Page:Instead of a Book, Tucker.djvu/424

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
408
INSTEAD OF A BOOK.

idea of collective right to everything that serves in the production of wealth has developed in the masses. This is a fact; and whoever wants to live, as we do, with the life of the people and follow its development will admit that this affirmation is but an accurate summary of popular aspirations."

Then Kropotkinian Anarchism means the liberty to eat, but not to cook; to drink, but not to brew; to wear, but not to spin; to dwell, but not to build; to give, but not to sell or buy; to think, but not to print; to speak, but not to hire a hall; to dance, but not to pay the fiddler. O Absurdity! is there any length to which thou wilt not go?—Liberty, July 3, 1886.

 

The Socialistic municipality of St. Etienne, France, has abolished the common grave to which heretofore have been consigned all bodies buried at the public expense. Why those whose dearest wish is to institute Communism in everything this side the grave should object to it in the grave itself is incomprehensible to an Anarchist. One would suppose that, if Communism must be accepted at all, it would be found less intolerable than anywhere else in the common dust of earth, to which we all return. But it seems to be the aim of the Communists and State Socialists to destroy all individuality that exists and make a pretence of it after it has gone,—to murder men and worship their ghosts.—Liberty, July 7, 1888.

 

Kropotkine, arguing in favor of Communism, says that he has "always observed that workers with difficulty understand the possibility of a wage-system of labor-checks and like artificial inventions of Socialists," but has been "struck on the contrary by the easiness with which they always accept Communist principles." Was Kropotkine ever struck by the easiness with which simple-minded people accept the creation theory and the difficulty with which they understand the possibility of evolution? If so, did he ever use this fact as an argument in favor of the creation hypothesis? Just as it is easier to rest satisfied with the statement, "Male and female created he them," than to trace in the geological strata the intricacies in the evolution of species, so it is easier to say that every man shall have whatever he wants than to find the economic law by which every man may get the equivalent of his product. The ways of Faith are direct and easy to follow, but their goal is a quagmire; whereas the ways of Science, however devious and difficult to tread, lead to solid ground at last. Communism belongs to the Age of Faith, Anarchistic Socialism to the Age of Science.—Liberty, September 15, 1888.