Karl Popper vs. Arnold Toynbee on the interpretation of Karl Marx

by Peter Myers

Date January 16, 2004; update February 17, 2019.

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The differences between Karl Popper and Arnold Toynbee over the interpretation of Karl Marx's philosophy turn out to be a surprisingly fruitful way of opening up all three.

The debate raises the questions: should Karl Marx be viewed as a social scientist, or as the prophet of a religion? Did the Totaliarianism and iconoclasm of the Soviet Union derive from Plato's Republic, or from Judaism?

Michael Higger explains in his book The Jewish Utopia (The Lord Baltimore Press, Baltimore, MD., 1932) that whereas Plato's Republic "is chiefy concerned with what will hold the ideal city together", "The rabbis, on the other hand, are mainly interested in that ideology which would hold the whole world, or the Universal State, together." (p. 5).

Karl Popper, in his book The Open Society and its Enemies, sourced Plato as the inspiration of the Communist movement, and ridiculed Arnold Toynbee for arguing that Marxism was mainly inspired by Judaism.

Popper, in effect, "writes out" any Jewish contribution to Communism, sourcing it all to elements deriving from Western Civilization itself.

Yet, Plato, in his Republic and the later Laws, makes it clear that he is only thinking of a small community - the Laws envisages a city of 5,040 households as its ideal experimental community (for which Plato is drafting the laws or scheme).

Michael Higger shows that ideas of a world-wide utopian community are central in the Jewish religion.

Higger writes that "A Jewish Utopia begins where Wells leaves off" (p. 6). This is a reference to H. G. Wells' "Open Conspiracy" blueprint for a World State: opensoc.html.

The Jewish Utopia, described by Higger, compared with Plato's Utopia as described in The Laws: jewish-utopia.html.

During the Cold War, Popper and Toynbee were on the same side, affiliated with the Anglo-American Establishment at the highest level (see quigley.html). Popper, a non-theistic Jew, was an Anti-Communist who nevertheless paid tribute to Marx, sharing some "Marxist Anti-Communist" traits, while Toynbee was an advocate for "Christian Socialism".

Popper insisted on treating Marx as a social scientist and humanitarian; Toynbee maintained that he was the prophet of a new religion, which is discerned by his division of Time into 3 stages: an initial paradise (Tribal Communism), a time of conflict (Civilization, i.e. Slavery, maintained by Religions which legitimate it), and a future paradise (inaugurated by the Communist Party in place of the Church), which is a return to the original - tribal - paradise but at a higher technological level.

This 3-fold division of Time is characteristic of religions derived from the Zoroastrian: zoroastrianism.html. Whereas earlier religions were oriented to preserving the past, or securing Order in the face of Chaos, religions in the Zoroastrian mould are future-oriented, depicting History as Salvation History. The first stage - the paradise - is the inspiration for the faithful of the second stage to strive to achieve the (predestined) third stage.

Zoroastrianism, not Plato or Heraclitus, is the source of Historicist thinking. But Heraclitus may have been influenced by the clash of opposites depicted in Zoroastrian thinking; Zoroastrianism was the religion of the Persian elite, within the Persian empire.

Lawrence H. Mills, an Avesta scholar, derives Heraclitus' metaphysics - the cosmic war of opposites, and Logos (an underlying unity) as Reason embedded in Nature - from Zoroastrian inspiration, in his book Zoroaster, Philo and Israel, Part 1: Zoroaster and the Greeks (F.A. Brockhaun, Leipzig, 1903-4), pp. 89-95 and 100-106.

Zoroastrian thought articulates antagonistic polarity, in which one pole (the evil) must be destroyed. In contrast, Taoist thought is based upon complementary (yin/yang) polarity.

Heraclitus articulates a mix of antagonistic polarity (in which strife prevails between the poles) and complementary polarity (both poles being essential parts of the whole).

Thomas C. McEvilley presented a detailed case for mutual influence between India and Greece in the ancient world. The Persian Empire included both Ionia in the west (i.e. the Ionian Greeks) and parts of India in the east. The Persians adopted from the Assyrians the strategy of deporting troublesome communities to remote areas; they deported Ionian Greek rebels to the far east, where they later formed Greek kingdoms in Bactria (Afghanistan). The western Greeks and the eastern Greeks maintained contact for hundreds of years across the Persian Empire.

At times, the influence was from India to Greece; at other times, the reverse.

He wrote, in his book The Shape Of Ancient Thought: Comparative Studies In Greek And Indian Philosophies (Allworth Press, New York, 2002):

"The period of unimpeded contact through the medium of Persia lasted approximately from 545 till 490. These dates include the heart of the brief moment of pre-Socratic philosophy. The work of Pythagoras, Heraclitus, Empedocles, Parmenides, and others falls between them. Only the work of Thales seems clearly to have preceded this period, and even before the conquest trade routes between Greece and India were open and in use." (p. 18)

Joseph Needham showed that there had been early contact between China and the West, and mutual cultural exchange, by 1600bc (Science and Civilization in China. Volume I Introductory Orientations, Cambridge University Press 1961): needham-anthony.html .

Victor H. Mair, in his book Contact and Exchange in the Ancient World, shows that knowledge and ideas spread both ways across the Silk Road, from around 2000bc. Heraclitus' philosophy is similar to Taoism, and he too took to the hills.

Popper's attack on Toynbee over Marx occurs in Volume II of The Open Society and Its Enemies. Those pages are quoted here; the most relevant of Popper's footnotes are quoted too.

In justifying his position, Popper refers to shorter background material from Volume I; those quotes are included next.

Then, I quote the Toynbee text he is criticising, on Marx, which is from A Study of History, Volume V, pp. 178-189, and the Annex on pp. 581-7.

On the way, I include some other perceptive material by Popper, e.g. on the execution of Socrates, turned by Plato into an epochal event like the Crucifixion.

In support of Toynbee's position that Marxism is a religion, I include a piece from Bertrand Russell, on Marx's eschatology: only a religion has an eschatology.

The militant atheism of Communism was a "clearing of the deck", a jealous purging of all other religions, similar to that initiated by Akhenaten and commanded by Yahweh; but Yahweh himself, as the transcendant god outside the creation, was replaced conceptually by Spinoza's immanent god.

(1) Popper attacks Toynbee, on Marxism
(2) Popper's background material in his attack
(3) Toynbee on Marxism
(4) Bertrand Russell on Marx's Eschatology
(5) "The Ordinary Soviet Man" - Driving the gods from out the sky
(6) Paris Commune 1871: much of Paris was destroyed by fire
(7) Popper praises Marx as a social scientist, but disagrees with his prophecy
(8) Socrates as Spokesman for Sparta?
(9) Popper blames Totalitarianism on Plato
(10) Israel Shahak on the Totalitarian elements in Judaism
(11) Hayek & the Mont Pelerin Society
(12) Letter to Israel Shamir

(1) Popper vs. Toynbee, on Marxism

The Open Society and Its Enemies, by K. R. Popper, Volume II: The High Tide of Prophecy: Hegel, Marx, and the Aftermath, 4th edition (revised) (Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London, 1962).

{p. 251} The second example of contemporary irrationalism with which I intend to deal here is A. J. Toynbee's A Study of History. I wish to make it clear that I consider this a most remarkable and interesting book, and that I have chosen it because of its superiority to all other contemporary irrationalist and historicist works I know of. I am not competent to judge Toynbee's merits as a historian. But as opposed to other contemporary historicist and irrationalist philosophers, he has much to say that is most stimulating and challenging; I at least have found him so, and I owe to him many valuable suggestions. I do not accuse him of irrationalism in his own field of historical research. For where it is a question of comparing evidence in favour of or against a certain historical interpretation, he uses unhesitatingly a fundamentally rational method of argument. I have in mind, for instance, his comparative study of the authenticity of the Gospels as historical records, with its negative results; although I am not able to judge his evidence, the rationality of the method is beyond question, and this is the more admirable as Toynbee's general sympathies with Christian orthodoxy might have made it hard for him to defend a view which, to say the least, is unorthodox. I also agree with many of the political tendencies expressed in his work, and most emphatically with his attack upon modern nationalism, and the tribalist and ' archaist ', i.e. culturally reactionary tendencies, which are con- nected with it.

The reason why, in spite of all this, I single out Toynbee's monumental historicist work in order to charge it with irrationality, is that only when we see the effects of this poison in a work of such merit do we fully appreciate its danger.

What I must describe as Toynbee's irrationalism expresses itself in various ways. One of them is that he yields to a widespread and dangerous fashion of our time. I mean the fashion of not taking arguments seriously, and at their face value, at least tentatively, but of seeing in them nothing but a way in which deeper irrational motives and tendencies express themselves. It is the attitude of socio-analysis, criticized in the last chapter; the attitude of looking at once for the unconscious motives and

{p. 252} determinants in the social habitat of the thinker, instead of first examining the validity of the argument itself.

This attitude may be justified to a certain extent, as I have tried to show in the two previous chapters; and this is especially so in the case of an author who does not offer any arguments, or whose arguments are obviously not worth looking into. But if no attempt is made to take serious arguments seriously, then I believe that we are justified in making the charge of irrationalism; and we are even justified in retaliating, by adopting the same attitude towards the procedure. Thus I think that we have every right to make the socio-analytical diagnosis that Toynbee's neglect to take serious arguments seriously is representative of a twentieth-century intellectualism which expresses its disillusionment, or even despair, of reason, and of a rational solution of our social problems, by an escape into a religious mysticism.

As an example of the refusal to take serious arguments seriously, I select Toynbee's treatment of Marx. My reasons for this selection are the following. First, it is a topic which is familiar to myself as well as to the reader of this book. Secondly, it is a topic on which I agree with Toynbee in most of its practical aspects. His main judgements on Marx's political and historical influence are very similar to results at which I have arrived by more pedestrian methods; and it is indeed one of the topics whose treatment shows his great historical intuition. Thus I shall hardly be suspected of being an apologist for Marx if I defend Marx's rationality against Toynbee. For this is the point on which I disagree: Toynbee treats Marx (as he treats everybody) not as a rational being, a man who offers arguments for what he teaches. Indeed, the treatment of Marx, and of his theories, only exemplifies the general impression conveyed by Toynbee's work that arguments are an unimportant mode of speech, and that the history of mankind is a history of emotions, passions, religions, irrational philosophies, and perhaps of art and poetry; but that it has nothing whatever to do with the history of human reason or of human science. (Names like Galileo and Newton, Harvey and Pasteur, do not play any part in the first SIX volumes of Toynbee's historicist study of the life-cycle of civilizations.)

Regarding the polnts of similarity between Toynbee's and my general views of Marx, I may remind the reader of my allusions, in chapter I, to the analogy between the chosen people and the chosen class; and in various other places, I have commented

{p. 253} critically upon Marx's doctrines of historical necessity, and especially of the inevitability of the social revolution. These ideas are linked together by Toynbee with his usual brilliance: 'The distinctively Jewish .. inspiration of Marxism', he writes 46, is the apocalyptic vision of a violent revolution which is inevitable because it is the decree .. of God himself, and which is to invert the present roles of Proletariat and Dominant Minority in .. a reversal of roles which is to carry the Chosen People, at one bound, from the lowest to the highest place in the Kingdom of This World. Marx has taken the Goddess "Historical Necessity" in place of Yahweh for his omnipotent deity, and the internal proletariat of the modern Western World in place of Jewry; and his Messianic Kingdom is conceived as a Dictatorship of the Proletariat. But the salient features of the traditional Jewish acalypse protrude through this threadbare disguise, and it is actually the pre-Rabbinical Maccabaean Judaism that our philosopher-impresario is presenting in modern Western costume ..' Now there is certainly not much in this brilliantly phrased passage with which I do not agree, as long as it is intended as nothing more than an interesting analogy. But if it is intended as a serious analysis (or part of it) of Marxism, then I must protest; Marx, after all, wrote Capital, studied laissez-faire capitalism, and made serious and most important contributions to social science, even if much of them has been superseded. And, indeed, Toynbee's passage is intended as a serious analysis; he believes that his analogies and allegories contribute to a serious appreciation of Marx; for in an Annex to this passage (from which I have quoted only an important part) he treats, under the title 47 'Marxism, Socialism, and Christianity', what he considers to be likely objections of a Marxist to this 'account of the Marxian Philosophy'. This Annex itself is also undoubtedly intended as a serious discussion of Marxism, as can be seen by the fact that its first paragraph commences with the words 'The advocates of Marxism will perhaps protest that ..' and the second with the words: 'In attempting to reply to a Marxian protest on such lines as these ..' But if we look more closely into this discussion, then we find that none of the rational arguments or claims of Marxism is even mentioned, let alone examined. Of Marxist theories and of the question whether they are true or false we do not hear a word. The one additional problem raised in the Annex is again one of historical origin; for the Marxist opponent envisaged by Toynbee does not protest, as

{p. 254} any Marxist in his senses would, that it is Marx's claim to have based an old idea, socialism, upon a new, namely a rational and scientific, basis; instead, he 'protests' (I am quoting Toynbee) 'that in a rather summary account of Marxian Philosophy .. we have made a show of analysing this into a Hegelian and a Jewish and a Christian constituent element without having said a word about the most characteristic .. part of Marx's message. .. Socialism, the Marxian will tell us, is the essence of the Marxian way of life; it is an original element in the Marxian system which cannot be traced to a Hegelian or a Christian or a ewish or any other pre-Marxian source . This is the protest put by Toynbee into the mouth of a Marxist, although any Marxist, even if he has read nothing but the Manfesto, must know that Marx himself as early as in 1847 distinguished about seven or eight different 'pre-Marxian sources' of socialism and among them also those which he labelled 'Clerical' or 'Christian' socialism, and that he never dreamt of having discovered socialism, but only claimed that he had made it rational; or, as Engels expresses it, that he had developed socialism from a Utopian idea into a science 48. But Toynbee neglects all that. 'In attempting', he writes, 'to reply to a Marxian protest on such lines as these, we shall readily admit the humaneness and constructiveness of the ideal for which socialism stands, as well as the importance of the part which this ideal plays in the Marxian "ideology"; but we shall find ourselves unable to accept the Marxian contention that Socialism is Marx's original discovery. We shall have to point out, on our part, that there is a Christian socialism which was practised as well as preached before the Marxian Socialism was ever heard of; and, when our turn comes for taking the offensive, we shall .. maintain that the Marxian Socialism is derived from the Christian tradition ..' Now I would certainly never deny this derivation, and it is quite clear that every Marxist could admit it without sacrificing the tiniest bit of his creed; for the Marxist creed is not that Marx was the inventor of a humane and constructive ideal but that he was the scientist who by purely rational means showed that socialism will come, and in what way it will come.

How, I ask, can it be explained that Toynbee discusses Marxism on lines which have nothing whatever to do with its rational claims? The only explanation I can see is that the Marxist claim to rationality has no meaning whatever for Toynbee. He is interested only in the question of how it originated

{p. 255} as a religion. Now I should be the last to deny its religious character. But the method of treating philosophies or religions entirely from the point of view of their historical origin and environment, an attitude described in the previous chapters as historism (and to be distinguished from historicism), is, to say the least, very one-sided; and how much this method is liable to produce irrationalism can be seen from Toynbee's neglect of, if not contempt for, that important realm of human life which we have here described as rational.

In an assessment of Marx's influence, Toynbee arrives at the conclusion 49 that 'the verdict of History may turn out to be that a re-awakening of the Christian social conscience has been the one great positive achievement of Karl Marx'. Against this assessment, I have certainly not much to say; perhaps the reader will remember that I too have emphasized 50 Marx's moral influence upon Christianity. I do not think that, as a final appraisal, Toynbee takes sufficiently into account the great moral idea that the exploited should emancipate themselves, instead of waiting for acts of charity on the part of the exploiters; but this, of course, is just a difference of opinion, and I would not dream of contesting Toynbee's right to his own opinion, which I consider very fair. But I should like to draw attention to the phrase 'the verdict of history may turn out', with its implied historicist moral theory, and even moral futurism 51. For I hold that we cannot and must not evade deciding in such matters for ourselves; and that if we are noL able to pass a verdict, neither will history.

