Bertrand Russell 1872-1970.   Some book reviews by 'Rerevisionist'

These reviews have been separated from big-lies.org/reviews because that file is large.

v. 14 August 2017 00:25

My revisionist review of Russell's life and work: Bertrand Russell: Dupe of Jews

Why Men Fight = Principles of Social Reconstruction 1916
Roads to Freedom 1918
Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy 1919
Practice and Theory of Bolshevism 1920
The ABC of Atoms 1923
Prospects of Industrial Civilization 1923
Freedom and Organization 1814-1914 1934
Which Way to Peace? 1936 First ever Internet upload! 30 June 2017. NEW!!
Power: A New Social Analysis 1938
Let the People Think 1941 new (Review Aug 2017)
History of Western Philosophy 1945
Extract: Russell on Jews 1945
Authority and the Individual 1948
The Impact of Science on Society essay collection 1952
Human Society in Ethics and Politics essay collection 1954
'Why I am not a Christian' and Other Essays
Portraits from Memory and other essays 1956
Common Sense and Nuclear Warfare 1959
My Philosophical Development 1959 new
[Herbert Gottschalk, eine Biographie 1962] new
War Crimes in Vietnam essay collection 1967
Autobiography (3 vols, 1967, 1968, 1969)
Dear Bertrand Russell: A Selection of His Correspondence with the General Public,1950-68 1969
Rupert Crawshay-Williams: Russell Remembered 1970
Against the Crime of Silence: Russell International War Crimes Tribunal 1970 or 71
Barry Feinberg: Bertrand Russell's America, 1945-1970 v1 1973; v2 1983?
Katherine Tait: My Father, Bertrand Russell 1975
Caroline Moorehead: Bertrand Russell: A Life 1992

image   Review of Bertrand Russell   Autobiography. Three volumes first published by Allen & Unwin 1967, 1968, 1969

Reasonably Honest Autobiography, Largely Greeted with Enthusiasm, by a British Aristocrat Torn Between Philosophy, Science, and Nascent Social Sciences.
11 March 2016.
Volume I   1872-1914
Russell was born in 1872; old enough not to have been called up in the 'Great War'. Volume 1 of his Autobiography (with the green jacket design spine, and a black-and-white cover photo by Lotte Meitner-Graf, a copy of which appears in Chomsky's study, and in a 1970s film including Malcolm McDowell) was published by Allen & Unwin, his lifelong publisher. Volume I is 1872-1914; Volume II 1914-1944; Volume III 1944-1967 (from memory) with a 'tailpiece' of 1969. These divisions clearly correspond to milestones in Russell's mental life: the outbreak of the 'Great War', and the invention of nuclear weapons.
      There were astounding changes in Russell's lifetime: automobiles and aeroplanes and skyscrapers hardly existed until he was about 40 years old. Underground and tube railways first came to London somewhat earlier. Telephones were rare and valuable. Oil-based plastic polymers were hardly known before 1945. Machine guns and dynamite pre-dated 1900. Their later developments were in time to be misreported by radio, and then television. Russell recognised the power of TV: he thought most people would believe any lie promoted by television.
      Russell's longevity reflects on his cultural background. He was not of a temperament to be attracted to Greek and Roman classics; these had their day, but were outdated by Victorian progress. He was hopelessly impractical, not having any empirical scientific skill, though he recognised the importance of science. Such books as Lewis Carroll's and Edward Lear's, Tristram Shandy and The Trumpet Major and War and Peace (later, in English) and the Cambridge Modern History were part of his upbringing and early maturity. Alys Pearsall Smith (his first wife, an American New England Quaker) and Russell ploughed through standard histories together, as Darwin and his wife did. I don't think Russell ever applied scepticism to history: for example, about Nero, or Cromwell, or the French Revolution. Before this, his early years in his grandfather's gift-of-Victoria house in Richmond Park were partly spent looking through Prime Minister Russell's library, though L'Art de Verifier des Dates is the only book (I think) he specifically locates there.
      All Russell's early years were spent, more or less in isolation, in Richmond Park, with his elder brother Frank, his servants, and elderly relatives, notably an ancient puritanical Scottish grandmother—it's not clear to me which of his parents was her child. As in many European countries, aristocrats carried with them a considerable penumbra of hangers-on. Possibly there was a painful waste of talent: they might have observed the world more than they did. But equally possibly there was not; it's agonising to reflect on the missed opportunities.
      Pembroke Lodge still exists, in a state of conversion into tea room with car park, and a huge outdoor poem carved into wood: City of Dreadful Night. Poor Russell is almost elided away by now. He loved the landscape and nature, which he thought of as wild, and described in old age with great vigour.
      When Russell was young, Joseph Conrad did not of course exist as part of a more-or-less official literary canon. Shelley was there—Russell read Epipsychidion aloud to Alys in between kissing sessions. Byron furnished materials for Russell on 'Byronic unhappiness'. The really immense historical upheaval at that time was the French Revolution and Napoleon, and the preceding philosophical groundwork, Voltaire, Blake, Swedenborg and so on, but especially Rousseau, who retained an aura of irresponsibly-'romantic' evil in Russell's mind. The simple outline of this historical set of events (including slogans, the terror, and military conquests) adapted itself well to the so-called 'Russian Revolution' of volume 2 of Russell's Autobiography. Russell never had any doubt about this scheme, and for example always called the Jewish-run 'Union of Soviet Socialist Republics' Russia, as though it was simply another nation-state made up of one well-defined nationality.
      Russell regarded himself as a triple philosopher-mathematician-social scientist. His philosophical life started largely with his attack on Christianity, in his exercise book labelled 'Greek Exercises'. It's similar to other rationalistic attacks of the time, concentrating fire on falsehood and absurdity. Russell was too young or naive to understand that much of established religion is an income-generating scheme, though he must have been aware of the history of the Reformation as presented in 19th-century England. Anyway, at the end of this process Russell recalls feeling relieved that it was all over. When he finally went 'up' to Cambridge, he says he met only one person who had heard of Draper's History of the Conflict between Religion and Science. Russell claims to have been led into mathematics by his brother's explaining some of mysteries of geometry to him, from Euclid, including the problem of parallel straight lines not meeting. Aged about 18, he was ready for Cambridge, full of promise—the famous Jowett came to visit what there was of his family. (Both his parents died when he was young—too young to remember them). Russell's social science interests started in Volume II; before that, he worked at his Principia Mathematica. He claims to have discovered much of the work of Cantor independently. My own belief is that Cantor and (later) Einstein are flawed. I suspect Russell was well aware of fame and publicity and renown; most of his beliefs were in accordance with ideas currently promoted at the time. One of his 1930s essays, on Tom Paine and Washington and the early views of democracy, Russell states that 'Some worldly wisdom is required even to secure praise for the lack of it.' In Volume I this hardly mattered; Russell's views were not very controversial. But, at least in my view, Russell always had some intellectual timidity: he never dared criticise Freud, for example, in any forthright way.
      Russell at Cambridge found Cambridge University life exactly suited to his tastes and abilities. He was sought out by intellectual clubs, was able to talk for the first time in his life, found the buildings beautiful, met Whitehead, and generally expanded. He bought and smoked Fribourg & Treyer's 'Golden Mixture'. He took very long walks. He rode his bike. He became less shy. He liked the ambience of completely free discussion, and never noticed it was much less free than he'd imagined. He made fun of people who tried to popularise. A note that strikes me as discordant is his dislike of the 'Dons'. He wrote prose with purple patches. As with almost all biographies, Russell writes very little on what he actually learned at Cambridge. He gives no summary or account of the influence of mathematical structures on his thinking. Very likely 'propositional functions' are one such thing, but he doesn't explicitly say so. He liked philosophy 'and the curious ways of conceiving the world that the great philosophers offer to the imagination.' His first philosophical ventures led him, following others, to criticisms of Hegel and German Idealism, though not of the assumptions and mind-sets that led to its being favoured.
      Russell married (partly because he wanted children) and moved to a newly-built house. He was—I did some comparative calculations—the equivalent of a millionaire now, through inheritance. He was in a position to turn down work he found distasteful: for a short time in 1898 he tried diplomatic work in Paris, but disliked working on a dispute as to whether lobsters legally counted as fish. (Plus ça change ..: the EU had a dispute as to whether carrots count as fruit). It's not quite true to say that Russell was fully absorbed in philosophy and mathematics: his wife Alys spoke on votes for women and similar issues. I found a short essay by her in Nineteenth Century Opinion, taken from The Nineteenth Century of 1877-1901, in a 1951 paperback edited by Michael Goodwin (if you must know) in which she expressed the desire of single wealthy women for work—with the usual implicit restrictions. Russell was impressed (unfavourably) by Philadelphia politics—as a long letter to Graham Wallas on 'bossism' and voting fraud shows. Russell and Alys went to Germany to study 'social democracy' there; the outcome was his very first book German Social Democracy (1896). This set a style for all Russell's social science books: he simply had no idea about Jews, which of course was a standard head-in-the-sand attitude in polite Britain. Probably he simply assumed the vast number of Jewish publications in Germany, and the tiny number of those discussing Jewish influence, must have been a plain reflection of merit. Russell's following three books were An Essay on the Foundations of Geometry (1897), A Critical Exposition of the Philosophy of Leibniz (1900), and The Principles of Mathematics (1903). However, Russell doesn't write much about his books, which he often implied came from unconscious thought, as for example in his account of sitting in the parlour of the Beetle and Wedge at Moulsford, wondering what to say about 'our knowledge of the external world'.
      One of the attractive characteristics of Russell's Autobiography is its peppering with famous names: G E Moore, J M Keynes, D H Lawrence, G B Shaw, Eddington, Einstein, H G Wells, Malinowski, Sidney and Beatrice 'Webb', as a tiny sample—though arguably some names are chosen for notoriety rather than firm reputation. Russell worked in Cambridge, London—at the time one of the world's largest cities— and his Hindhead house. And he had a large set of women companions, but this fact only emerged later, and is only very slightly present in his Autobiography. In this way, he might have proceeded from the 1890s to the twentieth century and onward, for the rest of his life as a respected academic, reading The Times and hefty Victorian books, with no inkling that other outlooks and forces were designing and plotting.
      Woven into his narrative are relatives—often enough, surprising, because of the inevitable limitations of the first-and-surname principle. General Pitt-Rivers was his uncle. Lord Portal, responsible for bomber command (in Volume III) and perhaps therefore the Second World War, was Russell's cousin. The Duke of Bedford was 'head of my family'. And of course Russell had personal friends. Russell's chapters each end with a collection of letters; Volume II has far more of his letters than text, suggesting his early life had disproportionately the most emotional meaning for him, and that Russia, China, and America between them managed to exhaust him.
imageVolume II   1914-1944
Just a few comments on Russell's attitudes at the time. A run-in with a family doctor caused other family members to tell Russell he ought not to have children, because of the taint of insanity of a relative of Russell's. Russell said people at the time tended to believe overmuch in heredity. Since then, population movements have become so much easier that people if anything are at the opposite extreme, denying all role for genetics—this of course is a Jewish view. The point really is that if people are to be ignored as sub- or non-human, as per Jewish orthodoxy, it doesn't matter if there are differences. Similarly with Russell: if you're a secure aristocrat, what do other people matter? Russell assumes all human populations are similar: his book on Power doesn't differentiate in any way between population, though there are token references in his books on education. This must have had a lot of effect on his attitude to the 'masses', and his attitude to Jews vs Russians.
      Russell was aware of, and discussed in his books, genetics and Darwin. He seems to have veered away from such awareness: a letter in Volume III says all Germans would have been 'sired by Hitler', for example. In a way it's odd, because he himself felt some need for intellectual accomplishment; and yet he was forbidden from reading books in his grandfather's library, and discouraged from rationalist critiques of Christianity.
      Russell disliked 'capitalism', but seems to have taken the word and its connotations straight from Marx. Although he was aware of finances, and the power of panics and crashes and so on, his use of 'capitalism' was just like that of all the other 'economists' of the time trying, or pretending, to be critical. Quite apart from money, as far as I recall there is nothing in Russell on economic goods: Can there be too much? Should inventions made in A be allowed into B? Is there some law making some level of 'productivity' ideal? Is there an optimum population? Despite Russell's attempts, I don't think he discovered anything, though some people credit him with 'effective demand' and 'spending out of depression'.
      Russell regarded himself as an innovator: he regarded Prospects of Industrial Civilization (1923) as a pioneering work in sociology. No doubt it's partly due to Jews that writers such as Durkheim and Weber are given priority. Russell regarded Power as founding a new science, as Adam Smith is regarded as founding economics. Russell considered that Power had been plagiarised by Burnham in The Managerial Revolution). Russell complained his books on science and sociology were plagiarised by Aldous Huxley in Brave New World.
      Russell was horrified by the 'Great War'. As with most people, he was at the level of calling it an 'outbreak'. He had no analysis of people who wanted war, and why they wanted war, though he implied he'd kept an eye on Sir Edward Grey and others. His eyes were on average people:
'... Although I did not foresee anything like the full disaster of the War, I foresaw a great deal more than most people did. The prospect filled me with horror, but what filled me with even more horror was the fact that the anticipation of carnage was delightful to something like ninety per cent of the population. I had to revise my views on human nature. At that time I was wholly ignorant of psycho-analysis, but I arrived for myself at a view of human passions not unlike that of the psycho-analysts. I arrived at this view in order to understand popular feeling about the war. I had supposed until that time that it was quite common for parents to love their children, but the war persuaded me that it is a rare exception. I had supposed that most people liked money better than almost anything else, but I discovered that they liked destruction even better. I had supposed that intellectuals frequently loved truth, but I found here again that not ten per cent of them prefer truth to popularity. ...
Thus Russell. But how could he be so sure of all this? Most of his information came from newspapers, and if newspapers are owned by people who want war, it's simple to fill the pages with war stories. The Bryce Report propaganda, and the prolonged leaks of anti-Russian and anti-German and anti-British material into other countries, clearly showed this. Russell did not talk to ordinary people; I've certainly met people who say they didn't want war at the time. Russell believed that pre-war outbreaks of violence (including those attributed to suffragettes) proved that British society unconsciously wanted war; in fact, it's likely that some of the supposed violence by suffragettes was in fact a Jewish false flag. However, the war gave him a new topic, the part played by impulse in human (and animal) life, which Russell mixed in with Freud, in my view unfortunately.
      His new topic emerged as Principles of Social Reconstruction (1915):
'... I did not discover what it was all about until I had finished it. It has a framework and a formula, but I only discovered both when I had written all except the first and last words. ...'
The first sentence is: 'To all who are capable of new impressions and fresh thought, some modification of former beliefs and hopes has been brought by the war.' Last is: 'Out of their ghosts must come life, and it is we whom they must vivify.'
I quote, below, from Dear Bertrand Russell, on seeing a drowning child, to illustrate how Russell lacked completely a feel for instinct and impulse. He seemed to think everyday life had no connection with evolution; he had no idea that different people react differently for genetic reasons.

Russell states that his book on social reconstruction made him a great deal of money (with no figures either of money or copies sold). He was obviously right in regarding the 'Great War', and the 'Russian Revolution', as important; but he ignored serious attempts at analysis of the results—for example, who gained from it, and to what extent the gains were planned. Russell seemed to have been aware of the Bryce Report as a propaganda fake—he wrote a bit about it in his wartime articles. He must have been aware of the 'Balfour Declaration', and was aware that secret agreements preceded the war. I can find no reference to John Reed in Russell's publications; and he dismissed Hilaire Belloc as being 'anti-Semitic'. Despite Russell's theoretical devotion to free enquiry, he failed completely in this critically important test case.
      Russell's chapter on 'The First War' reveals him to have been ineffectual—writing articles, addressing audiences. Despite knowing Keynes, and despite his family connections, and familiarity with Prime Ministers, and visits to the USA, his chapter shows his helplessness. The dark side of British, or Anglo-Jewish, power, showed itself in jailings, for himself in the 'first division', and with hard labour for E D Morel. And in compulsory call-up, when 'popular feeling about the war' proved insufficient. And of course in censorship. And in control over money 'for the duration'. And of course loans. The 1913 Federal Reserve and its other organisations set the stage. Anyone who takes Russell seriously must feel the tragedy of all this: he might have accomplished substantial work in deciphering events, as Europe's aristocrats fell and civilisation retrogressed; but he didn't.
      Russell wrote articles throughout the Great War. One was Justice in Wartime, put into a book of essays; but most were I think not republished. He seems to have not taken them very seriously: a TV interview showed him talking about 'sheets' which nobody read. Russell was reluctant to have his writings republished if they showed him in a bad light: an entire 1930s book, Which Way to Peace, was never republished after 1945. I've now (June 2017) uploaded it; click here.
      Death in the Great War embraced many promising people: Rupert Brooke, Mosley of atomic theory, Alfred Whitehead's son. Many were influenced intellectually, such as W H R Rivers (mentioned in Power on primitive beliefs), and W Trotter on herd instincts. Russell of course records some of this, for example Whitehead's anguish over the death of his son.
      Russell often wrote for Jewish publications. It's curious to read (in an essay) that he was aware of the Coudenhove-Kalergi scheme for a mixed race Europe—he was inclined to think it may be a good idea, since of course he blamed Europeans for the slaughter of the 'Great War'.
      Chapters II and III deal with Russell's visits to Russia after the Jewish coup, and then China. In the first case, he was an observer. He praised his hosts, but in such a vast territory, and with no Russian, it's difficult to see how he could expect to report reliably in such a land. He might have said he simply didn't know. But intellectuals dislike steps of that sort. Almost incredibly, he met Lenin and Trotsky and other 'revolutionaries'. In just one of his letters he talks of tyrannical Jews. Russell then visited, and loved, China. ('Once a week the mail would arrive from England, and the letters and newspapers that came from there seemed to breathe upon us a hot blast of insanity like the fiery heat that comes from a furnace door suddenly opened.') He wrote somewhere that China's adopting Communism was inconceivable; in Russia he'd compared Communism with the ideals of Plato's Republic—showing he had no idea how Communism had been forced onto peoples. For that matter, he was surprised by the change in fortunes away from Germany near the end of the Great War—possibly the result of a secret agreement added to Balfour's Declaration giving Russia to Jews. He lectured in China, and his new companion, Dora, lectured on things like women's issues. (Russell realised he 'no longer loved Alys', on a bike ride). Russell's letters are moving and heartfelt, though understandably his grasp of the history of these vast regions was sketchy, mostly nourished by British Victorian history, in which Constantinople, ruination of the Peking Summer Palace, opium, Hong Kong, the Mutiny, and so on were treated in the way distorted modern history is fed to gullible undergraduates now.
      The second parts of Volume II deal with Russell's second marriage, and a school Russell tried to set up in Telegraph House, an obsolete building which he bought from his bankrupt brother. This was a great period for experimental schools, because the memories of 19th century paying schools (H G Wells wrote on this) were still alive. There was scope for a combination of business with idealistic education. Russell never seems to have thought of founding or jointly founding a new university. Taxation, and legal restrictions, are now so high that perhaps home-schooling will become the 21st-century equivalent. Musing over Russell at the time, writing newspaper columns and collections of essays, and a potboiler or two, in a school he couldn't manage, trying to write great books and short of money, suggests he was at the nadir of his fortunes. His history of the 19th century Freedom and Organization: 1814-1914, written in two parts Legitimacy vs Industrialism 1814 to 1848 and Freedom vs Organization 1776 to 1914 (1934), shows his struggle to make sense of the world whilst omitting the Jewish issue. Russell's literary non-starts are not stressed in his autobiography, but it's clear from McMaster University Archives that he tried, and failed, to write on 'fascism'. He said in a TV interview (not in his autobiography) that he had a new idea for a book almost every day.
      Russell was invited to the USA to take up an academic position. If there were retirement and pension implications, Russell doesn't state them, though he does of course discuss his adventures when opposition was stirred up in the 'chair of indecency' Catholic incidents. At the time, New York had been spared the huge immigration of Jewish 'refugees', whose fraudulent claims provided them with a model for subsequent nonwhite invasions. Russell spent his time until the end of the Second World War in the USA. It's clear from his letters that he had no clue about Hitler or the Second World War.
      During Russell's time in the USA, arms were shipped to the USSR in huge quantities, largely secretly as not everybody liked Stalin. Bear this in mind when reading Volume II. Russell isn't very clear on the 'phoney war' before 1941, or on the way Jews fixed up war against France, Germany, and Italy—and in effect eastern Europe, by supplying Stalin—and took part in the 'civil war' in Spain. Maybe this Anglo-American action will eventually produce a European backlash and revenge.

