Lenin on freedom

Every now and then in my reading of Lenin’s collected works, I come across a passage that may well have been written this morning:

‘Freedom’ is a grand word, but under the banner of freedom for industry the most predatory wars were waged, under the banner of freedom of labour, the working people were robbed. The modern use of the term ‘freedom of criticism’ contains the same inherent falsehood. Those who are really convinced that they have made progress in critical scholarship wold not demand freedom for the new views to continue side by side with the old, but the substitution of the new views for the old. The cry heard today, ‘Long live freedom of criticism’, is too strongly reminiscent of the fable of the empty barrel. Lenin, Collected Works, vol. 5, p. 355.

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