So much about Toynbee's treatment of Marx. Concerning the more general problem of his historism or historical relativism, it may be said that he is well aware of it, although he does not formulate it as a general principle of the historical determination of all thought, but only as a restricted principle applicable to historical thought; for he explains that he takes 'as the starting point .. the axiom that all historical thought is inevitably relative to the particular circumstances of the thinker's own time and place. This is a law of Human Nature from which no human genius can be exempt.' The analogy of this historism with the sociology of knowledge is rather obvious; for 'the thinker's own time and place' is clearly nothing but the description of what may be called his 'historical habitat', by analogy with the 'social habitat' described by the sociology of knowledge. The difference, if any, is that Toynbee confines his 'law of Human

{p. 256} Nature' to historical thought, which seems to me a slightly strange and perhaps even unintentional restriction; for it is somewhat improbable that there should be a 'law of Human Nature from which no human genius can be exempt' holding not for thought in general but only for historical thought.

With the undeniable but rather trivial kernel of truth contained in such a historism or sociologism I have dealt in the last two chapters, and I need not repeat what I have said there. But as regards criticism, it may be worth while to point out that Toynbee's sentence, if freed from its restriction to historical thought, could hardly be considered an 'axiom' since it would be paradoxical. (It would be another form of the paradox of the liar; for if no genius is exempt from expressing the fashions of his social habitat then this contention itself may be merely an expression of the fashion of its author's social habitat, i.e. of the relativistic fashion of our own day.) This remark has not only a formal-logical significance. For it indicates that historism or historio-analysis can be applied to historism itself, and this is indeed a permissible way of dealing with an idea after it has been criticized by way of rational argument. Since historism has been so criticied, I may now risk a historio-analytical diagnosis, and say that historism is a typical though slightly obsolescent product of our time; or more precisely, of the typical backwardness of the social sciences of our time. It is the typical re-action to interventionism and to a period of rationalization and industrial co-operation; a period which, perhaps more than any other in history, demands the practical application of rational methods to social problems. A social science which cannot quite meet these demands is therefore inclined to defend itself by producing elaborate attacks upon the applicability of science to such problems. Summing up my historio-analytical diagnosis, I venture to suggest that Toynbee's historism is an apologetic anti-rationalism, born out of despair of reason, and trying to escape into the past, as well as into prophecy of the future. If anything then historism must be understood as an historical product.

This diagnosis is corroborated by many features of Toynbee's work. An example is his stress upon the superiority of other-worldliness over action which will influence the course of this world. So he speaks, for instance, of Mohammed's 'tragic worldly success', saying that the opportunity which offered itself to the prophet of taking action in this world was 'a challenge to which his spirit failed to rise. In accepting .. he was re-

{p. 257} nouncing the sublime role of the nobly-honoured prophet and contenting himself with the commonplace role of the magnificently successful statesman.' (In other words, Mohammed succumbed to a temptation which Jesus resisted.) Ignatius Loyola, accordingly, wins Toynbee's approval for turning from a soldier into a saint. One may ask, however, whether this saint did not become a successful statesman too? (But if it is a question of Jesuitism, then, it seems, all is different: this form of statesmanship is sufficiently other-worldly.) In order to avoid misunderstandings, I wish to make it clear that I myself would rate many saints higher than most, or very nearly all, statesmen I know of, for I am generally not impressed by political success. I quote this passage only as a corroboration of my historio-analytical diagnosis: that this historism of a modern historical prophet is a philosophy of escape.

Toynbee's anti-rationalism is prominent in many other places. For instance, in an attack upon the rationalistic conception of tolerance he uses categories like 'nobleness' as opposed to 'lowness' instead of arguments. The passage deals with the opposition between the merely 'negative' avoidance of violence, on rational grounds, and the true non-violence of other-worldliness, hinting that these two are instances of 'meanings .. which are .. positively antithetical to one another'. Here is the passage I have in mind: 'At its lowest the practice of Non-Violence may express nothing more noble and more constructive than a cynical disillusionment with .. violence .. previously practised ad nauseam. .. A notorious example of Non-Violence of this unedifying kind is the religious tolerance in the Western World from the seventeenth century .. down to our day.' It is difficult to resist the temptation to retaliate by asking - using Toynbee's own terminology - whether this edifying attack upon Western democratic religious tolerance expresses anything more noble or more constructive than a cynical disillusionment with reason; whether it is not a notorious example of that anti-rationalism which has been, and unfortunately still is, fashionable in our Western World, and which has been practised ad nauseam, especially from the time of Hegel, down to our day?

Of course, my historio-analysis of Toynbee is not a serious criticism. It is only an unkind way of retaliating, of paying historism back in its own coin. My fundamental criticism is on very different lines, and I should certainly be sorry if by

{p. 258} dabbling in historism I were to become responsible for making this cheap method more fashionable than it is already.

I do not wish to be misunderstood. I feel no hostility towards reliious mysticism (only towards a militant anti-rationalist intellectualism) and I should be the first to fight any attempt to oppress it. It is not I who advocate religious intolerance. But I claim that faith in reason, or rationalism, or humanitarianism, or humanism, has the same right as any other creed to contribute to an improvement of human affairs, and especially to the control of international crime and the establishment of peace. 'The humanist', Toynbee writes, purposely concentrates all his attention and effort upon .. bringing human affairs under human control. Yet .. the unity of mankind can never be established in fact except within a framework of the unity of the superhuman whole of which Humanity is a part ..; and our Modern Western school of humanists have been peculiar, as well as perverse, in planning to reach Heaven by raising a titanic Tower of Babel on terrestrial foundations ..' Toynbee's contention, if I understand him rightly, is that there is no chance for the humanist to bring international affairs under the control of human reason. Appealing to the authority of Bergson, he claims that only allegiance to a superhuman whole can save us, and that there is no way for human reason, no 'terrestrial road' as he puts it, by which tribal nationalism can be superseded. Now I do not mind the characterization of the humanist's faith in reason as 'terrestrial', since I believe that it is indeed a principle of rationalist politics that we cannot make heayen on earth. But humanism is, after all, a faith which has proved itself in deeds, and which has proved itself as well, perhaps, as any other creed. And although I think, with most humanists, that Christianity, by teaching the fatherhood of God, may make a great contribution to establishing the brotherhood of man, I also think that those who undermine man's faith in reason are unlikely to contribute much to this end.

{end of Popper's criticism of Toynbee}

{p. 269} Is there a meaning in history?

I do not wish to enter here into the problem of the meaning of 'meaning'; I take it for granted that most people know with sufficient clarity what they mean when they speak of the 'meaning of history' or of the 'meaning or purpose of life'. And in this sense, in the sense in which the question of the meaning of history is asked, I answer: History has no meaning.

{Here, Popper repudiates the "Salvation History" concept underlying all of the religions and philosophies derived from the Zoroastrian religion}

(2) Popper's background material in his attack

(2.1) footnotes 46 to 51 for chapter 24:

The Open Society and Its Enemies, by K. R. Popper, Volume II: The High Tide of Prophecy: Hegel, Marx, and the Aftermath, 4th edition (revised) (Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London, 1962).

{p. 360} 46 Toynbee, op. cit., vol. II, 178. {should read Volume V}

47 Toynbee, op. cit., vol. V, 581 ff. (Italics mine) In connection with Toynbee's neglect, mentioned in the text, of the Marxian doctrines and especially of the Communist Manifesto, it may be said that on p. 179 (note 5) of this volume, Toynbee writes: 'The Bolshevik or Majoritarian wing of the Russian Social-Democratic Party renamed itself "the Russian Communist Party" (in homage to the Paris Commune of A.D. 1871) in March, 1918 ..' A similar remark can be found in the same volume, p. 582, note 1. But this is not correct. The change of name (which was submitted by Lenin to the party conference of April, 1917; cp. Handbook of Marxism, 783 cp. also p. 787) referred, obviously enough, to the fact that 'Marx and Engels called themselves Communists', as Lenin puts it, and to the Communist Manifesto.

48 Cp, Engels, Socialism: Utopian and Scientific (see note g to chapter 13). For two historical roots of Marx's communism (Plato's and, perhaps, Pythagoras' archaism, and the Acts, which seem to be influenced by it) see especially note 29 to chapter 5; see also notes 30 to chapter 4, 34-36 to chapter 6, and notes 3 and 8 to chapter 13 (and text).

49 Cp. Toynbee, op. cit., vol. V, 587.

50 Cp, chapter 22, especially text to notes 1-4, and the end of that chapter.

51 The passage is not isolated; Toynbee very often expresses his respect for 'the verdict of history', a fact that is in keeping with his doctrine that it is 'the claim of Christianity .. that God has revealed Himself in history'. This 'Neo-protestant doctrine' (as K. Barth calls it) will be discusscd in the Cp my Logik der Forschung. next chapter. (Cp. especially note 12 to that chapter.)

In connection with Toynbee's treatment of Marx, it may be mentioned that his whole approach is strongly influenced by Marxism. He says (op. cit vol. I, p. 41, note 3): 'More than one of these Marxian coinages have become current even among people who reject the Marxian dogmas.' This

{p. 361} statement refers to the use of the word 'proletariat'. But it covers more than the mere use of words.

(2.2) Popper's statements about "Chosen People" and "Chosen Class" in Volume I.

The Open Society and Its Enemies, by K. R. Popper, Volume I: The Spell of Plato. Fifth edition (revised) (Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London 1966).

{p. x.} I am deeply indebted to Professor F. A. von Hayek. Without his interest and support the book would not have been published.

{p. 8} The theory of the chosen people, more specifically, assumes that God has chosen one people to function as the selected instrument of His will, and that this people will inherit the earth.

In this doctrine, the law of historical development is laid down by the Will of God. This is the specific difference which distinguishes the theistic form from other forms of historicism. A naturalistic historicism, for instance, might treat the developmental law as a law of nature; a spiritual historicism would treat it as a law of spiritual development; an economic historicism, again, as a law of economic development. Theistic historicism shares with these other forms the doctrine that there are specific

{p. 9} historical laws which can be discovered, and upon which predictions regarding the future of mankind can be based.

There is no doubt that the doctrine of the chosen people grew out of the tribal form of social life. Tribalism, i.e. the emphasis on the supreme importance of the tribe without which the individual is nothing at all, is an element which we shall find in many forms of historicist theories. Other forms which are no longer tribalist may still retain an element of collectivism; they may still emphasize the significance of some group or collective - for example, a class - without which the individual is nothing at all. Another aspect of the doctrine of the chosen people is the remoteness of what it proffers as the end of history. For although it may describe this end with some degree of definiteness, we have to go a long way before we reach it. And the way is not only long, but winding, leading up and down, right and left. Accordingly, it will be possible to bring every conceivable historical event well within the scheme of the interpretation. No conceivable experience can refute it. But to those who believe in it, it gives certainty regarding the ultimate outcome of human history. ...

In the present chapter, the doctrine of the chosen people serves only as an illustration. Its value as such can be seen from the fact that its chief characteristics are shared by the two most important modern versions of historicism, whose analysis will form the major part of this book - the historical philosophy of racialism or fascism on the one (the right) hand and the Marxian historical philosophy on the other (the left). For the chosen people racialism substitutes the chosen race (of Gobineau's choice), selected as the instrument of destiny, ultimately to inherit the earth. Marx's historical philosophy substitutes for it the chosen class, the instrument for the creation of the classless society, and at the same time, the class destined to inherit the earth.

(2.3) Footnotes from Volume I relating to the "Chosen" theme

{p. 202} NOTES


{p. 203} There is also, perhaps, a similarity between my 'open society' and the term used by Walter Lipmann as the title of his most admirable book, The Good Society (1937). ...


3 One of the features which the doctrines of the chosen people, the chosen race, and the chosen class have in common is that they originated, and became important, as reactions against some kind of oppression. The doctrine of the chosen people became important at the time of the foundation of the Jewish church, i.e. during the Babylonian captivity; Count Cobineau's theory of the Aryan master race was a reaction of the aristocratic emigrant to the claim that the French Revolution had successfully expelled the Teutonic masters. Marx's prophecy of the victory of the proletariat is his reply to one of the most sinister periods of oppression and exploitation in modern history.

{p. 207} 13 It seems very probable (cp. Meyer's Gesch. d Altertums, esp. vol. I) that such characteristic teachings as that of the chosen people originated in this period, which produced several other religions of salvation besides the Jewish.

{p. 300} 39 An interesting parallelism to this development is the destruction of tribalism through the Persian conquests. This social revolution led, as Meyer points out (op. cit., vol. III, 167 ff.), to the emergence of a number of prophetic, i.e. in our terminology, of historicist, religions of destiny, degeneration, and salvation, among them that of the 'chosen people', the Jews (cp. chapter I).

(3) Toynbee on Marxism

A Study of History, by Arnold J. Toynbee, Volume V (Issued under the auspices of the Royal Institute of International Affairs; published by Oxford University Press, London, 1939).

{p. 178} The distinctively Jewish (or perhaps originally Zoroastrian) element in the traditional religious inspiration of Marxism is the apocalyptic vision of a violent revolution which is inevitable because it is the decree, and irresistible because it is the work, of God himself, and which is to invert the present roles of Proletariat and Dominant Minority in a tremendous peripeteia - reversal of roles which is to carry the Chosen People, at one bound, from the lowest to the highest place in the Kingdom of This World. Marx has taken the Goddess 'Historical Necessity' in place of Yahweh for his omnipolent deity,3 and the internal proletariat of the

3 This Marxian Jewish Goddess 'Historical Necessity' has a sister in the Falasha Jewish Goddess Sanbat (see 11 . D (vi), Annex, in vol. ii, p. 406, above) and in the

{p. 179} modern Western World in place of Jewry;1 and his Messianic Kingdom is conceived as a Dictatorship of the Proletariat.2 But the salient features of the traditional Jewish apocalylse protrude through this threadbare disguise, and it is actually the pre-Rabbinical Maccabaean Judaism that our philosopher-impresario is presenting in modern Western costume; for it is of the esselce of the Marxian apocalyptic doctrine that the Messianic Kingdom is not only to be a material kingdom in This World but is also to be won by a victorious stroke of violence. If this archaic Futurism is the distinctive Jewish element in the Marxian faith, the distintively Christian element is an Oecumenicalism which is positively antipathetic, and not merely foreign, to the Jewish tradition. 'Go ye into all the World and preach the Gospel to every creture'3 is an injunction which Marx feels to be laid upon himself, and which he lays in turn upon his followers, as imperiously as the duty of establishing the kingdom of righteousness by force. It is not merely a revolution but a world revolution that the good Marxian is in duty bound to strive for.4

It is a far cry from the Hegelian dialectic to the embattled church militant of a Soviet Union Communist Party which with one hand is defending and organizing, through the Government of the Soviet Union, the ground which the Marxian Faith has now already won by the sword, while with the other hand it is working for the completion of the World Revolution through the agency of the Third International. The Marx who has conjured this matter out of that spirit by blending Syriac religion with Western philosophy is a mighty magician. He has performed as extraordinary a feat of 'materialization' as his Hellenic prototype Blossius of Cumae:7 the Stoic prophet of revolution8 who was not

{footnote 3 continued} Elephantinian Jewish (or Judeao-Samaritan) Goddesses Anath-Yahu and Anath- Bethel (see V. C (i) (d) 7, vol. vi, p. 46, footnote 1, below).

1 Compare the substitution of the internal proletariat of the Hellenic World for Jewry by the Christian Church under the influence of the Apostle to the Gentiles.

2 In the Marxian eschatology the Dictatorship of the Proletariat is represented as a transient regime which is destined to give place to a stateless form of society as soon as Socialism has become ingrained into the fabric of human life sufficiently to work by itself without any further need of organized force back it. A similat transitoriness is, of course, one of the traditional features of the Jewish Messiah's millennial reign on Earth.