      The final part of this volume has Russell working on History of Western Philosophy, as Jewish influence over the world sank deeper. Russell had theories on the rise and fall of civilisations and worldview: 'Three cycles: Greek, Catholic, Protestant. In each case.. decay of .. dogma leads to anarchy and thence to dictatorship. I like the growth of Catholicism out of Greek decadence, and of Luther out of Machiavelli's outlook'. This may have been related to the feeling of insecurity of a world amid a huge war—though very few people could explain why a tiny country like Germany should be taken so seriously. Thus Gilbert Murray, in typical confusion, to Russell: '.. not quite clear what the two sides were: Communism or Socialism against Fascism.. Christianity against ungodliness. But now.. Britain and America .. against the various autocracies, which means Liberalism v Tyranny..' Russell was not very secure in these categories. He was comfortable with philosophers and their schools, largely because some sort of consensus had been decided upon. But, despite his efforts, he never found convincing historical impulses and motives, as his book Power shows. Nor of course did for example Toynbee, at more or less the same time.
      History of Western Philosophy can now be seen to be marred by errors, all to do with misunderstandings of Jews. No doubt others will become clear, for example related to science. Anyway, by Volume II Russell was convinced that Rousseau and Romanticism had led to 'Fascism'—Russell never seemed to use the expression 'NSDAP'. The NSDAP's name being a socialist workers party, and Russell advocating 'socialism', must have been a problem for him. However, the Labour Party leadership had decreed that Hitler was not left wing, after all, but right wing. Russell was primed to announce Rousseau 'led to Auschwitz' though this phrase is not present in History of Western Philosophy.
      The reprinted letters following Chapters 12 and 13 (1930-7, 1938-44) light, one must assume, Russell's states of mind and activities when he was in his 60s, and well-known in the world. One from Einstein (1931), after flattery, recommends 'an international journalistic enterprise (Cooperation) to which the best people all belong as contributors ... to educate the public in all countries in international understanding. ... Dr J. Révész, will visit England in the near future..' [Original in German.] Russell's reply as printed merely invited Einstein to visit; probably this was just a small subsection of Jewish propaganda for Jewish control, which of course worked: Jews won the Second World War. Russell commented in the Tom Mooney case—no doubt a media-promoted thing. He wrote a 'brilliant' letter for the defence of Mátyás Rákosi, described in a footnote as 'a Hungarian Communist'. It's clear Russell had no idea about the machinations intended to lead to world war. A large chunk—in my view, far too large—of the later letters deals with the City College of New York issue, in which an offer of a professorship was withdrawn—this is reminiscent of manufactured outbreaks of scandals in US education, which of course still happen. A letter from the 'Student Council' is enclosed; I'm sure Russell never got to the bottom of what happened, though he thought (as he said on early TV) it was a 'Catholic thing'.
imageVolume III   1944-1967
After the success of the first volumes of Russell's autobiography, there were problems with this. It seems the American publisher declined to publish. (I don't know any contractual or other details, though clearly the appearance of homogeneous external appearance of the volumes is misleading). Anyway, it was published eventually, though there seem to be traces of carelessness—Fennimore Cooper, Ralph Milliband, and Pablo Cassals suggest sluggish proofreading. (A tape-recorded transcription elsewhere of Russell has 'Bishop Bluebroom' for Brougham—perhaps proofreaders preferred simpler stuff). The problems were with war crimes and atrocities, which of course the Jewish media censor. The final quarter-century of Russell's life included his activism against the 'West'—Russell knew nothing of ZOG, except, just possibly, at the very end of his life. Certainly this volume is very much unlike the author's preceding volumes. Russell records his reactions to public events: the Second World War, the Cold War, the BBC, nuclear weapons, the Korean War, Kennedy's murder, the Cuba Crisis, the Vietnam War. Chapter III - Trafalgar Square looks at protests against nuclear weapons. Chapter IV - The Foundation is on the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation.
      That at least is the formal version. Russell probably had no idea about Eisenhower (Jew from Sweden) starving Germans after the war. Or the fraud of what was later called 'the Holocaust', curious Greek expression as it is. Or the BBC frauds, of which the plump and oily Dimbleby, a Jew from London, started anti-German post-war propaganda in earnest. Or the fact, suppressed for decades, that mail bombs were sent to Labour Party leaders by Jews, over Israel. Russell had been to Germany: he accepted the figure of 135,000 Germans destroyed in the razing of Dresden, 'but also their houses and countless treasures'. 'By giving part of Germany to Russia and part to the West, the victorious Governments ensured the continuation of strife between East and West, particularly as Berlin was partitioned and there was no guarantee of access by the West to its part of Berlin except by air.' Note Russell's assumption that the Governments, all of course known now to be Jewish controlled, wanted to stop strife. He must have been laughed at, for his gullibility.
      Russell made a public announcement that Stalin's USSR should be invaded. He later denied his words, but the important point is that Jews in Russia felt they had to pretend to 'explode their first bomb in August, 1949'. Perhaps readers who have not met the nuclear revisionist view before might reread the above few sentences. A typical example of Russell's activism was his campaign on the Cuba Crisis—clearly at this distance a fake rigged up by Jews, along with the marrano Castro. About a year later, Kennedy was murdered (or allegedly murdered); again there's a clear Jewish link.
      In the late 1940s and 1950s, Russell was lonely and rather isolated. He says himself that after the war, Cambridge ladies thought he and his wife were 'not respectable'—you'd imagine they might have had other things to think about. Rupert Crawshay-Williams is my source for the 'loneliness' of Russell. His friends from youth had largely died. Alan Wood (who wrote on the then-notorious money-wasting groundnuts scheme) and his wife became friends; but Wood died, after writing a biography of Russell.
      Russell's public views appeared on BBC radio as the first Reith Lectures, in 1948, a series of six, Authority and the Individual. Probably suggested by Sir Arthur Keith, and by nuclear myths, part of his talk stated that war had been a leading cause of innovation—very probably the reverse of the truth. Russell took little effective interest in the 'United Nations', unfortunately. For example, one of its foundational bases was the idea that races were of no importance—naturally, Jewish input was important here. Russell therefore was weak on actual possible world government, which he considered essential, since he swallowed the myth of nuclear annihilation. Volume III has Russell meditating on the future: the population problem. And 'economic justice'. Russell, misreading the world, thought political democracy applies in industrialised countries, no doubt accepting the Jewish view; but economic justice is 'still a painfully-sought goal.' Fascinating to read this elderly man's lucubrations on likely events of the next few centuries, especially, now, from a revisionist viewpoint.
      Russell was given a Nobel Prize (for Literature) in 1950—most of which went in alimony payments, he writes here. Among other things, Russell in 1952 visited Greece, troubled by the US Army; 1953, Scotland; 1954, Paris; in 1955 made a speech in Glasgow for a Labour candidate (which Alistair Cooke, a BBC hack, wrote about). This period was enlivened by philosophical disputations; Russell disliked linguistic philosophy, with 'common usage' one of its slogans, and Russell has accounts of his disputes. He seems not to have realised that Oxford philosophers might feel out of their depths in a world of nuclear weapons and mass murder of Jews, in which in retrospect they must have been laughed at, by politicians in the know.
      And in 1955, Russell tried to get 'eminent scientists' to make a statement calling for joint action; Neils Bohr, Russian Academicians, Otto Hahn, Lord Adrian and others refused, and there was no reply from China. Josef Rotblat agreed to act as Chairman; I believe he was a Jew from Hungary. Looking back, he must have been part of the scheme to pretend Jews had nuclear weapons. In 1957, Cyrus Eaton, a Jew in Canada, put up money for a meeting in Pugwash. It can be seen that Jews were circling, just in case. Ralph Schoenman is reported to have met Russell in 1960, the story being he hitch-hiked there; but who knows?
      The Foundation: Russell's first speech to members of the Vietnam War crimes Tribunal was November 13th, 1966. This met some ridicule from the Jewish media; I doubt if anyone yet has researched into archives of (for example) the New York Times. Russell was uncomprehending about the Jewish media: newspapers exist to facilitate truth, and improve the world; surely that's an obvious ethical ground rule? Russell uncomprehendingly faced the Jewish liars of the world, to whom bombs meant money and young Vietnamese girls raped were good for a Jewish laugh. I think his letters to the New York Times were the first occasion in which he was faced with people genuinely and unblushingly favouring evil: destruction of Vietnamese landscape, bombing villages, large-scale rape, chemical warfare etc. The sort of thing that caused Robert Faurisson to say the USAF killed more children than any other organisation. Russell had no idea that so-called 'Jews' were evil, wanted to be evil, and liked being evil. Jewish wars are not between nations or states, as is advertised, but to make money for Jews by control of weapons and equipment by finance, and making money from loans, usually to governments or 'governments', and controlling issue of money, with the bonus of maiming killing goyim and destroying creative achievements such as splendid cities. None of this is present in Russell. (It's just possible, though very unlikely, that John Russell ('Lord John Russell'), could have lived long enough to tell young Bertrand a thing or two). His speech to his tribunal was three or four years after his epistolary exchange with the 'Jew York Times'. His book War Crimes in Vietnam remains discreetly unpublished by Routledge, his posthumous publishers, presumably picked by his Foundation. All this activity by Russell causes me to doubt Russell ever considered himself a Jew, something which has been suggested. I see why they say it; and why judging from published books it's credible. But I don't think it's true; he was just a Briton being polite and Christian to a few racially outlandish oddities. But he did follow the convention of secrecy about Jews: if there were any in his family tree, as is likely enough, he said nothing of them in his autobiography.
      The main office or centre of the B.R.P.F. was established in Nottingham. Certainly atrocity accounts from Vietnam were known in Nottingham University. There were student actions in 1968, which have subsequently been presented by the Jewish media as hippiesque 1960s self-indulgence, and many people considering themselves politically aware have no comprehension of the underlying issues. Most of the activists were Jews, and most non-Jews at the time had no idea of this; and Jewish motives were mainly to hide the truth of creatures like Kissinger, and to hold on to money Jews made from war. The BRPF was a Jewish front from the start; just the list of their writers makes this plain enough. Probably revisionist re-examinations of the 1960s will correct the media mirage which has been assembled. But the picture largely remains intact: Richard Dawkins' autobiography, for example, shows complete ignorance of that time.
      Looking again at Russell's conclusions drawn from his long life, we find: Consider the vast areas of the world where the young have little or no education and where adults have not the capacity to realise elementary conditions of comfort. These inequalities rouse envy and are potential causes of great disorder. Whether the world will be able by peaceful means to raise the conditions of the poorer nations is, to my mind, very doubtful, and is likely to prove the most difficult governmental problem of coming centuries. Russell used the expression 'third world' in his Autobiography, perhaps borrowed from Schoenman, I'd guess. But he left the problems to others: he believed 'the techniques are all known' for general prosperity; but he expressed no views on the genetic ability of populations, or the availability of raw materials and energy to move them around.
      His final paragraph is about the 'The essential unity of American military, economic and cold war policies was increasingly revealed by the sordidness and cruelty of the Vietnam war. ... Most difficult for many in the West to admit.' Russell faced opposition, but never fathomed the truth.
      After his Autobiography, Russell continued his activities as best he could. Dear Bertrand Russell was extracted from his archived letters, but edited by two Jews. His last published statement was on Israel's expansionism. His The Entire American People Are On Trial was published posthumously in March 1970.
Russell's Autobiography is a landmark on the road to reversing several centuries of evil. It is well worth reading in entirety. He was not completely honest; and he missed some important truths, to such an extent that he might legitimately be regarded as worthless. But he has one thing which Jews and their allies can never have: they will never be able to present their lives, as truthfully as they can, to genuinely interested audiences, in the way Russell does.
Top of Page

image   Review of Bertrand Russell: America 1945-1970   Barry Feinberg: Bertrand Russell's America, 1945-1970

Survey of Russell on 20th century USA but edited by Jews, December 8, 2011

First of two volumes with similar format, dealing with Russell's life in, and writings on, the USA. Volume 1 was published in 1973, shortly after Russell's death; in the period up to 1945, Russell lived, travelled, lectured, and wrote in the USA for a number of years in total.

Volume 2, published about ten years later, looks at Russell's work from 1945, mostly on free speech and related issues, supposed nuclear weapons, Kennedy's murder, the Vietnam War and Russell's Tribunal. He spent little time in the USA, however.

The first half of each book is biographical notes, based on Russell's Autobiography, supplemented typically with letters from the McMaster archives. Then there are plates—photographs and reproductions of cartoons and newspaper articles. The second half is Russell's writings—in the first volume, about 30 pieces, mostly news/ magazine article length. These seem to be reprinted from the relevant sources; if the published form was different from what Russell wrote, it's not stated anywhere.

As might be expected, the editing is Jewish and one can have no faith in its reliability; the feeling is as though edited by Jesuits. The lead up to the Second World War shows no awareness of the brutal viciousness of the USSR, and Hitler is presented as a serious risk to the entire world. The facts of Polish aggression and Britain declaring war aren't mentioned. India presents a problem to Russell which he couldn't solve. There's an extract from a letter from an American, presented with some horror, saying that Britain already dragged the US into a war which was none of its business—something Russell himself must have agreed with at one point, since he wasn't happy about the US entry into WW1. Russell must have been aware of people writing against Jews, as there were so many, including Mencken; and there were issues such as Speyer 'trading with the enemy'. But, if so, none of this appears in these volumes. There is of course information on the New York scandals surrounding Russell, and the sexual views/ freedom of speech/ academic freedom accusations, the details of which are not satisfactorily teased out. Russell's generous treatment by Barnes is only partially explained; it puzzles me why Barnes didn't simply help with Russell's History of Western Philosophy, rather than insist on lectures to not very interested parties, and what seems other rather pointless work. The falling-out is written entirely against Barnes; in view of the points of dispute, such as Russell's wife knitting in lectures, and Barnes seemingly knowing nothing of early philosophy, it's hard to form any sensible opinion. In volume 2 there's discussion of Sobell-Rosenberg, showing Russell at his most oratorical, and gullible; he based himself entirely on a book on the case, assumed there were no nuclear secrets, although it's hard to see how he could possibly have known. In my opinion, the 'spies' were simply a charade to support the pretence that the USSR Jews had atomic weapons. Volume 2 has fewer articles than volume 1, including shortish pieces—'What American [sic] Could Do With the Atomic Bomb' and several pieces on black militancy—plus longer pieces on the Vietnam War, and war crimes, ending with 'The Entire American People Are On Trial'—all of course censored out of the Jewish mass media, then and now. Poor Russell was misrepresented by the New York Times and the BBC etc but seems to have been unable to learn from this. Russell didn't seem to realise that the war was expensive -

Anyway ... a valuable collection of Russelliana, and Americana. Shows Russell's passion, but also indirectly reveals how information is controlled. It's hard to believe it's completely reliable.
Top of Page

Review of Bertrand Russell   The Practice and Theory of Bolshevism

Shows Russell as a Dishonest Aristocrat in Thrall to Jews
  © Rae West 2000; First uploaded 2000-07-31

Russell's deliberate omission of Jews from his study of Bolshevism: Why?
Exchange of E-mails looking at Russell's Practice and Theory of Bolshevism. Late 1998. These are from russell-l, a group closed in May 2000. All emails (except for the first) unedited and unaltered, except for formatting and cutting of header info. Too long for inclusion here; they open in a new window, and are in my piece Bertrand Russell, Dupe of Racist Jews.
Bertrand Russell to Morrell soon after leaving the USSR. Autobiography vol II (1968).
Bertrand Russell visited the new 'Soviet Union' in 1920, arriving on May 11th and leaving on June 16th. The official delegation he accompanied (not as an official delegate) was fêted with regimental bands, banquets, speeches, and military reviews. About a week later he wrote to Ottoline Morrell from Sweden—see illustration, right. Two or three months later (September) he wrote the preface to his new book, which was first published in 1920, according to its copyright page. My paperback copy records no reprints until 1949, when he dropped a chapter written by Dora, his woman companion of 1920, and altered the word "Communism" to "Socialism" 'in many places', 'in order to conform to modern usage'. He wrote that, at the time, there was no sharp distinction between the two words.
      The point of this brief note is to point out that Russell, who was perfectly aware of the Jewish nature of the Revolution, or coup, consistently failed to mention it in this book.
      And he continued to fail to mention Jewishness in modern politics, so far as I know both privately as well as in public (though I haven't attempted to check this in detail). For example Russell's character-sketches of Beatrice Webb go into considerable detail as to her family background (something like war profiteers from the Crimean War), her habits (strange use of the word 'we', fasting, dining), and influence with politicians. But Sidney Webb is left a much shadowier figure—he was industrious, in fact very industrious, not very scrupulous, and had been a civil servant. But his Jewishness is omitted, as is any psychological point or philosophical outlook which might be attributed to Jewishness. Even his real name isn't given.
      Why this should be, I have no rational (or irrational) explanation. Russell happily said unpleasant things about Americans, authors, bishops, bookmakers, businessmen, Christians, Muslims, politicians, Russians and so forth. Why this taboo? The following remarks don't address the issue directly I leave it to the reader to note the ways the omission distorted Russell's analyses.

    First mention of Jews in The Practice and Theory of Bolshevism
  • Just two pages from The Practice and Theory of Bolshevism (right) contain references to Jews; and one of them is encoded. Compare this with Russell's letter, above.
  • Russell chose the word 'Bolshevism' in the title carefully. The word 'communist' had a sort of vague meaning; suggesting Italian Comune, the Paris commune, millennarians and perhaps medieval monks (although their vows to poverty were something of a fake, as the institution itself was rich). Russell adopted the Russian meaning when he wrote (p. xi): 'A full-fledged Communist is not merely a man who believes that land and capital should be held in common, and their produce distributed as nearly equally as possible. He is a man who entertains a number of elaborate and dogmatic beliefs..' and he wrote 'Communism may become as unimportant [to Bolshevism] as abstaining from alcohol is in Islam.' Ironically, there was real communism of a sort: 'To a remarkable extent, each village is an independent unit. So long as the Government obtains the food and the soldiers that it requires, it does not interfere, and leaves untouched the old village communism...' (p. 66)
  • Russell corrects the view he says was held in England by advanced Socialists, who '.. think of the dictatorship of the proletariat as merely a new form of representative government, in which only working men and women have votes, and the constituencies are partly occupational.. They think that "proletariat" means "proletariat", but "dictatorship" does not quite mean "dictatorship." This is the opposite of the truth. When a Russian Communist speaks of dictatorship, he means the word literally, but when he speaks of the proletariat, he uses the word in a Pickwickian sense. He means the "class-conscious" part of the proletariat, i.e. the Communist Party.'
          When Russell arrived, the system of 'Soviets' was 'moribund'. (p. 40)
          How was this done? 'No conceivable system of free election would give majorities to the Communists, either in town or in country. Various methods are therefore adopted.. voting is by show of hands, so that all who vote against the Government are marked men. .. no candidate who is not a Communist can have any printing done, the printing works being all in the hands of the State. .. he cannot address any meetings.. The whole of the press, is of course, official; .. it is easy for the Government to exercise pressure over the election of the Executive Committee, and again over the election of the Presidium. ... in the villages.. I was met always with the reply that they were not represented at all.. if they elected a non-Communist representative he could not obtain a pass on the railway.. All real power is in the hands of the Communist Party, who number about 600,000 in a population of about 120 millions. ..' (pp. 41-43)
          What had this to do with the belief 'that land and capital should be held in common, and their produce distributed as nearly equally as possible'?
  • It's very important to understand the deliberate confusion of socialism, communism, bolshevism, and the rest. There was enormous opposition to socialism by a mixed bag of people, and it was useful to be able to point to a disaster and say "Look, that's socialism." In my view, 'communist' organisations and theory have been tacitly encouraged, because of their uselessness, and socialist organisations and theory discouraged. Britain's LSE illustrates the sort of thing.
          Another myth is the idea that revolutionaries were persecuted: '.. all the older members of the party have proved their sincerity by years of persecution. ..' In fact the conditions were lenient. The real victims were the soldiers (more than a million killed?) and the peasants fighting the Germans. The revolutionaries mostly had a relatively easy time, typically in the US, in Switzerland, or safe in camps.
  • As Russell points out, Marxist theory predicted revolution in the USA. He doesn't emphasise the essential absurdity of the Russian situation: 85% of the population were peasants, and most of the remaining 15% must have been soldiers, government workers, teachers, domestics and so on. Perhaps 4% were workers in the Marxist proletarian sense. This of course is why 'workers' had to be altered to 'workers and peasants'.
  • Russell invented or took up the claim that 'bureaucracy' might become the main problem (this was, I think, Weber's new and perhaps exciting word). It is of course absurd—bureaucrats don't oppress, round-up, and kill people.
  • It's important to understand various attitudes to Russia and 'Communism':—
    1. Russia had an empire both west (bits of Poland) and east (places like Siberia, Khamchatka). It was important for English ideology to claim that Britain was much more civilised. So, it was habitual to call the entire Russian empire 'Russia', so they could talk about the horrors of Russia under the Tsar. Whereas India was not called 'England'!
    2. This permitted considerable hypocrisy. Thus Russell, after the Second World War, contemplating nuclear weapons, said that Russia had always been imperialist.
    3. It's important to realise there was great hostility to the Russian empire. This appears for example in Kipling, and his 'great game'. The Germans and the Jews were not the only people anxious for Russia's downfall.
    4. 'Marx has taught that Communism is fatally predestined to come about; this fits in with the Oriental traits in the Russian character, and produces a state of mind not unlike that of the early successors of Mahomet. Opposition is crushed without mercy...' Russell believed in Asiatic characteristics for most of his life. He doesn't explain why, if something is inevitable, people should be energetic; why not just sit back and wait?
    5. Russell also insisted on the stupidity of the peasants whose 'reasons for disliking the Bolsheviks are very inadequate. .. the peasants are better off than they ever were before. I saw no one—man woman, or child—who looked underfed in the villages. The big landowners are dispossessed, and the peasants have profited. ..' (pp. 43-44). In fact, the peasants achieved this partly as a result of Tsarist reforms, and partly as a result of taking things into their own hands as the First World War dissolved into chaos. The Bolsheviks did nothing for them.
    6. Also, Russians are lazy. This contrasts oddly with: '.. The fact is that the rations [BR doesn't state what they were] are not sufficient, .. food in the market costs about fifty times the fixed Government price. .. Some do additional work..' (63) 'By proclaiming itself the friend of the proletarian, the Government has been enabled to establish an iron discipline, beyond the wildest dreams of the most autocratic American magnate. ..' (59) '.. very many people do extra work, because the official rates do not afford a living wage. .. When the day's work is over, a great deal of time has to be spent in fetching food and water...' (57)
    7. Russell accepted the legend of Lenin as a sort of superman. 'Napoleon said you can do anything with bayonets except sit on them; Lenin disproved the exception' Russell wrote, years later (from memory—this quotation mayn't be exactly correct). The facts of secret financial support by the Germans and various others weren't guessed by Russell.
    Russell in the New Leader: Note his utter naïveté about so-called Jews:
    The death of Lenin [1924] makes the world poorer by the loss of the one really great man produced by the war. It seems probable that our age will go down to history as that of Lenin and Einstein—the two men who have succeeded in a great work of synthesis in an analytic age, one in thought, the other in action. Lenin appeared to the outraged bourgeoisie of the world as a destroyer, but it was not the work of destruction that made him pre-eminent. Others could have destroyed, but I doubt whether any other living man could have built so well on the new foundations. His mind was orderly and creative; ...
  • Second, and last, coded mention of Jews in The Practice and Theory of BolshevismRussell talked to Lenin for an hour, saw Trotsky at the opera, listened to Kamenev, and was 'acquainted' with Sverdlov, the 'Acting Minister of Transport'. He also met, and liked, Gorky: '.. very ill... heartbroken.. begged me.. always to emphasize what Russia had suffered. He supports the Government.. because the possible alternatives are worse. One felt.. a love of the Russian people.. All the intellectuals whom I met—a class who have suffered terribly—expressed their gratitude to him..' (pp 38-39)
  • Russell has an interesting chapter (at the start of his 'theory' section) on 'the materialist conception of history', i.e. economic determinism, in which he comments that other determinisms (climate, sex) are just as possible, and other remarks which however aren't very relevant here. Another interesting chapter looks at 'Deciding Forces in Politics', a theme he liked and which appeared in other books, as e.g. 'politically important desires'. His theory chapter however is weak on Marxism (for example, the 'labour theory of value') an omission he remedied much later in his jointly-written book on 19th century history.
  • Pages 28-9 have Russell's comparison with Plato's Republic, which, he thought, annoyed many people. He also says: 'The Communists in many ways resemble the British public-school type: they have all the good and bad traits of an aristocracy which is young and vital. They are courageous, energetic, capable of command, always ready to serve the State; on the other hand, they are dictatorial.. They are practically the sole possessors of power, and they enjoy innumerable advantages in consequence..' A.J.P. Taylor made the same point, that Communism instilled self-confidence. Here again, the facts seem a bit more complicated. Possibly there is such a thing as endogenous self-confidence; but, usually, self-confidence is instilled by outside circumstances—being part of a large group, for example, or owning money. Their self-confidence is equally attributable to their position.
  • In retrospect, one of the distinctive features of 'communism' was its lack of prosperity. Was this caused by money being secretly siphoned away? Or weapons production? Or incompetence? Or was it that simple arithmetic shows that a country with little industry must take longer to build things up than one with more? It's difficult to be certain, and Russell brings up the possibility that the Soviet Union might sustain an enormous industrial revolution. Most people have no experience in building up industries or infrastructure, and so find it impossible to judge. So this made quite an effective scare story, as did the idea that 'the doctrines of Communism are almost certain, in the long run, to make progress among American wage-earners..' (p 75). It's curious just how uncreative the experiment was. Consider industries which have been distinctive of the 20th century: motor vehicles and air flight. In neither case did the new arrangement achieve much. Even such things as battery chickens, for which 'Communism' might have seem well adapted, weren't developed there.
  • A final point, to emphasise the lack of understanding by people who are (or in many cases pretend to be) on the left: Ken Coates' 1995 foreword states that 'All attempts by the left to replicate its previous experience have been blocked..' his two examples being the Chinese revolution, which in my view unsurprisingly was unique, and Cuba not being repeated in Bolivia. But in fact, Hungary and Poland, and no doubt other less well-documented places (for example, Czechoslovakia, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia), had 'revolutions' very like the USSR ones, also Jewish, in the aftermath of war.


