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ends and means and the individual

a briefing document

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ends and means and the individual is part of a group of briefing documents on the socially destructive amorality common in cult socialism and some other social domains
ends and means and the individual related item: the just war Introduction - socialism & sociology

“Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour”
[Exodus, 20 : 16]

Marker at abelard.org

“The end justifies the means”

Machiavelli Socialism and Islam Brandeis Bernanos
Koestler Trotsky Lenin Rand
Dewey Aquinas    
End notes      


I am led in my continuing analysis of generalised socialist cult members to examine the belief in “the end justifing the means” by which socialists at large often tend to believe it to be perfectly legitimate to lie and otherwise ethically misbehave in pursuit of their cult objectives. I was also interested to try and find the origin of the phrase.

Most cult members seem to have a ‘moral blindspot’ to understanding why normal people raised in a christianist society revile socialist cult members so readily.

At the heart of socialism is the belief that the collective takes precedence over the individual, whereas christianist theology/philosophy puts ultimate value and responsibility in the individual. This is at the core of the implacable war against socialism emanating from Rome. As you will notice, the quotes from a christianist or jewish background regard lying as a sin, whereas return to the indexsocialist writers regard lying as justified in pursuit of their ant-hill cult.


To Machiavelli (1469-1527) is often attributed the statement, “the good end justifies the means”. I am not aware of him using that phrase, even in Italian, but the idea is the thing. It is for this reason that Machiavelli is on the catholic Index (list of banned books). However, The Prince remains a book that any educated person should read if they intend to progress in understanding society.

Here is an actual quote from Machiavelli:

“Therefore it is unnecessary for a prince to have all the good qualities I have enumerated, but it is very necessary to appear to have them. And I shall dare to say this also, that to have them and always to observe them is injurious, and that to appear to have them is useful; to appear merciful, faithful, humane, religious, upright, and to be so, but with a mind so framed that should you require not to be so, you may be able and know how to change to the opposite.

“And you have to understand this, that a prince, especially a new one, cannot observe all those things for which men are esteemed, being often forced, in order to maintain the state, to act contrary to fidelity, friendship, humanity, and religion. Therefore it is necessary for him to have a mind ready to turn itself accordingly as the winds and variations of fortune force it, yet, as I have said above, not to diverge from the good if he can avoid doing so, but, if compelled, then to know how to set about it.” [The Prince, chapter 18]

And another:

“[...] a prince wishing to keep his state is very often forced to do evil [...]” [The Prince, chapter 19]

Socialism and Islam

As touched on above, a major problem christianist societies have with Socialism and Islam is a conflict over the notion of the individual; another is the socialist/Islamic belief that “the end justifies the means”. No libertarian can accept such a dogma that puts the individual as a tool of the collective.

from Islamic authoritarianism:

lying [from islamreview.com] [1]

    “ Most Muslims are familiar with the principles of Islam that will justify lying in situations where they sense the need to do so. Among these are:

    • War is deception; for instance, jihad.
      In other words, the dogmas
      1. demand the spread of Islam,
      2. sanction lying for that purpose, takeyya.
    • The necessities justify the forbidden.
    • If faced by two evils, choose the lesser of the two.

      “These principles are derived from passages found in the Quran and the Hadith.”

      “In conclusion, it is imperative to understand, that Muslim leaders can use this loop-hole in their religion, to absolve them from any permanent commitment. It is also important to know that what Muslim activists say to spread Islam may not always be the whole truth. When dealing with Muslims, what they say is not the issue. The real issue is, what they actually mean in their hearts.”

      “[...] the most tolerant Muslims are not the ones who are educated, but the uneducated people in the countryside, the rural poor, who don’t actually know precisely what is in the Koran, since they cannot read the difficult Arabic. Islamic fundamentalism is very much an urban phenomenon of people who are educated, or able to read the Koran and take it very literally.”

Is Iran hiding a nuclear weapon program?
How is one to negotiate and form agreements with people who justify lying?

The site quoted immediately before is Christianist. However, the claims are not dissimilar from items on Islam-oriented sites. For instance, on lying [from al-islam.org, three pages, heavily referenced]. [1]

click to return to tyhe indexFor further background on Socialist manipulation , see emotion versus reason.


“To declare that in the administration of criminal law the end justifies the means - to declare that the Government may commit crimes in order to secure conviction of a private criminal - would bring terrible retribution.”
Louis D. Brandeis (1856-1941)

“[A member of the American Supreme Court Justice, Brandeis was] a strong Liberal voice on the court for the remainder of his tenure, playing a major role in the creation of Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, and consistently supporting the causes of free speech, the right to privacy, and the reform of labor laws.”

More comments from Brandeis:

“We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both.”

marker at abelard.org

“No danger flowing from speech can be deemed clear and present unless the incidence of the evil apprehended is so imminent that it may befall before there is an opportunity for full discussion. Only an emergency can justify repression.”

marker at abelard.org

“In the frank expression of conflicting opinions lies the greatest promise of wisdom in governmental action.”