3 Mark xvi. 15

4 For the socialist element in Marxism and its relatiol to Christianity see V. C (i) (c) 2, Annex II, below.

{p. 180} only Zeno's disciple but was also the master of Tiberius Gracchus and Aristonicus. And, if it had pleased the Goddess fortune to crown Aristonicus's proletarian insurrection with success, then no doubt the names of the Italiot Greek prophet and his Pergamene khalifah would be resounding down to this day as loudly as the names of Marx and Lenin do ring in the ears of a generation which has witnessed the triumphant establishment, on Russian ground, of a Marxian counterpart of that Blossian 'City of the Sun' which Aristonicus tried and failed to establish in Asia Minor in the second century B.C.

Fortune decided otherwise; and the god Helios, to whom Aristonicus's commonwealth was dedicated, no more availed to save his Asiatic Heliopolis than the goddess Atargatis availed to save the contemporary Sicilian freedmen's state that was placed under her auspices by the Syrian slave-prophet Eunus. These attempts in a disintegrating Hellenic World to convert a proletarian religion and a proletarianized philosophy into political coin by force of arms were both promptly crushed by Roman military intervention, and they simply served to prove in action a truth which was put into words more than a century later by another leader of the Hellenic internal proletariat when he refused, in the crisis of his earthly career, to follow in Eunus's and Aristonicus's footsteps: 'for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.' The historical verdict which was pronounced in the Roman military victory over Eunus and Aristonicus was not shaken by the desperate attempts to reverse it which were made in succession by the authors of the Second Sicilian Slave-Revolt and by Spartacus and by Catiline; and some time before the tormented Hellenic World obtained the respite of the Pax Augusta it had already become clear that its destiny, whatever it was to be, was at any rate not foreshadowed in the apocalyptic vision of an internal proletariat which had gone, in desperation, upon the war-path.

{p. 181} In our Western World in our generation the Leninian attempt to fulfil the scripture of the Marxian apocalypse has been treated more kindly by Fortune, at least in the first chapter; for Lenin's proletarian commonwealth on Russian soil has successfully repulsed the first attempt of the Western dominant minority (or 'the Capitalist Society' as it is called in the monomaniacally economic language of the Marxian Sociology) to overthrow the new regime in its puny infancy. More fortunate than his counterparts in the second century B.C. who had to face a dominant minority whose forces were then united under the single command of the omnipotent and ubiquitous power of Rome, Lenin made his coup in a world in which the dominant minority was still profoundly divided against itself and was engaged at that very moment in an internecine world-war; and the contending 'Capitalist' states all played their unwilling part in working for the cause of their common arch-enemy. The German Reich gave Lenin his first opening by battering the Russian Tsardom to pieces; and the German authorities actually conveyed the formidable exile himself from Switzerland to Russia across German territory in order that he might complete - to their profit, as they fondly imagined - the task of destruction in which the donkey-work had already been done by German arms. Then, when Lenin succeeded in his enterprise too brilliantly for the Germans' liking, the victorious Allies unintentionally came to Lenin's rescue and saved his work in Russia from being hacked to pieces by the German sword when, for their own purposes, they compelled their defeated German adversaries to evacuate all the occupied Russian territories which Lenin, with his tongue in his cheek, had just ceded to the Central Powers in the Peace of Brest-Litovsk. And after that the nascent military strength of the rising Bolshevik state proved just sufficient for fending off the half-hearted attacks which the war-weary Allies proceeded to make upon the fringes of the Bolshevik domain in the futile hope of dispatching with their own blunted swords the monster whom they had not permitted their German opponents to slay.

In this world of mutually hostile 'Capitalist Powers' which were more concerned to thwart one another than to crush their common proletarian enemy, Lenin's infant Communist Commonwealth in Russia survived the ordeal to which Eunus's Sicilian freedmen's state and Aristonicus's Asiatic Heliopolis both alike succumbed. In the fourth year after Lenin's seiure of power at Petrograd in 1917 it was already clear that the Bolshevik regime was going to maintain itself in all but the outskirts of the derelict domain of the fallen Russian Empire; and eighteen years later

{p. 182} again, in the year 1938, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was still 'a going concern', instead of having faded into the mere 'curiosity of history' which was all that was left, within a year or two of Aristonicus's coup, of the Blossian militant revolutionary's pathetic attempt to establish a Hellenic Utopia 'in real life'. This striking difference, up to date, between the respective fortunes of our modern Western Hegelian philosophy militant and of its Zenonian counterpart in Hellenic history raises a question in our case which hardly arose in the other. We are driven to ask ourselves whether it may perhaps be the destiny of our Western Society to be taken captive by this militant movement - as formidable as it is bizarre - which claims intellectual descent from a modern Western philosophy, has caught its spirit of violence from an archaic strain in Judaism, has commandeered an ample base of operations in the vast Russian province of a Westernized World, and has been inspired by an echo of the Christian tradition to attempt the conversion of the whole of Mankind.

Ever since Lenin's advent to power at Petrograd in A.D. 1917 this question has been exercising the minds of men and women all over the World and has been arousing their hopes or their fears in accordance with their diverse outlooks and situations. The established Communist masters of the Soviet Union have hoped that they will not taste of death till they have beheld the world-wide triumph of the Marxian creed and regime which their own hands have already carried to victory in Russia. The non-Russian Communist 'Diaspora' in partibus infidelium - or in Dar-al-Harb, to use the corresponding Islamic term which seems more appropriate to the militancy of the Marxian ethos - has hoped that it may live to see for itself the coming of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat which in Russia is already an accomplished fact; and this hope has perhaps been shared to some extent by some of the non-Communist elements in the Western internal proletariat - for instance, among the avowedly subject or nominally independent peoples of alien culture to whom the propaganda of the Third International has been assiduously addressed in the hope of persuading them to join in building up a common 'anti-Capitalist' and 'anti-Imperialist' front. On the other hand the Western dominant minority beyond the borders of the Soviet Union, which has been the principal target of the Third International's attack, has hoped to see the march of Communism towards the World Revolution arrested at least at the present frontiers of the U.S.S.R.; and the ci-devant dominant minority in Russia, in so far as it still survives either at liberty in exile or in its homeland under the Bolshevik yoke, has ventured to hope - unfeignedly or in

{p. 183} secret, according to its place of domicile - that a successful repulse of the Communist offensive abroad may some day be followed up by a counter-attack upon the Communist stronghold in Russia, and that this may eventually result in the repatriation of the emigres and the liberation of those who, under the Bolshevik regime to-day, are sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death.

Officially, the opponents of Communism have been expecting daily - every day since the 8th November, 1917 - that the Bolshevik regime will collapse to-morrow, while the Latter-Day Saints of the Communist Church Militant have been awaiting, with the same official certitude, a denouement in the opposite sense on the lines laid down in the militant Jewish apocalyptic tradition. According to the orthodox Communist apocalypse, the heathen Capitalist Powers are sooner or later to join forces in a supreme effort to take the Soviet Socialist Jerusalem by storm and to overwhelm the Communist Chosen People; and on that day, when - on the plains of a Manchurian or Ukrainian Armageddon - the Communist Church Militant is standing at bay against a world of aggressors and is apparently facing hopeless odds, her patron goddess Historical Necessity will manifest her power by putting all the hosts of Midian out of action once for all at a single miraculous stroke. Such are the official expectations on either side; but they give little light to any one who is genuinely seeking to forecast the outcome of the conflict; for it has been evident for some time that both parties have ceased to believe in the respective apocalypses to which they are officially committed. For light we have to look, not to dogmas, but to acts; and, when we examine the recent internal political struggles and external political relations of the Soviet Union, we may feel inclined to predict that neither the Communist nor the anti-Communist apocalypse is likely to come true.

The domestic political life of the U.S.S.R. has been dominated since Lenin's death in 1924 by a schism in the ranks of his companions - not on any point of theoretical Marxian or Leninian doctrine or 'ideology', in which they all subscribe to an identic orthodoxy, but on the practical question of how these sacrosanct principles are to be translated into action here and now. One faction among the Union Communist Party leaders have taken the line that their immediate and paramount task is to bring about the world-wide triumph of the Communist Revolution, and that,

{p. 184} for this purpose, the economic and political and military resources of the U.S.S.R. must be placed unreservedly at the disposal of the Third International. But this Trotskian policy of 'continuous revolution' has been challenged by an opposing Stalinian policy of 'Socialism in a single country' - a policy which does not question the orthodox Communist doctrine that the Communist Revolution ultimately must be, and will be, world-wide, but does contest the Trotskian contention that the furtherance of the World Revolution ought to be a first charge upon the assets of the Soviet Union. The first thing to be done, in Stalin's view, is to make Socialism a going concern and a practical success in the one great country in which a Communist regime is already in power; and Stalin contends that this first objective can be attained within the frontiers of the U.S.S.R. independently of what may be happening - or not happening - at the moment in the rest of the World, while admitting that 'Socialism in one country' is only a means to the end of 'Socialism throughout the World', and that, until this consummation is reached, even the most brilliant and imposing achievements in a single country must still be regarded as provisional and precarious. In the year 1938, when the schism was fourteen years old, it was possible to pronounce with some assurance that the Stalinian policy had won. While Stalin was sitting in the Kremlin, Trotsky was vegetating in exile and Zinoviev was rotting in a grave to which he had been sent by the bullets of a firing-squad; and, while the socialization of the Soviet Union was by then an accomplished fact, the Communist World Revolution seemed to be farther off than it had ever been in a world in which Germany had turned National-Socialist. In fact, 'Socialism in a single country' had driven 'continuous revolution' off the field in the arena of Soviet Union domestic politics; and it was noteworthy that the definitive victory of Stalin over Trotsky in Moscow had been quickly followed by an almost sensational change in the relations between the Soviet Union and the states of 'the Capitalist World'.

Since Japan ran amok in the Far East in 1931, and Herr Hitler came into power in Germany in 1933, the Soviet Government has ceased in practice to act upon its official theory of knowing no distinctions between one Capitalist Power and another, and of expecting to see the world-wide triumph of Communism precipitated by a combined attack of all the Capitalist Powers upon the U.S.S.R. Instead, it has begun to show a lively fear lest a concerted attack upon the Soviet Union on the part of two aggressive Capitalist Powers alone may be sufficient to bring about, not the triumph of Communism throughout the World, but its overthrow in its present Russian citadel; and Soviet statesmanship has sought

{p. 185} to parry this threat by making friends among the Mammon of Unrighteousness. As early as 1932 the Soviet Union entered into a political entente with France; in 1934 she became a member of the League of Nations; in 1935 she signed treaties of mutual assistance with both France and Czechoslovakia.

{the U.S.S.R. was expelled from the League of Nations in 1939, for invading eastern Poland and the Baltic States}

These positive acts are proof that Soviet statesmanship no longer expects to see the downfall of Capitalism abroad within any measurable time; for they imply a belief in the reality of the menace to the Soviet Union from the side of Germany and Japan, as well as a belief in the efficacy of an alliance with France and an adherence to the League as expedients for warding the danger off, whereas the peril and the safeguard alike would have to be dismissed in the same breath as sheer illusions by any one who was sincerely convinced that Germany and Japan and France and all the states members of the League were vessels of destruction ipso facto because they were products and expressions of an officially doomed Capitalist order of society. Thus the Soviet Government's foreign policy since 1932 presupposes, on the Communist side, a renunciation of the hope of seeing the world-wide triumph of the Communist regime brought to pass within the lifetime of the present generation; and conversely we may infer, on the Capitalist side, a corresponding renunciation of the last lingering hope of living to see the collapse of the Communist regime within the borders of the Soviet Union; for French statesmanship was quite as active as Soviet statesmanship in negotiating the Franco-Soviet entente of 1932 and in 1934 most of the existing states members of the League were quite as eager to secure the Soviet Union's adherence as the Soviet Union was to win their consent to its admission; and this attitude implies a belief, in the minds of the statesmen of the Capitalist countries, that the Soviet Union is a valuable associate and not a ramshackle empire that is on the point of falling to pieces. On this showing, it might be said, in the year 1938 that the Soviet Union and a majority, at any rate, of its Capitalist neighbours had reciprocally and simultaneously come to the conclusion that the Communist and the Capitalist regimes were likely to go on existing side by side in the same world for as long a time to come as it was possible for statesmanship to take into account.

{p. 186} We may remind ourselves of the similar conclusion which was arrived at - likewise reciprocally and simultaneously - by the Protestant and the Catholic commonwealths of Western Christendom in the last quarter of the seventeenth century of the Christian Era; and the parallel is illuminating. In that earlier case, as we can now see in the retrospect of the intervening two hundred and fifty years, the mutual decision to live and let live has been followed by a steady convergence, towards a single standard type, between two groups of states whose citizens had previously felt themselves to be divided by so great a gulf that, for the first hundred and fifty years after the outbreak of the Reformation, they had assumed with one accord that Christendom was too small to hold them both. Can we see any symptoms of an analogous approximation to-day between the Communism of the Soviet Union and the Capitalism of the rest of the World? We have only to put the question for it to answer itself decidedly in the affirmative.

We can already discern a pronounced tendency towards convergence in this case likewise, and we can observe that this converging movement is proceeding simultaneously from both sides. The 'Socialism in one country' which is the watchword of the Stalinian regime is manifestly generating a new Soviet Socialist nationalism which is finding its basis not in an old-fashioned uniformity of language but in a new-fangled uniformity of institutions which has its counterparts in the Fascist nationalism of post-war Italy and the National-Socialist nationalism of post-war Germany. Conversely, not only these two dictatorially governed communities but also all the other post-war Capitalist national states in their degree are becoming more and more socialist in their constitution as their nationalism becomes more intense. The convergence between the nationalistic socialism of the Soviet Union and the socialistic nationalism of her neighbours is unmistakable; and we can already make out the lineaments of the new common standard type of community towards which our post-war Capitalist and Communist states are thus all tending. The common goal towards which they are headed is a 'totalitarian' regime in a parochial socialist national state which commands the religious as well as the political allegiance of its subjects and imposes itself upon their souls as their supreme and indeed exclusive object of worship.

If we are right in this forecast, it is the destiny of the would-be world-wide movement of Communism to be frustrated thrice over:

{p. 187} first by being imprisoned within the frontiers of a single parochial state; next by being degraded into a local variety of Nationalism after having started its career as a social panacea for all Mankind; and finally by seeing the particular state that has enslaved it gradually assimilate itself to the other sixty or seventy states of the contemporary world by approximating to a common standard type.

This is just the fate by which we should expect to see Communism overtaken on the analogy of the history of other religious or philosophico-religious movements that have similarly turned militant. For example, the militant anti-Hellenic Judaism and Zoroastrianism of the Syriac World in the post-Alexandrine age became imprisoned respectively in the Maccabaean Kingdom and in the Sasanian Empire; the militant Imami Shi'ism of the Iranic World became imprisoned in the Safawi Empire; the militant Muslim-Hindu syncretistic religion of Sikhism became imprisoned in the principality of Ranjit Singh; and all the four imprisoning states showed the same tendency to approximate in type to their neighbours. The Sikh State became one of those ephemeral 'successor-states' of the Mughal Raj in India - the Oudes and Rohilcunds - which made their appearance for a moment on the troubled surface of Indian political life before the broken Pax Mogulica was re-established as a Pax Britannica. The Maccabaean Kingdom played a corresponding role - until, under the Herodian usurpers, it became scarcely distinguishable in type from the Cappadocias and the Commagenes - as a 'successor-state' of the Seleucid Empire during the brief interval of anarchy which supervened before all these peritura regna were expunged by the Pax Romana. The Sasanian Empire both influenced and was influenced by its sole neighbour and rival, the Roman Empire, during the four centuries of their existence in the same world side by side until, on the eve of the Primitive Arab Muslim assault upon them both, it might have needed a practised eye to distinguish the court of Chosroes from the court of Caesar. And South West Asian history repeated itself when a Safawi counterpart of Chosroes prostituted his hereditary head-

{p. 188} ship of a religious order to the mundane political ambition of becoming the Gegenkaiser to the Ottoman Qaysar-i-Rum. The same historic penalty for the sin of militancy is apparently being exacted from Communism in our world to-day; and we can now almost foresee the time when Communism and Capitalism will be interchangeable names for a uniform idolatrous worship of the community in a standardized parochial 'totalitarian' state. On this showing, we shall be looking in vain if we look to Communism to provide the internal proletariat of a disintegrating Western Society with the makings of a universal church.