Further note: Russell had an odd relationship with the Pole Joseph Conrad (not his real name)—Russell said Conrad was every inch the Polish aristocrat, and Russell's Autobiography has the two men in mutual exultation together reaching the 'central fire'. Conrad has of course become established as an official great writer in English. But an interesting aspect is the rôle of Jews in Poland; Conrad's The Secret Agent perhaps is Jewish rather than Polish, though I doubt if this possible aspect of Conrad is even mentioned in today's grey close atmosphere of suppression.
Top of Page

Review of Bertrand Russell   The ABC of Atoms

Diligent Summary by Russell of Atomic Theory, Taken Entirely from Publications
  These comments uploaded 14 Feb 2016
By 'Bertrand Russell FRS' published by E P Dutton in New York, and Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner and Co in London. Unindexed. About 175 pages; not much per page; about 30,000 words. Russell was about 51 when this was published. As far as I can tell, Russell relied on books for his material: I don't think he spent time in laboratories, or with men using physics apparatus. As a result, he was not well equipped to note mistakes resulting from practical misinterpretations, or to note practicalities needed in making equipment and possibly consequent sequence of discoveries. And he liked everyday explanations—see for example his descriptions of transverse waves and longitudinal waves, below. His chapter sequence therefore is not very securely thought out. This may help explain his misleading title. He did not speculate; for example the sequence 2, 8, 18 in electron shells suggests geometrical explanations, for example surface areas of spheres of radii 1, 2, and 3, but Russell avoids such possibilities. Most of the notes consist of my extracts from his book, made in the 1980s or 1990s. I haven't used Greek letters.

CONTENTS:
I   INTRODUCTORY
II   THE PERIODIC LAW
III   ELECTRONS AND NUCLEI
IV   THE HYDROGEN SPECTRUM
V   POSSIBLE STATES OF THE HYDROGEN ATOM
VI   THE THEORY OF QUANTA
VII   REFINEMENTS OF THE HYDROGEN SPECTRUM
VIII   RINGS OF ELECTRONS
IX   X-RAYS
X   RADIO-ACTIVITY
XI   THE STRUCTURE OF NUCLEI
XII   THE NEW PHYSICS AND THE WAVE THEORY OF LIGHT
XIII   THE NEW PHYSICS AND RELATIVITY
APPENDIX   [Four pages: BOHR'S THEORY OF THE HYDROGEN SPECTRUM]

MY NOTES ON CONTENTS:

I INTRODUCTORY
- [Attempt to describe scale, not unlike Wells on the universe:] .. Let us start with a gramme of hydrogen, which is not a very large quantity. [Footnote says a gramme is about one 453rd of a pound] How many atoms will it contain? If the atoms were made up into bundles of a million million, then we took a million million of these bundles, then we should have about a gramme and a half of hydrogen. That is to say, the weight of one atom of hydrogen is about a million millionth of a million millionths of a gramme and a half. Other atoms weigh more than the atom of hydrogen, but not enormously more. .. An atom of oxygen weighs sixteen times as much .. Per contra , an electron weighs very much less than a hydrogen atom. It takes about 1850 electrons to weigh as much as one hydrogen atom.

The space occupied by an atom is equally minute. As we shall see, an atom of a given size is not always of the same size. When it is not crowded, the electrons which constitute its planets sometimes are much farther from its sun than they are under normal terrestrial conditions. But under normal conditions the diameter of a hydrogen atom is about a hundred millionth of a centimetre. [A centimetre is about a third of an inch]. That is to say, this is about twice the usual distance .. one electron from the nucleus. It might be thought that not much could be known about such minute phenomena, since they are very far below what can be seen by the most powerful microscope, but in fact a great deal is known. What has been discovered about atoms and molecules is doubly amazing. In the first place it is contrary what every man of science expected, and in part very difficult to reconcile with other knowledge and with deep-seated prejudices. In the second place it seems to the laymen hardly credible that such very small things should be not only observable but measurable with a high degree of accuracy. Sherlock Holmes at his best did not show anything like the skill of the physicists at making inferences, subsequently verified, from minute facts which ordinary people would have thought unimportant. ... There are three methods by which most of our knowledge is obtained: the spectroscope, X-rays, and radio-activity. ... All the atoms except that of hydrogen present some problems which are too difficult for mathematicians, in spite of the fact that they are largely of a kind that has been studied ever since the time of Newton. Although exact quantitative solutions of the questions that arise are often impossible, it is not impossible, even for the more complex atoms, to discover the sort of thing that is happening when they emit light, or X-rays, or radio-activity. When an atom has many electrons, it seems that they are arranged in successive rings round the nucleus, all revolving around it approximately in circles or ellipses... The chemical properties of the atom depend almost entirely upon the outer ring; so does the light that it emits, which is studied by the spectroscope. The inner rings of electrons give rise to X-rays when they are disturbed, and it is chiefly by means of X-rays that their constitution is studied. The nucleus itself is the source of radio-activity. In radium and the other radio-active elements, the nucleus is unstable, and is apt to shoot out little particles with incredible velocity. ..

Nowadays, transmutation, the dream of the alchemists, take place in laboratories, but unfortunately it does not transform the baser metals into gold; it transforms radium, which is infinitely more valuable than gold [sic], into lead - of a sort. ... One of the most astonishing things about the processes that take place in atoms is that they seem to be liable to sudden discontinuities, sudden jumps from one state of continued motion to another. The motion of an electron round its nucleus seems to be like that of a flea, which crawls for a while, and then hops. The crawls proceed accurately according to the old laws of dynamics, but the hops were a new phenomenon, concerning which certain totally new laws have been discovered empirically, without any possibility, so far as can be seen, of connecting them with the old laws....

II THE PERIODIC LAW
.. January 22nd of 1923.. last discovery of a new element.. hafnium announced in Copenhagen..

.. [Radio-activity:] .. The word atom originally meant indivisible. It comes to us from the Greeks... We now know what are called atoms can be cut up, except in the case of positively electrified hydrogen.. but in chemistry apart from radioactivity there is nothing to prove the atoms can be divided... some instinct rebels against the idea of its [viz. the universe] being built of eighty-eight different sorts of things. Physicists have now all but succeeded in reducing matter to two different kinds of units [i.e. basically proton and electron]

.. Mendeleev .. periodic law which was discovered about the year 1870. .. The fact that very many atomic weights are almost exactly whole numbers cannot be due to chance, and has long been regarded as a reason for supposing that atoms are built up out of small units.

.. Lothar Meyer, a German chemist observed that the elements which occurred at periodic intervals resembled other elements, for example, "the alkalis", 3rd, 11th, 19th etc in the series.. alkaline earths.. inert gases..

Once the periodic law had been discovered it was found that a great many properties of elements were periodic. This gave a principle of arrangement of the elements.. Argon, an inert gas, has the atomic weight 39.88, whereas potassium.. has 39.10, but nevertheless argon has to be placed before potassium.

.. There are seven periods of unequal length [sic]. The first contains only two elements, hydrogen and helium. The second and third each contain eight... The elements are placed in a series beginning with hydrogen and ending with uranium. .. What is called the "atomic number" of an element is simply its place in this series. .. irregularities, for example the sixteen rare earths that do not correspond to any of the other elements.. iron and two neighbouring elements have magnetic properties.. [Russell also talks of the atomic weights of the earlier elements being double, or one more than double, the atomic number, apart from hydrogen, but after the twentieth element the atomic weight becomes increasingly more than double]

III ELECTRONS AND NUCLEI
- [Mentions the cloud chamber, though not by this name, or attributing it to Wilson] .. water vapour.. each electron collecting a little cloud which can be made visible with a powerful microscope.. [Russell seems not to realise that visible condensation would be vastly greater than an electron]

Some readers may expect me at this stage to tell them what electricity "really is". The fact is that I have already said what it is. It is not a "thing" like St Paul's Cathedral. It is a way in which things behave. When we have told how things behave when they are electrified, and under what circumstances they are electrified, we have told all there is to tell. [I wonder if this is a tribute to 'behavorism'? - RW] .. velocity is about one 134th of the velocity of light. Thus the electron manages to cover about 2,200 kilometres, or about 1400 miles, in every second. .. The modern man is supposed to have a passion for rapid motion, but nature far surpasses him in this respect. ... Helium has two electrons, lithium three and so on, until we come to uranium, like the Grand Turk, with 92 consorts revolving round him. .. When, by any means, an atom is robbed of one of its electrons it becomes positively electrified; if it is robbed of two electrons it becomes doubly electrified and remains electrified until it has an opportunity of annexing from elsewhere as many electrons as it has lost. A body can be negatively electrified by containing free electrons; an atom may for a short time have more than its proper number of electrons, and thus become negatively electrified, but this is an unstable condition, except in chemical combinations.

[Orbits:] We know that the electrons must all orbit around the nucleus in orbits which are roughly circles or ellipses, but they will be perturbed from the circular or elliptic path by the repulsions of the other electrons. .. in the solar system, the attractions which the planets exercise .. are very minute, but the electrical forces between two electrons are not very much less strong than the forces between electrons and nucleus at the same distance - in the case of helium, they are half as strong; with lithium, a third as strong; and so on. This makes the perturbations much greater than they are in the solar system, and the mathematics correspondingly more difficult. .. The first hypothesis was that the electrons were like people in a merry-go-round, all going round in circles.. but for various reasons the arrangement cannot be as simple as that. .. It is impossible to get a ring to hold more than a certain number of electrons, and it has been suggested by Neils Bohr, in an extremely ingenious speculation, that a ring can hold more electrons when it has other rings outside it than when it is the outer ring. This theory accounts extraordinarily well for peculiarities of the periodic table.. though it cannot yet be regarded as certainly true. .. Thus krypton [this is Bohr's speculation] the inert gas which completes the fourth period will still have only eight electrons in its outer ring, but will have eighteen in the third ring. .. Some elements in the fourth period differ from their immediate predecessors not as regards the outer ring, but by having one more electron in the third ring. These are the elements that do not correspond accurately to any elements in the third period. Similarly, the fifth period, which again consists of eighteen elements, will add its new electrons partly in the new fifth ring, and partly in the fourth, ending with xenon which will have eight in the fifth ring, eighteen in the fourth, and the other rings as in krypton.. If we accept Bohr's theory, the outer ring, when it is completed, always has eight electrons except in hydrogen and helium. There is a tendency for atoms to combine so as to make up the full number of electrons in the outer ring.' [He gives an example of an 'alkali' and, I was expecting him to mention 'halogen' but he says 'an element next but one before an inert gas]

IV THE HYDROGEN SPECTRUM
.. The spectroscope has supplied the experimental facts, but the interpretation of the facts required an extraordinarily brilliant piece of theorising by a young Dane, Neils Bohr, who when he first propounded his theory in 1913 was still working under Rutherford. The original theory has since been modified and developed, notably by Sommerfeld, ... We are concerned with the explanation of the lines emitted by different elements. Why does an element have a spectrum consisting of certain sharp lines? What connection is there between the different lines and a single spectrum? Why are the lines sharp instead of being diffuse bands of colours? Until recent years, no answer whatever was known to these questions; now the answer is known with a considerable approach to completeness. In the two cases of hydrogen and positively electrified helium, the answer is exhaustive; everything as been explained down to the tiniest peculiarities. .. The mathematics involved in the case of atoms that have many electrons is too difficult to enable us to deduce their spectra completely from theory, as we can in the simplest cases. In the cases that can be worked out, the calculations are not difficult. [Footnote refers to Norman Campbell, 'Series Spectra' 1921, and a book by Sommerfeld]

.. [Description of transverse waves and longitudinal waves: Russell compares a longitudinal wave to a procession marching up Piccadilly, which is stopped by a policeman time after time, .. compression wave.. travel down the procession.. when people begin to move out at the front they will begin to thin out again. Whereas a transverse wave he illustrates by a policeman on a horse, riding along the edge of the procession, so that people on his right move to the left and the movement to the left will travel along the procession as the policeman rides on]

.. [Speed of light and speed of sound]

.. People have invented a medium, the aether, for the express purpose of transmitting light waves, but all we really know is that the waves are transmitted; the aether is purely hypothetical and does not really add anything to our knowledge. We know the mathematical properties of light waves .. but we do not know what it is that undulates; we only suppose that something must undulate, because we find it difficult to imagine waves otherwise.

Different colours of the rainbow have different wavelengths, that is to say different distances between the crest of one wave and the crest of the next.. [Red, violet.. longest waves those of the sort used in wireless telegraphy.. X-rays are much shorter.. gamma rays the shortest we know].. Any waves that are too long or too short to be seen can nevertheless be photographed, so in speaking of the spectrum we .. do not confine ?ourself to visible colours but include all experimentally discoverable waves.. for example, X-ray spectra.. a recent discovery beginning in 1912..

.. wave-number.. the number of waves in a centimetre. Thus, if the wavelength is 1/10000 of a centimetre, the wave number is 10,000. .. The wave number is also sometimes called the "frequency", but this term is more properly employed to express the number of waves that pass given point in a second. This is obtained by multiplying the wave-number by the number of centimetres that light travels in a second, i.e. thirty thousand million. These three terms: wavelength, wave-number and frequency must be borne in mind in reading spectroscopic work,

.. For many years no progress was made. .. It was supposed there must be one fundamental line [of hydrogen] and that the others must be like harmonics in music. ..

At last in 1908 a curious discovery was made by W Ritz, which equalled the Principle of Combination. He found that all the lines were connected with a certain number of inferred wave numbers, which are called "terms", in such a way that every line has a wave-number which is the difference of two terms, and the difference between any two terms (apart from certain easily explicable exceptions) gives a line. [Russell gives an analogy:] .. eccentric shopkeeper.. the only sums ever spent by his customers were 19/11, 19/-, 15/-, 10/-, 9/11, 9/-, 5/-, 4/11, 4/-, 11d. At first these sums might seem to have no connection with each other, but if it were worth your while you might presently notice.. they are the sums that would be spent by customers who gave 20s, 10s, 5s, or 1s, and got 10s, 5s, 1s, or 1d in change. .. The oddity would be explained if you found the shopkeeper's eccentricity took the form of him insisting of giving one coin or note in change, no more, no less. The sums spent in the shop correspond to the lines in the spectrum, while the sums of 20s, 10s, 5s, 1s and 1 penny correspond to the terms. You will observe there are more lines than terms; ten lines and five terms in our illustration. As the number of both increases, the disproportion grows greater. Six terms would give fifteen lines; seven, twenty-one; eight, twenty-eight, and so on. This shows that, the more lines and terms there are, the more surprising it becomes that the Principle of Combination should be true...

.. The terms of the hydrogen spectrum can all be expressed very simply. There is a certain fundamental wave number, called Rydberg's Constant after its discoverer. Rydberg discovered that this constant was always occurring in formulae for series of spectral lines, and it has been found that it is very nearly the same for all elements. Its value is about one hundred and nine thousand seven hundred waves per centimetre. This may be taken as the fundamental term of the hydrogen spectrum. The others are obtained from it by dividing by four, nine, sixteen, and so on. This gives all the terms. The lines are obtained by subtracting one term from another. Theoretically, this rule gives an infinite number of terms.. but in practice the lines grow fainter as higher terms are involved, and also so close together that they can no longer be distinguished. For this reason .. it is not necessary in practice to take account of more than about thirty terms; and even this number is only necessary in the case of certain nebulae [sic; surely 'elements'?] ...

It will be seen that, by our rule, we have obtained various series of terms. The first series is obtained by subtracting from Rydberg's constant successively 1/4, 1/9, 1/16, .. of itself, so that the wave numbers of its line are respectively 3/4, 8/9, 15/16, .. of Rydberg's Constant. These wave numbers correspond to lines in the ultra-violet.. this series of lines is called after its discoverer the Lyman series. Then there is a series of lines obtained by subtracting from a quarter of Rydberg's Constant successively 1/9, 1/16, 1/25.. of Rydberg's Constant, so that the wave numbers of this series are 5/36, 3/16, 21/100, .. of Rydberg's Constant. This series of lines is in the visible part of the spectrum. The formula for this series was discovered as long ago as 1885, by Balmer. Then there is the series obtained by taking a ninth of Rydberg's Constant, and subtracting successively 1/16, 1/25, 1/36.. of Rydberg's Constant. This series is not visible because its wave numbers are so small that it is in the infra-red, but it was discovered by Paschen, after whom it is called. .. Thus so far as the conditions of observation admit, we may lay down this simple rule: the lines of the hydrogen spectrum are obtained from Rydberg's Constant by dividing it by any two square numbers, and subtracting the smaller resulting number from the larger. This gives the wave number of some line in the hydrogen spectrum if observation of a line of that wave number is possible, and if there are not too many other lines in the immediate neighbourhood. .. All this so far is purely empirical. Rydberg's Constant and the formulae .. were discovered merely by observation and by hunting for some arithmetical formula which would make it possible to collect the different lines under some rule. For a long time the search failed because people employed wave lengths instead of wave numbers; the formulae are more complicated in wavelengths, and therefore more difficult to discover empirically. Balmer who discovered the formula for the visible lines in the hydrogen spectrum expressed it in wavelengths, but when expressed in this form it did not suggest Ritz's Principle of Combination, which led to the complete rule. Even after the rule was discovered, no-one knew why there was such a rule, or what was the reason for the appearance of Rydberg's Constant. The explanation.. was effected by Neils Bohr...

V POSSIBLE STATES OF THE HYDROGEN ATOM
- It was obvious from the first that, when light is sent out by a body, this is due to something that goes on in the atom, but it used to be thought that, when the light is steady, whatever causes the emission of light is going on all the time in all the atoms of the substance from which the light comes. The discovery that the lines of the spectrum are the differences between terms suggested to Bohr a quite different hypothesis which proved immensely fruitful. He adopted the view that each of the terms corresponds to a stable condition of the atom, and that light is emitted when the atom passes from one stable state to another, and only then. The various lines of the spectrum are due, in this theory, to the various possible transitions between different stable states. Each of the lines is a statistical phenomenon: a certain percentage of the atoms are making a transition that gives rise to this line. Some of the lines in the spectrum are very much brighter than others; these represent very common transitions, while the faint lines represent very rare ones. On a given occasion some of the rarer possible transitions may not be occurring at all; in that case, lines corresponding to these transitions will be wholly absent on this occasion. According to Bohr, what happens when a hydrogen atom gives out light is that its electron, which has hitherto been comparatively distant from the nucleus, suddenly jumps into an orbit which is much nearer to the nucleus. When this happens, the atom loses energy, but the energy is not lost to the world: it spreads to the surrounding medium in the shape of light waves. When an atom absorbs light instead of emitting it, the converse process happens: energy is transferred from the surrounding medium to the atom and takes the form of making the electron jump to a larger orbit. This accounts for fluorescence - that is to say, the subsequent emission in certain cases of light of exactly he same frequency as that which has been absorbed.

.. Let us first consider the results which Bohr [indecipherable] .. we will assume to begin with that the electron in a hydrogen atom in its steady states goes round the nucleus in a circle, and that the different steady states only differ as regards the size of the circle. As a matter of fact, the electron moves sometimes in a circle and sometimes in an ellipse; but Sommerfeld showed how to calculate the elliptical orbits that may occur .. also showed that, so far as the spectrum is concerned, the result is very nearly the same as if the orbits were always circular..