Brandeis was from a secular Jewish background, and later took an interest in zionism.


Georges Bernanos (1888-1948) was a French catholic and a catholic writer:

“The first sign of corruption in a society that is still alive is that the end justifies the means.”

Also from Bernanos:

“A thought which does not result in an action is nothing much, and an action which does not proceed from a thought is nothing at all.”


“Politics can be relatively fair in the breathing spaces of history; at
its critical turning points there is no other rule possible than the old
one, that the end justifies the means.”
Arthur Koestler (1905-1983)

Arthur Koestler was a Hungarian novelist, journalist, and critic. In Berlin between 1931-1938, he was a member of the Communist Party. He was also a propagator of ‘parapsychology’! Koestler also has other ‘strangenesses’ and adventures with his life.


“The end may justify the means as long as there is something that justifies the end.”
Leon Trotsky (1879-1940)

Leon Trotsky was a Russian Communist theorist and agitator, and a leader in Russia's October Revolution in 1917.


“To speak the truth is a petit-bourgeois habit, a luxury of worry-free and aimless people. To lie, on the contrary, is often justified by the lie’s aim.”
People and Portraits: A Tragic Cycle, 1966, by Georges (Yuri) Annenkov [1889-1974]


“The end does not justify the means. No one's rights can be secured by the violation of the rights of others.”
Ayn Rand (1905-82 )

Ayn Rand was a virulent anti-communist.return to the index

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John Dewey (1859-1952). This site contains much discussion and criticism of Dewey. He was a communist.

“Dewey's life-theme was to destroy in men's minds the idea of the individual. Working towards that goal, he promoted the kind of education that would create docile men easily ruled, and he promoted the kind of government that would do the ruling - a statist government where any "recalcitrant minority" would be dealt with by violence. He called the destruction of the individual "new individualism," his homogenizing educational theory "progressive education," and his ideal socialist/fascist government variously "democracy," "socialism," and "democratic socialism.”

“The following is from Dewey's essay "Means and Ends" which he submitted to the communist journal The New International (subtitled: "A Monthly Organ of Revolutionary Marxism") and which was published in vol. 4, Aug. 1938 page 232 (Later Works, vol. 13 page 349). Dewey discusses an earlier essay in the same journal by Trotsky.

“Since Mr. Trotsky also indicates that the only alternative position to the idea that the end justifies the means is some form of absolutistic ethics based on ... some brand of eternal truths, I wish to say that I write from a standpoint that rejects all such doctrines as definitely as does Mr. Trotsky himself, and that I hold that the end in the sense of consequences provides the only basis for moral ideas and action, and therefore provides the only justification that can be found for means employed. (Page 350.)
[This justifies those means]

" which really leads to the liberation of mankind" (Dewey quoting Trotsky, page 351).”

“Don't be fooled by the word "liberation" - the meaning here is establishing a socialist government....”


Thomas Aquinas (1225 – 1274). Italian priest, follower of Aristotle's ideas and often regarded as the Catholic Church's greatest theologian and philosopher.

"[...] and insofar as it [human law] deviates from right reason it is called unjust law; in such cases it is no law at all but rather a species of violence.
Summa theologiae, Ia-Ilae, q. xciii, art. 3, ad 2m.

End notes

  1. The origin of the phrase “The end justifies the means” is unknown. It certainly appears as far back as the Latin writer, Ovid [43 BC – AD 17/18]: “Exitus acta probat” [from Heroides (The Heroines), II, 85; probably written between 25 and 16 BC].

    Of course, being written in a now dead language, there are many translations. Here are the most prevalent:
  • The result validates the deeds. [the most frequent translation found]
  • The result justifies the deed
  • The ends justify the means.
  1. Machiavelli, Niccolo
    The Prince

    (pbk,1984, Bantam Classic and Loveswept, 0553212788) $3.16 [amazon.com] {advert}
    (pbk, 1995, Everyman Paperbacks, 0460876295) £2.39 [amazon.co.uk] {advert}
    For a more realistic understanding of human society. A must read for any aware individual.

  2. Machiavelli does say “one judges by the result”. Note, he does not say the end justifies the means, he says others will judge actions by results, when here he is referring to the mass.

    “For this reason a prince ought to take care that he never lets anything slip from his lips that is not replete with the above-named five qualities, that he may appear to him who sees and hears him altogether merciful, faithful, humane, upright, and religious. There is nothing more necessary to appear to have than this last quality, inasmuch as men judge generally more by the eye than by the hand, because it belongs to everybody to see you, to few to come in touch with you. Every one sees what you appear to be, few really know what you are, and those few dare not oppose themselves to the opinion of the many, who have the majesty of the state to defend them; and in the actions of all men, and especially of princes, which it is not prudent to challenge, one judges by the result.” [The Prince, chapter XVIII]
    return to the index
For further reading: mark related item: the just war

mark authoritarianism and liberty mark socialist religions
mark denialism mark psycho-babble
mark categories, analogy and reification mark drugs
mark the nature of cult recruitment - jihadi bombers

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