The upshot of our present inquiry seems to be that, while the evidence for the recruitment of an internal proletariat is at least as abundant in the recent history of our Western World as it is in the history of any other civilization, there is singularly little evidence in our Western history so far for the laying of any foundations of a proletarian universal church or even for the emergence of any strong-winged proletarian-born 'higher religions'. Communism seems not to 'fill the bill' any better than Anabaptism or Quakerism or Bahaism or Ahmadism; and these five movements, which make so oddly assorted a company, are a small catch to take in a net which we have thrown so wide.

How is this apparent spiritual barrenness of our Western internal proletariat to be interpreted?

On first thoughts we might perhaps be tempted to draw an encouraging conclusion. We might account for this dearth of creative achievement by the fact, which we have already observed, that some of the finest of the plants that have been uprooted in our Western garden have managed hitherto to strike root again on virgin soil. In other words, some of the most promising of the recruits to our Western internal proletariat have been prevented from making any appreciable contribution to a new proletarian culture by the fact that they have been successfully reabsorbed into an unruptured Western body social; and this is a fact on which we may surely congratulate ourselves; since it may be taken to mean that, in our Western Society, the schism between Proletariat and Dominant Minority has been partially repaired, and that the breakdown of our civilization (if it has broken down) has been to that extent retrieved. The talents of these rehabilitated proletarians may have been lost to the proletariat, but they have certainly not been lost to our society as a whole. So far from that, these deracines descendants - Non-conformist English, French Protestant South Africans, United Empire Loyalist Canadians, and Irish and German Americans

{p. 189} are reckoned to-day among the most valuable members of the communities on to which they have been grafted or re-attached. On this line of reasoning the spiritual barrenness of the Western proletariat, so far from being a cause for shame or regret, is actually to be taken as presumptive evidence that the condition of our Western body social as a whole, though it may be serious, is not by any means beyond hope. And if, in our own day, our system shows signs of being able still to conquer and transmute so strong a virus as Communism, we may surely flatter ourselves that there is life and health in our Western Society yet.

These may be our first thoughts; but our optimism will be damped when we look narrowly at the price at which our boasted conquest of Communism is being purchased; for the all-absorbing Western institution to which the Marxian Church Militant shows signs of succumbing turns out, as we have seen, to be the pagan parochial 'totalitarian' state; and, if we remind ourselves of the fate of other civilizations that have come to be articulated into states of this kind, we shall find reason to fear that the future history of our own civilization may be 'nasty, brutish, and short'. An unceasing round of internecine warfare of ever increasing intensity between deified parochial states has been the principal cause of the breakdown and disintegration of some, and perhaps most, of the civilizations that have already gone the way of all flesh. The bones of the Hellenic and Sinic societies - to pick out two conspicuous skeletons - lie whitening ominously on fratricidal battlefields. If our own Western Society in its turn is now assuming this fatal posture and falling into this deadly rhythm, then its prospects, so far from being encouraging, are about as bad as they can be; for the 'drive' of Democracy and Industrialism, which are the two master-forces in our Western World in this latest age, has already entered into both our parochialism and our warfare; and this terrific head of steam seems likely to carry us at an unprecedented speed to an unparalleled disaster. On these second thoughts we may be inclined to look for some alternative solution of our puzzle which will not involve the assumption that, in spite of appearances to the contrary, our Western Civilization is really still flourishing like a green bay tree.

{p. 581} ANNEX II T0 V. C (i) (c) 2


THE advocates of Marxism will perhaps protest that in a rather summary account of the Marxian Philosophy or Faith we have made a show of analysing this into a Hegelian and a Jewish and a Christian constituent element without having said a word about the most characteristic and most celebrated part of Marx's message to his fellow men. In the mind of 'the man in the street', the Marxian apologist will point out, Marxism means Socialism; and he will add that 'the man in the street' is substantially right in making this popular equation. Socialism, the Marxian will tell us, is the essence of the Marxian way of life; it is an original element in the Marxian system which cannot be traced to a Hegelian or a Christian or a Jewish or any other pre-Marxian source; and it is a supremely philanthropic ideal - so much so that, when we place it in its proper position at the heart of the Marxian dispensation, the whole of this dispensation will appear in an utterly different light from the lurid colour in which it is maliciously painted by its enemies. As soon as we view it thus in its true proportion and perspective, we shall perceive (we shall be told) that Marxism is eminently humane and constructive in its ulterior aims and in its ultimate effects, and that the destructive violence upon which its enemies have seized as a pretext for discrediting it is no more than an incidental and transitory means to an end which is purely beneficent. Our champion of Marxism will probably follow up this vigorous defence by passing over to the offensive. He will accuse the opponents of his Faith of giving a false pretext for their hostility because they are ashamed of confessing the true reasons. What they really hate and fear in Marxism (he will suggest) is not its revolutionary violence but the fact that its programme of Socialism is a threat to existing anti-social vested interests and an exposure of the inadequacy of pre-Marxian philosophies and religions. The sages and prophets who have left it to Karl Marx to proclaim what is Man's elementary social duty to his neighbour must have been either hypocrites or imbeciles.

In attempting to reply to a Marxian protest on such lines as these we shall readily admit the humaneness and the constructiveness of the ideal for which Socialism stands, as well as the importance of the part which this ideal plays in the Marxian 'ideology'; but we shall find ourselves unable to accept the Marxian contention

{p. 582} that Socialism is Marx's own original discovery. We shall have to point out, on our part, that there is a Christian Socialism which was practised as well as preached before the Marxian Socialism was ever heard of; and, when our turn comes for taking the offensive, we shall venture to make two assertions. We shall maintain that the Marxian Socialism is derived from the Christian tradition as unmistakably as is the Marxian concern to convert the World. We shall also maintain that the Marxian version of the Christian ideal of philanthropy is an excerpt which has omitted the one thing needful - and indeed indispensable - for making any form of Socialism work.

The social arrangements of the primitive Christian community are only referred to incidentally in the books of the New Testament, because the authors' minds are pre-occupied with other aspects of the life of the Founder and his companions; but these incidental allusions give us glimpses of a picture of a common way of life which is undoubtedly Socialism and indeed Communism in the economic sense of a community of goods and services.

In the story of the Passion as told in the Gospel according to Saint John, Jesus and his companions are represented as having a common purse which is in Judas Iscariot's keeping. And in the preface to the story of Ananias and Sapphira, as told in the Acts of the Apostles, the economic regime of the infant Church on the morrow of the Ascension is depicted as being that of a miniature and rudimentary yet authentic Communist commonwealth.

'The multitude of them that lelieved were of one heart and of one soul; neither said any of them that ougllt of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common. And with great power gave the Apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus; and great grace was upon them all. Neither was there any among them that lacked; for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them and brought the prices of the things that were sold and laid them down at the Apostles' feet; and distribution was madc unto every man accordin as he had need.'

The complete community of goods that is described in this passage did not, of course, become one of the permanent institu-

{p. 583} tions of the Christian Church (as, for that matter, it is not being insisted upon to-day in the Soviet Union either); nor can the testimony of the Acts be taken as conclusive evidence that the picture here presented was ever strictly true to the life of the Church even in the Apostolic Age (any more than the first written constitution of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics can be taken as conclusive evidence for the social condition of Russia even in the lifetime of Lenin). What the passage does attest is the social ideal of the early Christian milieu in which the Acts was conceived and written. And, even if this contemporary testimony were lacking, the Christian social ideal of the Apostolic Age could still be reconstructed by inference from the testimony of succeeding centuries, in which the Church was famous for a sensitiveness - that declared itself in material as well as in spiritual good works - to the emotional attitudes and moral responsibilities implied in being one's brother's keeper. This ingrained philanthropic vein in the post-Apostolic Christian tradition comes out in the legend of how St. Lawrence replied to the Roman Government's summons to

{p. 584} deliver up the Church's treasures by collecting a crowd of the poor and needy from the slums of Rome and presenting himself, at their head, to the public authorities. But we need not appeal to an unverifiable Christian legend when we can cite the unimpeachable testimony of Julian the Apostate. The virtual monopoly of social-welfare work by the Christian Church in the Hellenic World of the fourth century of the Christian Era is sorrowfully confessed by Julian in a pastoral letter 1 to one of the pagan prelates of his Neoplatonic Antichurch:

'If Hellenism [i.e. Neoplatonism] is not yet making the progress which we have a right to expect, it is we, its devotees, who are to blame. ... Are we refusing to face the fact that Atheism [i.e. Christianity] owes its success above all to its philanthropy towards strangers and to its provision for funerals and to its parade of a high puritanical morality ? These are all, surely, virtues which we ourselves ought to put into practice bona fide. ... You must establish in every city [in your see] an ample number of hospices, in order that strangers may have the benefit of a philanthropy which will be recognized as ours; and this service must not be confined to strangers of our own persuasion; it must be at the disposal of anybody whatsoever who is in need. I have already provided for the allocation to you of the necessary funds. ... A fifth of this grant should be spent on the poor who are in the clientele of the [pagan] clergy; the balance should be distributed to strangers and beggars. It is a disgrace to us that our own people should be notoriously going short of assistance from us when in the Jewish community there is not a single beggar, while the impious Galilaeans are supporting not only their own poor but ours as well. You should instruct the votaries of Hellenism to make voluntary contributions towards these charitable services, and the Hellenic [i.e. pagan] parishes [in your see] to dedicate their first fruits [for this purpose]. You must get our Hellenic community into the habit of doing good works of this kind by instructing them that this is one of our most ancient traditional activities - as is testified by Homer. ... Do not let us allow hostile competitors to outdo us in our own strong points while we give way to a slackness and indifference which are not merely a disgrace to our religion but a downright betrayal of it.'

{footnote 1} Letter from the Emperor Julian to Arsaces, the Chief Priest of Galatia (= Letter No. 84 in Bidez, J.: LÕEmpéreur Julien: Îuvres Complètes: Tome i, 2e Partie: ÒLettres et FragmentsÓ (Paris 1924, Les Belles Lettres)). {end footnote; it goes at the bottom of the page, but I have placed it here, beneath the quote - Peter M.}

These passages from the correspondence of the Emperor Julian and from the Acts of the Apostles and from the Gospel according to Saint John will perhaps suffice to demonstrate our three propositions. In the first place they make it clear that Socialism - and

{p. 585} this in the strict formal sense of a community of goods - is one of the principles of the primitive Christian Weltanschauung. In the second place they establish a very strong presumption that the Socialism, as well as the Oecumenicalism, of the Marxian scheme is derived from the Christian tradition. In the third place they reveal the element in the Christian Socialism which the Marxian Socialism has left - or cut - out.

The passage in the Acts represents the philanthropy of the primitive Christian Society as flowing from a God-given grace which was the fruit of a belief in the divinity of Jesus. In other words, the charity which is here depicted as moving the primitive Christians to go - in their mutual concern for one another's welfare - to the extreme length of sharing all their worldly goods is not a mere love of Man for Man (which is the limited literal meaning of the word 'philanthropy'), but is a spiritual relation to which God is a party as well as His human creatures. In fact, this Christian Socialism is a practical application, on the economic surface of life, of the fundamental religious truth that the brotherhood of Man is a consequence of the fatherhood of God - a truth which is driven home with special force by a religion which teaches that God is not only the father and creator of Man, but also his saviour who has been incarnate in human shape and has suffered, and triumphed over, Death. Christians believe - and a study of History assuredly proves them right - that (beyond the narrow circle of the tribe, in which a parochial 'honour among thieves' is maintained at the prohibitive moral price of an Ishmaelitish warfare against a world of foreign enemies) the brotherhood of Man is impossible for Man to achieve in any other way than by enrolling himself as a citizen of a Civitas Dei which transcends the human world and has God himself for its king. And any one who holds this belief will feel certain, a priori, that the Marxian excerpt from a Christian Socialism is an experiment which is doomed to failure because it has denied itself the aid of the spiritual power which

{p. 586} alone is capable of making Socialism a success. The Christian critic will have no quarrel with the Marxian Socialism for going as far as it does: he will criticize it for not going far enough. Its fatal flaw in his eyes will be a sin of omission and not a sin of commission.

Thus, from the Christian standpoint, the Marxian experiment in Socialism is a tragedy; but this cannot be the Christian observer's last word; for the responsibility for this tragedy is manifestly shared by the Christian Church itself.

How, in face of such evidence as we have cited, are we to explain the Marxian attitude towards Christianity? The Marxians not only maintain that there is no trace of Socialism in the Christian tradition and that their own prophet has been the first to awaken Man's social conscience: they actually declare that Christianity is one of the most formidable obstacles in the way of their own effort to apply Socialism in practice. 'Christianity', they say, 'is the opiate of the People'; and, in the Soviet Union at any rate, this supposed antithesis and incompatibility between Socialism and Christianity has been so sincerely believed in, and so strongly felt, that the votaries of Christianity or of any other theistic religion have been debarred, ex oficio religionis, from admission to membership of the All-Union Communist Party. In fact, Communism has been definitely and militantly anti-Christian. And, when we ask how this has come to be when Socialism and philanthropy loom as large as they do in the Christian tradition, the answer is, of course, that the Christianity against which the Communists have declared war is neither the first-century Christianity of Jerusalem nor the fourth-century Christianity of the Roman Empire but the nineteenth-century and twentieth-century Christianity of the Western World and Russia. It is our modern Western and modern Russian practice of Christianity that has given this occasion for an enemy to blaspheme; and a practice that has aroused a hatred and contempt which are plainly as sincere as they are vehement must have fallen far indeed below the Christian practice of the first four centuries. ...

{p. 587} Fas est et ab hoste doceri; and, if we do take to heart the self-reproachful words of a noble adversary, we latter-day Christians may still turn a Marxian attack upon Christianity to good account as, seven centuries ago, a Paulician attack was turned to account, in comparable circumstances, under the inspired leadership of Saint Francis and Saint Dominic. In that event the verdict of History may turn out to be that a re-awakening of the Christian social conscience has been the one great positive practical achievement of Karl Marx; and, in bringing Marx's endeavours to this unexpected issue, the irony of History would not be so cruel as might at first appear; for, if we are right in our thesis that the Marxian Socialism is doomed, a priori, to be a Socialism Manque, then we must believe that Marx's sole chance of realizing his ideal of a socialized world lies in awaking from its inopportune slumber, and speeding upon its abandoned path, that primitive Christian charity which does know the secret of making Socialism work as one of the terrestrial institutions of a supra-mundane Civitas Dei.


(4) Bertrand Russell on Marx's Eschatology

Bertrand Russell, History of Western Philosophy (George Allen and Unwin, London, 1946):

{p. 382} The City of God contains little that is fundamentally original. The eschatology is Jewish in origin, and came into Christianity mainly through the Book of Revelation. The doctrine of pre-

{p. 383} destination and election is Pauline, though St. Augustine gave it a much fuller and more logical development than is to be found in the Epistles. The distinction between sacred and profane history is quite clearly set forth in the Old Testament. What St. Augustine did was to bring these elements together, and to relate them to the history of his own time, in such a way that the fall of the Western Empire, and the subsequent period of confusion, could be assimilated by Christians without any unduly severe trial of their faith.

The Jewish pattern of history, past and future, is such as to make a powerful appeal to the oppressed and unfortunate at all times. St. Augustine adapted this pattern to Christianity, Marx to Socialism. To understand Marx psychologically, one should use the following dictionary:

Yahweh = Dialectical Materialism
The Messiah = Marx
The Elect = The Proletariat
The Church = The Communist Party
The Second Coming = The Revolution
Hell = Punishment of the Capitalists
The Millennium = The Communist Commonwealth

The terms on the left give the emotional content of the terms on the right, and it is this emotional content, familiar to those who have had a Christian or a Jewish upbringing, that makes Marx's eschatology credible. A similar dictionary could be made for the Nazis, but their conceptions are more purely Old Testament and less Christian than those of Marx, and their Messiah is more analogous to the Maccabees than to Christ.


(5) "The Ordinary Soviet Man" - Driving the gods from out the sky

This illustrates the excesses of the Soviet Union, its obsession with political correctness, even though it had good features too.