According to Newtonian dynamics, the electron ought to be capable of revolving in any circle which had a nucleus in the centre, or in any ellipse which had the nucleus in a focus; the question what orbit it would choose would depend only on upon the velocity and direction of its motion at a given moment. Moreover if outside influences increased or diminished its energy, it ought to pass by continuous graduations to a larger or smaller orbit in which it would go on moving after the outside influences were withdrawn. According to the theory of electrodynamics, on the other hand, an atom left to itself ought gradually to radiate its energy into the surrounding aether, with the result that the electron would approach continually nearer and nearer to the nucleus. Bohr's theory differs from the traditional views on all these points. He holds that, among all the circles that ought to be possible on Newtonian principles, only a certain infinitesimal selection are really possible. There is the smallest possible circle, which has a radius of about half a hundred millionth of a centimetre. This is the commonest circle for the electron to choose. If it does not move in this circle, it cannot move in a circle slightly larger but must hop at once to a circle with a radius four times as large. If it wants to leave this circle for a larger one, it must hop to one with a radius nine times as large as the original radius. In fact, the only circles that are possible in addition to the smallest circle are those that have radii 4, 9, 16, 25, 36 times as large. When we come to consider elliptical orbits, we shall find that there is a similar selection of possible ellipse from among all those thought to be principle on Newtonian principles.

The atom has least energy when the orbit is smallest; therefore the electron cannot jump from a smaller to a larger orbit except under the influence of outside forces. It may be attracted out of its course by some passing positively electrified atom, or repelled out of its course by a passing electron, or waved out of its course by light waves. Such occurrences as these, according to the theory, may make it jump from one of the smaller possible circles to one of the larger ones. When it is moving in a larger circle, it is not in such a stable state as when it is in a smaller one; it can jump back to a smaller circle without outside influences. When it does this it will emit light, which will be one or other of the lines of the hydrogen spectrum, according to the particular jump that is made. When it jumps from the circle of radius four to the smallest circle it emits a line whose wave number is 3/4 of Rydberg's Constant. A jump from radius 9 to the smallest gives us a line which is 8/9 of Rydberg's Constant. ...

.. This is supposed to happen instantaneously, not merely in a very short time. It is supposed that for a time it is moving in one orbit, and then instantaneously it is moving in the other, without having passed over the intermediate space. An electron is like a man who, when he is insulted, listens at first apparently unmoved, and then suddenly hits out. The process by which an electron passes from one orbit to another is at present quite unintelligible, to all appearance contrary to everything that has hitherto been believed about the nature of physical occurrences... Evolution in biology and relativity in physics seemed to have established the continuity of natural processes more formally than ever before. Newton's action at a distance, which had always been considered something of a scandal, was explained away by Einstein's theory of gravitation. But just when the triumph of continuity seemed complete, and when Bergson's philosophy had enshrined it in popular thought, this inconvenient discovery about energy came and upset everything. How far it way carry us no-one can yet tell. Perhaps we were not speaking correctly a moment ago when we said that an electron passes from one orbit to another "without passing over the intermediate space;" perhaps there is no intermediate space; perhaps it is merely habit and prejudice that makes us suppose space to be continuous. ... It is odd that the orbits of electrons down to the smallest particulars are such as to be possible on Newtonian principles. Even the minute corrections introduced by Einstein have been utilised by Sommerfeld to explain some of the more delicate characteristics of the hydrogen spectrum. It must be understood that, as regards the present question, .. Einstein and the theory of relativity are the crown of the old dynamics, not the beginning of the new. Einstein's work has immense philosophical and theoretical importance, but the changes which it introduces in actual physics are very small indeed until we come to deal with velocities not much less than that of light. The new dynamics of the atom, on the contrary, not merely alters our theories but alters our view as to what actually occurs, by leading to the conclusion that change is often discontinuous and that most of the motions which should be possible are in fact impossible. This leaves us quite unable to account for the fact that all the motions that are in fact possible are exactly in accordance with the old principles, showing that the old principles, though incomplete, must be true up to a point. Having discovered that the old principles are not quite true, we are completely in the dark as to why they have as much truth as they evidently have.

.. Other elements.. when there are many electrons revolving round a single nucleus, the mathematics becomes too difficult for our present powers.. There is one case which can be tested to the full, and that is the case of positively electrified helium, .. it only differs from hydrogen as regards the movement of the electron by the fact that the charge on the nucleus is twice as great as that on the electron, instead of being equal to it, as with hydrogen, and that the mass of the nucleus is four times that of the hydrogen nucleus. [Incidentally; I think the 'neutron' is not mentioned anywhere in this book] The changes which this produces in the spectrum as compared with hydrogen are exactly such as theory would predict.

.. We have seen what was the conclusion to which Bohr was led as to the possible states of the hydrogen atom, but we have not yet seen what was the reasoning by which he was led to this conclusion.

VI THE THEORY OF QUANTA
Planck, in 1900.. showed that it was necessary, that is to say, that the energy of a body cannot vary continuously, in order to account for the laws of temperature radiation; roughly speaking, if bodies could part with their warmth continuously, not by jumps, they ought to grow colder than they do when they are not exposed to a source of heat. .. His reasoning was somewhat abstruse; there is an account in Jeans's Report on Radiation and Quantum-Theory, published in 1914.

.. Planck's Principle in its original form was as follows: there are bodies undergoing any kind of vibration or periodic motion of a frequency nu, (i.e. the body goes through its whole period nu times in a second) then there is a certain fundamental constant h such that the energy of the body, owing to this periodic is h nu, or some exact multiple of h nu. That is to say, h nu is the smallest amount of energy that can exist in any periodic process whose frequency is nu and if the energy is greater than h nu, it must be exactly twice as great, or three or four times as great, ... The energy was at first supposed to exist in atoms, in little indivisible parcels, each amount h nu. .. The quantity h, which is called "Planck's quantum", is of course very small. ... We may say that a million million million million times h would be a quantity just appreciable without instruments of precision. Taking the electron in its smallest orbit, h is exactly obtained by multiplying the circumference of the orbit by the velocity of the electron and multiplying the result by the mass of the electron. In the second orbit, the result of this multiplication is 2h; in the third, 3h and so on. [Footnote says: expressed in the usual CGS units h = 6.55 x 10^-27] ... The right way to generalise Planck's Principle has been discovered by Sommerfeld, but is very difficult to express in non-mathematical language. It turns out that the principle.. cannot be stated in its general form as involving little parcels of energy; it only seemed possible because Planck was dealing with a special case. The general form requires a method of stating the principles of dynamics which is due to Hamilton...

.. [periodic movement, like a pendulum or planet].. a system is called conditionally periodic when its motion is compounded of a number of motions each of which separately is periodic, but which don't have the same period. For example the earth has a motion compounded of its rotation round its axis, which takes a day, and revolution around the sun, which takes a year. So.. when we take account of both rotation and revolution, the motion of the earth is "conditionally periodic." .. The motions of electrons in their orbits, when we take account of niceties, are, strictly speaking, conditionally periodic and not simply periodic. .. We can now state the generalised quantum principle: take some one co-ordinate of the system, and imagine the motion of the system throughout one period of this co-ordinate. Divide it into a great number of little bits. In each little bit, take the generalized momentum corresponding to the co-ordinate in question, and multiply it by the amount of change in the co-ordinate during that little bit. Add up all these for all the little bits that make up one complete period then, in the limit, when the bits are made very small and very numerous, the result of the addition for one complete period will be exactly h or 2h or 3h or some other exact multiple of h. [Refers to Sommerfeld, 'Atombau und ?Spektrallinien'] No-one knows in the least why this should be the case; all we can say is that it is so, in all the cases that have been tested.

.. We can now understand how Bohr's theory explains the lines of the hydrogen spectrum. When the electron jumps from a large to a smaller orbit, it loses energy. A little very elementary mathematics shows that the kinetic energy in the second orbit is a quarter of that in the first; the third is a ninth, and the fourth a sixteenth, and so on. [The appendix has four pages on the working] It is also very easy to show that (apart from a constant portion which may be ignored) the total energy in any orbit (potential and kinetic energy) is numerically equal to the kinetic energy, but with the opposite sign. Therefore, the loss of total energy in passing from a large to a smaller orbit is equal to the gain in kinetic energy. It follows that, if we call e [epsilon] the kinetic energy in the smallest orbit, the loss of energy in passing from the second orbit to the smallest is 3/4 e; the loss in passing from the third orbit is 8/9 epsilon, and so on. The loss in passing from the third to the second is 1/4 minus 1/9 epsilon, that is 5/36. ... the same as those concerned in connection with Rydberg's Constant.. The energy that is lost by the atom in one of these jumps is turned into a light wave. What sort of a light wave it is to become, is determined by the theory of quanta. A light wave is a periodic process, and if its frequency is nu, its period is a nuth of a second. The generalized quantum principle shows that, if he period of a wave is t, the energy of the wave multiplied by t must be an exact multiple of h. In fact, so far as observation goes, it appears to be always h. Since t is a nuth of a second, where nu is the frequency, it follows that the energy of the wave is h nu. Also by the Principle of the Conservation of Energy, the energy of the wave is equal to the energy the atom has lost.

This shows that, if e is the kinetic energy of the electron in the smallest orbit, the wave caused by the transition from the second orbit to the first will have a frequency nu given by the equation 3/4 e = h nu. The transition from the third orbit to the first, 8/9 e = h nu, and so on. .. They agree if Rydberg's Constant is equal to e divided by h and the velocity of light (We have to divide by the velocity of light because in this chapter we have been speaking of frequencies whereas in chapter four we were speaking of wave numbers). Now e is easily calculated, since we know the charge on a hydrogen nucleus and on an electron, the mass of an electron, and the radius of the minimum orbit. Also h and the velocity of light are known. It is found that the calculated value and Rydberg's Constant.. agrees closely; this was from the first a powerful argument in favour of Bohr's theory.

.. The quantity h, Planck's Quantum, has been found to be involved in all the very phenomena that can be adequately studied. It is one of the fundamental constants to which science has led; for the present, it represents a limit of explanation, since no-one knows why there is such a constant, or why it is just the size it is.. for Planck's Quantum for the present is a brute fact.

VII REFINEMENTS OF THE HYDROGEN SPECTRUM
[This chapter is concerned to see if the admission of elliptical orbits makes a difference:] .. There are three effects which it [admission of ellipses] explains: 1 What's called the Zeeman Effect, which is an alteration produced by a strong magnetic field. 2 The Stark effect, which is produced by a strong electric field. 3 "Fine Structure" - the fact that each line of the spectrum when closely examined is found to consist of a number of almost identical lines.

[Ellipses drawn with a couple of pins and loop of string] There are now two periodic characteristics of the orbit, instead of only one as in the case of the circle. First is the angle that SE, [the sun so to speak - the focus], to the electron makes with the major axis; the other is the distance of the electron from the nucleus; the distance grows continually smaller while the electron is travelling from the further point to the near point, and then continually larger. As there are two periodic characteristics of the orbit, the general quantum theory will give two conditions that the orbit must fulfil instead of only one. It is impossible to explain the process by which the results are obtained, but the results themselves are fairly simple. ... The amount of energy radiated out in waves when this occurs .. the same electron is torn away from.. when the electron occupies a vacant place near the nucleus, the amount of energy radiated out when this occurs is very great, and therefore the frequency of the waves is very great. X-ray waves differ from ordinary light waves by their great frequency, so the emission of X-rays is just what might be expected under the circumstances..

VIII RINGS OF ELECTRONS
.. Bohr has given a table setting out his theory of the way the electrons are arranged in various inert gases, each of which has an outer ring as full as it will hold. .. The helium atom in its commoner form he supposes to contain two electrons moving in circles, each with the same total quantum number, namely 1, as the minimum circle in hydrogen. There is however as we saw another form of helium in which one of the electrons moves in an eccentric orbit. In the next inert gas, neon, there are ten electrons, two in the inner ring and eight in the outer. The two in the inner ring, according to his table, remain as in helium, but of the outer eight, four are moving in circles and four in ellipses. This and the other figures in the table apply of course to the atoms' most compressed state, the state to which it tends when it is let alone, the state corresponding to the minimum circle in hydrogen. Argon, which comes next with eighteen electrons, has its two inner rings as in neon, but it has eight electrons in a third ring. Partly from spectroscopic considerations, partly from stability, Bohr maintains that of these eight outer electrons, none move in circles, but are divided into two groups of four, the first group moving in orbits of very great eccentricity, the second in less eccentric orbits. The first group of four will at moments penetrate inside the first ring. It is assumed that the two inner rings are definitely completed as soon as we reach neon, but that the later rings are not completed so quickly.. and so on. [He goes right through Bohr's table. I presume this is the same stuff as represented by s, p and what have you orbitals. Several pages on this. For example:] .. In accordance with this principle, the outer, fifth, ring of xenon in to have eight electrons, divided into two groups of four, the first group having the most eccentric orbit at this stage, length five times breadth, the second group having the next most eccentric, five times half the breadth, ... For convenience we are speaking as if the orbits were still ellipses and circles, but of course this is only very roughly true..

IX X-RAYS
- Everybody knows that they can take a photograph of the skeleton of a living person so the exact position of a bullet lodged in the brain but not everybody knows why this is so. [my notes sic] The reason is that the capacity for ordinary matter for stopping them varies approximately as the fourth power of the atomic number of the elements concerned. Thus, carbon, whose atomic number is 6, is 1296 times as effective as hydrogen at stopping X-rays; nitrogen is 2401 times.. calcium, 160,000 and so on. The human body consists mainly of carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrogen, but bones consist mainly of calcium. Consequently X-rays which go through the rest of the body easily are stopped by the bones.. lead.. is about forty-five million times as affective as hydrogen, and about 280 times as effective as calcium; so it is no wonder that bullets come out clearly in X-ray photographs. ..

[More, inc. 'kathode' spelt with a k, Greek style] .. X-ray spectra do not occur as a regular thing in the form of absorption spectra, and in this they differ from optical spectra. It is worthwhile to understand why this is. An ordinary light of a frequency which an element is capable of emitting passes through a gas composed of this element: the element absorbs all or some of it, though light of other frequencies passes through freely. The reason is that the light corresponding to the spectral line of the element supplies just the quantum required to move an electron from an inner to an outer ring; the energy of the light-wave is used up in doing this. The electrons involved in optical spectra are only those in the outer ring.. but in X-ray spectra the electrons concerned are those in the inner rings. When one of these is fetched out by a passing electron, it cannot settle in an outer ring, because the outer rings are already occupied by electrons. Each of the electrons that it passes on the way out repels it and gives it so to speak an extra shove, with the result hat it cannot rest in an outer ring unless by some exceptional stroke of luck but has to go wandering off into space. The energy involved in such a journey is not tied down to certain amounts, like the energy involved in passing from one orbit to another. Its place on the inside is taken by one of the other electrons, while the outer ring remains one electron short until it has a chance to help itself from some other atom by means of some free electron. .. The atomic number represents the fundamental property of the atom, namely the positive charge on the nucleus.. X-ray spectra have given the decisive victory to the classification by atomic numbers.. The law of X-ray spectra is just the same as the law of optical spectra, namely that if nu is the frequency of a line in the spectrum, i.e. the number of waves per second, and h is Planck's quantum, h multiplied by nu is the energy lost by the atom in the transition that gives rise to the line in question. There are three principle lines in X-ray spectra, called respectively the K, L and M lines; for any given atom, the K line has the greatest frequency, and the M line the least... X-ray spectra are also important concerning the "fine structure" because the distance between these fine lines ought to increase roughly as the fourth power of the atomic number. On this point, the empirical evidence obtained from X-ray spectra agrees closely with the theory developed by Sommerfeld.

X RADIO-ACTIVITY
Becquerel's discovery that a very sensitive photographic plate put away in a dark cupboard with a piece of uranium was found to photograph the uranium in spite of the complete darkness.. Becquerel found that the rays came from the uranium itself and did not depend on previous exposure to light, as is the case with fluorescent substances. Uranium was found able to produce rays apparently indefinitely.. This seemed to go against the conservation of energy.. but the energy as we shall see comes out of the nucleus of the uranium atom. But something equally astonishing was found to happen: in radioactivity one element turns into another. .. In radioactivity atoms of one element throw out particles from the nucleus, and become atoms of another element.

Radioactivity is associated in popular thought with radium, but in fact the discovery of radium was caused by that of radioactivity, and not vice versa. M and Mme Curie, who were working under Becquerel, observed that pitchblende, from which uranium is obtained, is more radioactive than pure uranium. They inferred that it must contain some very radioactive constituent.. The search finally led Mme Curie to the new element, radium. Since then, a number of new radioactive elements have been discovered. Sommerfeld enumerates forty of them.. The atoms of a radioactive substance are like a population which has a certain death rate. In a given time, a certain percentage of them die and are born again as atoms of a different substance, but they are not endowed like human beings with a certain span of life. Some live a very short time, some a very long time; the old ones are no more liable to death than the young ones. .. Uranium, which is only very slightly radioactive, takes 4,500 million years in its most stable form for half its atoms to decay. The first product of their disintegration is a substance which half decays in just twenty-four days; .. a minute and a quarter the next; two million years.. at this stage, two different products may be formed, one of which in turn becomes radium, of which the period is 1,580 years, while the other becomes protoactinium, [NB: Webster's says this is 'early form of protactinium'] of which the period is 12,000 years, the next product being actinium. Radium gives rise to the inert gas, niton, also called radium emanation [or radon!] of which the period is a little less than four days. The end of both series is a form of lead which so far as we know is not radioactive at all.. [He talks about thorium after that. Then explains about half-life and about statistical averages.] ..

In this respect, as in some others, ... the universe seems like a clock running down with no mechanism for winding it up again.. it seems strange there should be any uranium. But if, like some insects, we lived only for a single spring day, we should think it strange that there should be any ice in the world, since we should find it always melting and never being formed. Perhaps the universe has long cycles of alternate winding-up and running-down; if so, we are in the part of the cycle in which the universe, or at least our portion of it, runs down. .. It is only this process that liberates energy for purposes that we regard as useful. [Then discusses alpha, beta and gamma rays:] Alpha rays being the nucleus of a helium atom, beta.. electrons, and gamma rays being of the nature of light waves, of frequency higher even than X-rays.. [Paths of decay, for example uranium 1 and uranium 2, both very stable, though uranium 1 is the great-grandfather of uranium 2] ..

129: F W Aston who.. by gas separation.. discovered.. isotopes.. for example in chlorine, in krypton..

[Finally, on the energy inside the atom:] Sommerfeld says the sources of energy which are thus disclosed to the external world are of quite a different order of magnitude from the energies of other physical and chemical processes. They bear witness to what powerful forces are active in the interior of atoms, the nuclei. The world of the interior of the atom is in general closed to the outer world; it is not influenced by conditions of temperature and pressure which hold outside; it is ruled by the law of probability, spontaneous chance which cannot be influenced.

XI THE STRUCTURE OF NUCLEI
- [A lot about hydrogen nuclei, helium nuclei, and electrons. Still haven't found the word 'neutron'. He also mentions that of elements with odd atomic numbers, there is only one instance, nitrogen, in which the atomic weight is just double the atomic number..]

.. Overcrowding in the nucleus of the heavy atom must be something fearful; radium C.. has a nucleus whose radius is about three million millionths of a centimetre; its atomic number is 83 and its atomic weight is 214. This means that in this tiny space it must contain 53 helium nuclei and two hydrogen nuclei, .. also.. 131 electrons. It is no wonder that helium nuclei and electrons move fast when radioactivity liberates them from this slum.

[NB: Unsure how he gets this; helium nucleus with atomic weight 4 times 53 plus two gives 214, but I don't see why other combinations shouldn't be possible. The 131 'electrons' are 214 - 83 but of course the charge would be positive]

XII THE NEW PHYSICS AND THE WAVE THEORY OF LIGHT
[Starts with a discussion of "action":] The word "action" in physics has a precise technical meaning, and may be regarded as the result of energy operating for a certain time. Thus, if a given amount of energy operates for two seconds, there is twice as much action as if it operated for one second. .. Waves.. interference.. problem with quantum theory.. James Jeans:
    'There appears no hope of reconciling the undulatory theory of light with the quantum theory..'

In Sommerfeld's work we no longer have little parcels of energy. What we have is a property of periodic processes.. For the purposes of stating the quantum principle, one period of a periodic process has to be treated as an indivisible whole. This was not evident at the time when Jeans's report was written [1914] but has been made evident by subsequent developments. While it makes the quantum principle more puzzling, it also prevents it from being inconsistent with known facts about light. ... [Typical Russell warning:] .. The charge on the electron, the equal and opposite charge on the hydrogen atom, the mass of the electron, the mass of the hydrogen nucleus, Planck's quantum, all appear in modern physics as absolute constants.. the aether.. has sunk into the background.. It may be found, however, as a result of further research, that the aether is after all what is really fundamental, and that electrons and hydrogen nuclei are merely states of strain in the aether, or something of the sort. If so the two "elements" with which modern physics operates may be reduced to one, and the atomic character of matter may turn out to be not the ultimate truth. This suggestion is purely speculative; there is nothing in the existing state of physics to justify it, but the past history of science shows that it should be borne in mind as a possibility to be tested hereafter.

