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One fine day in the early 1500s, a retired public servant, lately employed by the Florentine Republic, and out of power because of the return of the Medicis, went up into his chamber and sat down and wrote The Prince, thereby inventing political science. He had been the equivalent of Secretary to Cabinet and Clerk of the Privy Council in the Florentine Republic. He personally had known the Holy Roman Emperor, the King or France, and the Pope in the course of his diplomatic travels. A man of many parts.

Here is a serious and deeply well-educated lecture by a British savant, Quentin Skinner, on the subject of Machiavelli. You will absorb it to your benefit. Politics is about outcomes.



Dominic Cummings

Dominic Cummings is the brightest man in the British government. He is a special advisor to Boris Johnson. Every point Cummings makes applies with equal force to the Canadian government: the perverse incentives, the personality types selected, the process obsession, the lack of institutional memory, the inability of the Minister to control any aspect of what he must answer to parliament for, the innumeracy of the practitioners, the failure to concern oneself with actual outcomes: all this applies to Canada as well as to the UK.