Life is a succession of lessons enforced by immediate reward, or, oftener, by immediate chastisement.Ernest Dimnet
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Quotes about Communism
(in alphabetic order, by author)
Quotes in favor of Communism
- "Communism is not a set of measures to be put into practice after the seizure of power. It is a movement which already exists, not as a mode of production (there can be no communist island within capitalist society), but as a tendency which originates in real needs. Communism does not even know what value is. The point is not that one fine day a large number of people start to destroy value and profit. All past revolutionary movements were able to bring society to a standstill, and waited for something to come out of this universal stoppage. Communization, on the contrary, will circulate goods without money, open the gate isolating a factory from its neighbourhood, close down another factory where the work process is too alienating to be technically improved, do away with school as a specialized place which cuts off learning from doing for 15 odd years, pull down walls that force people to imprison themselves in 3-room family units - in short, it will tend to break all separations. Communism believes in equality through force."
- "Communism is the end of the economy as a separate and privileged field on which everything else depends while despising and fearing it. It is used to refer to the economic power under Communist parties that have the dictatorship of the social classes."
- "The true revolutionary is guided by great feelings of love. It is impossible to think of a genuine revolutionary lacking this quality."
"There is no other definition of communism valid for us than that of the abolition of the exploitation of man by man."
- "I worked at a factory owned by Germans, at coal pits owned by Frenchmen, and at a chemical plant owned by Belgians. There I discovered something about capitalists. They are all alike, whatever the nationality. All they wanted from me was the most work for the least money that kept me alive. So I became a communist."
- "The political form of a society wherein the proletariat is victorious in overthrowing the bourgeoisie will be a democratic republic."
- "Communism is for us not a state of affairs which is to be established, an ideal to which reality [will] have to adjust itself. We call communism the real movement which abolishes the present state of things. The conditions of this movement result from the premises now in existence."
- "Communism differs from all previous movements in that it overturns the basis of all earlier relations of production and intercourse, and for the first time consciously treats all natural premises as the creatures of hitherto existing men, strips them of their natural character and subjugates them to the power of the united individuals. Its organisation is, therefore, essentially economic, the material production of the conditions of this unity; it turns existing conditions into conditions of unity. The reality, which communism is creating, is precisely the true basis for rendering it impossible that anything should exist independently of individuals, insofar as reality is only a product of the preceding intercourse of individuals themselves."
- "The theory of the Communism may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property."
"From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his needs."
"Communism deprives no man of the ability to appropriate the fruits of his labour. The only thing it deprives him of is the ability to enslave others by means of such appropriations."
"Democracy is the road to socialism."
"Let the ruling classes tremble at a Communist revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Working men of all countries, unite!"
- "Communism needs democracy like the human body needs oxygen."
- "The fall of the present bureaucratic dictatorship [in the Soviet Union], if it were not replaced by a new socialist power, would thus mean a return to capitalist relations with a catastrophic decline of industry and culture."
–Leon Trotsky, The Revolution Betrayed
Quotes against Communism
- "Capitalism and communism stand at opposite poles. Their essential difference is this: The communist, seeing the rich man and his fine home, says: 'No man should have so much.' The capitalist, seeing the same thing, says: 'All men should have as much.' "
- "Communism and fascism or Nazism, although poles apart in their intellectual content, are similar in this, that both have emotional appeal to the type of personality that takes pleasure in being submerged in a mass movement and submitting to superior authority."
–James A. C. Brown
- "Justice is always naive and self-confident; believing that it will immediately win once recognized. That is the reason why the forces of Justice are so poorly organized. On the other hand, the Evil is cynic, sly and fantastically organized. It never ever has the illusion of the ability to stand on its own feet and to win in a fair competition. That is why it is ready to use any kind of means without hesitation. And of course it does - under the banners of the most noble ideas."
- "From the days of Spartacus, Karl Marx, Trotsky, Rosa Luxemburg, and Emma Goldman, this world conspiracy has been steadily growing. This conspiracy played a definite recognizable role in the tragedy of the French revolution. It has been the mainspring of every subversive movement during the 19th Century. And now at last this band of extraordinary personalities from the underworld of the great cities of Europe and America have gripped the Russian people by the hair of their head and have become the undisputed masters of that enormous empire."
"A communist is like a crocodile – when it opens its mouth you cannot tell whether it is trying to smile or preparing to eat you up."