XIII THE NEW PHYSICS AND RELATIVITY
Distances too small for the microscope are concerned in the theory of quanta; distances too large for the telescope are concerned in the theory of relativity. .. The two theories have been pursued by different investigators, because they required different apparatus and different methods.. [Then we have Einstein 1905 first part, 1915 second part of relativity.. Two books for those with 'sufficient mathematical equipment': Hermann Weyl's 'Space, Time, Matter' and Eddington's 'Mathematical Theory of Relativity'] We are only concerned here with the points where this theory touches the problem of atomic structure.. It is relevant at several points. Its doctrine that mass as measured by our instruments varies with velocity and is in fact merely part of the energy of a body .. It is part of the theory of relativity to show that the results of measurement, in a great many cases, do not yield physical facts about the quantities intended to be measured, but are dependant upon the relative motion of the observer and what is observed.. so.. [stuff about increase in mass which is only apparent to observers..]/ .. elementary dynamics.. energy consists of two parts, kinetic and potential energy; Russell considers the kinetic energy, which depends on the mass and the velocity:] the velocity depends on the observer, and is not an intrinsic property, so energy has to be redefined in the theory of relativity. It turns out we can identify the energy with its mass as measured by the observer or, in ordinary units, with its mass multiplied by the square of the velocity of light. In the theory of relativity, there are two kinds of variation of mass to be distinguished, of which so far we have only considered one. We considered the change of measured mass, as we have called it, which is brought about by a change in the relative motion of the observer and the body whose mass is being measured, that is not a change in the body itself but merely a relation to the observer, .. [continues with proper mass being a genuine property of a body which is increased when it absorbs radiant energy and so on, and] .. there is another point, not easy to explain clearly, and as yet amounting to no more than a suggestion, capable of proving very important in the future. We saw that Planck's quantum, h, is not a certain amount of energy, but a certain amount of what is called "action". The theory of relativity would lead us to expect that action would be more important than energy. The reason for this is derived from the fact that relativity diminishes the gulf between space and time which exists in popular thought, and traditional physics. How this affects our question we will now try to understand. [Well, he discusses two events which happened a day apart, in London and Edinburgh, and said that the 24 hours interval and the four hundred miles interval idea is really a mistake; there is really only one type.] The importance of this principle is impossible to exaggerate. It means in the first place the ultimate facts in physics must be events rather than bodies in motion, and it follows from various considerations.. when you consider what is happening in a very small region, you must take a very small region of space-time, not just of space. This leads us to consider not merely the energy at an instant but the effect of energy operating for a very short time, and this is the nature of "action" in a technical sense. .. from Eddington on action; quite a lot is quoted from 'Space, Time and Gravitation'; Eddington claims that the theory of relativity has shown that most of the traditional dynamics, which is supposed to contain scientific laws, really consist of conventions as to measurement, and are strictly analogous to the "great law" that there are always three feet to a yard. In particular, this applies to the Conservation of Energy. This makes it plausible to suppose that every apparent law of nature which strikes us as reasonable is not really a law of nature, but a concealed convention plastered onto nature by our love of what we, in our arrogance, choose to consider rational. Eddington hints that a real law of nature is likely to stand out by the fact that it appears to us irrational, since in that case it is less likely that we have invented it to suit our intellectual taste. And from this point of view, he inclines to the belief that the quantum principle is the first real law of nature that has been discovered in physics.

[Final paragraph:] This raises a somewhat important question: is the world rational, i.e. such as to conform to our intellectual habits? Or is it "irrational" i.e. not such as we should have made it if we had been in the position of the Creator? I do not propose to suggest an answer to this question.

APPENDIX: [Four pages: BOHR'S THEORY OF THE HYDROGEN SPECTRUM, which I'll briefly discuss, which no doubt occurs in other physics books:]

m the mass of an electron; a the radius of it orbit; omega its angular velocity; e its negative charge.

Elementary dynamics says centrifugal force is m a omega^2, while the force attracting it to the nucleus is e^2/a^2 by Coulomb's Law. Put these equal to get the quantum theory.

Kinetic energy is 1/2 m a omega^2. The potential energy is -e^2/a. In view of the above equation, e^2/a is double 1/2 m a^2 omega^2, so that the total energy is equal to the kinetic energy with its sign changed.

The impulse corresponding to omega is m alpha^2 omega. This has to be taken round one complete circuit of the orbit,

This yields 2 pi m a^2 omega, which must be put equal to a multiple of h, say nh.

So 2 pi m a^2 omega = n h

Because m, e, and h are known, equations 1 and 2 determine a and omega, as soon as m is fixed.

a = (n^2 h^2)/ (4 pi^2 m e^2) and omega = 8 pi^3 m e^4/ n^3 h^3.

The smallest possible radius.. putting n=1.. radius 1 is h^2 / 4 pi^2 n^2 e; next possible one is 4 times this = 4 a1 etc

Kinetic energy in nth orbit is m a^2 omega^2 / 2 = m/2 2 pi e^2/ (nh)^2

Since the total energy = the kinetic energy with the sign changed, and loss of energy from kth to nth orbit is (1/2) m (2 pi e^2/h)^2 (1/m^2 - 1/k^2). If this transition is to give rise to a wave of frequency nu, we must have (1/2) m (2 pi e^2/h)^2 (1/m^2 - 1/k^2) = h nu, that is to say nu is given by the equation nu = m 2 pi^2 e^4 / h^3 x (1/m^2 - 1/ K^2). If c = the velocity of light this gives a wave number nu/c.

Now, the empirical formula is r (1/n^2 - 1/k^2) where r is Rydberg's Constant. This shows that if our theory is right we should have:

r = 2 pi^2 m e^4 / h^3 c.

By substituting the observed values for m, e, h, and c, it was found this equation is satisfied. This was perhaps the most sensational evidence in favour of Bohr's theory when it was first published.

Top of Page

image   Review of Bertrand Russell   Prospects of Industrial Civilization

Inconclusive Brew—'Great War', USSR under Jews, Chinese Civilization, Factories..., November 27, 2011

Bertrand Russell and Dora Russell 1923—The Prospects of Industrial Civilization

Not a popular book by Russell. A second edition was published in 1959, with a preface attributed to Dora Russell (they married in 1921, for a while). It's not clear what differences were made from the first edition—the preface is worthless trivia and amusingly comments on the 'communist block' and 'spirit of free enterprise' despite the fact that book shows that even in 1918 there were huge American trusts. I'm pretty sure I once read the first edition—I remember a phrase something like 'men desire sexual intercourse with all women', which is missing from this version. Unfortunately, Russell was not averse to a bit of editing of his own past—his book 'Which Way To Peace?' published just before 1939 was never reprinted. Dora Black, 'daughter of a senior civil servant', studied Greek, Latin and German, before going to Cambridge where she got a first in Modern Languages. The details seem hard to find—but anyway after her degree she researched in France, so one assumes French was one of her languages. It's not clear to me whether she knew Russian. One has to assume she had something like zero awareness of science, technology, and industry, and I'll assume in what follows that Russell wrote most of the book, despite the claims that it was a joint effort. It seems she loved the Bolsheviks, but, with almost insane hypocrisy, disliked the 'machine age'.

First, the title and presentation. It's necessary to spend a little time on these. The title in fact is misleading. The book is in two parts, roughly speaking (1) a retrospective view of industrialism so far, and (2) a theoretical look at ethics and what a good society should be. There's a certain amount on prospects, but not much. Russell unfortunately made little attempt to knit his essays together or signpost them. Thus a number of chapters are subdivided—I, II, and III style—but it's left to the reader to try to deduce the reasons for these subdivisions. So this book leans towards being an atomised collection of essays rather than a unified argument—his 'Human Society in Ethics and Politics' a quarter of a century later has the same rather bitty style.

Although I have a high opinion of Russell, this book is so bad that I wonder whether it has any value at all. There are some acute-ish comments, for example comparing cells of a body with individual single-celled creatures (p34—pagination taken from the Routledge edn) though obviously this sounds Hobbesian. There's a good comparison of Calvinism with industry—for example with inheritance as something like predestination. But a lot is very weak. I'll go through bullet-point fashion---

[1] One of Russell's tricks, perhaps taken from set theory, or from Marx on classes, is to start on some topic—generally a buzzword of the time—and then, rather than define it in sufficient detail to be useful, to split it into two parts, and describe those instead, generally in some mutually hostile way. Thus (p18) two growing forces 'stand out .. Industrialism and Nationalism'. He doesn't say why these 'stand out'. He was writing soon after the 'Great War'; one might have thought that Militarism would 'stand out'. Or, in view of the Empire, race issues. Or, in view of the effects of science, population growth to unprecedented levels. Anyway, he describes 'Industrialism' as something like (p19) an extension of normal tools—Russell means the use of huge, expensive, temporarily unproductive factories and installations. He then says 'Industrialism' must be, or is, of two types—'capitalist' or 'socialist'. And 'Nationalism' has two forms (p25)—one for the bosses, Imperialism; one for the underdogs—Self-determination. This technique is often Russell's way of smuggling in various assumptions.

[2] Russell had little feeling for technology and science; and Dora presumably even less so. Russell never quite got the feeling for the difference between description and analysis. All his material on 'Industry' was based on Britain, the USA, and Europe, including steam-powered engines, the cotton cloth industry, coal, and iron. Why did he pick these? He had no predictive technique—if he'd been born in 1700 he could have predicted none of these. His material relies on other people's having decided to try these things, and get them to operate. This means all his pontification is somewhat pointless, because he seems to have no way to suggest how it ought to have been different. His mental model of 'Industrialism' is of spoil heaps, muck, sweat, labourers, huge factories, and top-hatted capitalists. (Stalin had a different scheme—on behalf of his foreign controllers, to import factories and arm the USSR for all-out war against Europe. This is 'industrialism' of a sort, too.) Apart from the aims oligarchs might have, there's the issue of techniques: for all Russell knew, simple methods for extracting food and water and heating and clothing, and making tools, might have been on the point of being invented. This thread runs through the entire book, as does his view that there are significant numbers of 'idle rich'. He dislikes these as much as militarists who want to kill people cheaply.

[3] Russell tended to regard ideas, and groups of ideas, as purely psychological, and independent of the physical world. To use his own style of commentary, we might divide ideas, or ideologies, into two parts. One part is the set of ideas imposed by ruling groups. The other part is ideas which reflect the actual world. For example, on sexual attitudes, Russell says little about the realities of pregnancy and disease and economics, but treats beliefs purely as though they are tokens which can be altered. A very important mistake in Russell is the assumption that religious beliefs are pure superstitions. He has no feel for the way Christianity may have acted as a 'politically correct' glue binding together assorted groups, as were found in the Roman Empire. This may apply to the Russian Orthodox Church after about 1600—I don't know; but nor does Russell. And he has no feel for the way tribal cults, notably Judaism and Islam, and also Hinduism, don't permit instant change or conversion.

[4] Russell included quite a few Darwinian themes as evidence for some aspects of human behaviour. He thought people had genuine spontaneous friends because they were people who would help the befriended person have a maximum number of children. (p151)—'Our instincts, in the main, are such as would be likely to achieve [a large number of descendants] in a rather uncivilized community.' This contrasts oddly with his comments on nearly-static white populations. He thought there is an instinct of hostility to remote people—and yet how could an instinct evolve in any creature, for creatures so far away it couldn't even know they existed?

[5] Russell was rather naive about newspapers. Continuing the previous theme, how can anyone know about faraway places, other than by being told about them? If a genuine instinct for war exists, why is there any need for propaganda at all?

[6] Russell had no idea of the influence of Jews, or, if he did, it shows in none of his books. He doesn't mention the 'Federal Reserve'. He notes President Wilson and the 'American' (meaning USA's) entry into the Great War (p180), but has no mention of the Balfour Declaration. He quotes from a 1918 investigation into US meat packing (pp 176-81)—on similar lines to Upton Sinclair's 'The Jungle'—but not on US credit and money.

[7] Quite an important part of Russell—which I hadn't understood until I read this book—is how Freud's idea of the unconscious was used by Russell to excuse Jews and others. This is how it works: Russell knew the USSR after the Jewish coup was run by Jews—he met a number of them, in fact. They told him they were bringing about socialism, or some other lie, correctly perceiving Russell as a stupid goy. (Russell in this book quotes quite a chunk of writings by Lenin (Ulyanov), pp 92ff, and Trotsky (Bernstein—p74 in a 1922 newspaper letter). In both cases Russell shows no awareness they might be lying). Russell writes that Bolsheviks, and other more or less autocratic types, are 'unconscious' of the fact that their idea of the State just happens to give them a key position in it! How could this possibly apply to a group that spent years of planning against the Tsar?

[8] Russell's idea of 'justice' is spelt out (p 233): '.. no one will inherit money, no one will own more land than he can cultivate himself, no one will be supported in voluntary idleness if he is physically fit for work. ....' It's clear that, though Russell expects progress, he has no reliable way to ensure it will happen, or happen in the right direction. However he says (pp 234-5) '.. Socialism.. is only possible .. if the population is stationary... the less prolific races will have to defend themselves against the more prolific by methods which are disgusting even if they are necessary. In the meantime our aspirations .. have to be confined to the white races.. perhaps with the inclusion of the Japanese and Chinese..' The second part of the book is clearly largely rhetorical. Incidentally this book was published only about a year after his 'The Problem of China'—in my view a better book. Russell found the Chinese loveable, and civilized, and part of his idealism section in this book was clearly based on traditional China, then in its transitional state.

[9] Throughout the book there are flickers of such problems as 'the crisis of overproduction' and whether capital equipment should be exported to areas which currently have cheap labour. Russell quotes a book by Lord Leverhulme (who controlled manufacture of soap and other products; his 1918 book was 'The Six Hour Day') and Myers 'Mind and Work' (1900). The first says that, provided there's machinery, six hours a day is enough. The second drew attention to fatigue and stated in effect that productivity was pretty much the same with shorter hours, a lesson reinforced by wartime arms production, and mentioned later in H J Eysenck's psychology books. It seems to follow that strenuous people would end up running unproductive bureaucracies, fake charities, or frauds of the NASA type, but Russell only notices weapons production in this theoretical result of industrialism. Rather oddly he says nothing of the possibility that 'developed' industrial countries could help other countries build their own machines, something the Bolsheviks were in effect secretly funded to do.

The 1996 edition has an introduction by Louis Greenspan, who unfortunately appears to be involved with the large team editing Russell's papers. He comments that Russell's book was published in same year the 'Frankfurt School' was established by Horkheimer. He presumably thinks he's a Jew; the introduction is a disgraceful piece of hackery ignoring the mass murders by 'Jews' in the Soviet Union regime of so-called 'socialism'. The bias is so extreme it casts doubt on the accuracy of the entire McMasters University project on Russell.
Top of Page

image   Review of Bertrand Russell biography   Caroline Moorehead: Bertrand Russell: A Life

Vacant—interesting mainly for scandal, and Russell's last years, July 8, 2011

About 25 years after Russell's Autobiography, and nearly 20 after Clark's, by the time this book was written (at a suggestion—it wasn't a spontaneous decision) the McMaster Archives were well established. These may have included newspaper cuttings—this is not clear, but seems likely. Moorehead supplemented this with papers (Moore, Keynes etc) and interviews with survivors of those who knew Russell. The result is a sort of composite book: the main lines are as in Russell's Autobiography—upbringing, Cambridge, WW1, USSR, China, 1930s school, WW2, nuclear weapons, Vietnam War. And of course his books. Much of this material is simply taken from Russell. These main lines are interspersed with a multiplicity of affairs, of a sort vaguely reminiscent of some Internet activity now. Some women loved Russell all their lives, though it's not entirely easy to see why, as it's clear few of them were interested in his ideas. I suspect, though nobody ever says this, that it was his aristocratic side which attracted them—after all many adults found Princess Diana a swooningly attractive figure; why not something analogous? In a sense, Moorehead is in this same groupie category. Her comments on his mathematics, relativity, atoms and so on aren't even dutiful: she simply quotes the received views as briefly as possible, without the slightest interest or sign of comprehension. Similarly with related ideas—for example, Keynes and economics. And the same applies to politics and protest. She says nothing intelligent about the USSR. She says absolutely nothing about the ideas in Russell's Reith Lectures, essentially on world government. She is saddened by Russell getting worked up over war crimes—surely he could have been more moderate! Moorehead evidently has no clue about atrocities etc. She has no idea why Woolf was upset over Russell's letter in vol. II of his Autobiography, revealing after nearly fifty years that Russell knew Jews ran the 'Soviet Union'.

The interest of this book is in some side-issues, notably his closing years, when of course he was extremely old. There's some information on his Committee of 100/CND activities, and on his War Crimes Tribunal, though not much, with many sideswipes at Ralph Schoenman. Occasional bits of information surface: for example, Americans students it seems talk of 'Occam's eraser'. Moorehead gives an account of 'Which Way to Peace?' which Russell self-censored from his post-1945 writings. I hadn't known the unpleasant New York Times piece on Russell was written by Bernard Levin. I hadn't known Schoenman was a Hungarian Jew. There's an amusing piece of mischief—Russell listed (in 'Dear Bertrand Russell'—not mentioned at all by Moorehead) his favourite words, including wind, heath, begrime, and multisyllabic words—alembic, chrysoprase, Chorasmian. Moorehead has 'health' in place of 'heath', but more seriously someone inserted 'asholala' into his list.
Top of Page

image   Review of Century-old socionomy futurology   Bertrand Russell: The Impact of Science on Society

Future of Mankind as affected by Science. Very wide (but flawed) survey, October 25, 2010

Seven essays: six first given at Ruskin College, Oxford (not part of the University, but a sort of token place for aspirational working class types). I haven't found dates of the talks, but they probably postdate Orwell's 1984, published in 1948. The final essay 'Can a Scientific Society be Stable?' was given in 1949. The collection was first published in the UK in 1952.

Very important topic—possibly the most important there is, since science seems to be the only possible way to general happiness. It's therefore an ambitious work. (Note: there's extraordinary nonsense promoted about this book—my guess being because professional liars won't address Russell on US war crimes in Vietnam).

Russell's book isn't entirely easy to interpret though; because--

[1] His examples vary in length and emphasis—trivial points may get lot of exposition, complicated ones only a bit; rather like an impromptu speech. He sometimes doesn't keep to the point of the chapter titles; thus 'The Effects of Scientific Techniques' includes material on organisations (much of it taken from his book 'Power') which could apply to Chinese mandarins or the medieval church. His generalisations are often European-based.
[2] Possibly because he was consciously lecturing to the uneducated, some explanations are over-simply worded, and inconsistent with the rest of his book. For example, when discussing democracy, he talks of people as having three components—hero, common man, and cog. 'Hero' seems to refer to Carlyle's 'Hero Worship' and Mussolini; but turns out to mean someone allowed personal initiative. 'Common man' means someone with everyday security—Russell, being British, takes this for granted. 'Cog' means a useful member of society—but could mean devastatingly impersonal exploitation. There are quite a few confusing pages of this type.
[3] Russell does not clearly distinguish science from plain trial-and-error empiricism. For instance, he says cotton processing in the southern USA was scientific; but it was just a machine, perhaps no more scientific than a prehistoric weaving machine.
[4] Being a philosopher, he overstates the importance of philosophers. He includes the passage from Marx saying the point of philosophy is to change the world. Yet obviously people have wanted to change the world for millennia! Russell thought medieval philosophers were genuinely moved by other-worldly considerations, rather than just getting paid by the Church along with artists and others.
[5] He's very influenced by then-recent history: Germany, USSR, Japan, USA.

Anyway, after those cautions, here's what Russell says:

Chapter 1: Science and Tradition. Russell trots through prehistory and history—old favourites, including demons, eclipses, Galileo, witchcraft, through to Newton and Darwin. He discusses not so much what science is, as its effects on non-scientists' mentalities: the world as not having 'purpose' and being autonomous, rather than e.g. pushed around by Gods; the importance of evidence; man as being a tiny part of the universe.

Chapter 2: The General Effects of Scientific Technique—the longest chapter of the book. Russell lists inventions—gunpowder, compass, steam engine, electricity, telegraph, internal combustion engine and oil, flying. (Bear in mind that for about half Russell's life a car was a novelty). Then the social effects: 'War has been.. the chief source of social cohesion; and.. the strongest incentive to technical progress. Large groups have a better chance of victory than small ones..' Russell goes on to food and population, then industry and organisation and officials—he was concerned about this; one of his earliest books discusses the problem jobs being given for cunning or nepotism rather than genuine merit. He also discusses 'mass psychology' in the usual rather condescending way, as though personally immune. Quite a good chapter—deals with vast issues.

Chapter 3: Scientific Techniques in an Oligarchy. This is largely about the USSR; Russell gives information on forced Labour in the Arctic, mass deaths and the Soviet system, though without sources; much of his writing of the time (e.g. 'Human Society..') says this too. His introductory remarks on oligarchies (i.e. rule by smallish numbers) states that the 'Rule of the Saints' introduced in the English Civil War was the first example of power confined to one creed, which must be news to Muslims and Jews and others. This chapter includes much 'dystopian' material, and is intended to explore what might happen under scientific oligarchies. It's not a set of recommendations, as some rather stupid comments on Russell claim. Russell ends optimistically: 'I do not believe that dictatorship is a lasting form of scientific society—unless (and this proviso is important) it can become world-wide.'

Chapter 4: Democracy and Scientific Technique complements the previous chapter. What's science like in democracies?—Russell surveys early enthusiasts for democracy (he dates it from about the 18th century) as compared with more sober prophets. There's a lot on weariness, despair, people liking wars (Russell was in the US at the time of WW2!), problems of huge constituencies etc. This is where his hero, common man, and cog aspects of people is discussed, in my view a bit confusingly.

Chapter 5: Science and War—the shortest chapter. Surprisingly optimistic, given Russell believed the H-Bomb threats. He mostly discusses effects on populations; he believed, like A J P Taylor, that modern war doesn't give rise to that many casualties—he seems to have taken this idea from armies in the Bible being wiped out by sudden epidemics. He doesn't seem aware of flu after WW1, and the sheer absolute numbers of deaths—very likely an effect of wartime censorship and lies.

Chapter 6: Science and Values. Marx, Dewey and other pragmatists, Fichte and others are quoted for their philosophies. This chapter had a reference to Christian love which, his autobiography states, attracted a deluge of letters from Christians congratulating him on his conversion. Russell deplores fanaticism. He tries to list 'bad things it [science] can diminish, and good things it can increase.' The final part is anti-nation: he says 'Nationalist propaganda, in any violent form, will have to be illegal.' Russell of course assumed the 20th century wars were caused by nationalism. It's now known that the Balfour Declaration, US entry into WW1, the funding by Jews of Bolshevism, and of Churchill, has a huge effect; Russell was aware of much of this, but the 20th century fashion was to hush it up. However, if someone is trying to avoid or minimise wars, presumably it helps to know the causes of wars.

