Max Weber on Politics as a Vocation


“The unique quality of “the State” is its legitimized use or threat of physical force as a means to the ends of those in political power, Weber reminded us. At the same time those who liveforpolitics also liveoffpolitics. They like power and using government to furthercauses,” and they attract a retinue of interest group followers and bureaucratic office holders seeing the State as the financial and related means to all their personal ends.

Politics, in other words, is ultimately all about privilege, favors, and plunder, and this should be kept in mind as those running for high political office promise all the things they will do “for us.” It really means a multitude of things “to use” for their own purposes.”