Annotations on Locke’s “Two Treaties on Government.”

Two Treaties on Government was written by John Locke. Below are some thoughts paraphrased from his text.

  1. If monarchical power is paternal in nature, why do kings dominate more than their families?
  2. If monarchy is the government that God has chosen for men, why is God not punishing democracies for existing (on the contrary, the richest nations in the world are often democratic)?
  3. Whenever common sense says, literal interpretation is better than metaphorical.
  4. If we want to prove something based on a textual source, we can not deviate from what the text says.
  5. If the power to start and end wars can only reside in the hands of the monarchs, then all the governments of the world are monarchical.
  6. It is possible to command without necessarily being king.
  7. Every inheritance implies rules to determine the heir.
  8. God would have left rules to determine the succession of Adam’s paternal power if that were important.
  9. If this were relevant and only Adam’s “legitimate” successors could govern something, while we do not know who these “legitimate” successors are, then no government is legitimate.
  10. Speculating on the succession of patriarchal power bestowed on Adam is irrelevant to currently stablished governments.
  11. Letting your firstborn succeed your throne may even be tradition, but it is an idiotic tradition if your firstborn child is stupid.
  12. What’s the point of saying that I should obey without telling who to obey?
  13. And if the father had no children, who would succeed him in a political system based on primogeniture?
  14. Political power is an agreement, not a natural right passed from father to son.
  15. It is possible to buy the birthright (Genesis 25:31), so that the firstborn does not inherit what he was supposed to be “destined” to inherit.
  16. If something is granted conditionally, it is not absolute, obviously.
  17. Moreover, if the kingdom belongs to the offspring of Adam, Jesus could not be king, for the Word already existed before Adam.
  18. If power can only be inherited by a descendant of Adam, then power can be inherited by any human.
  19. Who owns power?
  20. If power can be usurped, then patriarchal power is not inviolable, as it can be taken, even if illegitimately.
  21. There are people who are neither masters nor slaves.
  22. Father and mother are the ones who raise the kid, not necessarily the biological parents.
  23. “Injury” is an offense to one’s right.
  24. The right to inheritance comes from the paternal duty to support the children.
  25. The property of the father passes to the son with the death of the father because society thinks that it’s fair , not because “that is how it was and always will be”.
  26. It is not possible to speak about obedience without mentioning to whom it is due.
  27. If it is paternity that gives us absolute right, then the subject should not obey the monarch absolutely unless the monarch is his father.
  28. “New nothingness” is a novelty that does not change anything.
  29. Parents must agree on the child’s upbringing, and according to the fifth commandment, they have equal authority, so the boy can not turn against his father even on his mom’s command.
  30. Both parents deserve respect, not just the mother.
  31. To use biblical verses abstracted from context to facilitate their arbitrary use is to distort the divine word.
  32. It is a grave sin to kill, especially if it’s done as sacrifice to a pagan god and much more serious if the sacrificed object is your offspring (Psalm 106: 38).
  33. Acts committed by passion are extravagant.
  34. The desire to protect the child takes parents to extremes.
  35. God has given us reproductive power because he wants humanity to be perpetuated.
  36. Other cultures report Genesis’ flood.
  37. The father and the mother make the body of the son, but the life comes from God, therefore to kill someone is usurpation of the divine right.
  38. Affirmations without evidence can be denied even if you are wrong in doing so.
  39. Eve’s submission is a curse made against Eve, not an advantage conferred on Adam.
  40. If Adam were really a monarch, why did he have to work the ground for food?
  41. As Eve sinned first, she was submitted to Adam.
  42. When you have excess of wealth, not helping those in need is sin (James 2:16).
  43. God does not give us the right to dominate another to the point of making them starve if we wish, so it is not possible to use the Holy Bible to justify tyranny.
  44. It is easier to grow and multiply without monarchy.
  45. The Earth belongs to all human beings, as are all its resources, so we have an equal right to nature, so that we can not waste their resources (wasting resources means taking away from someone).
  46. Before considering whether the Bible is actually speaking in metaphors, make sure if the literal does or not make sense.
