Vladimir Lenin, fully Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

Vladimir
Lenin, fully Vladimir Ilyich Lenin
1870
1924

Russian Marxist Revolutionary and Communist Politician who led the October Revolution of 1917

Author Quotes

The revolutionary way is the way of quick amputation, which is the least painful to the proletariat, the way of the direct removal of the decomposing parts, the way of fewest concessions to and least consideration for the monarchy and the disgusting, vile, rotten and contaminating institutions which go with it.

The worker is becoming impoverished absolutely, i.e., he is actually becoming poorer than before; he is compelled to live worse, to eat worse, to suffer hunger more, and to live in basements and attics.

To become a power the class-conscious workers must win the majority to their side.As long as no violence is used against the people there is no other road to power. We are not Blancists, we do not stand for the seizure of power by a minority.

The Russian is a bad worker compared with people in advanced countries. It could not be otherwise under the tsarist regime and in view of the persistence of the hangover from serfdom. The task that the Soviet government must set the people in all its scope is - learn to work. The Taylor system, the last word of capitalism in this respect, like all capitalist progress, is a combination of the refined brutality of bourgeois exploitation and a number of the greatest scientific achievements in the field.

The workers and peasants are still timid, they have not yet become accustomed to the idea that they are now the ruling class; they are not yet resolute enough. The revolution could not at one stroke instill these qualities into millions and millions of people who all their lives had been compelled by want and hunger to work under the threat of the stick.

To belittle the socialist ideology in any way, to turn aside from it in the slightest degree means to strengthen bourgeois ideology. There is much talk of spontaneity. But the spontaneousdevelopment of the working-class movement leads to its subordination to bourgeois ideology; for the spontaneous working-class movement is trade-unionism, and trade unionism means the ideological enslavement of the workers by the bourgeoisie. Hence, our task, the task of Social-Democracy, is to combat spontaneity, to divert the working-class movement from this spontaneous, trade-unionist striving to come under the wing of the bourgeoisie, and to bring it under the wing of revolutionary Social Democracy.

The so-called Great Powers have long been exploiting and enslaving a whole number of small and weak nations. And the imperialist war is a war for the division and redivision of this kind of booty.

The working class cannot play its world-revolutionary role unless it wages a ruthless struggle against this renegacy, spinelessness, subservience to opportunism and unexampled vulgarization of the theories of Marxism.

To call a fight for the Zionist idea of a Jewish nation, for the federal principle of Party organization, a “fight for the equality of the Jews in the world family of the proletariat” is to degrade the struggle from the plane of ideas and principles to that of suspicion, incitement and fanning of historically-evolved prejudices. It glaringly reveals a lack of real ideas and principles as weapons of struggle.

People always have been the foolish victims of deception and self-deception in politics, and they always will be, until they have learned to seek out the interests of some class or other behind all moral, religious, political and social phrases, declarations and promises.

Socialism, by organizing production without class oppression, by ensuring the well-being of all members of the state, gives full play to the “sympathies” of the population, thereby promoting and greatly accelerating the drawing together and fusion of the nations.

The bourgeoisie are today evading taxation by bribery and through their connections; we must close all loopholes.

The functionaries of our political organizations and trade unions are corrupted — or rather tend to be corrupted — by the conditions of capitalism and betray a tendency to become bureaucrats, i.e., privileged persons divorced from the people and standing above the people.

The oppressed are allowed once every few years to decide which particular representatives of the oppressing class shall represent and repress them in parliament.

Perhaps the profoundest cause of disagreement with the Narodniks is the difference in our fundamental views on social and economic processes. When studying the latter, the Narodnik usually draws conclusions that point to some moral; he does not regard the diverse groups of persons taking part in production as creators of various forms of life; he does not set out to present the sum-total of social and economic relationships as the result of the mutual relations between these groups, which have different interests and different historical roles.

Socialists cannot achieve their great aim without fighting against all oppression of nations.

The bourgeoisie incites the workers of one nation against those of another in the endeavour to keep them disunited. Class-conscious workers, realizing that the break-down of all the national barriers by capitalism is inevitable and progressive, are trying to help to enlighten and organize their fellow-workers from the backward countries.

The goal of socialism is communism.

The passing of state power from one class to another is the first, the principal, the basic sign of a revolution, both in the strictly scientific and in the practical political meaning of that term. To this extent, the bourgeois, or the bourgeois-democratic, revolution in Russia is completed.

Philosophical idealism is only nonsense from the standpoint of crude, simple, metaphysical materialism. From the standpoint of dialectical materialism, on the other hand, philosophical idealism is a one-sided, exaggerated, development (inflation, distension) of one of the features, aspects, facets of knowledge, into an absolute, divorced from matter, from nature, apotheosized.

Socialists must explain to the masses that they have no other road of salvation except the revolutionary overthrow of “their” governments, and that advantage must be taken of these governments’ embarrassments in the present war precisely for this purpose.

The bourgeoisie is many times stronger than we. To give it the weapon of freedom of the press is to ease the enemy’s cause, to help the class enemy. We do not desire to end in suicide, so we will not do this.

The government considers it the greatest of crimes against humanity to continue this war over the issue of how to divide among the strong and rich nations the weak nationalities they have conquered, and solemnly announces its determination immediately to sign terms of peace to stop this war on the terms indicated, which are equally just for all nationalities without exception.

The Poor Peasants’ Committees are necessary to fight the kulaks, the rich, the exploiters, who shackle the working peasants. But between the kulaks, who are a small minority, and the poor or semi-proletarians there is the section of the middle peasants. The Soviet government has never declared or conducted any struggle against them. Any steps or measures to the contrary must be condemned most vigorously and stopped. The socialist government must pursue a policy of agreement with the middle peasants.

Political institutions are a superstructure resting on an economic foundation.

Author Picture
First Name
Vladimir
Last Name
Lenin, fully Vladimir Ilyich Lenin
Birth Date
1870
Death Date
1924
Bio

Russian Marxist Revolutionary and Communist Politician who led the October Revolution of 1917