes tyranny to be the “exercise of power beyond right.” For him, the right use of power is for the good of the citizens and a leader’s use of power for “his own private separate advantage” is exercising that power “beyond right.” Locke also presents some other key point about tyranny, noting that it occurs when “the governor, however entitled:” Makes his will and not the law the ruleDoes not direct his commands and actions to the preservation of the properties of his people.Directs them to the satisfaction of his own ambition, revenge, covetousness, or any other irregular passion. When an authority becomes a tyrant, they cease to be an authority and “may be opposed, like any using force to invade the right of another.” Locke condemns tyranny at all levels but is especially critical of tyranny at the highest level. Tyranny “is much worse in one who has more trust put in him and has already a much greater share, and is supposed from his education, employment, and counselors, to know more of right and wrong.”. . .

Continue reading . . .

News source: A Philosopher's Blog

blog comments powered by Disqus