  47. Using the Bible to condemn philosophers is a tricky business: many philosophers know the Bible better than most religious people.
  48. Using the Bible as an argument against ignorant believers allows one to pass anything as truth.
  49. The human monarchy is a style of government unsuitable for the settlement of the entire earth (Genesis 1:28).
  50. No person can arrogate the Earth to themselves on the basis of natural law.
  51. The philosopher’s position that no human being has a natural right to rule another can be defended by David (Psalms 8: 6), which says that creation was put under our feet (of all mankind) .
  52. Adam and Noah had no authority over other human beings.
  53. Beautiful speech is not always correct.
  54. Possibilities are not things in fact.
  55. There is no monarch without people to rule over.
  56. To say that Adam had a right of sovereignty because he was created first is incorrect: the animals came before (Genesis 1: 25-26).
  57. Adam did not submit to Eve, but God subjected Eve to Adam on the occasion of original sin (Genesis 3:16).
  58. Do not shy away from the question you want to address.
  59. Prove as many assumptions as you can.
  60. There is little credit for the text that is based on an assumption.
  61. Abusing your people leads them to rebellion.
  62. When you do not define something clearly, you end up defining the term by its use throughout the speech.
  63. Laws made by the community are more effective than laws imposed by government.
  64. If you accuse someone of not defining the terms of the speech, you better be able to define your terms in your speech.
  65. If we are born under the authority of our parents, when we become free?
  66. One way of establishing a discourse is by attacking and destroying the current discourse.
  67. Destroying a speech can be done once and for all if its assumptions are destroyed.
  68. Freedom is not always absence of government.
  69. No one can rule anything on the bases of “inheriting Adam’s right to rule”.
  70. The love between people is an incentive to practice politics: if I love the other and this other has a problem that I can solve, why would not I solve his problem?
  71. There are communities still in a state of nature.
  72. Different people have different abilities, so we need each other to survive.
  73. For the philosopher, it is necessary to punish crimes, because we have the duty to watch over as many people as possible and a criminal can do damage to several people.
  74. Although the subjects are submissive to the government, the governments are not submitted to each other.
  75. Polemizing with Pascal , the philosopher points out that there are tribal societies that did not develop any religion.
  76. We only leave the natural state when we join a society.
  77. Wanting absolute power over another person implies declaring war against that person.
  78. Self-defense is a fair remedy from a legal point of view, because, on the verge of death, as life can not be restored by men, the person who was attacked has no time to appeal to the law.
  79. The essence of natural state is the absence of a judge.
  80. Natural freedom consists in not being subject to anyone.
  81. Civil liberty is to submit to state laws because you consented to it, because you saw benefit in it.
  82. Life is not ours, so we can not grant it to another person, through slavery.
  83. It is normal to fall into mistakes that you yourself condemn.
  84. My work force and my body are properly private.
  85. What gives rise to the right to property: the work, the agreement or both?
  86. If we needed permission to catch, for example, food from the ground, we will die in natural state.
  87. The water that flows in the river belongs to everyone, but the water I put in my jar is mine.
  88. Then private property begins when someone appropriates something that once belonged to everyone.
  89. One should not consume more than necessary.
  90. Failure to observe this principle leads to disputes over terrain.
  91. Land tenure is obtainable by contract.
  92. The rarity of something increases its value.
  93. In some parts of the world, the right that you have on your lands expires if you do not use them constructively.
  94. In the past, a person was entitled to what he could use, but now he is entitled to what he can afford, even if he never uses it.
  95. The work spent into manufacture increases the product’s price.
  96. Of all the things we use, only a small part comes from nature without going through human labor (the air we breathe, for example, but even the fruits we buy are harvested, cared for, transported to us, and then sold).
  97. Money has more effect as more people recognize its value.
  98. What made gold and silver measures of value among nations (as a sort of universal currency) were three things: durability, rarity, and difficulty to falsify.