Roland R. Hegstad, Pretenders to the Throne (Pacific Press Publishing Association, Boise, Idaho, 1990):

{p. 38} In 1937 when Valery Chkalov made his famous flight across the pole, the Soviets found anti-religious meaning in his triumph. Wrote Lebedew-Kumach in his well-known poem "The Ordinary Soviet Man":

About the Pole he proudly paces,
The flow of rivers shifts to plan;

{p. 39} Towering mountains he displaces
- The ordinary Soviet man
Rejecting miracle and fable,
Driving the gods from out the sky,
These ordinary Soviet people
Work wonders every time they try.

Two decades later, when the first sputniks were launched, the director of the Moscow planetarium said on a Moscow radio broadcast: "Now that the first two sputniks have appeared in the cosmos, it is possible to say that we have visited heaven. We have been where the eyes of the believer are directed with religious awe." When the Soviet cosmonaut Titov came down from orbit, he reported, "There is no God, for I did not see Him."


(6) Paris Commune 1871: much of Paris was destroyed by fire

During the Paris Commune of 1871, the Communards executed the Archbishop of Paris.

Isaiah Berlin wrote in Karl Marx: his life and environment (Thornton Butterworth, London 1939):

{p. 224} The Commune, as the new government described itself, was neither created nor inspired by the International ... By a great effort the people had shaken off the nightmare first of the Empire then of the siege; ... they announced

{p. 225} that the state in its old form was abolished, and called upon the people in arms to govern itself.

Presently, as supplies began to give out, and the condition of the besieged grew more desperate, terror developed: proscriptions began, men and women were condemned and executed, many of them certainly guiltless, and few deserving of death. Among those executed was the Archbishop of Paris who had been held as a hostage against the army at Versailles. The rest of Europe watched the monstrous events with growing indignation and disgust. The Communards seemed even to enlightened opinion, even, to old and tried friends of the people like Louis Blanc and Mazzini, to be a band of criminal lunatics dead to the appeal of humanity, social incendiaries pledged to destroy all religion and all morality, men driven out of their minds by real and imaginary wrongs, scarcely responsible for their enormities.

{p. 226} ... Marx ... acclaimed it as the first open and defiant manifestation in history of the strength and idealism of the working class - the first pitched battle which it had fought against its oppressors before the eyes of the whole world ...

The pamphlet, later entitled The Civil War in France was not primarily intended as a historical study: it was a tactical move, and one of typical audacity and intransigeance. Marx was sometimes blamed by his own followers for allowing the International to be linked in the popular mind with a band of law-breakers and assassins, an association which earned for it an unnecessarily sinister reputation. This was not the kind of consideration which could have influenced him in the slightest degree. He was, all his life, a convinced and uncompromising believer in a violent working class

{p. 227} revolution. ...

{p. 228} Marx attempted to forestall all reproaches by revealing his name as the sole author of the work. "The Red Terrorist Doctor," as he was now popularly known, became overnight the object of public odium ...

{p. 229} A large part of Paris was destroyed by fire during the Commune: this fire seemed to him a symbol of his own life, and a magnificent realization of his favourite paradox: "Destruction, too, is a kind of creation."


Overlooking these excesses, Popper was still able to praise Marx as 'enlightening' (p. 120, below).

(7) Popper praises Marx as a social scientist, but disagrees with his prophecy

The Open Society and Its Enemies, by K. R. Popper, Volume II: The High Tide of Prophecy: Hegel, Marx, and the Aftermath, 4th edition (revised) (Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London, 1962).


We are now ready to approach what is probably the most crucial point in our analysis as well as in our criticism of Marxism; it is Marx's theory of the state and - paradoxical as it may sound to some - of the impotence of all politics.

Marx's theory of the state can be presented by combining the results of the last two chapters. The legal or juridico-political system - the system of legal institutions enforced by the state - has to be understood, according to Marx, as one of the superstructures erected upon, and giving expression to, the actual productive forces of the economic system; Marx speaks in this connection of 'juridical and political superstructures'. It is not, of course, the only way in which the economic or material reality and the relations between the classes which correspond to it make their appearance in the world of ideologies and ideas. Another example of such a superstructure would be, according to Marxist views, the prevailing moral system. This, as opposed to the legal system, is not enforced by state power, but sanctioned by an ideology created and controlled by the ruling class. The difference is, roughly, one between persuasion and force (as Plato would have said); and it is the state, the legal or political system, which uses force. It is, as Engels puts it, 'a special repressive force' for the coercion of the ruled by the rulers. 'Political power, properly so called,' says the Manifesto, 'is merely the organized power of one class for oppressing the other.' ...

{p. 119} What are the consequences of this theory of the state? The most important consequence is that all politics, all legal and political institutions as well as all political struggles, can never be of primary importance. Politics are impotent. ...

These consequences show again the unity of Marx's historicist system of thought. Yet considering that few movements have done as much as Marxism to stimulate interest in political action, the theory of the fundamental impotence of politics appears somewhat paradoxical. ...

{p. 120} Another important consequence of the theory is that, in principle, all government, even democratic government, is a dictatorship of the ruling class over the ruled. 'The executive of the modern state', says the Manifesto, is merely a committee for managing the economic affairs of the whole bourgeoisie ...' What we call a democracy is, according to this theory, nothing but that form of class dictatorship which happens to be most convenient in a certain historical situation. ...

I am very far from defending Marx's theory of the state. His theory of the impotence of all politics, more particularly, and his view of democracy, appear to me to be not only mistakes, but fatal mistakes. But it must be admitted that behind these grim as well as ingenious theories, there stood a grim and depressing experience. And although Marx, in my opinion, failed to understand the future which he so keenly wished to foresee, it seems to me that even his mistaken theories are proof of his keen sociological insight into the conditions of his own time, and of his invincible humanitarianism and sense of justice.

{Popper pays no attention to Marx' own promotion of Capitalism - Free Trade - to hasten the process, a hastening that only occurs through the suffering of its losers: classwar.html. Marx could promote this, only because he was confident of final victory; his strategy is continued by the Trotskyists of our own time, whose overriding goal is the replacement of nation-states with a world-state: xTrots.html}

Marx's theory of the state, in spite of its abstract and philosophical character, undoubtedly furnishes an enlightening interpretation of his own historical period. It is at least a tenable view that the so-called 'industrial revolution' developed at first mainly as a revolution of the 'material means of production', i.e. of machinery; that this led, next, to a transformation of the class structure of society, and thus to a new social system; and that political revolutions and other transformations of the legal system came only as a third step. Even though this Marxist interpretation of the 'rise of capitalism' has been challenged by historians who were able to lay bare some of its deep-lying ideological foundations (which were perhaps not quite unsuspected by Marx, although destructive to his theory), there can be little doubt about the value of the Marxist interpretation as a first approximation, and about the service rendered to his successors in this field. And even though some of the developments studied by Marx were deliberately fostered by legislative measures, and indeed made possible only by legislation (as Marx himself says), it was he who first discussed the influence of economic developments and economic interests upon legislation, and the function of legislative measures as weapons in the class struggle, and especially as means for the creation of a 'surplus population', and with it, of the industrial proletariat.

{p. 124} I believe that the injustice and inhumanity of the unrestrained 'capitalist system' described by Marx cannot be questioned; but it can be interpreted in terms of what we called, in a previous chapter, the paradox of freedom. Freedom, as we have seen, defeats itself, if it is unlimited. Unlimited freedom means that a strong man is free to bully one who is weak and to rob him of his freedom. This is why we demand that the state should limit freedom to a certain extent, so that everyone's freedom is protected by law. Nobody should be at the mercy of others, but all should have a right to be protected by the state.

Now I believe that these considerations, originally meant to apply to the realm of brute-force, of physical intimidation, must be applied to the economic realm also. Even if the state protects its citizens from being bullied by physical violence (as it does, in principle, under the system of unrestrained capitalism), it may defeat our ends by its failure to protect them from the misuse of economic power. In such a state, the economically strong is still free to bully one who is economically weak, and to rob him of his freedom. Under these circumstances, unlimited economic freedom can be just as self-defeating as unlimited physical freedom, and economic power may be nearly as dangerous as physical violence; for those who possess a surplus of food

{p. 125} can force those who are starving into a 'freely' accepted servitude, without using violence. And assuming that the state limits its activities to the suppression of violence (and to the protection of property), a minority which is economically strong may in this way exploit the majority of those who are economically weak.

If this analysis is correct, then the nature of the remedy is clear. It must be a political remedy - a remedy similar to the one which we use against physical violence. We must construct social institutions, enforced by the power of the state, for the protection of the economically weak from the economically strong. The state must see to it that nobody need enter into an inequitable arrangement out of fear of starvation, or economic ruin. This, of course, means that the principle of non-intervention, of an unrestrained economic system, has to be given up; if we wish freedom to be safeguarded, then we must demand that the policy of unlimited economic freedom be replaced by the planned economic intervention of the state. We must demand that unrestrained capitalism give way to an economic interventionism.

{p. 133} If we now look back at Marx's theory of the impotence of politics and of the power of historical forces, then we must admit that it is an imposing edifice. It is the direct result of his sociological method; of his economic historicism, of the doctrine that the development of the economic system, or of man's metabolism determines his social and political development. The experience of his time, his humanitarian indignation, and the need of bringing to the oppressed the consolation of a prophecy the hope, or even the certainty, of their victory, all this is united in one grandiose philosophic system, comparable or even superior to the holistic systems of Plato and Hegel. ...

{p. 134} Marx was the last of the great holistic system builders. We should take care to leave it at that, and not to replace his by another Great System. What we need is not holism. It is piecemeal social engineering.

{We hear today of the end of "MetaNarrative"; but is not the reigning Feminism a variant of Marxism, and based on a "MetaNarrative"?}

With this, I conclude my critical analysis of Marx's philosophy of the method of social science, of his economic determinism as well as of his prophetic historicism. The final test of a method, however, must be its practical results. I therefore proceed now to a more detailed examination of the main result of his method, the prophecy of the impending advent of a classless society.

{p. 152} A threat of making use of the situation for the establishment of a counter-tyranny is just as criminal as the original attempt to introduce a tyranny; the use of such a threat, even if made with the candid intention of saving democracy by deterring its enemies, would therefore be a very bad method of defending democracy; indeed, such a threat would confuse the ranks of its defenders in an hour of peril, and would therefore be likely to help the enemy.

These remarks indicate that a successful democratic policy demands from the defenders the observance of certain rules. A few such rules will be listed later in this chapter; here I only wish to make it clear why I consider the Marxist attitude towards violence one of the most important points to be dealt with in any analysis of Marx.


According to their interpretation of the social revolution, we may distinguish between two main groups of Marxists, a radical wing and a moderate wing (corresponding roughly, but not precisely, to the Communist and the Social Democratic parties).

Marxists often decline to discuss the question whether or not a violent revolution would be 'justified'; they say that they are not moralists, but scientists, and that they do not deal with speculations about what ought to be, but with the facts of what is or will be. In other words, they are historical prophets who confine themselves to the question of what will happen. But let us assume that we have succeeded in persuading them to discuss the justification of the social revolution. In this case, I believe that we should find all Marxists agreeing, in principle, with the old view that violent revolutions are justified only if

{p. 153} they are directed against a tyranny. From here on, the opinions of the two wings differ.

The radical wing insists that, according to Marx, all class rule is necessarily a dictatorship, i.e. a tyranny. A real democracy can therefore be attained only by the establishment of a classless society, by overthrowing, if necessary violently, the capitalist dictatorship. The moderate wing does not agree with this view, but insists that democracy can to some extent be realized even under capitalism, and that it is therefore possible to conduct the social revolution by peaceful and gradual reforms. But even this moderate wing insists that such a peaceful development is uncertain; it points out that it is the bourgeoisie which is likely to resort to force, if faced with the prospect of being defeated by the workers on the democratic battlefield; and it contends that in this case the workers would be justified in retaliating, and in establishing their rule by violent means. Both wings claim to represent the true Marxism of Marx, and in a way, both are right. For, as mentioned above, Marx's views in this matter were somewhat ambiguous, because of his historicist approach; over and above this, he seems to have changed his views during the course of his life, starting as a radical and later adopting a more moderate position.

I shall examine the radical position first, since it appears to me the only one which fits in with Capital and the whole trend of Marx's prophetic argument. For it is the main doctrine of Capital that the antagonism between capitalist and worker must necessarily increase, and that there is no compromise possible, so that capitalism can only be destroyed, not improved. It will be best to quote the fundamental passage of Capital in which Marx finally sums up the 'historical tendency of capitalist accumulation'. He writes: Along with the steady decrease in the number of capitalist magnates who usurp and monopolize all the advantages of this development, there grows the extent of misery, oppression, servitude, degradation, and exploitation; but at the same time, there rises the rebellious indignation of the working class which is steadily growing in number, and which is being disciplined, unified, and organized by the very mechanism of the capitalist method of production. Ultimately, the monopoly of capital becomes a fetter upon the mode of production which has flourished with it, and under it. Both the centralization in a few hands of the means of production, and the social organization of labour, reach a point where their

{p. 154} capitalist cloak becomes a straitjacket. It bursts asunder. The hour of capitalist private property has struck. The expropriators are expropriated.'

In view of this fundamental passage, there can be little doubt that the core of Marx's teaching in Capital was the impossibility of reforming capitalism, and the prophecy of its violent overthrow; a doctrine corresponding to that of the radical wing. ...

As opposed to the radical position which at lcast fits quite well into the prophetic argument, the moderate position destroys it completely. But as was said before, it too has the support of Marx's authority. Marx lived long enough to see reforms carried out which, according to his theory, should have been impossible. But it never occurred to him that these improvements in the workers' lot were at the same time refutations of his theory. His ambiguous historicist view of the social revolution permitted him to interpret these reforms as its prelude or even as its beginning. As Engels tells us, Marx reached the conclusion that in England, at any rate, 'the inevitable social revolution might be effected entirely by peaceful and legal means. He certainly never forgot to add that he hardly expected the English ruling class to submit, without a "pro-slavery

{p. 155} rebellion", to this peaceful and legal revolution'. This report agrees with a letter in which Marx wrote, only three years before his death: 'My party .. considers an English revolution not necessary but - according to historic precedents - possible.' It should be noted that in the first at least of these statements, the theory of the 'moderate wing' is clearly expressed; the theory, namely, that should the ruling class not submit, violence would be unavoidable.

These moderate theories seem to me to destroy the whole prophetic argument. They imply the possibility of a compromise, of a gradual reform of capitalism, and therefore, of a decreasing class-antagonism. But the sole basis of the prophetic argument is the assumption of an increasing class-antagonism.

{On the contrary: after the fall of the Soviet Union, the Clinton Government and the EU made great strides in furthering their Reformist agenda}

{p. 163} All political parties have some sort of 'vested interest' in their opponent's unpopular moves. They live by them and are therefore liable to dwell upon, to emphasize, and even to look forward to them. They may even encourage the political mistakes of their opponents as long as they can do so without becoming involved in the responsibility for them. ...

There is no doubt about the way in which the ambiguity just mentioned played into the hands of those fascist groups who wanted to destroy democracy. For we must reckon with the possibility that there will be such groups, and that their influence within the so-called bourgeoisie will depend largely on the policy adopted by the workers' parties.

For instance, let us consider more closely the use made in the political struggle of the threat of revolution or even of political strikes (as opposed to wage disputes, etc.). ... But if used as an offensive weapon they must lead to a strengthening of the anti-democratic tendencies in the opponent's camp, since they clearly make democracy unworkable. ... The use by the workers of any kind of non-democratic pressure is likely to lead to a similar, or even to an anti-democratic, counter-pressure - to provoke a move against democracy.


And George Soros - head of the Open Society Foundation, and a great fan of Popper - argues much the same way. Yet, Soros was instrumental in dismantling the protective economy of the East Bloc, and exposing its people to the chill winds of Privatisation and Deregulation: soros.html.

(8) Socrates as Spokesman for Sparta?

Popper's interpretation of the trial of Socrates is an important contribution, followed up in A. Chroust, Socrates Man and Myth (Routledge, London 1957), I.F. Stone, The Trial of Socrates, and A.E. Taylor, Socrates.