Chapter 7: Can a Scientific Society be Stable?—Fascinating attempt to survey the conditions needed, including physical and psychological stability. Russell comments, like Malthus, that wars or general misery will happen—and unlike Malthus, he mentions birth control too. Russell even includes the possibility of Asians exterminating Europeans. One of his conditions of course is a single government possessing a monopoly of force and therefore able to enforce peace. (Russell thinks in terms of peace between nations or countries; probably religious, cult, natural disaster-driven, and other events might slip through).

5 stars for adventurousness and considerable general knowledge, despite the weaknesses. It would not surprise me if this book (and his Reith Lectures of 1948—'Authority and the Individual') had a great deal of impact at the time, and some of his suggestions have been taken up or became part of 'conventional wisdom'; though of course potential elite people who were influenced tended to discount the democratic parts of Russell's argument, leading to today's skewed NWO protagonists.
Top of Page

why-i-am-not-a-christian  
UK 'Unwin paperback' cover design. The book contains these other essays:
• Has religion made useful contributions to civilization? [1940]
• What I believe [1925]
• Do we survive death? [1936]
• Seems, madam? Nay, it is [1899]
• On Catholic and Protestant skeptics [1928]
• Life in the Middle Ages [1925]
• The fate of Thomas Paine [1934]
• Nice people [1931]
• The new generation [1930]
• Our sexual ethics [1936]
• Freedom and the colleges [1940]
• Existence of God: Debate between Russell and Copleston [1948]
• Can religion cure our troubles? [1954]
• Religion and morals [1954]
• Appendix: How Bertrand Russell was prevented from teaching at the College of the City of New York.
Review of Bertrand Russell   'Why I am not a Christian' and Other Essays new

Conventional Victorian rationalism, which omits crucial aspects of modern history
  Review by 'Rerevisionist' 26 May 2016
Russell's 1927 address to the UK's National Secular Society (he was in his mid-50s) has a Youtube audio version, not however spoken by Russell himself.

I'll list below some notes on these essays. Note that the contents may vary from those I've given; I've seen slightly different versions of these tables of contents.

First, I want to say why some readers find Russell's book hollow-centred and unconvincing.

Russell was brought up in the Victorian rationalist tradition. He assumed this tradition would be shared by his readers and listeners. Much of the tradition needs stating, but Russell tended to avoid this task. Gibbon is a perfect example of Eighteenth Century rationalism—a fastidious ridicule of absurd beliefs in elegant prose is a principal attitude. A later example—specifically mentioned in Russell's Autobiography, when he arrived at Cambridge, is John Draper's 1875 book A History of the Intellectual Development of Europe—Russell said he thought it a 'very good book', and found hardly anyone had heard of it. The author was a chemist and physiologist (biochemistry hadn't been invented), and uses a schematic overview of history—prehistory, Greek and Roman, Middle Ages, and modern times. The mental atmosphere of assured science, efficient technology, military security, and Christianity as a tolerated side-issue, was shared by most people not in the classics or historical literature or military or religious groups.

Russell, as with many people with assured wealth and incomes, was, for most of his life, naive about some religious roots. He simply had no idea that men of the time joined the Church of England for its easy life and light work, and other men, non-conformists, engaged in more-or-less Darwinian struggles for money and status. The traditional view was that Baptists, Congregationalists, Presbyterians, Quakers, Methodists, Primitive Methodists, Unitarians, Paedo-Baptists, believers in Greek Orthodoxy, Russian Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism and so on genuinely differed in creeds. Russell's reading included Blunt's Dictionary of Sects, Heresies, Ecclesiastical Parties...—he compared Oxford philosophers after 1945 with the abecedarians', clearly regarding Christian sects as absurdities.
    And Russell had no idea about tribalist inclusive cults, such as Judaism and Islam, which attempted to include all aspects of life, and where penalties for leaving, or not being a member, could be murderous. This was partly for reasons of language barriers: the Talmud and related material wasn't translated into English until the 1930s. Hinduism is tribe-based too, as far as I can decipher it: Hindus are wedded to the caste system.

Because Russell failed to understand Judaism and Islam, and particularly Judaism, in view of its infiltration into all more-or-less liberal, generally white, societies, he misunderstood Christianity. As late as the 1960s, he regarded the USA under Johnson and Kissinger as 'Christian', with blood-red banners. He had no idea about the motives behind either the First or Second World War. So whenever he discussed Christianity, he had plenty of wars to choose from and dislike, without ever separating out the Jewish component. Considering he was fluent in German, and could have read texts on Jews in Germany, many of his comments on Christianity are inadequate. He was, of course, not alone in this.

Russell in my view was not aware of any of the subtleties of Jewish excursions against Christianity, including such things as the reasons for inclusion of the 'Old Testament' in the Bible, and the 'Scofield Bible'. He had little idea of the significance of Freemasonry.

Russell has little to say on everyday activities. Did Christianity help in everyday life, or not? What are its strengths and weakness? Russell is little help in making decisions.

Second, brief notes on the chapters:

Why I am not a Christian [1927]. Long, and with interesting components, but limited by traditional Victorian ideas. Briefly, as estate agents say, we have a discussion on what Christians may be assumed to believe. God (Russell discusses the arguments, starting with the 'First Cause'). Then moral arguments on injustice, omnipotence etc. And then the character of Christ. (Russell doesn't discuss the truth or otherwise of the personage). Russell picks various maxims, and judges them. And of course there's a lot of dross there! Finally he looks at progress, and human fears, which he seems to think will vanish if everyone decides to be fearless and upright.
Has religion made useful contributions to civilization? [1940]. Philosophical rather than historical; except the start, where Russell considers the difference between the Church and its supposed Founder. Then Russell discusses sex, objections to religion, the soul and immortality, intolerance, free-will, and righteousness. He considers Christianity all but exclusively. Very unsatisfactory and inconclusive.
What I believe [1925]. This had been published as a short book. Russell looks at 1. Nature and man, 2. The good life.. inspired by love and guided by knowledge, 3. Moral rules, 4. Salvation: individual and social, and 5. Science and happiness.
Do we survive death? [1936] was part of The Mysteries of Life and Death. Russell favoured the research approach of seeking for evidence of survival.
Seems, madam? Nay, it is [1899] is one of Russell's first revolts against Hegel, or at least the odder philosophical points on the unreality of space and time.
On Catholic and Protestant sceptics [1928]. ''To the Protestant the exceptionally good man is one who opposes the authorities and the received doctrines, like Luther at the Diet of Worms. The Protestant conception of goodness is something individual and isolated. ... the Catholic has quite a different conception of virtue: to him there is in all virtue an element of submission, not only to the voice of God as revealed in conscience, but also to the authority of the Church as a repository of Revelation. This gives to the Catholic a conception of virtue far more social than that of the Protestant, and makes the wrench much greater when he severs his connexion with the Church. ... And he generally remains convinced, at least subconsciously, that the moral life is confined to members of the Church, so that for the free-thinkers the highest kinds of virtue have become impossible. ...'
    'Lenin took over his faith from a Protestant free-thinker (for Jews and Protestants are mentally indistinguishable), but his Byzantine antecedents compelled him to create a Church as the visible embodiment of the Faith.'
Life in the Middle Ages [1925]. This is mostly concerned with the very late Middle Ages. Eileen Power's Medieval People is 'a delightful book', dealing with Marco Polo and five other fairly obscure people. And material—all part of the rationalist view—on Gibbon, the French Revolution and Walter Scott and the 'reaction to reason', all ignoring the Jewish element, church building, charnel houses, and so on.
The fate of Thomas Paine [1934]. An interesting summary of Paine and his life and books. 'From the moment of his first participation in public affairs - his protest against slavery in 1775 -.. he was consistently opposed to every form of cruelty.. The Government of England was a ruthless oligarchy, using Parliament as a means of lowering the standard of life in the poorest classes; Paine advocated political reform and had to fly for his life. In France, for opposing unnecessary bloodshed, he was thrown into prison.. In America, for opposing slavery and upholding the principles of the Declaration of Independence, he was abandoned by the Government when he most needed its support.'
    Most is not very relevant to Christianity, but Russell also says: ''The greater part of The Age of Reason consists of criticism of the Old Testament from the moral point of view. .. it was considered impious to criticize the Israelites.. The orthodox of our day have forgotten what orthodoxy was like 140 years ago [i.e. 1795]..'
Nice people [1931] is a miscellany of épater le bourgeois comments. Including dislike of hangmen, dislike of policing, dislike of discussions on sex, the 'control of everything unpleasant by means of feelings of decency', dislike of politicians of all parties [who] tacitly combine to prevent anything damaging.. from getting known. Russell says The Fairchild Family is 'an invaluable work on how to produce nice people'.
The new generation [1930]. Russell on the effects of technologies: ''James Watt by making it possible for men to sleep in a place distant from .. work.. had the effect [of establishing a matriarchal family]'
Our sexual ethics [1936]. Russell thought sexual ethics were typically a couple of generations out of date.
Freedom and the colleges [1940]. Russell on academic freedom (but with virtually no concrete examples). For my taste, this chapter sadly misses the point. Rather typically, Russell gives a potted history of a few centuries, praising Holland and England, but has no idea of the extent of censorship, particularly by official experts. I was amused by this: '... the Chinese Empire had a Board of Censors, with the duty to criticise the Emperor and his government. Unfortunately, like everything else in traditional China, this institution became conventionalized. There were certain things that the censors were allowed to censure, notably the excessive power of eunuchs, but if they wandered into unconventional fields.. the Emperor was apt to forget their immunity.' There's a similar view that the 'the fool' in mediaeval courts, was allowed to voice criticisms; but I don't know what truth there is in this.
Existence of God: Debate between Russell and Copleston [1948] on BBC radio. Subdivided into the Argument from Contingency, Religious Experience, and The Moral Argument. (At the time of Stalin and mass killings etc). What happened was revealed in 1996: the two men spoke impromptu and were recorded; this was transcribed and edited; then they both read from the script for the broadcast!
Can religion cure our troubles? [1954]. Mostly a crit of Herbert Butterfield's Christianity and History. Russell's conclusion is a masterpiece of historical ignorance: 'our troubles have sprung... from the First World War, of which the Communists and the Nazis were products. The First World War was wholly Christian in origin. The three Emperors were devout, and so were the more warlike of the British cabinet. Opposition.. came, in Germany and Russia, from the Socialists, who were anti-Christian; in France, from Jaurès, whose assassin was applauded by earnest Christians; in England, from John Morley, a noted atheist.'
Religion and morals [1954]. A single page.
Appendix: How Bertrand Russell was prevented from teaching at the College of the City of New York.
Top of Page

The business of Book Translation. Herbert Gottschalk, Bertrand Russell, eine Biographie published in Britain by Unwin Books as Bertrand Russell: A Life
Rerevisionist's Review: 14 August 2017
Unwin Paperback edition 1967, which struck me at the time as an oddity, possibly cashing in on the Russell Autobiography boom which (I take it) existed at the time.

The blurb says it 'forms a useful complement to the longer and slightly earlier study [in fact, 1957] by Alan Wood, also in this [Unwin paperback] series, The Passionate Sceptic'. Gottschalk's Biographie was first published 'by the Colloquium Verlag, Otto H. Hess', in 1962. It was translated from German by Edward Fitzgerald, and published in 1965 by John Baker.

Reading between the bilingual lines, I think Gottschalk plagiarised and simplified Wood, and was then published in Germany. Then the reverse process occurred; probably Unwin came to some arrangement, as this book is shorter, with a handy table of 'Important Dates', but is a plagiarised work.
It's clear, after a few comparisons, that almost all of the material is simply lifted from Alan Wood—even the sequence is preserved. E.g. this is page 65 of Gottschalk: Whitehead galled by BR, p. 154 in Wood/ 1920s and 1930s, deaths of many friends and acquaintances 154/ Ottoline Morrell 154/ Eliot turning to the Church 155/ Shaw in favour of Stalin 155/ Charles Trevelyan parting 155/ by the time he married Patricia Spence, 'two of the few old friends he had left were Robert Trevelyan and his wife' 155/ biologist John Baker when Russells moved to Kidlington 156/ Conquest of Happiness 157/ Religion and Science 157/ In Praise of Idleness & advocacy of spending, similar view to Keynes 158.

One of the tests for plagiarism is the repetition of errors; we find e.g. there's a passage about Shaw, metaphorically standing truth on its head, which Gottschalk interprets literally (71 in Wood).

Pages 70ff in Wood give good brief description of Russell's circle of friends in page 35 of Gottschalk, all comfortably off with sufficient money. Shaws, Webbs etc; Gilbert Murray.

Gottschalk keeps his book short and sharp by mostly omitting personal anecdotes (e.g. 'Robert Trevelyan had married a charming Dutch girl' - Wood). Gottschalk skates over contentious stuff, notably and predictably the First and Second world wars; e.g. 42 takes the argument from Portraits from Memory [Justice in War Time isn't mentioned] but doesn't seem to bother to consider what a 'German victory' actually would mean. He does say (p 32) Hegel's view that the interests of the state must always have priority over those of the individual had few if any supporters in British politics, but in Germany and Italy it was to provide the extremist right wings with a theoretical basis.. after the 1914-1918 [sic] War. Gottschalk is outdated at the latter part because it omits Russell on Vietnam.

Wood pp 126-130 is all copied in some of the following, in the same sequence as Wood:
-35: The story about C G Berry, a librarian at Oxford, who's in 'Principia Mathematica'. This is no doubt lifted from Wood, p 73 - but the name there is G G Berry.
- 40: '.. Eliot adopted B R's ideas as warmly as Bertrand had adopted him and his wife, and his review of Mysticism and Logic was the only one to meet with favour in B R's eyes.' [NB: Russell's footnote 'the suggestion.. that one of us influenced the other.. is without foundation' perhaps came from here.
- 54: '.. The New Leader.. enjoyed a world-wide reputation. ..'
- 54-55: Material on the USA, scattered in Russell's books and The New Leader. Gottschalk gives quite a few examples, and seems to have read widely the material which ended in Bertrand Russell's America (vol. 1), including Russell's advocacy of keeping Britain strong & maintaining large reserves of oil in order to be independent of US oil monopolies.
- 58: '.. The Analysis of Matter was.. a strictly philosophical analysis of the effect of Einstein's theory of relativity on the age-old problem of mind and matter. ..' says Gottschalk, rather wrongly. (The ABC of Atoms, according to Alan Wood, prophesies destructive weapons; Gottschalk says it prophesies atomic energy.
Gottschalk one guesses must be German; however at one point he refers to America as 'our country', so conceivably he was an American writing in German—or perhaps the translator, almost as a reflex, converted unthinkingly to a US standpoint.
      Gottschalk introduces some novelties not in Wood, no doubt taken from standard references: for example that Frank Russell was known as 'The Wicked Duke'. And Henry VIII gave Woburn Abbey to an ancestor of Russell: Henry VIII.. John Russell.. rewarded.. with Woburn Abbey.. The process of sequestration was carried out with great simplicity: the abbott was hanged from a convenient oak tree, and his monks were driven out. ..
    Gottschalk also has a tendency to give German thinkers notably greater priority than one finds in Britain, which of course makes an interesting change. He (of course) doesn't separate out Jews. Examples:
7: '.. The thesis [of Principia Mathematica] is disputed, for example, by Professor Freytag-Löringhoff, and by Professor Günther Jacoby.'
17: '.. allowed himself to be persuaded that Hegel and Kant were far ahead of Locke, Hume and Berkeley..'
20 '.. went with his wife to Berlin to study the German Socialist movement. .. series of lectures to the students of the newly-founded LSE.. German Social Democracy.. aggressive propaganda..'
20: '.. Marx and Engels..'/ 22: '.. Weierstrass.. analytical functions.. at Cambridge B R had never even heard the name mentioned.' / 23: 'In 1898 he read Hegel again.. everything the great man [sic] had to say about mathematics was 'confused nonsense'. ..'/ 24: '.. Symbolic logic.. men like G Peano, C S Peirce, E Schröder and G Frege..' / 26-27: '.. Meinong.. professor of philosophy at Graz University..'/ 58: '.. Einstein's theory of relativity. .. Einstein's calculations and equations..'/ 63: '.. his views now began to diverge from those of Freud in certain questions. ..'
There's an interesting point in Wood (which however I noticed first in Gottschalk, because of its trimmed down manner), that Russell took his factual stuff from 'experts'; when these were wrong, as they were, he went wrong, too. Wood thinks Russell never really allowed for hierarchy of developed-ness of sciences (this might explain why he talks more seriously than might be expected of e.g. psychiatrists).

On language, Gottschalk says
- 27: 'His book Theory of Descriptions, [sic; in fact a paper called 'On Denoting'] published in 1905, was an answer to Meinong...

Until now it had occurred to no one that the grammatical and logical structures of a sentence were not the same.. B R now analysed this sentence about the golden mountain, and adduced proof that the assumption was incorrect, since by words and semantic relationships one could arrive at thoroughly false conclusions. He reinforced his assertion with numerous other examples. ..
    .. B R ended the domination of ordinary grammar over logical analyses.. He insists that in future the laws of grammar shall not be allowed to dominate ontology. It is really no .. surprise to learn that.. he toyed with the idea of developing a perfect language...'

Top of Page

Dear Bertrand Russell Searle cartoon   Review of Bertrand Russell   Bertrand Russell: Dear Bertrand Russell: Selection of His Correspondence with the General Public, 1950-68 (edited by two Jews, Feinberg & Kasrils)


Barry Feinberg - Bertrand Russell was a dupeRonald Kasrils, fake Jew, pretending to be South African Bertrand Russell's post-WW2 postbag, through Jewish filter. Review: October 24, 2010/ Jan 21, 2014

About 175 edited letters to Russell, and his edited replies, from 1957 to 1965 mostly—extracted from 'about 25,000' letters. Most, or perhaps all, of Russell's letters are now online, in the McMaster archives. Dear Bertrand Russell is indexed. I has a frontispiece photo of Russell at home reading. Interesting, and I thought the book could be (and should have been) twice as long—and more—without any diminution in impact. I suspect this book was published to try to make money to help fund his Vietnam War Crimes Tribunal.

Sorted roughly into main sections such as religion, philosophy, politics, war; plus 'anekdota'—the latter referring to A N Whitehead ('His philosophy in later years was essentially that of Bergson'), Tagore, D H Lawrence, Sinclair Lewis, George Gissing, H G Wells, Edward Carpenter, T S Eliot, Vaughan Williams, H J Mackinder. Others in the book include Shelley, Castlereagh, Tom Paine... and Sir Arthur Keith's New Theory of Human Evolution. There are several facsimile letters reproduced.

The philosophy section includes what must be the sharpest put-down of existentialism—'.. pure nonsense, based intellectually upon errors of syntax and emotionally upon exasperation.' There are letters referring readers to his own books—'Human Knowledge..' (theoretical philosophy), 'Power' (political theory), 'Human Society in Ethics and Politics' (political practice), 'Freedom and Organization' (includes his opinion of Marx). The final chapter (Lecture VIII) of 'Our Knowledge of the External World' 'says all that I have to say on determinism and free will', adding, correctly, 'If you find the discussion unsatisfactory, I can only say that I agree with you.' Disappointingly, Russell's conclusion on free will starts from the viewpoint (which he himself felt, considering the mathematics of muscles) that some men felt distressed at the thought they had no free will. Free will, therefore, is true in the only form which is important; and the desire for other forms is a mere effect of insufficient analysis.

Russell has things to say about the Church of England, in addition to Roman Catholicism. (The Greek and Orthodox Churches play little part in Russell's writings). He says the C of E is fundamentalist, quoting a passage on 'the ordering of deacons': Do you unfeignedly believe in all the Canonical Scriptures of the Old and New Testament?
    Russell wrote ... most Western philosophers have accepted Christian dogma. At most times and in most places throughout Christendom they could not otherwise have done their work unimpeded or earned a living wage. ... This is generous to them: in effect, he was saying they could only do their work by not doing their work! They posed as philosophers for money. But is not entirely true; less so than in the tribalist beliefs of Judaics and Muslims. Some philosophers, provided they had some sort of protector or kept anonymous, did 'their work'.
    Russell wrote: 'persons calling themselves Christian have almost a monopoly of intolerance..', his evidence being a collection of letters written to a broadcaster on the radio. This is an extraordinarily wrong remark, something like the belief that 'all religions are the same'.
    Russell wrote (not his exact wording) that, of course, many clergymen were honourable and honest, but the effect of them was to rebound [sic] to the credit of the Church, and thus indirectly to support a persecuting organisation. If he'd been a more adventurous reader, he might have applied the same lesson to 'Jews'.
    Russell wrote that 'religions, like wines, mature with age', expressing preference for Catholicism over 'modern religions' of Communism and 'Nazism' (National Socialism). But it's easy to see how his statement would be viewed by 'Jews'!
    Russell had little concern with practical comparisons between religions and their effects; his world especially when young was nominally Christian; anything else was remote and vague. As with many naive rationalists, he almost solely attacked Christianity, though occasionally he says things about other belief systems. A 1966 letter here gives three reasons why Christians are 'not without blemish' - 1. Torture in the Congo; 2. The condemnation of Dreyfus; 3. Continued support for nuclear war. The Belgian Congo (and probably French) was an 'alternative' cause in Russell's twenties, roughly the time of Dreyfus. It's a tribute to the power of Jewish censorship that, given everything that happened in the 20th century, Russell should pick only one mass killing, and what was probably a Jewish false-flag; along with the Jewish fake of nuclear weapons.

