When Books Fall Out!

Bricks at Locke,
While Lenin’s work
Is excoriated by Burke.

Friedman stands aloof
Believing he holds the absolute truth,
While Engels continues his long wait
For the end of the Capitalist state.

1. I studied history and politics at University College of Swansea and read all of the below works during the course of my studies. The books still reside on the bookshelves which live in my spare room, which I glorify with the name of study!

2. Thomas Hobbes was a philosopher who, in 1651 published “Leviathan”, http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/3207. Essentially Hobbes argues in favour of a government with absolute power as a means of preventing a return to “the state of nature” which is, for Hobbes a “state of war of every man against every man”. People should not challenge governmental authority as this will lead to chaos (in other words any authority is better than no authority). However, if a government does fall then the populace should give its loyalty to the new authority. Hobbes view of human nature is bleak and in part at least flows from his experience of the bloody anarchy which flowed from the English Civil War which saw the execution of King Charles I.

3. John Locke was a Whig philosopher who in his “Second Treatise of Government” defended the right of the people (if all else failed) to overthrow a tyrannical government. The “Second Treatise” was, in part at least a defence of the “Glorious Revolution” of 1688. The “Second Treatise” can be found here, http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/7370.

4. Lenin was the leader of the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 in Russia. One of his best known works is “The State and Revolution” in which he sets out his view on how the Capitalist state will be replaced by a socialist/communist society, https://www.amazon.com/State-Revolution-V-I-Lenin/dp/0717801969.

5. Edmund Burk is often regarded (in a philosophical sense) as being the founder of modern Conservatism. In his “Reflections on the Revolution in France” Burke roundly condemns the French Revolution and argues that such uprisings inevitably lead to anarchy and Terror. Consequently Burke stands diametrically opposed to Lenin. You can find “Reflections” here, http://www.constitution.org/eb/rev_fran.htm.

6. Milton Friedman was a major contributor to the free-market school of economics. In his “Free to Choose” co-authored with his wife Rose, he argues in favour of personal and economic freedom. “Free to Choose” is, in all probability the most accessible of Friedman’s works and is based on a television series of the same name, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_to_Choose.

7. Engels was Marx’s friend and produced several works of his own, including “Socialism Utopian and Scientific”, in which he criticises what he regards as “utopian” socialism, which he contrasts with what he argues is the “scientific” socialism of Marx. As with Marx, Engels believed that Capitalism would inevitably collapse and be replaced by communism for (according to Engels), the laws of science proved the inevitability of communism’s triumph, https://www.amazon.com/dp/0717801918.


3 thoughts on “When Books Fall Out!

    1. drewdog2060drewdog2060 Post author

      Thanks for your comment. There is often a yawning gap between the writings of theorists and how real people operate. Human society is complex but this fact is often disregarded by those who spend their time writing pamphlets for think tanks etc.


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