good & superior goods
Fri, 21 Dec 2001 10:20:16 -0800
According to Berlin, Machiavelli did not
say "be evil"; he said "one can choose to
either be good, or be power-seeking, but
not both at the same time". [0,1]
A potential corollary is then that those
who already have power can afford to be
good. In theory , this should not be
uncommon: people who have enough milk,
unless they are Howard Hughes, buy tea
instead of more milk; in practice it is
only all too common that those with some
power feel the need to acquire more.
Why is this the case?
 Does this dichotomy echo distinctions
between the brahmin and ksatriya, or the
oratores and the bellatores?
 To put it in Fido terms: a good person
will neither be excessively annoying, nor
be excessively annoyed. A power-seeking
person, however, will be both excessively
annoying and annoyed, each to be used in
turn as it proves advantageous.
For the Bill & Ted parallel, see:
For the interoperability parallel, good
nodes should be strict in what they send
(not annoying) and liberal in what they
accept (not being annoyed). I suppose
power-seeking nodes "embrace and extend"
a protocol, changing what they send and
accept whenever it proves advantageous.
 This theory goes back at least to
Leviticus. How old is that book? Any