"The substance of the eminent Socialist gentlemen's speech is that making a profit is a sin. It is my belief that the real sin is taking a loss!"
- "The streets of our country are in turmoil. The universities are filled with students rebelling and rioting. Communists are seeking to destroy our country. Russia is threatening us with her might, and the Republic is in danger. Yes - danger from within and without. We need law and order! Without it our nation cannot survive."
- "Communism has never come to power in a country that was not disrupted by war or corruption, or both."
–John Fitzgerald Kennedy
- "No one is so stubborn and dangerous as the beneficiaries of a fallen idea - they defend not the idea, but their bare life and the loot."
- "When ecclesiastic love waned, when waves of capitalistic greed surged across Christian Europe, when starving masses cried out bitterly in the slums, the promise of their salvation came not from heaven but from the earth. Its name was communism. Christianity, though it professed the love of God, had degenerated into a dead body of clergy trailing empty slogans. It was then only natural that a banner of rebellion would be raised, arguing that a merciless God who would allow such suffering could not exist. Hence, modern materialism was born. Western society became a hotbed of materialism; it was the fertile soil in which communism flourished."
-Sun Myung Moon, Divine Principle, Introduction.
- "Nonetheless, one final and inescapable conflict remains before us, the war between democracy and communism. Although each side has equipped itself with fearsome weapons and is pitted against the other in readiness for battle, the core of their conflict is internal and ideological. Which side will triumph in this final ideological conflict? Anyone who believes in the reality of God will surely answer that democracy will win."
-Sun Myung Moon, Divine Principle, Introduction.
- "After 7,000 biblical years — 6,000 years of restoration history plus the millennium, the time of completion — communism will fall in its 70th year. Here is the meaning of the year 1978. Communism, begun in 1917, could maintain itself approximately 60 years and reach its peak. So 1978 is the border line and afterward communism will decline; in the 70th year it will be altogether ruined. This is true. Therefore, now is the time for people who are studying communism to abandon it."
-Sun Myung Moon, The Way of Restoration, (April, 1972)
- "How do you tell a communist? Well, it's someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It's someone who understands Marx and Lenin."
"The years ahead will be great ones for our country, for the cause of freedom and the spread of civilization. The West will not contain Communism, it will transcend Communism. We will not bother to denounce it, we'll dismiss it as a sad, bizarre chapter in human history whose last pages are even now being written."
"In an ironic sense, Karl Marx was right. We are witnessing today a great revolutionary crisis – a crisis where the demands of the economic order are colliding directly with those of the political order. But the crisis is happening not in the free, non-Marxist West, but in the home of Marxism-Leninism, the Soviet Union ... [Communism will be] left on the ash heap of history."
"The Soviet Union is an Evil Empire, and Soviet communism is the focus of evil in the modern world."
- "Communism is like Prohibition, it's a good idea but it won't work"
- "At the end of a century that has seen the evils of communism, Nazism and other modern tyrannies, the impulse to centralize power remains amazingly persistent."
- "For us in Russia communism is a dead dog. For many people in the West, it is still a living lion."
"I have spent all my life under a Communist regime, and I will tell you that a society without any objective legal scale is a terrible one indeed. But a society with no other scale but the legal one is not quite worthy of man either."
"In our country, the lie has become not just a moral category but a pillar of the State."
- "Communism is the corruption of a dream of justice."
"Communism is the death of the soul. It is the organization of total conformity – in short, of tyranny – and it is committed to making tyranny universal.
–Adlai E. Stevenson
- "Communists always say that Capitalism leaves holes for crime, poverty and a higher society and that it is wrong. Communists do an even worse job at correcting this. Capitalism has a mission to give every person everything they want, and right now we are set out to fulfill that mission. All we lack is a means."
- "It all came from there."
–Lech Walesa, pointing to a TV when a reporter asked him why communism fell
- "Communists are of two kinds only. Gadarene Swine whose wits have been taken from them so that they rush headlong down the slope to their own destruction, and ordinary voracious swine who, if you were standing in their sty, had a heart-attack and fell among them, would instantly set upon and devour you."
- "Communism doesn't work because people like to own stuff."
- "The scientific approach uncovers, that Communism does not eliminate the inequality between men, the social injustice, exploitation of man by man and other evils of society – communism merely changes their form and gives birth to new evils, which become eternal fellow-travelers of communism."