Sparta, having won the Peloponnesian War, forced Athens to grant an amnesty which prevented it from punishing traitors among its own citizens. The leaders of Athens saw Socrates this way. If they had wanted to prosecute him for attacking the traditional religion, they would have done it decades earlier, rather than waiting until he was aged 70 or 71.

The critical fact about Socrates, which discredits the view that he was martyred for subverting the ideology of the day, is his age at his trial. Surely he had been challenging tradition for many decades; why then leave it so late to bring charges against him?

The Open Society and Its Enemies, by K. R. Popper, Volume I: The Spell of Plato. Fifth edition (revised) (Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London 1966).

{p. 173} A closed society resembles a herd or a tribe ... whose members are held together by semi-biological ties - kinship, living together, sharing common efforts, common dangers, common joys and common distress.

{p. 174} ... in an open society, many members strive to rise socially, and to take the place of other members. This may lead, for example, to ... class struggle.

{p. 175} ... the transition from the closed to the open society can be described as one of the deepest revolutions through which mankind has passed.

{p. 188} The rise of philosophy itself can be interpreted, I think, as a response to the breakdown of the closed society and its magical beliefs. It is an attempt to replace the lost magical faith by a rational faith; it modifies the tradition of passing on a theory or a myth by founding a new tradition - the tradition of challenging theories and myths and of critically discussing them. (A significant point is that this attempt coincides with the spread of the so-called Orphic sects whose members tried to replace the lost feeling of unity by a new mystical religion.) The earliest philosophers, the three great Ionians and Pythagoras, were probably quite unaware of the stimulus to which they were reacting. They were the representatives as well as the unconscious antagoists of a social revolution. The very fact that they founded schools or sects or orders, i.e. new social institutions or rather concrete groups with a common life and common functions, and modelled largely after those of an idealized tribe, proves that they were reformers in the social field, and therefore, that they were reacting to certain social needs. That they reacted to these needs and to their own sense of drift, not by imitating Hesiod in inventing a historicist myth of destiny and decay, but by inventing the tradition of criticism and discussion, and with it the art of thinking rationally, is one of the inexplicable facts which stand at the beginning of our civilization. But even these rationalists reacted to the loss of the unity of tribalism in a largely emotional way. Their reasoning gives expression to their feeling of drift, to the strain of a development which was about to create our

{p. 189} individualistic civilization. One of the oldest expressions of this strain goes back to Anaximander, the second of the Ionian philosophers. Individual existence appeared to him as hubris, as an impious act of injustice, as a wrongful act of usurpation, for which individuals must suffer, and do penance. The first to become conscious of the social revolution and the struggle of classes was Heraclitus. How he rationalized his feeling of drift by developing the first anti-democratic ideology and the first historicist philosophy of change and destiny, has been described in the second chapter of this book. Heraclitus was the first conscious enemy of the open society. ...

The greatest contribution to this faith was to be made by Socrates, who died for it. Socrates was not a leader of Athenian democracy, like Pericles, or a theorist of the open society, like Protagoras. He was, rather, a critic of Athens and of her democratic institutions, and in this he may have borne a superficial resemblance to some of the leaders of the reaction against the open society. But there is no need for a man who criticizes democracy and democratic institutions to be their enemy, although both the democrats he criticizes, and the totalitarians who hope to profit from any disunion in the democratic camp, are likely to brand him as such. There is a fundamental difference between a democratic and a totalitarian criticism of democracy. Socrates' criticism was a democratic one, and indeed of the kind that is the very life of democracy. (Democrats who do not see the difference between a friendly and a hostile criticism of democracy are themselves imbued with the totalitarian spirit. Totalitarianism, of course, cannot consider any criticism as friendly, since every criticism of such an authority must challenge the principle of authority itself.)

I have already mentioned some aspects of Socrates' teaching: his intellectualism, i.e. his equalitarian theory of human reason

{p. 190} as a universal medium of communication; his stress on intellectual honesty and self-criticism; his equalitarian theory of justice, and his doctrine that it is better to be a victim of injustice than to infiict it upon others. I think it is this last doctrine which can help us best to understand the core of his teaching, his creed of individualism, his belief in the human individual as an end in himself.

The closed society, and with it its creed that the tribe is everything and the individual nothing, had broken down. Individual initiative and self-assertion had become a fact. Interest in the human individual as individual, and not only as tribal hero and saviour, had been aroused. But a philosophy which makes man the centre of its interest began only with Protagoras. And the belief that there is nothing more important in our life than other individual men, the appeal to men to respect one another and themselves, appears to be due to Socrates.

{p. 191} But if Socrates was, fundamentally, the champion of the open society, and a friend of democracy, why, it may be asked, did he mix with anti-democrats? For we know that among his companions were not only Alcibiades, who for a time went over to the side of Sparta, but also two of Plato's uncles, Critias who later became the ruthless leader of the Thirty Tyrants, and Charmides who became his lieutenant.

There is more than one reply to this question. First we are told by Plato that Socrates' attack upon the democratic politicians of his time was carried out partly with the purpose of exposing the selfishness and lust for power of the hypocritical flatterers of the people, more particularly, of the young aristocrats who posed as democrats, but who looked upon the people as mere instruments of their lust for power. This activity made him, on the one hand, attractive to some at least of the enemies of dernocracy; on the other hand it brought him into contact with ambitious aristocrats of that very type. And here enters a second consideration. Socrates, the moralist and lndividualist, would never merely attack these men. He would, rather, take a real interest in them, and he would hardly give them up without making a serious attempt to convert them. There are many allusions to such attempts in Plato's dialogues. We have reason, and this is a third consideration, to believe that Socrates, the teacher-politician, even went out of his way to attract young men and to gain influence over them, especially when he considered them open to conversion, and thought that some day they might possibly hold offices of responsibility in their city. The outstanding example is, of course, Alcibiades, singled out from his very childhood as the great future leader of the Athenian empire. And Clitias' brilliancy, ambition and courage made him one of the few likely competitors of Alcibiades. (He co-operated with Alcibiades for a time, but later turned against him. It is not at all improbable that the temporary co-operation was due to Socrates' influence.) From all we know about Plato's own

{p. 192} early and later political aspirations, it is more than likely that his relations with Socrates were of a similar kind. Socrates, though one of the leading spirits of the open society, was not a party man. He would have worked in any circle where his work might have benefited his city. If he took interest in a promising youth he was not to be deterred by oligarchic family connections.

But these connections were to cause his death. When the great war was lost, Socrates was accused of having educated the men who had betrayed democracy and conspired with the enemy to bring about the downfall of Athens.

The history of the Peloponnesian war and the fall of Athens is still often told, under the influence of Thucydides' authority, in such a way that the defeat of Athens appears as the ultimate proof of the moral weaknesses of the democratic system. But this view is merely a tendentious distortion, and the well-known facts tell a very different story. The main responsibility for the lost war rests with the treacherous oligarchs who continusly conspired with Sparta. Prominent among these were three former disciples of Socrates, Alcibiades, Critias, and Charmides. After the fall of Athens in 404 B.C. the two latter became the leaders of the Thirty Tyrants, who were no more than a puppet government under Spartan protecion. The fall of Athens, and the destruction of the walls, are often presented as the final results of the great war which had started in 431 B.C. But in this presentation lies a major distortion; for the democrats fought on. At first only seventy strong, they prepared under the leadership of Thrasybulus and Anytus the liberation of Athens, where Critias was meanwhile killing scores of citizens; during the eight months of his reign of terror the death-roll contained 'rather a greater number of Athenians than the Peloponnesians had killed during the last ten years of war'. But after eight months (in 403 B.C.) Critias and the Spartan garrison were attacked and defeated by the democrats, who established themselves in the Piraeus, and both of Plato's uncles lost their lives in the battle. Their oligarchic followers continued for a time the reign of terror in the city of Athens itself, but their forces were in a state of confusion and dissolution. Having proved themselves incapable of ruling, they were ultimately abandoned by their Spartan protectors, who concluded a treaty with the democrats. The peace re-established democracy in Athens. Thus the democratic form of government had proved its superior strength under the most severe trials, and even its enemies began to think it invincible. (Nine years later, after the battle of Cnidus, the Athenians could re-erect their walls. The defeat of democracy had turned into victory.)

As soon as the restored democracy had re-established normal legal conditions, a case was brought against Socrates. Its meaning was clear enough; he was accused of having had his hand in the education of the most pernicious enemies of the state, Alcibiades, Critias, and Charmides. Certain difficulties for the prosecution were created by an amnesty for all political crimes committed before the re-establishment of the democracy. The charge could not therefore openly refer to these notorious cases. And the prosecutors probably sought not so much to punish Socrates for the unfortunate political events of the past which, as they knew well, had happened against his intentions; their aim was, rather, to prevent him from continuing his teaching, which, in view of its effects, they could hardly regard otherwise than as dangerous to the state. For all these reasons, the charge was given the vague and rather meaningless form that Socrates was corrupting the youth, that he was impious, and that he had attempted to introduce novel religious practices into the state. (The latter two charges undoubtedly expressed, however clumsily, the correct feeling that in the ethico-religious field he was a revolutionary.) Because of the amnesty, the 'corrupted youth' could not be more precisely named, but everybody knew, of course, who was meant. In his defence, Socrates insisted that he had no sympathy with the policy of the Thirty, and that he had actually risked his life by defying their attempt to implicate him in one of their crimes. And he reminded the jury that among his closest associates and most enthusiastic disciples there was at least one ardent democrat, Chaerephon, who fought against the Thirty (and who was, it appears, killed in battle).

It is now usually recognized that Anytus, the democratic leader who backed the prosecution, did not intend to make a martyr of Socrates. The aim was to exile him. But this plan was defeated by Socrates' refusal to compromise his principles. That he wanted to die, or that he enjoyed the role of martyr, I do not believe. He simply fought for what he believed to be right, and for his life's work. He had never intended to undermine democracy. In fact, he had tried to give it the faith it needed. This had been the work of his life. It was, he felt, seriously threatened. The betrayal of his forrner companions let his work and himself appear in a light which must have

{p. 194} disturbed him deeply. He may even have welcomed the trial as an opportunity to prove that his loyalty to his city was unbounded.

Socrates explained this attitude most carefully when he was given an opportunity to escape. Had he seized it, and become an exile, everybody would have thought him an opponent of democracy. So he stayed, and stated his reasons. This explanation, his last will, can be found in Plato's Crito. It is simple. If I go, said Socrates, I violate the laws of the state. Such an act would put me in opposition to the laws, and prove my disloyalty. It would do harm to the state. Only if I stay can I put beyond doubt my loyalty to the state, with its democratic laws, and prove that I have never been its enemy. There can be no better proof of my loyalty than my willingness to die for it.

Socrates' death is the ultimate proof of his sincerity. His fearlessness, his simplicity, his modesty, his sense of proportion, his humour never deserted him. 'I am the gadfly that God has attached to this city', he said in his Apology, 'and all day long and in all places I am always fastening upon you, arousing and persuading and reproaching you. You would not readily find another like me, and therefore I should advise you to spare me .. If you strike at me, as Anytus advises you, and rashly put me to death, then you will remain asleep for the rest of your lives, unless God in his care sends you another gadfly'. He showed that a man could die, not only for fate and fame and other grand things of this kind, but also for the freedom of critical thought, and for a self-respect which has nothing to do with self-importance or sentimentality.

Socrates had only one worthy successor, his old friend Antisthenes, the last of the Great Generation. Plato, his most gifted disciple, was soon to prove the least faithful. He betrayed Socrates, just as his uncles had done. These, besides betraying Socrates, had also tried to implicate him in their terrorist acts, but they did not succeed, since he resisted. Plato tried to implicate Socrates in his grandiose attempt to construct the theory of the arrested society; and he had no difficulty in succeeding, for Socrates was dead.

I know of course that this judgement will seem outrageously harsh, even to those who are critical of Plato. But if we look upon the Apology and the Crito as Socrates' last will, and if we

{p. 195} compare these testaments of his old age with Plato's testament, the Laws, then it is difficult to judge otherwise. Socrates had been condemned, but his death was not intended by the initiators of the trial. Plato's Laws remedy this lack of intention. Here he elaborates coolly and carefully the theory of inquisition. Free thought, criticism of political institutions, teaching new ideas to the young, attempts to introduce new religious practices or even opinions, are all pronounced capital crimes. In Plato's state, Socrates might have never been given the opportunity of defending himself publicly; and he certainly would have been handed over to the secret Nocturnal Council for the purpose of 'attending' to his diseased soul, and finally for punishing it.

I cannot doubt the fact of Plato's betrayal, nor that his use of Socrates as the main speaker of the Repubic was the most successful attempt to implicate him. But it is another question whether this attempt was conscious.

In order to understand Plato we must visualize the whole contemporary situation. After the Peloponnesian war, the strain of civilization was felt as strongly as ever. The old oligarchic hopes were still alive, and the defeat of Athens had even tended to encourage them. The class struggle continued. Yet Critias' attempt to destroy democracy by carrying out the programme of the Old Oligarch had failed. It had not failed through lack of determination; the most ruthless use of violence had been unsuccessful, in spite of favourable circumstances in the shape of powerful support from victorious Sparta. Plato felt that a complete reconstruction of the programme was needed. The Thirty had been beaten in the realm of power politics largely because they had offended the citizens' sense of justice. The defeat had been largely a moral defeat. The faith of the Great Generation had proved its strength. The Thirty had nothing of this kind to offer; they were moral nihilists. The programme of the Old Oligarch, Plato felt, could not be revived without basing it upon another faith, upon a persuasion which re-affirmed the old values of tribalism, opposing them to the faith of the open society. Men must be taught that justice is inequality, and that the tribe, the collective, stands higher than the individual. But since Socrates' faith was too strong to be challenged openly, Plato was driven to re-interpret it as a faith in the closed society. This was difficult; but it was not impossible. For had not Socrates been killed by the democracy? Had not democracy lost any right to claim him? And had not Socrates always criticized

{p. 196} the anonymous multitude as well as its leaders for their lack of wisdom? It was not so very difficult, moreover, to re-interpret Socrates as having recommended the rule of the 'educated', the learned philosophers. In this interpretation, Plato was much encouraged when he discovered that it was also part of the ancient Pythagorean creed; and most of all, when he found, in Archytas of Tarentum, a Pythagorean sage as well as a great and successful statesman. Here, he felt, was the solution of the riddle. Had not Socrates himself encouraged his disciples to participate in politics? Did this not mean that he wanted the enlightened, the wise, to rule? What a difference between the crudity of the ruling mob of Athens and the dignity of an Archytas! Surely Socrates, who had never stated his solution of the constitutional problem, must have had Pythagoreanism in mind.

In this way Plato may have found that it was possible to give by degrees a new meaning to the teaching of the most influential member of the Great Generation, and to persuade himself that an opponent whose overwhelming strength he would never have dared to attack directly, was an ally. This, I believe, is the simplest interpretation of the fact that Plato retained Socrates as his main speaker even after he had departed so widely from his teaching that he could no longer deceive himself about this deviation. But it is not the whole story. He felt, I believe, in the depth of his soul, that Socrates' teaching was very different indeed from this presentation, and that he was betraying Socrates. And I think that Plato's continuous efforts to make Socrates re-interpret himself are at the same time Plato's efforts to quiet his own bad conscience. By trying again and again to prove that his teaching was only the logical development of the true Socratic doctrine, he tried to persuade himself that he was not a traitor.

{p. 200} The lesson which we thus should learn from Plato is the exact opposite of what he tries to teach us. It is a lesson which must not be forgotten. Excellent as Plato's sociological diagnosis was, his own development proves that the therapy he recommended is worse than the evil he tried to combat. Arresting political change is not the remedy; it cannot bring happiness. We can never return to the alleged innocence and beauty of the closed society. Our dream of heaven cannot be realized on earth. Once we begin to rely upon our reason, and to use our powers of criticism, once we feel the call of personal responsibilities, and with it, the responsibility of helping to advance knowledge, we cannot return to a state of implicit submission to tribal magic. For those who have eaten of the tree of knowledge, paradise is lost. The more we try to return to the heroic age of tribalism, the more sureIy do we arrive at the Inquisition, at the Secret Police, and at a romanticized gangsterism. Beginning with the suppression of reason and truth, we must end with the most brutal and violent destruction of all that is human.

