E.J. Hundert in an introduction to Mandeville’s “The Fable of the Bees”: “He [Mandeville] sought to reduce to absurdity the idea that polities could have been established from any realistically conceivable process of communal deliberation. Instead, only the “dexterous management of skillful politicians” served to stabilize an anthropologically, irreducible clash of escalating individual desires.”
The dexterous management of skillful politicians has become rare these days. Or perhaps we should say that many politicians have become a bit too skillful at managing other politicians and the public opinion?