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If Politicians Were Philosophers (By Mr. Igal Shenderey)

(Disclaimer: The guest posts do not necessarily align with Philosocom's manager, Mr. Tomasio Rubinshtein's beliefs, thoughts, or feelings. The point of guest posts is to allow a wide range of narratives from a wide range of people. To apply for a guest post of your own, please send your request to

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The Fusion of Philosophy and Politics

In the realm of governance, the fusion of philosophical thought with political action has long been a source of contemplation. If politicians were true philosophers, their responses to upcoming challenges would bear the hallmark of wisdom, ethical consideration, and long-term vision. This article explores how the convergence of philosophical ideals and political pragmatism could revolutionize responses to contemporary challenges and presents a compelling argument for why this harmonious synergy is imperative.

The Need for Philosopher-Politicians

The current political landscape is characterized by multifaceted challenges such as climate change, technological disruption, global inequality, and public health crises. Conventional political responses often prioritize short-term gains and partisan interests, resulting in a failure to adequately address the root causes and potential solutions of these issues. True philosopher-politicians, however, would approach these challenges differently.

A Holistic and Ethical Approach

A true philosopher-politician would approach challenges with a holistic and ethical perspective, grounded in profound philosophical principles. For instance, the philosophy of utilitarianism could guide decisions by seeking the greatest good for the greatest number, fostering policies that prioritize the well-being of all citizens. Meanwhile, deontological ethics could ensure that individual rights and justice are upheld in every policy endeavor. By combining such ethical frameworks, politician-philosophers would transcend political expediency, focusing on solutions that genuinely serve the common good.

A Long-Term Vision

Unlike short-sighted political maneuvering, philosopher-politicians would adopt a long-term vision, considering the consequences of their actions for future generations. This intergenerational perspective, rooted in virtue ethics, would entail responsible stewardship of resources and the environment. For instance, in tackling climate change, instead of pursuing immediate economic gains, a philosopher-politician would take measures to ensure a sustainable planet for posterity. This approach aligns with the Aristotelian concept of eudaimonia, emphasizing the flourishing of all citizens over time.

Balancing Idealism and Pragmatism

Balancing philosophical ideals with political pragmatism is a nuanced task, but philosopher-politicians would seek a harmonious blend. Pragmatism would guide the implementation of ideals, recognizing that real-world complexities often demand compromise. However, the core principles derived from philosophical reflection would remain untainted. This integration resonates with John Rawls' theory of justice, where principles are established through rational discourse, even as their application may require adjustments to fit specific contexts.

Rising Above Partisanship

One of the most significant impediments to effective governance is partisan politics. True philosopher-politicians would rise above narrow partisanship, focusing on dialogue and collaboration to arrive at comprehensive and reasonable solutions. Drawing from the Socratic Method, they would engage in constructive debates that prioritize truth-seeking over winning arguments. This approach could lead to the emergence of policies that genuinely reflect collective interests, rather than catering solely to a particular constituency.

Adopting a Global Perspective

In an interconnected world, philosopher-politicians would adopt a global perspective, transcending national interests. Cosmopolitanism, as advocated by Immanuel Kant, would guide their actions, promoting international cooperation and shared responsibility. Issues like global inequality and pandemics would be addressed with empathy and collaboration, recognizing the interconnectedness of human fates across borders.

Cultivating Civic Virtue

A vital aspect of philosopher-politicians' approach would be the cultivation of civic virtue through education. Drawing from the philosophies of Plato and Confucius, they would recognize the importance of an informed and morally conscious citizenry. By promoting critical thinking, ethical values, and civic engagement, philosopher-politicians would lay the foundation for a society that actively participates in shaping its destiny.

Shifting Societal Values

Consumerism and the pursuit of instant gratification often drive policy decisions that prioritize short-term gains over long-term stability. Philosopher-politicians, however, would promote a shift in societal values, emphasizing the pursuit of meaningful lives over material accumulation. Drawing from existentialist thinkers like Jean-Paul Sartre, they would encourage citizens to take responsibility for their choices, fostering a sense of purpose beyond immediate pleasures.


The convergence of philosophy and politics is a transformative concept that holds immense potential for addressing contemporary challenges. True philosopher-politicians would infuse ethical considerations, long-term vision, and global perspectives into their governance approach. Their ability to transcend partisanship, embrace pragmatism with idealism, and foster civic virtue could usher in a new era of enlightened governance. While challenges abound, the statesman-philosopher's commitment to the common good and a flourishing society would stand as a beacon of hope, guiding humanity toward a more just and sustainable future.

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Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosocom's Founder & Writer

I am a philosopher from Israel, author of several books in 2 languages, and Quora's Top Writer of the year 2018. I'm also a semi-hermit who has decided to dedicate his life to writing and sharing my articles across the globe. Several podcasts on me, as well as a radio interview, have been made since my career as a writer. More information about me can be found here.

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