"Because just as good morals, if they are to be maintained, have need of the laws, so the laws, if they are to be observed, have need of good morals."
Niccolo Machiavelli
(1469-1527) Italian Statesman and Political Philosopher
Bookmark and Share  
Reader comments about this quote:
Most laws in our country have no moral or principled foundation. They are simply the whim of some legislator trying to make some group of people feel better.
 -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
    Governmentally compelled compliance(s) (slavery) and victimless crimes are rule ('law') enforced immorality.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    There are too many ways to interpret this to be a good quote... some would make it a good quote with good insight, and others would show it to be just babel... and when there is not clarity, it is not a good quote.
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US     
     -- E Archer, NYC      
    If someone has good morals, there is no need for laws to enforce them. The law is there to deal with the immoral who would impose their immorality on the rest of us. Conversely, if a law is not based on the morality of society, we have no obligation to observe it. They are simply means of controlling otherwise free men and are, therefore, immoral laws.
     -- Ken, Allyn, WA     
    By way of explanation: ancient Hebrew morals were based on law (law was the foundation of societal jurisprudence); ancient Greek laws were based on morals (the weakness there, every individual has different morals). The U.S. founders (being well educated in Locke, Blackstone, and the earliest Greek philosophers at natural law) took in to account the plethora of information on Greek natural law (as well as the historical debates thereon, applications thereof, the logic and reasoning on the subject, etc.) and inverted the system to mirror the ancient Hebrew understandings. By way of example: murder is anti-law as well as immoral. Morality can not be lawfully legislated 'SO', legislation does not define the morality of murder, legislation defines the lawfulness / illegality of murder (morality is a defining result of the lawful / illegal). Man's tools (codes, ordinances, regulations, rules, statutes, etc.) are, at natural law, merely definitions to the law endowed by the Creator of the universe - for man's temporal administrations (1st degree, 2nd degree, man slaughter, etc.) The unconstitutional legal positivism that infests this once upon a time, nation of law, is immoral, never considering the 'law' of a thing but only the statist theocracy's control by canon.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    Just laws are observed . This is evident in all of nature.
     -- Ron w13, Or     
    The ancient Hebrew text, part of the rock we stand on. Moral code at natural law. 12 is the number of Gods government. As also the order of the heavens. 360* in the circle. 12 is a perfect number as also 3,4 and 10. Our founding fathers new well this order of things. The socialist and all else in this nation contrary to sound doctrine is sickening . Obviously the current administration does not want anybody to know the whole truth. Otherwise people would know the truth concerning natural law and the God of nature and his finger prints. Well said Mike.
     -- Ron w13, Or     
    Joe, Rochester, I agree. And also laws are passed to buy votes and please lobbyists.
     -- jim k, austin tx     
    Rate this quote!
    How many stars?

    What do YOU think?
    Your name:
    Your town:

    More Quotations
    Get a Quote-A-Day! Free!
    Liberty Quotes sent to your mail box.
    RSS Subscribe
    Quotes & Quotations - Send This Quote to a Friend

    © 1998-2023 Liberty-Tree.ca