Through the years many political philosophers have conjured a variety of political views, but of these free thinkers, few have had the profound effect of three pioneers: Plato, John Locke, and Karl Marx. Each believed in a political system that was just, feeling that everyone should not have to conform to a system of unruly decisions and feelings, but each had a perspective on how to achieve their goals.
What should the qualities of a king involve - great bravery or strength? Well Plato's idea of the ideal king was one that possessed a quality in which he was kin; a great philosophical mind. What Plato had in mind was to have a king that made wise choices, so that the society could live harmoniously. This "philosopher king" was to be the head of a three tiered system he named the Republic. Beside the king (who, along with other law enforcers, belong to a group called the "rational" guardians), the Republic was composed of a group called the "spirited" auxiliaries and lastly the "desirous" citizens. Transition to an alternate class was discouraged by Plato and therefore this set a system of inequality among the citizens.
The method to Plato's madness was to weed out the injustice in the societies that were currently in power. Instead of having the most powerful being in charge, he desired the most competent. Obviously any sane man wouldn't want the heavy-weight champion of the world as president. Sure he might have a mean right hook, but after so many shots in the noggin he would barely have the capacity to dress himself, let alone run a country. Although his thoughts are sound, they also have their flaws. When the "desirous" citizens, who were the majority, realized they were short ended, revolution could easily take place. Also, when a king was chosen, whose to say that he is really fair? Endowing all the power to one person could easily corrupt even the most descent man.
Next in line was John Locke, whose ideas helped mold many governments, including ours. Locke believed in a system known as a limited government, which meant that the government couldn't do everything their hearts desired. Although Locke believed everyone had rights, as demonstrated in his statement that "no one can be deprived of life, liberty, and pursuit of property", he did not believe in social and economic equality. This was due to the fact that he thought everyone was like Play-Doh, each being able to mold themselves into what they desired.
What Locke wanted to deter was the head honcho government, which basically gave one man all the power in an establishment. A government in which the voice of the people was heard and a body of people ran was the gist of his system. Obviously, since this system is greatly used currently, proof of its workability is plain to see. Though this system was (and is) commonly used, it also had its downsides. To begin with, it still allowed the aristocrats to capitalize on the "lesser" man. In this type of order, the rich were few and the poor many, which greatly increased the chance of revolt. Also, although John Locke preached that every one had an equal chance to succeed, in reality this was still far from true.
With Locke's idea came one more problem, the concept included in Karl Marx's system, the downfall of capitalism. In Locke's society the rich got richer, while the poor got poorer (not to mention larger). With the majority of the people unhappy, it was only a matter of time in which the citizens would try to overthrow the wealthy.
A modern utopia. This was what Karl Marx had in mind with his ideas of the "perfect" system: the communist government. In this "marvel", equality seemed to happen not only financially but also socially. The poor were poor because of divine right or laziness were common beliefs during Marx's era, but these ideals weren't shared by Marx. Marx believed that the poor were poor due to the society in which they were entrapped. In Marx's communistic government, there were heavy taxes on the rich which were then distributed to the poor; a philosophical Robin Hood, right. An advantage of this was that it made the larger poor class more equal to their peers. It also allowed those that weren't able to provide an adequate lifestyle for themselves, whether because they were handicapped or had to support too large of family, to be able too.
If this system was followed strictly by its parameters, it would be successful. Obviously, however, following these guidelines are difficult and can be disastrous such as in the case of Russia. Communism struggles with capitalism and once this battle begins, the effectiveness of communism disintegrates. When any type of government is in trouble, and if the economy gets screwed up, people start looking for any answer to correct their problems, just like Germany after World War I.
With the problems these three system have, they are still the best and most currently used today mainly for one reason, the benefits out weigh the problems. Without these philosophers the world as we know it today would definitely be different and might even still be a lawless, tyrannical world.