{p. 201} But if we wish to remain human, then there is only one way, the way into the open society. We must go on into the unknown, the uncertain and insecure, using what reason we may have to plan as well as we can for both security and freedom.


(9) Popper blames Totalitarianism on Plato

The Open Society and Its Enemies, by K. R. Popper, Volume II: The High Tide of Prophecy: Hegel, Marx, and the Aftermath, 4th edition (revised) (Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd, London, 1962).

{p. 2} Aristotle's thought is entirely dominated by Plato's. ... So he endorsed, and systematized, Plato's naturalistic theory of slavery: 'Some men are by nature free, and others slaves; and for the latter, slavery is fitting as well as just. .. A man who is by nature not his own, but another's, is by nature a slave. .. Hellenes do not like to call themselves slaves, but confine this term to barbarians. ... The

{p. 3} slave is totally devoid of any faculty of reasoning', while free women have just a very little of it. (We owe to Aristotle's criticisms and denunciations most of our knowledge of the Athenian movement against slavery. By arguing against the fighters for freedom, he preserved some of their utterances.) In some minor points Aristotle slightly mitigates Plato's theory of slavery, and duly censures his teacher for being too harsh. He could neither resist an opportunity for criticizing Plato, nor one for a compromise, not even if it was a compromise with the liberal tendencies of his time.

But the theory of slavery is only one of Plato's many political ideas to be adopted by Aristotle. Especially his theory of the Best State, as far as we know it, is modelled upon the theories of the Republic and the Laws; and his version throws considerable light on Plato's. Aristotle's Best State is a compromise between three things, a romantic Platonic aristocracy, a 'sound and balanced' feudalism, and some democratic ideas; but feudalism has the best of it. With the democrats, Aristotle holds that all citizens should have the right to participate in the government. But this, of course, is not meant to be as radical as it sounds, for Aristotle explains at once that not only slaves but all members of the producing classes are excluded from citizenship. Thus he teaches with Plato that the working classes must not rule and the ruling classes must not work nor earn any money. (But they are supposed to have plenty.) They own the land, but must not work it themselves. Only hunting, war, and similar hobbies are considered worthy of the feudal rulers. Aristotle's fear of any form of money earning, i.e. of all professional activities, goes perhaps even further than Plato's. Plato had used the term 'banausic' to describe a plebeian, abject, or depraved state of mind. Aristotle extends the disparaging use of the term so as to cover all interests which are not pure hobbies. In fact, his use of the term is very near to our use of the term ' professional', more especially in the sense in which it disqualifies in an amateur competition, but also in the sense in which it applies to any specialized expert, such as a physician. For Aristotle, every form of professionalism means a loss of caste. A feudal gentleman, he insists 5, must never take too much interest in 'any occupation, art or science. .. There are also some liberal arts, that is to say, arts which a gentleman may acquire, but always only to a certain degree. For if he takes too much interest in them, then these evil effects will follow', namely,

{p. 4} he will become proficient, like a professional, and lose caste.

{p. 5} The Form or essence of anything developing is identical with the purpose or end final state towards which it develops. Thus we obtain after all, in spite of Aristotle's disclaimer, something very closely resembling Speusippus' adjustment of Platonism. The Form or Idea, which is still, with Plato, considered to be good, stands at the end, instead of the beginning. This characterizes Aristotle's substitution of optimism for pessimism.

{p. 7} Three historicist doctrines which directly follow from Aristotle's essentialism may be distinguished. (1) Only if a person or a state develops, and only by way of its history, can we get to know anything about its 'hidden, undeveloped essence' (to use a phrase of Hegel's). This doctrine leads later, first of all, to the adoption of an historicist method; that is to say, of the principle that we can obtain any knowledge of social entities or essences only by applying the historical method, by studying social changes. ... (2) Change, by revealing what is hidden in the undeveloped essence, can only make apparent the essence, the potentialities, the seeds, which from the beginning have inhered in the changing object. This doctrine leads to the historicist idea of an historical fate or an inescapable essential destiny; for, as Hegel showed later, 'what we call principle, aim, destiny' is nothing but the

{p. 8} 'hidden undeveloped essence'. ... (3) In order to become real or actual, the essence must unfold itself in change. This doctrine assumes later, with Hegel, the following form: 'That which exists for itself only, is .. a mere potentiality: it has not yet emerged into Existence. .. It is only by activity that the Idea is actualized.'

{p. 22} The conflict between the Platonic-Aristotelian speculation and the spirit of the Great Generation, of Pericles, of Socrates, and of Democritus, can be traced throughout the ages. This spirit was preserved, more or less purely, in the movement of the Cynics who, like the early Christians, preached the brotherhood of man, which they connected with a monotheistic belief in the fatherhood of God. Alexander's empire as well as that of Augustus was influenced by these ideas which had first taken shape in the imperialist Athens of Pericles, and which had always been stimulated by the contact between West and East. It is very likely that these ideas, and perhaps the Cynic movement itself, influenced the rise of Christianity also.

In its beginning, Christianity, like the Cynic movement, was opposed to the highbrow Platonizing Idealism and intellectualism of the 'scribes', the learned men. ('Thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent and hast revealed them unto the babes.') I do not doubt that it was, in part, a protest against what may be described as Jewish Platonism in the wider sense, the abstract worship of God and His Word. And it was certainly a protest against Jewish tribalism, against its rigid and empty tribal taboos, and against its tribal exclusiveness which expressed itself, for example, in the doctrine of the chosen people, i.e. in an interpretation of the deity as a tribal god. Such an emphasis upon tribal laws and tribal unity appears to be characteristic not so much of a primitive tribal society as of a desperate attempt to restore and arrest the old forms of tribal life; and in the case of Jewry, it seems to have originated as a reaction to the impact of the Babylonian conquest on Jewish tribal life. But side by side with this movement towards greater rigidity we find another movement whch apparently originated

{p. 23} at the same time, and which produced humanitarian ideas that resembled the response of the Great Generation to the dissolution of Greek tribalism. This process, it appears, repeated itself when Jewish independence was ultimately destroyed by Rome. It led to a new and deeer schism between these two possible solutions, the return to the tribe, as represented by orthodox Jewry, and the humanitarianism of the new sect of Christians, which embraced barbarians (or gentiles) as well as slaves. We can see from the Acts how urgent these problems were, the social problem as well as the national problem. And we can see this from the development of Jewry as well; for its conservative part reacted to the same challenge by another movement towards arresting and petrifying their tribal form of life, and by clinging to their 'laws' with a tenacity which would have won the approval of Plato. It can hardly be doubted that this development was, like that of Plato's ideas, inspired by a strong antagonism to the new creed of the open society; in this case, of Christianity.

But the parallelism ketween the creed of the Great Generation, especially of Socrates, and that of early Christianity goes deeper. There is little doubt that the strength of the early Christians lay in their moral courage. It lay in the fact that they refused to accept Rome's claim 'that it was entitled to compel its subjects to act against their conscience'. The Christian martyrs who rejected the claims of might to set the standards of right suffered for the same cause for which Socrates had died.

It is clear that these matters changed very considerably when the Christian faith itself became powerful in the Roman empire. The question arises whether this official recognition of the Christian Church (and its later organization after the model of Julian the Apostate's Neo-Platonic Anti-Church) was not an ingenious political move on the part of the ruling powers, designed to break the tremendous moral influence of an equalitarian religion - a religion which they had in vain attempted to combat by force as well as by accusations of atheism and impiety. In other words, the question arises whether (especially after Julian) Rome did not find it necessary to apply Pareto's advice, 'to take advantage of sentiments, not wasting one's energies in futile efforts to destroy them'. This question is hard to answer; but it certainly cannot be dismissed by appealing (as Toynbee does) to our 'historical sense that warns us against attributing', to

{p. 24} the period of Constantine and his followers, '.. motives that are anachronistically cynical', that is to say, motives that are more in keeping with our own 'modern Western attitude to life'. For we have seen that such motives are openly and 'cynically', or more precisely, shamelessly, expressed as early as in the fifth century B.C. by Critias, the leader of the Thirty Tyrants; and similar statements can be found frequently during the history of Greek philosophy. However this may be, it can hardly be doubted that with Justinian's persecution of non-Christians, (A.D. 529), the dark ages began. The Church followed in the wake of Platonic-Aristotelian totalitarianism, a development that culminated in the Inquisition. The theory of the Inquisition, more especially, can be scribed as purely Platonic. It is set out in the last three books of the Laws, where Plato shows that it is the duty of the shepherd rulers to protect their sheep at all costs by preserving the rigidity of the laws and especially of religious practice and theory, even if they have to kill the wolf, who may admittedly be an honest and honourable man whose diseased conscience unfortunately does not permit him to bow to the threats of the mighty.

{but the Inquisition, it seems, was an attempt to suppress Jewish tribalism and Jewish dominance; the Inquisitors used the methods they did, to combat Jewish covert methods (especially marranism): braudel.html. Werner Sombart ventured to ask in this connection, "Cannot we bring into connexion the shifting of the economic centre from Southern to Northern Europe with the wanderings of the Jews?" (The Jews and Modern Capitalism, p. 13): sombart.html}

{p. 26} The terms 'Epicureanism', 'materialism', and 'empiricism', that is to say, the philosophy of Democritus, one of the greatest of the Great Generation, became in this way the synonyms of wickedness, and the tribal Idealism of Plato and Aristotle was exalted as a kind of Christianity before Christ. Indeed, this is the source of the immense authority of Plato and Aristotle, even in our own day, that their philosophy was adopted by medieval authoritarianism. But it must not be forgotten that, outside the totalitarian camp, their fame has outlived their practical influence upon our lives. And although the name of Democritus is seldom remembered, his science as well as his morals still live with us.

{Karl Marx was a great fan of Epicurus; he wrote his Ph. D. thesis on the similarities and differences between the (materialistic) philosophies of Epicurus and Democritus (see his Collected Works, Volume I)}

{p. 27} Hegel, the source of all contemporary historicism, was a direct follower of Heraclitus, Plato, and Aristotle.

{p. 29} Hegel's influence, and especially that of his cant, is still very powerful in moral and social philosophy and in the social and political sciences (with the sole exception of economics). Especially the philosophers of history, of politics, and of education are still to a very large extent

{p. 30} under its sway. In politics, this is shown most drastically by the fact that the Marxist extreme left wing, as well as the conservative centre, and the fascist extreme right, all base their political philosophies on Hegel; the left wing replaces the war of nations which appears in Hegel's historicist scheme by the war of classes, the extreme right replaces it by the war of races; but both follow him more or less consciously. (The conservative centre is as a rule less conscious of its indebtedness to Hegel.)

{And Feminism substitutes the war of the sexes - Peter M.}

How can this immense influence be explained ? My main intention is not so much to explain this phenomenon as to combat it. ...

The fight for the open society began again only with the ideas of 1789; and the feudal monarchies soon experienced the seriousness of this danger. When in 1815 the reactionary party began to resume its power in Prussia, it found itself in dire need of an ideology. Hegel was appointed to meet this demand, and he did so by reviving the ideas of the first great enemies of the open society, Heraclitus, Plato, and Aristotle. Just as the French Revolution rediscovered the perennial ideas of the Great Generation and of Christianity, freedom, equality, and the brotherhood of all men, so Hegel rediscovered the Platonic ideas which lie behind the perennial revolt against freedom and reason. Hegelianism is the renaissance of tribalism. The historical sig-

{p. 31} nificance of Hegel may be seen in the fact that he represents the 'missing link', as it were, between Plato and the modern form of totalitarianism. Most of the modern totalitarians are quite unaware that their ideas can be traced back to Plato. But many know of their indebtedness to Hegel, and all of them have been brought up in the close atmosphere of Hegelianism. They have been taught to worship the state, history, and the nation. (My view of Hegel presupposes, of course, that he interpreted Plato's teaching in the same way as I did here, that is to say, as totalitarian, to use this modern label; and indeed, it can be shown, from his criticism of Plato in the Philosophy of Law, that Hegel's interpretation agrees with ours.)

{Socialists fall into two camps, according to whether they admire or spurn ancient Rome. All socialists reject the Church rule of medieval Europe, but Jewish socialism opposes ancient Rome, whereas non-Jewish socialism looks to ancient Rome as some sort of inspiration. Rousseau, the chief philosopher of the French Revolution, looked to Sparta as a model, following Plato. His book The Social Contract is peppered with references to Sparta and Rome. Babeuf, the leader of the Communist faction executed by the Directorate, appealed to Lycurgus (lawgiver of Sparta), to Socrates and to Jesus during his trial. He said, "Gentelemen of the Jury, ... Socrates made war on bigotry - and drank the poisoned cup. Jesus of Galilee, who taught men to love equality, truth, and justice, and to hate the rich, was nailed live to the stake. Lycurgus fled his native land to escape death at the hands of those whom his deeds had made happy": toolkit2.html. Nietzsche, like Rousseau and Babeuf, looked to ancient Rome as a model. On the other hand, Weishaupt - founder of the Illuminati - and Marx, both Jewish, rejected Rome. Weishaupt adopted the name Spartacus, of the leader of as slave rebellion against Rome; and Marx wrote that Rome, far from a model of inspiration, represented nothing but Slavery. In The Holy Family, Marx wrote, 'Robespierre then explicitly calls the Athenians and Spartans "peuples libres". He ... quotes its heroes as well as its corrupters - Lycurgus, ... Brutus, ... Caesar ... . In his report on Danton's arrest ... Saint-Just says explicitly: "The world has been empty since the Romans, and only their memory fills it and still prophesies liberty." ... Robespierre, Saint-Just, and their party fell because they confused the ancient ... commonwealth based on real slavery with the modern ... commonwealth based on emancipated slavery, bourgeios society' (Collected Works of Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, Volume 4, Lawrence & Wishhart, London 1975, pp. 121-2). This divergence between the Jewish and non-Jewish revolutionaries shows the uneasy coalition between them. Similarly, Stalin came to see some merit in pre-Revolutionary Russian culture, but Trotskyists see none. In Australian Universities, Humanities faculties were captured during the 1980s by academics who not only wished to recount Australia's sins and display its dirty washing, but who could see no merit at all in the Australia of earlier decades. Does this iconoclasm, this attempt to obliterate the past, come from Plato, or from Judaism? - Peter M.}

In order to give the reader an immediate glimpse of Hegel's Platonizing worship of the state, I shall quote a few passages, even before I begin the analysis of his historicist philosophy. These passages show that Hegel's radical collectivism depends as much on Plato as it depends on Frederick William III, king of Prussia in the critical period during and after the French Revolution. Their doctrine is that te state is everything, and the individual nothing; for he owes everything to the state, his physical as well as his spiritual existence. This is the message of Plato, of Frederick William's Prussianism, and of Hegel 'The Universal is to be found in the State', Hegel writes. 'The State ... exists for its own sake. .. The State is the actually existing, realized moral life.' This selection of utterances may suffice to show Hegel's Platonism and his insistence upon the absolute moral authority of the state, which overrides all personal morality, all conscience. It is, of course, a bombastic and hysterical Platonism, but this only makes more obvious the fact that it links Platonism with modern totalitarianism.


But one extreme does not justify another. The East Asian countries of the Confucian tradition have survived the Capitalist onslaught from Wall Street precisely because they have "strong states". On the other hand, the weak states - the Philippines, many African and South American countries - have been much worse managed.

The state is required, to look after the "little people" in the face of the "big end of town". The stronger they are, the stronger the state needs to be, to contain them.

Plato drafted a plan for an ideal, but small, city-state; Hegel had a much more grandiose scheme of empire on a grand scale. His "stage of history" had no time for backwaters, as Plato would have been contented with. Hegel drew on Plato, but Plato can't be blamed for that.

Plato's Totalitarianism was an attempt to preserve order, in the face of the forces of chaos. As Norman Cohn points out, this was the common goal of religions prior to Zoroaster:

Norman Cohn, Cosmos, Chaos and the World to Come: The Ancient Roots of Apocalyptic Faith (Yale University Press, New Haven 1995).

