it is not wisdom but authority that makes a law. t – tymoff

When creating laws, people often assume wisdom should serve as their guide. Yet on closer examination it becomes apparent that authority holds more sway to create and implement these regulations – something made famously clear by Tymoff who put forth this notion about authority’s relationship to legislation process. This raises important questions regarding its relationship to legislative process as a whole.

Lawmakers Within Society

All societies entrust lawmaking authority to specific groups or institutions. Lawmakers–either elected representatives or appointed representatives–hold this power to shape legal framework that guides communities. Their authority may come from Constitutions, Statutes or historical precedents.

Wisdom and expertise in lawmakers are unquestionably beneficial attributes, yet don’t guarantee they can create effective laws. History shows us even the most knowledgeable individuals can make bad choices; thus it is the authority granted them which ultimately dictates its legitimacy and enforceability.

Wisdom’s Role in Lawmaking

While wisdom may not be the primary influencer on legislation creation, its influence still cannot be denied in shaping legislation. Wisdom refers to the combined knowledge and expertise of lawmakers, legal scholars and experts in various fields whose insights into societal needs and values facilitate creating laws which are just, fair and beneficial to community needs and values are critical components to creating fair laws which serve their community best.

Wisdom plays an essential part in the interpretation and application of laws. Judges and legal professionals rely on their expertise and discernment to apply laws fairly. Their wisdom helps navigate through complex legal language while adapting them to changing situations.

The Limitations of Wisdom

While wisdom is undoubtedly valuable, it is not infallible. The diversity of perspectives and interests within a society means that there will always be differing opinions on what constitutes a wise decision. Furthermore, wisdom alone cannot address the complexities and nuances of every situation that may arise.

Authority, on the other hand, provides a framework for decision-making that is based on established processes and principles. It ensures that laws are created through a legitimate and accountable system. While this may not always result in the wisest laws, it provides a necessary structure for the functioning of a society.

The Balance of Authority and Wisdom

For an effective legal system, a balance between authority and wisdom is crucial. While authority provides the legitimacy and enforceability of laws, wisdom ensures that these laws are just and beneficial. The ideal scenario is one where lawmakers possess both authority and wisdom, making decisions that are both legitimate and wise.

However, achieving this balance is not always easy. It requires a commitment to transparency, inclusivity, and the incorporation of diverse perspectives. It also necessitates ongoing evaluation and revision of laws to ensure they remain relevant and effective.


While wisdom is often seen as the ideal quality for lawmakers, it is ultimately authority that holds the power to create and enforce laws. Wisdom, though important, is limited by its subjectivity and inability to address all complexities. The balance between authority and wisdom is crucial for a just and effective legal system, where laws are created through a legitimate process and guided by the collective knowledge and experience of society.