The War and Peace section looks at Cuba, Khrushchev etc and nuclear matters—Russell spent a lot of time on 'current nuclear writings'. He states his view on the First World War—it was a disaster and he'd have preferred Germany to win a quick victory—then Communists, Nazis, and Fascists would not have existed. He replies to a pacifist re WW2 to the effect that the correspondent hadn't seen 'innocent Jews herded into gas chambers'—a rather odd justification, since it wasn't advertised during the war itself.
    All the politics is recognisable, or at least should be to Americans, as part of the Jewish world-view for the goyim. Many of Russell's comments in fact are disguised comments on the Jewish question from bygone eras: 'oriental despotism' for example.
    The nuclear material is derived from people like Herman Kahn—all the official nuclear 'experts'—and Russell never suspected there was anything fishy about it. Cyrus Eaton, 'Professor Eugene Rabinovitch, Editor of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists', Edward Teller (though his name is excised), Einstein and others appear, though Rotblat is omitted.
    Russell's action plan is: (1962) .... in Britain... when we offer a means of struggle both compatible with the peril ... and available to ordinary people... the popular apathy is replaced by determination to undergo any sacrifice ... that will help in the prevention of a nuclear war. There are no short cuts: we have to build an international movement of mass resistance to nuclear annihilation.
    The Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation. BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES presumably by Feinberg & Kasrils state: By 1963 his total involvement had increased to such an extent that the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation was formed, an organization designed to lift some of the burden of work off Russell's shoulders...' which I take to mean Jews moved in to ensure his words were corralled.

There are criticisms of Catholicism: Russell seemed to think the 'ultimate contest' would be between the Vatican and the Kremlin! But Russell had no idea that Nuremberg was rigged. I can recall no mention of Freemasonry anywhere in Russell.

Russell noted 'American imperialism' but had little grasp of the realities, notably (i) Empires have other purposes than getting raw materials. He had no ideas on the control of currencies, the control of legal systems, the control of information, and control of people, whether for labour or for invasions. This of course fits in with his Jew naivete: he has no idea that Jews can extract money or buy assets at the expense both of target countries, and host countries.
    But, unlike almost as many people, he had some grasp of militaries: In the United States this suppression [of dissident opinion] has become so complete that it has created the conditions for widespread fanaticism. Economic interests which ensure American support of dozens of feudal dictatorships around the globe make it necessary to propound a devil-theory about Communism, and this results in an appalling self-righteousness which bears no relation to the facts and cannot tolerate freedom of speech or independence of mind. ... (April 1963)shows his views on US media; and he mentions US bases in Turkey, Japan, Italy, Britain and elsewhere 'on the Communist periphery' (1962, 1963). His book of essays War Crimes in Vietnam has more on bases, and also protests against US genocide—not identifying the Jewish component, for which of course such activity was routine whenever Jews were powerful. It is these protests which make me believe Russell was a 'useful idiot', not a collaborator, since these were also indifferent to war crimes. Russell swallowed the entire fabrication of mass murder by 'Nazis', and seems to have supported the Second World War purely on the strength of these lies and forgeries. Russell, all his life, was not very aware of mass thefts from, and mass killings in, Eastern Europe.

Russell talks about 'defence' contracts, and was quite bullish about potential money savings, but had no plans for 'Third World' improvements, which seems a bit lopsided. He quotes 'What Peace would do to you' (1959) and 'After Disarmament, What?' (1960) both of whom said 'conversion of plant to peace-time uses will not be very difficult'. [Page 73: from Nation's Business, 'the organ of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce', and from Think]

There are several letters about blacks in Africa: Russell was part of the anti-Apartheid movement, including economic sanctions against South Africa, a secret Jewish thing. A letter on race from a US woman comments on one of Russell's books: the reply said his comment about inferiority applied to 'environmental conditioning'. Every detail shows no familiarity with the situation. It may be worth quoting another race-related comment to Chinese male in Canada; aged 14 (from the section 'Youth and Old Age'): '... I do not agree that it is harmful to belong to such a [racial] minority. ... for people who have independence of mind and strong character as you have, it provides a perspective on the follies of the many. You can see that the remarkable achievement of the Jews is due in no small part to their experience as a persecuted minority. ... in reality you are a member of the largest racial group on the planet for one of three human beings is Chinese. ...' Russell doesn't state what 'the remarkable achievement of the Jews' [sic] is. Note the multiple assumptions, including in effect the idea that the Chinese are racially homogeneous.

A number of letters are on capitalism, which Russell points out he'd opposed since his early years. But Russell does not distinguish worthless paper money (plastic and electronic were in their early stages) and its characteristics—when run by Jews—from ordinary capitalism, a vast chasm of misunderstanding. (Russell disliked gold as a currency support: he regarded South African and other gold grabs as transferring gold from one place underground to another, though it's not in this book).

Russell did his best to be a rationalist, though I don't think he ever got the feel of tribal systems, such as modern Judaism and Islam. He has one letter on Islam, replying to someone who disliked the picture (supposedly—how could they know?) of Mohammed in 'Wisdom of the West', which was an illustrated version of 'History of Western Philosophy', with pictures presumably selected from photo libraries. Most of the religious letters are anti-Christian. This is no doubt where the Jewish editing comes in; most or all the letters promote the Jewish pressure-group attitudes—e.g. there's a pro-immigration into Britain reply to a south African.

Youtube comment 29 Aug 2015
Nitelaer reply to Alex McKelvey You stupid negroid sympathizer. mandela personally ordered the bombings and assassinations of white politicians and their children. FUCK OFF. You who allow the nigger to murder whites you are the problem.
 
In fact, one of the editors, Kasrils, ended in the ANC—strangely, the mineral wealth and businesses in south Africa appears to remain in Jewish hands. I couldn't find much about the other editor, Barry Feinberg. On the Vietnam War, he replies to a despairing opponent of American intervention [sic; Feinberg & Kasrils' wording] in Vietnam: 'I should not despair of the people of the United States, however, for the American people are not allowed to know the true character of the war waged by their government. It is the duty of those of us who understand the injustice and cruelty involved to educate and inform our fellow citizens' (page 85). Russell never suspected that money-making could be an object of 'war'. Or that the Jewish media would assist.

This is Russell addressing a 15 year old, reading philosophy books, but continually finding his 'reason is being swayed': ... I would urge you not to worry about the discovery of conflicting views. Do not resist being swayed by different points of view even if these seem to suggest contradiction. May I encourage you to come to a sympathetic understanding of the position that is being argued. I think you will find that after you have assimilated thoroughly all the different philosophical positions, then your own thinking will clarify. It has often been my experience when coming into contact with new ideas that all of them seemed persuasive, and it had only been after I had familiarised myself with them that those things which seemed important became apparent and that which was insignificant became less compelling. It is not error which is a danger to independence of mind. It is unwillingness to question everything. ... Much more easily said than done... as Russell himself exemplifies; none of his books published in his lifetime show any interest in Jewish questions. Russell, commenting on British politicians and clubs and favours, mentions coal owners writing to get public money, but does not mention helping East End Londoners against torrential immigration. Note the interesting fact that Russell provides no logical or mathematical help or techniques.

Russell seems never to have acquired much insight into human evolution. He wrote a letter something like this: I do not think that [passions have any source. If you saw a child drowning, you would try to save it and would not wait for some -ism to persuade you that it was worth saving. ...' [Dear BR 1969 p 127] I see the human race drowning [i.e. threatened, in this case by 'nuclear war'] and feel a direct impulse to save it...' Russell had little idea that there must be some sort of mechanism linking perception with emotions. He assumed—'assumed' is too strongly worded; he seems never to have thought about it—direct impulses exist, and his other writings show impulse was something he thought underestimated in theories of life, and yet he made little attempt at an integrated view.

Even Russell's work practices are revealed: In 1963, aged about 90, this is a summary of his working day: 8-11.30, letters and newspapers. 11.30-1: seeing people. 2-4 reading, mostly nuclear writings. 4-7 writing or seeing people. 8-1 am reading and writing. At this time, he received 'on average 100 letters a day'.

Russell's ideals are summarised in a 1962 letter to an Italian: ... maximum encouragement of independent thought ... for ... creative things beneficial to mankind emerge only from self-sufficient individuals... [S]uch a society would provide for the material welfare of all its citizens... the degree of organisation would be only such as to make stable life feasible .. all members of that society would be encouraged to participate in the public policy of it.
    .. Work ought not to be something from which people derive no creative satisfaction and ... experience as drudgery. The social units should be small and a federal principle should obtain between different units. Cultural diversity among the communities should be valued [by] world organisation ... In this way the necessity for world order to cope with natural problems would not be incompatible with open societies and political and cultural freedom. ...


Anyway—an interesting if too short collection. I bought a copy from Amazon, to replace one lost to me, but it seemed never to have gone to a second edition, or even impression.
Top of Page

image   Review of Bertrand Russell   Bertrand Russell: War Crimes in Vietnam

Vietnam—some of the (very repellent) truth by a very skilful writer, October 18, 2010

Collection of essays, rather than one continuous book, published in 1967 when Russell, the philosopher, was in his 90s. The magisterial introductory essay looks at the French conquest, the First World War, Ho Chi Minh and others in Paris, the Second World War including Japan, and Dien Bien Phu where the French were decisively defeated. After this the Americans took over, though of course the period was dominated politically in the USA by Jews, notably Kissinger.

Four stars because several issues are, understandably really, played down: the influence of Catholicism—a tiny layer of converts in countries conquered by France became the new 'elite'. The influence of Jews of course is ignored—a 20th century convention. There is little on 'imperialism'—control of finance is omitted, and there isn't much detail on raw materials and markets. And the money-making aspect of war—war profiteers, the 'warbucks' aspect—isn't spotlit.

This book preceded Russell's War Crimes Tribunal, published under the media-crit but not search-friendly title 'Prevent the Crime of Silence'.

Very disgusting stuff; I think this is what led Robert Faurisson to say the USAF killed more children than any other organisation. Note incidentally the part played by the 'Holocaust' fraud—US commentators could say, well, in comparison with the Holocaust, this wasn't much—only a few million dead.

[1] The 'war' was probably a Jewish money-making opportunity—building bases, spending on ships and aircraft (including helicopters) and endless shells and bombs. Maybe there was experimentation, though personally I'd guess this is largely a myth; these things could be tested elsewhere.

With Jews controlling the USA, Europe, and USSR, China must have been a tempting next target. One of Russell's essays mentions McNamara trial ballooning Chinese weapons in Vietnam as a cause for war—almost unbelievable hypocrisy. Maybe a motive was to provoke war with China; who knows? The myth of H bombs may have allowed that option to be suppressed. Maybe it was a militarist vs banker struggle?
About five years after this book, Chomsky's Backroom Boys appeared, the rather mild comment of which in retrospect seems like an apologia for Kissinger and other establishment war criminals. In fact it may not be too much to say that Chomsky's job was to minimise the secret acts of Jewish war criminals.
Top of Page

  Review of Vietnam War   Edited by John Duffet: Against the Crime of Silence: Proceedings of the Russell International War Crimes Tribunal (Stockholm, Copenhagen) (Foreword by Ralph Schoenman)

Ed Ken Coates, Limqueco, and Weiss: Prevent the Crime of Silence: Reports from the Sessions of the International War Crimes Tribunal Censored facts about the Vietnam War—a Nuremberg style inquiry, October 6, 2010

Rather little-known report. Organised by Bertrand Russell (and others) in 1967—when Russell was 95. There are two different hardback versions, published one year later, and some reprints. Based on, and edited down from, a large amount of witness testimony, some American, some (with translators) Vietnamese. Well worth reading to get the Vietnamese perspective on American war crimes and the racist anti-'gook' mentality. I suspect in retrospect the whole thing was Jewish-driven, with Kissinger as front of a policy to make money from war, and collect a percentage from currency from south-east Asia.

The idea was to mimic the Nuremberg Trials, though obviously without official support; in fact the Harold Wilson 'Labour' regime in the UK banned at least one Vietnamese witness. It's now known of course that the Nuremberg Trials were a fake, purely concerned to set up post-war mythologies.

Includes Chomsky and Ralph Schoenman among many others.

WARNING—much very unpleasant material. Note that the material is available online as internet documents, though this is not in book form. (In fact, I put the HTML there myself with permission in late 1997 to early 1998).
Top of Page

Let the People Think (1941) - Brit Liby 8477.y.67
  Misleadingly-titled and Unoriginal Book; Presumably a PotBoiler
Clark's biography (paperback 561) mentions Gilbert Murray's proposal for a book on thinking, turned down January 1939 on the ground that Russell hadn't 'the vaguest idea either how I think or how one ought to think'. The 1930s had a small vogue for books on critical thinking, which of course often happens during stressful times—though the results are usually disappointing. Thus we have as examples: Graham Wallas, The Art of Thought (1926); Thouless, Straight and Crooked Thinking (1930); Jepson: Clear Thinking (1936) and Teach Yourself to Think (1938); A E Mander, Clearer Thinking (1936), Susan Stebbings, Thinking to Some Purpose (1939).

Russell's book, despite the title, is NOT a 'how to think' book. It's a rather sad collection of obsolete essays, reprinted at least till 1961, published by the Rationalist Press Association (or RPA). This of course is just another Jewish front.

All the essays were printed in other places: 'In Praise of Idleness', 'Sceptical Essays', and other places, footnoted, some undated. These chapters are the entire contents:
ON THE VALUE OF SCEPTICISM
CAN MEN BE RATIONAL?
FREE THOUGHT AND OFFICIAL PROPAGANDA
IS SCIENCE SUPERSTITIOUS?
STOICISM AND MENTAL HEALTH 1928
THE ANCESTRY OF FASCISM 1935
"USELESS" KNOWLEDGE
ON YOUTHFUL CYNICISM 1929
MODERN HOMOGENEITY 1930
MEN VERSUS INSECTS 1933
WHAT IS THE SOUL? 1928
ON COMETS.

It's a saddening collection, disconnected from the world at that time. His 'official propaganda' piece dates from about the 'Great War', and is of little value. Russell might for example have discussed the BBC, then about twenty years old, and clearly a serious propagandist. Incidentally his 'Ancestry of Fascism' emphasizes Carlyle! And has nothing on either Mussolini or Hitler—or of course Jews in the USSR and elsewhere. Russell, having written an article, tended never to update it, or even reread it.

I insert this (in 13 August 2017) as I see the Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation has reprinted this; I thought it had dropped from memory. Incidentally, they haven't reprinted one of Russell's most impassioned books, War Crimes in Vietnam. What scum they are.
Top of Page

image   Review of Good wide view of, mostly, traditional philosophy. Not Jew-aware   Bertrand Russell: History of Western Philosophy

Best single volume on philosophy, June 26, 2010

Best book on philosophy that I know of. But don't get the idea that it's simple: Russell's style is clear, and he is witty, and this can lead readers to think his material is simple; but Russell now and then puts in very sharp and complicated theory-of-types analysis. Its divided mostly into names, which is handy for anyone dipping into the views of Parmenides, Plato, Bacon, Descartes, Locke, Leibniz, Spinoza, John Stuart Mill, Marx, Nietzsche... there's a long list. Russell is happy to admit that academic philosophers have usually been cowardly types, and admits many names (e.g. Byron) not normally considered philosophers.

Russell's style is so convincing he was often plagiarised—unconscious imitation being the sincerest form of flattery. Joad (who copied Russell on Marx), and Aldous Huxley (who based Brave New World on a Russell work) are just two examples.

There are innumerable asides, which I presume (he wrote and assembled this book aged about 70) were the fruit of discussions in his youth and middle age; on psychology, groups, sex, emotions, animals, ethics, totalitarianism, adventures, trade—a vast range of topics.

I recommend this to everyone willing to take some trouble. I've met many people who would have benefitted from its intellectual stiffening—for example a gifted physics man who couldn't seem to grasp that atoms are mostly holes, even though they don't look that way. And who had never understood that the square root of two is 'irrational'. Hoary problems—'universals', 'analytical' and 'synthetic', 'induction', 'teleology', 'determinism'—appear here and there, and it can do no harm to know about them. Russell also is good at picking out the strange practical effects of beliefs: just one example: Stoics and Christians both believed (supposedly) in personal virtue: if external circumstances cannot prevent a man from being virtuous, there is no need to seek a 'just' social system.

There are omissions, all I think to do with demarcation problems—the boundaries of philosophy, apart from politics, history, science, economics, and psychology. Darwin isn't here (much). Freud isn't here—but then Russell regarded the idea of unconscious motivation as the only significant part of Freud. Adam Smith isn't in. Marx is only treated as a philosopher: his economics is looked at by Russell in an earlier book, Freedom and Organization 1814-1914, in its first half titled Legitimacy versus Industrialism 1814-1848. Note that Russell seemed to regard Marx as 'socialistic'.
    All Russell's history in a sense is official: there must be innumerable people who were censored or killed or otherwise silenced; but Russell doesn't really bother with them. His book is a bit like commentary on a tidy, ordered library. A great deal of 'philosophy' must have been analogous to 'politically correct' chanting and chatter, not intended to help understanding, in fact, the reverse. His comments on (e.g.) Sparta, the various sacks of Rome, Platonists—any Christian discussing future life and God seems to be called a 'Platonist', even though Plato doesn't seem to be monotheistic—Islam, the Reformation, the World Wars—all are unquestioning. He doesn't ask about gangs and loot. Russell in fact has a comment to the effect that it seems impossible to find out to what extent anti-Semitism was based on genuine money concerns.

Russell's history is typical 20th century western: prehistory, with Egypt, Babylon and the rest regarded as 'oriental despotisms'. Rather inconsistently, the Bible is admitted. There's a conspiracy of silence about Jewish beliefs. Then Greece, then Rome; then the dark ages, and 'middle ages'; Russell accepts that Islam was a transmitter, though I'm not sure he makes a good case. Finally, modern enlightenment and science. Not much was known about many chunks of history, so this schema appeared satisfactory. Some of his historical comments are typically Victorian: the dislike of Rousseau from hatred of the French revolution, and of Rousseau as the supposed origin of romanticism and silliness. Rousseau and Nietzsche and Carlyle were supposed to have led to extremism and Auschwitz; Plato and Sparta to Stalin.

When eras change, Russell usually finds transitional people or ideas as exemplars: the Greeks treated in the then-usual awed way as a mix of peoples; Christianity as taking in Platonic and Judaic elements; Europe as church vs monarchs and feudal nobility and knights; Machiavelli, Erasmus and More at about the Renaissance. ...

Russell himself doubted his success in describing the relation of philosophy to social events when science became important. Russell mostly knew maths, but was notoriously hopeless in practical activities; he literally couldn't make a cup of tea. Such things as the rise and fall of the idea of phlogiston, the growth of chemistry, changes in transport, and such things as anaesthesia, aren't really covered but taken for granted, in rather the way unreflective people seem to think motor cars and piped water and printing have always existed.

Some accuse Russell of bias; typically these are:-

[1] Catholics often can't face the rationalistic side of Russell. (They don't seem to know that Russell wrote a lot on mysticism).

[2] People who like Kant and Hegel, and Nietzsche. Russell was not keen on German philosophy—when he was young, all official philosophers were Hegelians. He followed G E Moore in 'climbing down'.

[3] Supporters of Wittgenstein. Russell was a friend of his, and liked his work when it was new, but decided later it was rather trivial. (Though this is rarely stated, and not at all by Russell, Ludwig Wittgenstein appears to have considered himself a Jew).

[4] Supporters of Sartre and other existentialists. Russell dismissed it in a sentence in Dear Bertrand Russell: based emotionally on exasperation, and intellectually on errors of syntax.

[5] 'Linguistic' philosophers of the Gilbert Ryle type—'just another clever man' according to Russell. He supplied an introduction to Ernest Gellner's Words and Things.

Note that, near the end of his life, Russell spent years on the problem of nuclear weapons, Kennedy's assassination, and, later, the Americans and the Vietnam War. For this reason he's partly censored, still.

It's a pity there is no equivalent book on eastern philosophies... that would be something. Incidentally 'Sophie's World' is based on Russell. Probably Nigel Warburton's book is, too. This sort of thing is the penalty for a highly convincing writing style.
[Added later]
Here's a passage (from Russell's chapter on 'The Atomists') which shows Russell's unawareness of the possibility of parasitical subgroups of human beings emerging:
the notion of purpose or final cause. The "final cause" of an occurrence is an event in the future for the sake of which the occurrence takes place. In human affairs, this conception is applicable. Why does the baker make bread? Because people will be hungry. Why are railways built? Because people will wish to travel. In such cases, things are explained by the purpose they serve. When we ask "why?" concerning an event, we may mean either of two things. We may mean: "What purpose did this event serve?" or we may mean: "What earlier circumstances caused this event?" The answer to the former question is a teleological explanation, or an explanation by final causes; the answer to the latter question is a mechanistic explanation. I do not see how it could have been known in advance which of these two questions science ought to ask, or whether it ought to ask both. But experience has shown that the mechanistic question leads to scientific knowledge, while the teleological question does not. The atomists asked the mechanistic question, and gave a mechanistic answer. Their successors, until the Renaissance, were more interested in the teleological question, and thus led science up a blind alley.
There are I think better passages in Russell on this topic, but I haven't found one. The point is that "Why?" can also be answered by the desire to trick or manipulate others.
Top of Page

Bertrand Russell on Jews. From History of Western Philosophy—Victorian View of Jews
I have made no notes on Russell's chapter—though very many ought to be made—but I include it as a sample of perfect Jew-naivety. Jewish history and beliefs at the time were an undiscovered country.
{307}

The Religious Development of the Jews

THE Christian religion, as it was handed over by the late Roman Empire to the barbarians, consisted of three elements: first, certain philosophical beliefs, derived mainly from Plato and the Neoplatonists, but also in part from the Stoics; second, a conception of morals and history derived from the Jews; and thirdly, certain theories, more especially as to salvation, which were on the whole new in Christianity, though in part traceable to Orphism, and to kindred cults of the Near East. The most important Jewish elements in Christianity appear to me to be the following:
  1. A sacred history, beginning with the Creation, leading to a consummation in the future, and justifying the ways of God to man.
  2. The existence of a small section of mankind whom God specially loves. For Jews, this section was the Chosen People; for Christians, the elect.
  3. A new conception of "righteousness." The virtue of almsgiving, for example, was taken over by Christianity from later Judaism. The importance attached to baptism might be derived from Orphism or from oriental pagan mystery religions, but practical philanthropy, as an element in the Christian conception of virtue, seems to have come from the Jews. {308}
  4. The Law. Christians kept part of the Hebrew Law, for instance the Decalogue, while they rejected its ceremonial and ritual parts. But in practice they attached to the Creed much the same feelings that the Jews attached to the Law. This involved the doctrine that correct belief is at least as important as virtuous action, a doctrine which is essentially Hellenic. What is Jewish in origin is the exclusiveness of the elect.
  5. The Messiah. The Jews believed that the Messiah would bring them temporal prosperity, and victory over their enemies here on earth; moreover, he remained in the future. For Christians, the Messiah was the historical Jesus, who was also identified with the Logos of Greek philosophy; and it was not on earth, but in heaven, that the Messiah was to enable his followers to triumph over their enemies.
  6. The Kingdom of Heaven. Other-worldliness is a conception which Jews and Christians, in a sense, share with later Platonism, but it takes, with them, a much more concrete form than with Greek philosophers. The Greek doctrine--which is to be found in much Christian philosophy, but not in popular Christianity--was that the sensible world, in space and time, is an illusion, and that, by intellectual and moral discipline, a man can learn to live in the eternal world, which alone is real. The Jewish and Christian doctrine, on the other hand, conceived the Other World as not metaphysically different from this world, but as in the future, when the virtuous would enjoy everlasting bliss and the wicked would suffer everlasting torment. This belief embodied revenge psychology, and was intelligible to all and sundry, as the doctrines of Greek philosophers were not.
To understand the origin of these beliefs, we must take account of certain facts in Jewish history, to which we will now turn our attention.

