Macchiavelli on Facebook

In appreciation of social media and marble memories, on the day after the debate of five presidential candidates, let us take a moment to remember the meaning of the phrase “Machiavellian” and the words of “The Prince”

Steve and Mac-elli
MSNBC’s commentator in Sept on Facebook

A Wednesday in October

Last night, the first Democrat presidential debate saw the former U.S. Secretary of State acquit herself well. The candidates-in-waiting did not threaten her with any accusations from the right wing echo chamber. The laugh lines included e-mails and a long bathroom break joke. Unlike the Republican debate, there was a mention of the costs of going to war, the damage done, and the risks going forward of repeating failed policies. There was discussion and debate of science, the science being documented and the global/national security threats involving environmental issues and climate change.

The debate brought up and focused on a near-and-present danger to democracy of pay-to-play politics and oligarchy in practice. Unlike the Republican debate, terms like “Super PACs” and “Citizens United” were spoken out loud.

Coincidentally, a few days earlier in the debate site of Las Vegas, the gambling magnate Sheldon Adelson met with his new potentially favored politico, Marco Rubio. A few hundred million from Sheldon will be crucial for the Florida senator who denies climate change while south Florida will be hit first and hard. Marco is, according to Donald Trump posts, ready to be bought by Sheldon and set to tailor the U.S. foreign policy views to fit those of the hawkish right-wing Adelson, who both controls the largest newspaper in Israel and has made his strong views known that expanded military action in the Mid East, including preemptive strikes on Iran are what an Adelson (that is, a potential Adelson-Rubio) foreign policy would auger.

In the days of the Romans, augering was a popular past time. One has to wonder, as the Democrats debate and plan for the 2016 election, what would happen to security issues across the board, and across the globe, if a Republican is elected with a heavily invested backer like Adelson.

Is it time to glean from augering — or time to just predict by listening to promises being put on the record?

There are those who are promising a further inflamed Mid East… a new Cold War… escalated tensions and conflict… entangled relations with China… increased national debt to pay for all the hot spots, flare ups, ratcheting up… international push back and reaction… lost business, opportunity costs…. deaths, trauma, vendetta, a spiral of war all occurring amid a next generation of nuclear weapons soon to be deployed.

It seems at this point as we glean from the Ds and the Rs debates, and duly consider the policies the candidates are promising, that there is a wide divide between the Ds and Rs.

Some would argue otherwise, that there is little difference between the two U.S. political parties.

This is not an argument we would make. Nor one even a modern-day Macchiavelli would make.

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