Cool Stuff Machiavelli Said:
For he who innovates will have for his enemies all those who are well off under the existing order of things, and only lukewarm supporters in those who might be better off under the new.
Hence it comes that all armed Prophets have been victorious, and all unarmed Prophets have been destroyed.
It should be borne in mind that the temper of the multitude is fickle, and that while it is easy to persuade them of a thing, it is hard to fix them in that persuasion.
He deceives himself who believes that with the great, recent benefits cause old wrongs to be forgotten.
Still, to slaughter fellow-citizens, to betray friends, to be devoid of honour, pity, and religion, cannot be counted as merits, for these are means which may lead to power, but which confer no glory.
Those cruelties we may say are well employed, if it be permitted to speak well of things evil, which are done once for all under the necessity of self-preservation, and are not afterwards persisted in, but so far as possible modified to the advantage of the governed. Ill-employed cruelties, on the other hand, are those which from small beginnings increase rather than diminish with time.
...The aim of the people being more honourable than that of the nobles, the latter seeking to oppress, the former not to be oppressed.