  99. Giving to others what you do not use is better than accumulating unused things.
  100. Better that something be worn out by abuse than by disuse.
  101. The barter of things for gold ended up making gold a convenient currency, thanks to its durability.
  102. The invention of money stimulated the human being to want more than necessary.
  103. That’s because money allows you to buy the desirable possessions of others.
  104. In a community without money and without commerce, each one is left only with what’s enough for them, without generating surplus production.
  105. The existence of money allows you to sell what is not in use, that is, the surplus, in order to get money to buy something else that you want.
  106. The pursuit of money and power, after all, is a quest for security.
  107. Parents’ dominion over their children is temporary.
  108. If people could be happier without law, it would disappear.
  109. The purpose of the law is to give everyone a decent amount of freedom.
  110. The adult is one who has already acquired reason and judgment enough to govern his own life, ie, from this point of view, it is possible to be an adult before the age of eighteen.
  111. If the parents die leaving the child totally alone, this child should be cared by the state, until the tyke finds a new family or until he grows up.
  112. We are freer when we are subject to just laws.
  113. Anyone who does not reach the right level of reason will never be a free adult.
  114. The child should be treated with love, but not without justice.
  115. If the father respects the son, the son will respect the father.
  116. The mother who does not provide assistance to the child (food, education and safety) is a criminal.
  117. Parents should reward their child’s good behavior and punish their bad behavior.
  118. Reward and punishment are excessive when they result in harm to the child’s education, as both too much reward and too much punishment can spoil a child.
  119. If the father controls his son as a monarch controls his people, he jeopardizes his future independence, because the son will remain dependant on parents for a longer time.
  120. The father can give more inheritance to the favorite son.
  121. Parents are the best judges for sibling quarrels.
  122. The first society was between man and woman, then between parents and children, only then between boss and employee.
  123. If the parents divorce, the mother does not necessarily keep the children (it would be interesting if custody of children was decided in a registry office before the marriage, so that they would decide custody matters before marrying, in order to know which child stays with who in case of divorce).
  124. The slave is only treated as a second-class individual because he is not entitled to possessions.
  125. My property: my life, my freedom, my possessions.
  126. Assassins are enemies of the whole of humanity.
  127. In absolute monarchies, the monarch is often unjust: he can do everything with impunity.
  128. The rulers must be under the laws that they write and pass.
  129. Anyone who values ​​his or her life, liberty or property should participate in politics.
  130. Any group of people can set up small governments.
  131. The existence of a government does not affect the freedom of those outside it.
  132. Democracy: the majority decide for everyone.
  133. In a government in which the minority rules, dissensions occur .
  134. A democracy can agree to take decisions only when a certain number of votes beyond the majority is achieved, but should not accept suggestions from a minority of voters.
  135. If there is no record of something, it does not necessarily mean it did not happen.
  136. The development of intellectual abilities can only arise in societies that have already solved survival issues.
  137. The population chooses the ruler.
  138. All monarchies were electives at first.
  139. Government should be exercised by persuasion rather than by violence, for the purpose of government is the well-being of subjects.
  140. In ancient Israel, before the monarchy, there was no great difference between being a judge (governing) and being a war chief.
  141. The constitution of military chief often marks transition between natural state and monarchy.
  142. Governments that are not initiated by the consensus of the people are often initiated by violence.
  143. If we are all born under one government and therefore we are not free to start another, how can the rebellion be explained?
  144. You submit if you need to submit.
  145. Whoever travels is not necessarily a subject of the country where he travels to.
  146. The laws for visitors are reduced, but also are their rights.
  147. The function of the state is to secure property and the common good.
  148. When I become subject to a state, I abdicate my right to punish others.
  149. When I become subject of a state, I abdicate my right to do what I think necessary for my own good or that of others.
  150. What makes a law is the consensus of society, not the arbitrariness of the ruler, at least in a democratic regime.
  151. The State can not expropriate anything of the subjects, unless they consent, since the work of the State is also to guarantee the right of private property.
  152. If the state had the right to take away property when it wished, then, in practice, everything is owned by state and no one has private property.
  153. Any cause involving the expropriation of property is iffy.
  154. The payment of taxes is necessary, but there must be consensus on how much and which taxes to pay, which should be done in a democratic way.