{p. 227} ... Until around l500 BC peoples as diverse as Egyptians, Sumerians, Babylonians, Indo-Iranians and their Indian and Iranian descendants, Canaanites, pre-exilic Israelites were all agreed that in the beginning the world had been organised, set in order, by a god or by several gods, and that in essentials it was immutable. For each people, security - meaning fertility of the land, victory in war, stable social relations sanctioned by custom and law - was the outward and visible sign that a divinely ordained order did indeed exist.

However, that order was never untroubled, it was always threatened by evil, destructive forces - sometimes identified as flood or drought, famine or plague, inertia or death itself - but sometimes also as hostile peoples or tyrannical conquerors. In the combat myth, in its various formulations, the conflict between universal order and the forces that threatened and invaded and impaired it - between cosmos and chaos - was given symbolic expression. A young hero god, or divine warrior, was charged by the gods with the task of keeping the forces of chaos at bay; and in return he was awarded kingship over the world.

Some time between 1500 and 1200 BC Zoroaster broke out of that static yet anxious world-view. He did so by reinterpreting, radically, the Iranian version of the combat myth. In Zoroaster's view the world was not static, nor would it always be troubled. Even now the world was moving, through incessant conflict, towards a conflictless state. The time would come when, in a prodigious final battle, the supreme god and his supernatural allies would defeat the forces of chaos and their human allies and eliminate them once and for all.

{p. 228} From then on the divinely appointed order would obtain absolutely physical distress and want would be unknown, no enemy would threaten, within the community of the saved there would be absolute unanimity; in a word, the world would be for ever untroubled totally secure.

{endquote} More at zoroastrianism.html.

Popper himself, in advocating an "Open Society" in which - he acknowledges - Class War is a prominent feature, sides with those unsettling forces of "Change" or "Chaos".

In blaming Plato for Totalitarianism, Popper lets Judaism off the hook completely.

J. L. Talmon, another distinguished Jewish scholar, wrote two studies of the revolutionary tradition. The first, The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy, "writes out" any mention of Jewish involvement, tracing Totalitarianism to Rousseau's "General Will", with Plato as one of the ancestors.

The second, Israel Among the Nations (Weidenfeld and Nicolson, London 1970) "writes Judaism back in" as an agent of revolution:

{p. 1} It has for a long time been almost an axiom that The Revolution was the ally, some were even wont to say saviour of the Jews, and that the Jews were the natural standard-bearers of the revolution. ... Those who should be most interested, revolutionaries of Jewish extraction, or revolutionaries in general, tend to deny the very legitimacy of the juxtaposition, 'Jews and revolution'. It is, they argue, men, classes, peoples who rise in revolt against oppression, that many revolutionaries have

{p. 2} been of Jewish ancestry is quite irrelevant and the very desire to see it as relevant arises out of a sinister intention to discredit the cause of revolution itself ... Then there are those Jews who are unable to ignore the intimate relation between Jews and revolution, but wish they had never heard of it. {endquote}

More at talmon2.html.

(10) Israel Shahak on the Totalitarian elements in Judaism

Israel Shahak, Jewish History, Jewish Religion: The Weight of Three Thousand Years (Pluto Press, London 1994).

{p. 10} In May 1993, Ariel Sharon formally proposed in the Likud Convention that Israel should adopt the 'Biblical borders' concept as its official policy. There were rather few objections to this proposal, either in the Likud or outside it, and all were cased on pragmaic grounds. No one even asked Sharon where exactly are the Biblical borders which he was urging that Israel should attain. Let us recall that among those who call themselves Leninists there was no doubt that history follows the principles laid out by Marx and Lenin. It is not only the belief itself, however dogmatic, but the refusal that it should ever be doubted, by thwarting open discussion, which creates a totalitarian cast of mind. Israeli-Jewish society and diaspora Jews who are leading 'Jewish lives' and organised in purely Jewish organisations, can be said therefore to have a strong streak of totalitarianism in their character.

{p. 15} However, once the modern state had come into existence, the Jewish community lost its powers to punish or intimidate the individual Jew. The bonds of one of the most closed of 'closed societies', one of the most totalitarian societies in the whole history of mankind were snapped.

{p. 16} So one will not find in Hannah Arendt's voluminous writings whether on totalitarianism or on Jews, or on both, the smallest hint as to what Jewish society in Germany was really like in the 18th century: burning of books, persecution of writers, disputes about the magic powers of amulets, bans on the most elementary 'non-Jewish' education such as the teaching of correct German or indeed German written in the Latin alphabet. Nor can one find in the numerous English-language 'Jewish histories' the elementary facts about the attitude of Jewish mysticism (so fashionable at present in certain quarters) to non-Jews: that they are considered to be, literally, limbs of Satan, and that the few non-satanic individuals among them (that is, those who convert to Judaism) are in reality 'Jewish souls' who got lost when Satan violated the Holy Lady (Shehhtnah or Matronit, one of the female components of the Godhead, sister and wife of the younger male God according to the cabbala) in her heavenly abode.

{p. 18} There were no Jewish comedies, just as there were no comedies in Sparta, and for a similar reason.

{p. 101} Also, many Jews who appear to be active in defending human

{p. 102} rights and who adopt non-conformist views on other issues do, in cases affecting Israel, display a remarkable degree of totalitarianism and are in the forefront of the defence of all Israeli policies.

{p. 103} It should be recalled that Judaism, especially in its classical form, is totalitarian in nature.


(11) Hayek & the Mont Pelerin Society

(9.1) The Austrian school of thought that packs a massive political punch

Sydney Morning Herald

August 13, 2003

The godfather of the neo-conservative movement would have been delighted with its progress, writes Wilson da Silva.


They are unelected, privately funded and their meetings are by invitation only. Operating behind the scenes, they influence elected officials, bureaucrats and rising politicians from both sides of politics and they populate the opinion pages of newspapers. Australia's neo-conservative think tanks wield extraordinary influence over government policy.

They are so influential that they regard themselves as "the fifth estate", as essential to democracy as the other four: government, parliament, the judiciary and a free press. Each think tank has a clear political agenda, but prefers the camouflage of innocuous-sounding names such as Sydney's Centre for Independent Studies (CIS) or Melbourne's Institute of Public Affairs.

Despite their clout, as reported in The Sydney Morning Herald this week, their membership is undisclosed and their financial backers publicity shy.

At closed meetings, you are as likely to find the Premier, Bob Carr, as you are the Prime Minister, John Howard. They may sell themselves as independent ideas factories, but they have a product to sell. Call it neo-liberalism, neo-conservatism or the New Right, they are about the winding-back of government from the economy and the retreat of the welfare state. In the case of the CIS, the traditional family is also central.

The left has nothing quite like them: not in numbers, funding or in sheer clout. That's partly because most donors of think tanks are businesses and wealthy individuals, and few of these are interested in policy ideas espoused by groups such as the Australia Institute in Canberra, probably the country's leading progressive think tank.

In the United States and Britain, neo-conservative think tanks have been phenomenally successful since rising to prominence in the 1970s. Margaret Thatcher was co-founder of Britain's Centre for Policy Studies before becoming party leader, and her government's manifesto was written by her think tank. It advocated the busting of union power, free trade, restructuring the tax system to favour families and a raft of what were once neo-conservative fetishes now considered mainstream.

The capture of the White House by the Republicans in 1980 ushered in the first-wave neo-conservative revolution in the US. Ronald Reagan's favourite think tank was the hawkish Institute for Contemporary Studies, from where he drew Edwin Meese as attorney-general and Caspar Weinberger as defence secretary. A former chairman is the Defence Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld.

If there was a global godfather of this neo-conservative movement, it would be Friedrich von Hayek. The Austrian economist and social theorist was a rival of British economist John Maynard Keynes. Keynes' interventionist ideas came to dominate policy after World War II, while Hayek's drifted into the back rooms of history.

But he didn't give up: in 1947, he set up the Mont Pelerin Society, a secretive group that met annually to map out a neo-conservative counterattack against the growing socialist character of postwar economies. It played midwife to scores of neo-conservative think tanks, among them the Heritage Foundation (1973) and the Cato Institute (1977) in the US and Australia's CIS (1975).

The society and its progeny have been enormously influential: of the 76 advisers in Reagan's 1980 presidential campaign, 22 were members. And its members include Nobel laureate Milton Friedman (a former president), Czech Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus and former New Zealand finance minister Ruth Richardson. Greg Lindsay, the executive director of the CIS in Sydney, is a former vice-president. Neo-conservative think tanks now dominate the political debate in much of the West.

In Australia, as elsewhere, they ply their trade by publishing "independent research" from a network of like-minded scholars whose reports invariably end up backing the neo-conservative world view. Staff and friendly scholars are paid to write newspaper articles which are submitted - usually free - to opinion pages.

By publishing reports that confirm their arguments, neo-conservative think tanks seek to mould public debate. But they also peddle influence, holding closed seminars and lectures where visiting international conservative luminaries address selected rising members of the political elite - such as last week's CIS gathering on the Sunshine Coast. Von Hayek would have been pleased. He died in 1992, but not before Thatcher rewarded him with a visit to Buckingham Palace, where he was bestowed with a Companion of Honour - a tribute to the most successful, if unheralded, political puppet-master of the past century.

Wilson da Silva is a Sydney journalist who has extensively researched think tanks in Australia.


(9.2) Rochard Cockett's book Thinking the Unthinkable: Think-Tanks and the Economic Revolution, 1931-1983 (Fontana edition, London, 1995) is a history of the Mont Pelerin Society:

{p. 77} Von Mises published two books in 1944, Omnipotent Government and Bureaucracy, both of which attacked

{p. 78} planning and Keynesian economics.

{p. 80} Hayek met Popper before the war, when Popper had addressed the Hayek-Robbins Seminar at the L.S.E. in 1936. Despite the brevity of their personal contact, Hayek and Popper had recognized a mutual interest

{p. 82} in each other's work, and corresponded. At the start of the war, Popper was working on the long essay The Poverty of Historicism which was published in Economica in 1944 and 1945. However, much more intriguingly for Hayek, he discovered that Popper was also working on a book that was very similar to his own Road to Serfdom. ...

The book Popper was writing was of course, The Open Society and its Enemies, which in 1943 Popper was calling The Flight from Freedom. ... Popper was undoubtedly inspired by Hayek's work ... {endquote}

(12) Letter to Israel Shamir

by Peter Myers

January 17, 2004.

It seems that Dugin - and yourself - let me put you both in the same basket - are trying to salvage what was good about the Communist system, jettisoning its fanatical iconoclasm and suppression of all religion.

I agree with this. I myself don't mind if the land is owned communally, and operated as collective farms, or owned co-operatively, or privately by small farmers but NOT big ones.

Nor do I object to the centrally planned economy the USSR had, although I am equally happy with a "market socialist" one. Probably the East European economies are more to my liking that the USSR one, but I can abide both.

Where I oppose the USSR is its "cultural war" on all things traditional. That does not mean that I am a stick-in-the-mud traditionalist, but I think that religions often preserve (unwittingly) vestiges or relics of the past, that one should not just jettison. To do so is to risk throwing out the baby with the bathwater.

A culture without a past is like a person without a memory. A cultural lobotomy is not a good idea.

I do not endorse "open slather" for religions. I think that Russia is quite right to resist the encroachment of the Vatican, the American Protestant churches, the Scientologists.

But the USSR even went as far as banning native Shamans from continuing their craft.

In the end, religion brought it down. The CIA mobilised the Moslems in Afghanistan, and the Catholics in Poland, to do their demolition job for them.

If only the USSR had taken a softer line on religion, it might still exist.

And you yourself advocate such a stance.

Rowan is - like Larouche - making "fascist" allegations (e.g. against Dugin) too freely. The irony is that Larouche, whose material he is using, is also branded a "fascist" by his critics. It's got to the point where everyone's calling everyone else "Nazis".

Hannah Newman, a Zionist, calls the New Age Movement and the One-World Utopia of H. G. Wells "a kinder, gentler Reich": http://www.mega.nu:8080/ampp/newage.html.

John Carey's book The Intellectuals and the Masses similarly equates H. G. Wells and the Green intellectuals with Hitlerism: http://www.leaderu.com/ftissues/ft9406/reviews/kimball.html.

LM Magazine in Britain (formerly Living Marxism) similarly labeled the Greens "Nazis", and produced a TV documentary Against Nature to that effect, which was shown in Britain and Australia.

George Monbiot wrote of it, "In their callous disregard for human welfare and their fetishism of nature, greens, it maintains, are not merely conservative, but fascist, drawing their inspiration from precisely the same ideologies as the Nazis": http://www.videonetwork.org/stuff/againstnature.html.

I reject all this name-calling; it's all too easy, as if a one-word reply suffices as a substitute for debate.

The only way the "Open Society" - the nice name for Capitalism - can be resisted - is for elements of the Left Opposition & the Right Opposition to coalesce. Popper calls them the Left Hegelians & the Right Hegelians; Popper's mentor F. A. von Hayek had earlier used similar terminology, in bracketing the two groups in The Road to Serfdom (Routledge, London, 1944). James Burnham bracketed them together as "managerial societies", in his book The Managerial Revolution: burnham.html. Even Roger Scruton bandies the same sort of terminology about.

Popper imself notes "a similarity between my 'open society' and the term used by Walter Lipmann as the title of his most admirable book, The Good Society (1937)" (The Open Society and Its Enemies, Volume I, Fifth edition (revised), p. 203n above).

Carroll Quigley wrote of Lippmann in his book Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World in our Time (Macmillan, New York, 1966):

"This new recruit, Walter Lippmann, has been, from 1914 to the present, the authentic spokesman in American journalism for the Establishments on both sides of the Atlantic in international affairs. His biweekly columns, which appear in hundreds of American papers, are copyrighted by the New York Herald Tribune which is now owned by J. H. Whitney. It was these connections, as a link between Wall Street and the Round Table Group, which gave Lippmann the opportunity in 1918, while still in his twenties, to be the official interpreter of the meaning of Woodrow Wilson's Fourteen Points to the British government." (p. 939).

More from Quigley at tragedy.html.

I have no brief for Hegel, so I reject the "Hegelian" part of the label. But I maintain that the truly racist part of the anti-Capitalist Right should be rejected, as well as the Jacobin part of the anti-Capitalist Left, and that the remainder should unite to form a new block.

This is what I think you and Dugin are about.

Whether one had a Jewish upbringing, or any other in particular, is not terribly relevant in this scheme. We all have to escape our upbringing in various ways, but we don't want to lobotomise ourselves in that way either.

The important thing is that we unite for this pressing task.


Since the Enlightenment, a variety of secular fundamentalisms - Marxist, Nazi, Radical Feminist - have preoccupied the European mind, unobserved because fundamentalism was defined as necessarily religious. A fundamentalist world-view is one based on the antagonistic polarity concept: (a) social forces are seen as divided into two sides, one good, one evil (b) the good side is totally good and the other totally evil; there are no "shades of grey" in between. Living Without Utopia: utopia.html.

Fallibilism as a theory of knowledge; Falsifiability as a criterion for dismissing theories: perspectivism.html.

Soros chose Popper as his guru; but Popper "blessed" Soros & his Open Society Foundation by accepting the first "Open Society Prize" from him, and by delivering a lecture at his Central European University in Prague; George Soros' role in promoting privatisation and "minority" politics: soros.html.

Toynbee on Judaism and Zoroastrianism as militant anti-Hellenic movements: toynbee.html.

Toynbee on Trotsky and the Bolshevik Revolution: toynbee2.html.

Free Trade is a means to World Government. There are good reasons for world unity; but who will rule? oneworld.html.

Alternatives to Laissez-Faire economics:

Financing Sustainable Development, by John H. Hotson; Banana Republic? No, Banana Colony, by Dr H. C. Coombs.: money.html.

The Money Masters: How International Bankers Gained Control of America, by Patrick S. J. Carmack and Bill Still: money-masters.html.

Back to the Zionism/Communism index: zioncom.html.

Write to me at contact.html.