Histomat: Adventures in Historical Materialism

'Historical materialism is the theory of the proletarian revolution.' Georg Lukács

Monday, December 04, 2006

Engels on the 'Iron Chancellor'

'a man of great practical judgment and great cunning...but this advanced sense of the practical often goes hand in hand with a corresponding narrowness of outlook...Bismarck, as we shall see, never managed to produce even a hint of any political ideas of his own but always combined the ready-made ideas of others to suit his own purposes. However, precisely this narrow-mindedness was his good fortune. Without it he would never have been able to regard the entire history of the world from a specific Prussian point of view; and if in this typically Prussian world outlook of his there had been a rent through which daylight could penetrate, he would have bungled his entire mission and it would have been the end of his glory.'

Substitute 'Brown' for 'Bismarck' and 'British' for 'Prussian' and I think Engels' critique of the 'Iron Chancellor' still kind of works, particularly given Gordon Brown's obsession with championing 'Britishness'...an obsession that British taxpayers are going to have to indulge to the tune of up to £100 billion (£76 billion for Trident plus £20 billion for ID Cards)...

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