  155. Laws should apply to rich, poor, famous, and anonymous.
  156. Laws should be for the public good.
  157. Laws should not sanction the collection of absurd taxes.
  158. The population must shape the legislature.
  159. If the State does not honor its duties towards the population, neither the population should honor its duties towards the State.
  160. The good of the people is the supreme state law.
  161. If declaring someone innocent won’t harm anyone, declare them innocent.
  162. If the monarch’s interest is not the public good, he is a tyrant.
  163. In this case, the ruler will want to treat his subjects as servants.
  164. If the ruler wants what is best for his people, the population will not about care whatever crime he comitted.
  165. If the judiciary is the defendant, who will judge the cause?
  166. If the monarch is a defendant, who will judge the cause?
  167. The father does not own the son.
  168. Political power, that is, collective power, for the good of all, is sanctioned by a pact between the members of a society.
  169. The father should teach the son how to use his property.
  170. The conquest of territory is not the beginning of government, but the end of an existing government.
  171. If a crime is committed by many it is still a crime.
  172. If the father can not get justice, the son may be able to get it, or maybe the daughter, or maybe the mother, so that the same appeal can be made by everyone in the family, one at a time, until it works out.
  173. In a war, the credit for victory is not just for the general.
  174. Children should not be blamed for their parents’ crimes.
  175. If I go to war against someone and win, I only have the right to what the other has lost.
  176. If you have less duties, you have less rights.
  177. God, being extremely righteous, will want to fulfill the promises he makes.
  178. The conquest is the taking of government by a foreigner, while the usurpation is the taking of government by a citizen.
  179. If there is no criterion of monarch’s choice, anyone can be.
  180. Tyrant is a corrupt politician.
  181. The king is not above the agreements he makes with his subjects.
  182. Corruption of government occurs not only in the monarchy, but also in the aristocracies, democracies and relations between citizens .
  183. If I receive inheritance from my father and my brother receives another part of the inheritance, I can not take my brother’s share.
  184. Abuse of power by police is as bad as abuse of power by politicians, and it’s not something less horrid just because the power of police has smaller reach.
  185. Unless it is for the good of all, the police should not have the right to invade my house.
  186. If someone tries to assassinate me, I do not have time to call the authorities, so resisting is self-defense, thus legit.
  187. The politician who attracts the suspicion of the people is already dead.
  188. There is a difference between the dissolution of government (deposing rulers) and dissolution of society (returning to the natural state).
  189. It is possible for society to dissolve without the rulers realizing it.
  190. War and unacceptable laws cause dissolution of society.
  191. If a ruler hands over the power to a foreigner, he ends the government.
  192. The population has the right to avoid tyranny and to get rid of it.
  193. Using the police, public money, or state offices to corrupt politics is something worth rebellion.
  194. Some politicians are stupid enough to let their malicious intentions show up.
  195. Voting without taking the debate seriously enough is a sign of malicious intent.
  196. The population should call a new legislature whenever they feel like it.
  197. If the people have a good reason to hate the government to which they are subjected, they may, if they wish, rebel.
  198. If the legislature changes to the taste of the people, the people have no reason to rebel: whatever goes bad is only their fault.
  199. To use force without authority is declaring war.
  200. Anyone who applies a coup against the government is guilty of all the evil that follows the coup, and those who backed the coup are guilty as well.
  201. There is difference between rebellion (attack) and resistance (defense).
  202. Resistance can not last forever; rebellion is necessary.
  203. In a war between people and ruler, one is not superior to the other.
  204. If the king wants to destroy the people, he ceases to be king.
  205. If the king happens to be submissive to another person, he ceases to be king.
  206. People should judge the ruler’s crimes.
  207. The should interpret the laws.

Publicado por Yure

Quando eu me formei, minha turma teve que fazer um juramento coletivo. Como minha religião não me permite jurar nem prometer, eu só mexi os lábios, mas resolvi viver com os objetivos do juramento em mente de qualquer forma.

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