"All in all, Engels talked so much rot of every kind, that now all the world’s academies of science should be directed to rectify his mistakes and idiocies.""
- "I think all the great religions of the world - Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam and Communism - both untrue and harmful."
-Bertrand Russell, 1957, My Religious Reminiscences reprinted in The Basic Writings of Bertrand Russell</ref>
- It was in prison that we found the hope of salvation for the Communists. It was there that we developed a sense of responsibility toward them. It was in being tortured by them that we learned to love them.
- Richard Wurmbrand, Tortured For Christ, p. 58 (1967).
- "COMMUNISM: Liberation of the people from the burdens of liberty."
-Rick Bayan, The Cynic's Dictionary
- "Communism: Right idea, wrong species."
- "In my opinion, nothing has contributed so much to the corruption of the original idea of socialism as the belief that Russia is a socialist country and that every act of its rulers must be excused, if not imitated. And so for the last ten years, I have been convinced that the destruction of the Soviet myth was essential if we wanted a revival of the socialist movement."
–George Orwell, Preface to Animal Farm
- "[T]he perversion of Stalinist Communism consists in the fact that the view by means of which the Party looks at history coincides immediately with history's gaze upon itself. To use good old Stalinist jargon, today already half-forgotten, Communists act immediately in the name of "objective laws of historical progress"; it is history itself, its necessity, that speaks through their mouths."
–Slavoj Žižek, Looking Awry: An Introduction to Jacques Lacan through Popular Culture, p. 22. ISBN 026274015X
- "Today the primary threat to the liberties of the American people comes not from communism, foreign tyrants or dictators. It comes from the tendency on our own shores to centralize power, to trust bureaucracies rather than people."
–George H. Allen
- "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist."
–Dom Helder Camara, Brazilian archbishop
- "The devotion of such titans of spirit as Lenin to an Ideal must bear fruit. The nobility of his selflessness will be an example through centuries to come, and his Ideal will reach perfection."
- "In October 1917, we parted with the old world, rejecting it once and for all. We are moving toward a new world, a world of Communism. We shall never turn off that road."
- "Catholics and Communists have committed great crimes, but at least they have not stood aside, like an established society, and been indifferent. I would rather have blood on my hands than water like Pilate."
"If you have abandoned one faith, do not abandon all faith. There is always an alternative to the faith we lose. Or is it the same faith under another name?"
- "The trouble with Communism is the Communists, just as the trouble with Christianity is the Christians"
–Henry Louis Mencken
- "Some tell me "Preach the pure gospel!" This reminds me that the Communist secret police also told me to preach Christ, but not to mention communism. Is it really so, that those who are for what is called "a pure gospel" are inspired by the same spirit as those of the Communist secret police?"
- Richard Wurmbrand, Tortured For Christ, p. 75 (1967).
- "In Germany, [the Nazis] first came for the Communists, and I did not speak up, because I was not a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak up, because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak up, because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I did not speak up, because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me – and by that time no one was left to speak up."
- "There is not so much difference between the ideologies of capitalism and communism, you know. The difference is simple. Capitalism is the exploitation of man by man, and communism is the reverse."
–John Gardner, The man from Barbarossa
- "We first fought the heathens in the name of religion, then Communism, and now in the name of drugs and terrorism. Our excuses for global domination always change."
- "We grow tyrannical fighting tyranny. ... The most alarming spectacle today is not the spectacle of the atomic bomb in an unfederated world, it is the spectacle of the Americans beginning to accept the device of loyalty oaths and witch hunts, beginning to call anybody they don't like a Communist."
–E. B. White
- "Any man who is not a communist at the age of twenty is a fool. Any man who is still a communist at the age of thirty is an even bigger fool."
George Bernard Shaw
- "Communism is the perfect system, in theory. As are Monarchy, Fascism and Democracy. The only reason they don't work, is because of Human nature to pervert the situation into the best one for them. Nothing else."
- "Russian Communism is the illegitimate child of Karl Marx and Catherine the Great."
~ Clement Attlee, The Observer (1956)
- Of the Communist Party: "Its relationship to democratic institutions is that of the death watch beetle - it is not a party, it is a conspiracy."
~ Aneurin Bevan, attributed
- “What is a communist? One who hath yearnings For equal division of unequal earnings.”
–Ebenezer Elliott (1781-1849), Epigram.