The early history of the Israelites cannot be confirmed from any source outside the Old Testament, and it is impossible to know at what point it ceases to be purely legendary. David and Solomon may be accepted as kings who probably had a real existence, but at the earliest point at which we come to something certainly historical there are already the two kingdoms of Israel and Judah. The first person mentioned in the Old Testament of whom there is an independent record is Ahab, King of Israel, who is spoken of in an Assyrian {309} letter of 853 B.C. The Assyrians finally conquered the Northern kingdom in 722 B.C., and removed a great part of the population. After this time, the kingdom of Judah alone preserved the Israelite religion and tradition. The kingdom of Judah just survived the Assyrians, whose power came to an end with the capture of Nineveh by the Babylonians and Medes in 606 B.C. But in 586 B.C. Nebuchadrezzar captured Jerusalem, destroyed the Temple, and removed a large part of the population to Babylon. The Babylonian kingdom fell in 538 B.C., when Babylon was taken by Cyrus, king of the Medes and Persians. Cyrus, in 537 B.C., issued an edict allowing the Jews to return to Palestine. Many of them did so, under the leadership of Nehemiah and Ezra; the Temple was rebuilt, and Jewish orthodoxy began to be crystallized.

In the period of the captivity, and for some time before and after this period, Jewish religion went through a very important development. Originally, there appears to have been not very much difference, from a religious point of view, between the Israelites and surrounding tribes. Yahweh was, at first, only a tribal god who favoured the children of Israel, but it was not denied that there were other gods, and their worship was habitual. When the first Commandment says, "Thou shalt have none other gods but me," it is saying something which was an innovation in the time immediately preceding the captivity. This is made evident by various texts in the earlier prophets. It was the prophets at this time who first taught that the worship of heathen gods was sin. To win the victory in the constant wars of that time, they proclaimed, the favour of Yahweh was essential; and Yahweh would withdraw his favour if other gods were also honoured. Jeremiah and Ezekiel, especially, seem to have invented the idea that all religions except one are false, and that the Lord punishes idolatry.

Some quotations will illustrate their teachings, and the prevalence of the heathen practices against which they protested. "Seest Thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven [Ishtar], and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger." [Footnote: Jeremiah VII, 17-18.] The Lord is angry about it. "And they {310} have built the high places of Tophet, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I commanded them not, neither came it into my heart." [Footnote: Ibid., VII, 31.]

There is a very interesting passage in Jeremiah in which he denounces the Jews in Egypt for their idolatry. He himself had lived among them for a time. The prophet tells the Jewish refugees in Egypt that Yahweh will destroy them all because their wives have burnt incense to other gods. But they refuse to listen to him, saying: "We will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we and our fathers, our kings and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem; for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil." But Jeremiah assures them that Yahweh noticed these idolatrous practices, and that misfortune has come because of them. "Behold, I have sworn by my great name, saith the Lord, that my name shall no more be named in the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt. ... I will watch over them for evil, and not for good; and all the men of Judah that are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by the famine, until there be an end of them." [Footnote: Jeremiah XLIV, 11-end]

Ezekiel is equally shocked by the idolatrous practices of the Jews. The Lord in a vision shows him women at the north gate of the temple weeping for Tammuz (a Babylonian deity); then He shows him "greater abominations, " five and twenty men at the door of the Temple worshipping the sun. The Lord declares: "Therefore will I also deal in fury: mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: and though they cry in mine ears with a loud voice, yet will I not hear them." [Footnote: Ezekiel VIII, 11-end]

The idea that all religions but one are wicked, and that the Lord punishes idolatry, was apparently invented by these prophets. The prophets, on the whole, were fiercely nationalistic, and looked forward to the day when the Lord would utterly destroy the gentiles.

The captivity was taken to justify the denunciations of the prophets. If Yahweh was all-powerful, and the Jews were his Chosen People, their sufferings could only be explained by their wickedness. The psychology is that of paternal correction: the Jews are to be purified by punishment. Under the influence of this belief, they developed, in {311} exile, an orthodoxy much more rigid and much more nationally exclusive than that which had prevailed while they were independent. The Jews who remained behind and were not transplanted to Babylon did not undergo this development to anything like the same extent. When Ezra and Nehemiah came back to Jerusalem after the captivity, they were shocked to find that mixed marriages had been common, and they dissolved all such marriages. [Footnote: Ezra IX-X, 5.] The Jews were distinguished from the other nations of antiquity by their stubborn national pride. All the others, when conquered, acquiesced inwardly as well as outwardly; the Jews alone retained the belief in their own pre-eminence, and the conviction that their misfortunes were due to God's anger, because they had failed to preserve the purity of their faith and ritual. The historical books of the Old Testament, which were mostly compiled after the captivity, give a misleading impression, since they suggest that the idolatrous practices against which the prophets protested were a falling-off from earlier strictness, whereas in fact the earlier strictness had never existed. The prophets were innovators to a much greater extent than appears in the Bible when read unhistorically.

Some things which were afterwards characteristic of Jewish religion were developed, though in part from previously existing sources, during the captivity. Owing to the destruction of the Temple, where alone sacrifices could be offered, the Jewish ritual perforce became non-sacrificial. Synagogues began at this time, with readings from such portions of the Scriptures as already existed. The importance of the Sabbath was first emphasized at this time, and so was circumcision as the mark of the Jew. As we have already seen, it was only during the exile that marriage with gentiles came to be forbidden. There was a growth of every form of exclusiveness. "I am the Lord your God, which have separated you from other people." [Footnote: Leviticus XX, 24] "Ye shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy." [Footnote: Ibid., XIX, 2.] The Law is a product of this period. It was one of the chief forces in preserving national unity. What we have as the Book of Isaiah is the work of two different prophets, one before the exile and one after. The second of these, who is called by Biblical students Deutero-Isaiah, is the most remarkable of the prophets. He is the first who reports the Lord as saying "There is no god but I." He believes in the resurrection of the body, perhaps {312} as a result of Persian influence. His prophecies of the Messiah were, later, the chief Old Testament texts used to show that the prophets foresaw the coming of Christ.

In Christian arguments with both pagans and Jews, these texts from Deutero-Isaiah played a very important part, and for this reason I shall quote the most important of them. All nations are to be converted in the end: "They shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore" (Is. II, 4). "Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." [Footnote: Isaiah VII, 14.] (As to this text, there was a controversy between Jews and Christians; the Jews said that the correct translation is "a young woman shall conceive," but the Christians thought the Jews were lying.) "The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light; they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. ... For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace." [Footnote: Jerusalem under the High priests, p. 12]] The most apparently prophetic of these passages is the fifty-third chapter, which contains the familiar texts: "He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief. ... Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows. ... But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. ... He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth." The inclusion of the gentiles in the ultimate salvation is explicit: "And the gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising." [Footnote: Ibid., LX, 3.]

After Ezra and Nehemiah, the Jews for a while disappear from history. The Jewish state survived as a theocracy, but its territory was very small--only the region of ten to fifteen miles around Jerusalem, according to E. Bevan. [Footnote: Ibid., IX, 2, 6] After Alexander, it became a disputed territory between the Ptolemies and the Seleucids. This, however, seldom {313} involved fighting in actual Jewish territory, and left the Jews, for a long time, to the free exercise of their religion.

Their moral maxims, at this time, are set forth in Ecclesiasticus, probably written about 200 B.C. Until recently, this book was only known in a Greek version; this is the reason for its being banished to the Apocrypha. But a Hebrew manuscript has lately been discovered, in some respects different from the Greek text translated in our version of the Apocrypha. The morality taught is very mundane. Reputation among neighbours is highly prized. Honesty is the best policy, because it is useful to have Yahweh on your side. Almsgiving is recommended. The only sign of Greek influence is in the praise of medicine.

Slaves must not be treated too kindly. "Fodder, a wand, and burdens, are for the ass: and bread, correction, and work, for a servant. ... Set him to work, as is fit for him: if he be not obedient, put on more heavy fetters" (XXIII, 24, 28). At the same time, remember that you have paid a price for him, and that if he runs away you will lose your money; this sets a limit to profitable severity (ibid., 30, 31). Daughters are a great source of anxiety; apparently in his day they were much addicted to immorality (XLII, 9-11). He has a low opinion of women: "From garments cometh a moth, and from women wickedness" (ibid., 13). It is a mistake to be cheerful with your children; the right course is to "bow down their neck from their youth" (VII, 23, 24).

Altogether, like the elder Cato, he represents the morality of the virtuous business man in a very unattractive light.

This tranquil existence of comfortable self-righteousness was rudely interrupted by the Seleucid king Antiochus IV, who was determined to hellenize all his dominions. In 175 B.C. he established a gymnasium in Jerusalem, and taught young men to wear Greek hats and practise athletics. In this he was helped by a hellenizing Jew named Jason, whom he made high priest. The priestly aristocracy had become lax, and had felt the attraction of Greek civilization; but they were vehemently opposed by a party called the "Hasidim" (meaning "Holy"), who were strong among the rural population. [Footnote: From them, probably, developed the sect of the Essenes, whose doctrines seem to have influenced primitive Christianity. See Oesterley and Robinson , History of Israel, Vol. II, p. 323 ff. The Pharisees also descended from them.] When, in 170 B.C., {314} Antiochus became involved in war with Egypt, the Jews rebelled. Thereupon Antiochus took the holy vessels from the Temple, and placed in it the image of the God. He identified Yahweh with Zeus, following a practice which had been successful everywhere else. [Footnote: Some Alexandrian Jews did not object to this identification. See Letter of Aristeas, 15, 16.] He resolved to extirpate the Jewish religion, and to stop circumcision and the observance of the laws relating to food. To all this Jerusalem submitted, but outside Jerusalem the Jews resisted with the utmost stubbornness.

The history of this period is told in the First Book of Maccabees. The first chapter tells how Antiochus decreed that all the inhabitants of his kingdom should be one people, and abandon their separate laws. All the heathen obeyed, and many of the Israelites, although the king commanded that they should profane the sabbath, sacrifice swine's flesh, and leave their children uncircumcised. All who disobeyed were to suffer death. Many, nevertheless, resisted." They put to death certain women, that had caused their children to be circumcised. And they hanged the infants about their necks, and rifled their houses, and slew them that had circumcised them. Howbeit many in Israel were fully resolved and confirmed in themselves not to eat any unclean thing. Wherefore they chose rather to die, that they might not be defiled with meats, and that they might not profane the holy covenant: so then they died." [Footnote: I Maccabees I, 60-63] It was at this time that the doctrine of immortality came to be widely believed among the Jews. It had been thought that virtue would be rewarded here on earth; but persecution, which fell upon the most virtuous, made it evident that this was not the case. In order to safeguard divine justice, therefore, it was necessary to believe in rewards and punishments hereafter. This doctrine was not universally accepted among the Jews; in the time of Christ, the Sadducees still rejected it. But by that time they were a small party, and in later times all Jews believed in immortality.

The revolt against Antiochus was led by Judas Maccabaeus, an able military commander, who first recaptured Jerusalem (164 B.C.), and then embarked upon aggression. Sometimes he killed all the males, sometimes he circumcised them by force. His brother Jonathan was {315} made high priest, was allowed to occupy Jerusalem with a garrison, and conquered part of Samaria, acquiring Joppa and Akra. He negotiated with Rome, and was successful in securing complete autonomy. His family were high priests until Herod, and are known as the Hasmonean dynasts.

In enduring and resisting persecution the Jews of this time showed immense heroism, although in defence of things that do not strike us as important, such as circumcision and the wickedness of eating pork.

The time of the persecution by Antiochus IV was crucial in Jewish history. The Jews of the Dispersion were, at this time, becoming more and more hellenized; the Jews of Judea were few;and even among them the rich and powerful were inclined to acquiesce in Greek innovations. But for the heroic resistance of the Hasidim, the Jewish religion might easily have died out. If this had happened, neither Christianity nor Islam could have existed in anything like the form they actually took. Townsend, in his Introduction to the translation of the Fourth Book of Maccabees, says:
"It has been finely said that if Judaism as a religion had perished under Antiochus, the seed-bed of Christianity would have been lacking; and thus the blood of the Maccabean martyrs, who saved Judaism, ultimately became the seed of the Church. Therefore as not only Christendom but also Islam derive their monotheism from a Jewish source, it may well be that the world today owes the very existence of monotheism both in the East and in the West to the Maccabees." [Footnote: The Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament in English. Edited by R. H. Charles. Vol. II, p. 659.]

The Maccabees themselves, however, were not admired by later Jews, because their family, as high priests, adopted, after their successes, a worldly and temporizing policy. Admiration was for the martyrs. The Fourth Book of Maccabees, written probably in Alexandria about the time of Christ, illustrates this as well as some other interesting points. In spite of its title, it nowhere mentions the Maccabees, but relates the amazing fortitude, first of an old man, and then of seven young brothers, all of whom were first tortured and then burnt by Antiochus, while their mother, who was present, exhorted them to stand firm. The king, at first, tried to win them by friendliness, telling them that, if they would only consent to eat pork, he would take them into his favour, and secure successful careers for {316} them. When they refused, he showed them the instruments of torture. But they remained unshakable, telling him that he would suffer eternal torment after death, while they would inherit everlasting bliss. One by one, in each other's presence, and in that of their mother, they were first exhorted to eat pork, then, when they refused, tortured and killed. At the end, the king turned round to his soldiers and told them he hoped they would profit by such an example of courage. The account is of course embellished by legend, but it is historically true that the persecution was severe and was endured heroically; also that the main points at issue were circumcision and eating pork.

This book is interesting in another respect. Although the writer is obviously an orthodox Jew, he uses the language of the Stoic philosophy, and is concerned to prove that the Jews live most completely in accordance with its precepts. The book opens with the sentence:
"Philosophical in the highest degree is the question I propose to discuss, namely whether the Inspired Reason is supreme ruler over the passions; and to the philosophy of it I would seriously entreat your earnest attention."
Alexandrian Jews were willing, in philosophy, to learn from the Greeks, but they adhered with extraordinary tenacity to the Law, especially circumcision, observance of the Sabbath, and abstinence from pork and other unclean meats. From the time of Nehemiah till after the fall of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, the importance that they attached to the Law steadily increased. They no longer tolerated prophets who had anything new to say. Those among them who felt impelled to write in the style of the prophets pretended that they had discovered an old book, by Daniel or Solomon or some other ancient of impeccable respectability. Their ritual peculiarities held them together as a nation, but emphasis on the Law gradually destroyed originality and made them intensely conservative. This rigidity makes the revolt of Saint Paul against the domination of the Law very remarkable.

The New Testament, however, is not such a completely new beginning as it is apt to seem to those who know nothing of Jewish literature in the times just before the birth of Christ. Prophetic fervour was by no means dead, though it had to adopt the device of pseudonymity in order to obtain a hearing. Of the greatest interest, in this respect, is the Book of Enoch, [Footnote: For the text of this book, in English, see Charles, op. cit., whose introduction also invaluable.] a composite work, due to various authors, the {317} earliest being slightly before the time of the Maccabees, and the latest about 64 B.C. Most of it professes to relate apocalyptic visions of the patriarch Enoch. It is very important for the side of Judaism which turned to Christianity. The New Testament writers are familiar with it; Saint Jude considers it to be actually by Enoch. Early Christian Fathers, for instance Clement of Alexandria and Tertullian, treated it as canonical, but Jerome and Augustine rejected it. It fell, consequently, into oblivion, and was lost until, early in the nineteenth century, three manuscripts of it, in Ethiopic, were found in Abyssinia. Since then, manuscripts of parts of it have been found in Greek and Latin versions. It appears to have been originally written partly in Hebrew, partly in Aramaic.

Its authors were members of the Hasidim, and their successors the Pharisees. It denounces kings and princes, meaning the Hasmonean dynasty and the Sadducees. It influenced New Testament doctrine, particularly as regards the Messiah, Sheol (hell), and demonology.

The book consists mainly of "parables, " which are more cosmic than those of the New Testament. There are visions of heaven and hell, of the Last Judgement, and so on; one is reminded of the first two Books of Paradise Lost where the literary quality is good, and of Blake Prophetic Books where it is inferior.

There is an expansion of Genesis VI, 2, 4, which is curious and Promethean. The angels taught men metallurgy, and were punished for revealing "eternal secrets." They were also cannibals. The angels that had sinned became pagan gods, and their women became sirens; but at the last, they were punished with everlasting torments.

There are descriptions of heaven and hell which have considerable literary merit. The Last Judgement is performed by "the Son of Man, who hath righteousness" and who sits on the throne of His glory. Some of the gentiles, at the last, will repent and be forgiven; but most gentiles, and all hellenizing Jews, will suffer eternal damnation, for the righteous will pray for vengeance, and their prayer will be granted.

There is a section on astronomy, where we learn that the sun and moon have chariots driven by the wind, that the year consists of 364 days, that human sin causes the heavenly bodies to depart from their courses, and that only the virtuous can know astronomy. Falling stars are falling angels, and are punished by the seven archangels.

Next comes sacred history. Up to the Maccabees, this pursues the {318} course known from the Bible in its earlier portions, and from history in the later parts. Then the author goes on into the future: the New Jerusalem, the conversion of the remnant of the gentiles, the resurrection of the righteous, and the Messiah.

There is a great deal about the punishment of sinners and the reward of the righteous, who never display an attitude of Christian forgiveness towards sinners. "What will ye do, ye sinners, and whither will ye flee on that day of judgement, when ye hear the voice of the prayer of the righteous?""Sin has not been sent upon the earth, but man of himself has created it." Sins are recorded in heaven. "Ye sinners shall be cursed for ever, and ye shall have no peace." Sinners maybe happy all their lives, and even in dying, but their souls descend into Sheol, where they shall suffer "darkness and chains and a burning flame." But as for the righteous, "I and my Son will be united with them for ever."

The last words of the book are: "To the faithful he will give faithfulness in the habitation of upright paths. And they shall see those who were born in darkness led into darkness, while the righteous shall be resplendent. And the sinners shall cry aloud and see them resplendent, and they indeed will go where days and seasons are prescribed for them."

Jews, like Christians, thought much about sin, but few of them thought of themselves as sinners. This was, in the main, a Christian innovation, introduced by the parable of the Pharisee and the publican, and taught as a virtue in Christ's denunciations of the Scribes and Pharisees. The Christians endeavoured to practise Christian humility; the Jews, in general, did not.

There are, however, important exceptions among orthodox Jews just before the time of Christ. Take, for instance, "The Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs, " written between 109 and 107 B.C. by a Pharisee who admired John Hyrcanus, a high priest of the Hasmonean dynasty. This book, in the form in which we have it, contains Christian interpolations, but these are all concerned with dogma. When they are excised, the ethical teaching remains closely similar to that of the Gospels. As the Rev. Dr. R. H. Charles says: "The Sermon on the Mount reflects in several instances the spirit and even reproduces the very phrases of our text: many passages in the Gospels exhibit traces of the same, and St. Paul seems to have used the book as a vade mecum" {319}(op. cit., pp. 291-2). We find in this book such precepts as the following:

"Love ye one another from the heart; and if a man sin against thee, speak peaceably to him, and in thy soul hold not guile; and if he repent and confess, forgive him. But if he deny it, do not get into a passion with him, lest catching the poison from thee he take to swearing, and so then sin doubly. ... And if he be shameless and persist in wrong-doing, even so forgive him from the heart, and leave to God the avenging."

Dr. Charles is of opinion that Christ must have been acquainted with this passage. Again we find:

"Love the Lord and your neighbour."

"Love the Lord through all your life, and one another with a true heart."

"I loved the Lord; likewise also every man with all my heart." These are to be compared with Matthew XXII, 37-39. There is a reprobation of all hatred in "The Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs"; for instance:

"Anger is blindness, and does not suffer one to see the face of any man with truth."

"Hatred, therefore, is evil; for it constantly mateth with lying." The author of this book, as might be expected, holds that not only the Jews, but all the gentiles, will be saved.

Christians have learnt from the Gospels to think ill of Pharisees, yet the author of this book was a Pharisee, and he taught, as we have seen, those very ethical maxims which we think of as most distinctive of Christ's preaching. The explanation, however, is not difficult. In the first place, he must have been, even in his own day, an exceptional Pharisee; the more usual doctrine was, no doubt, that of the Book of Enoch. In the second place, we know that all movements tend to ossify;who could infer the principles of Jefferson from those of the D.A.R.? In the third place, we know, as regards the Pharisees in particular, that their devotion to the Law, as the absolute and final truth, soon put an end to all fresh and living thought and feeling among them. As Dr. Charles says:

"When Pharisaism, breaking with the ancient ideals of its party, committed itself to political interests and movements, and concurrently therewith surrendered itself more and more wholly to the study {320} of the letter of the Law, it soon ceased to offer scope for the development of such a lofty system of ethics as the Testaments [of the Patriarchs] attest, and so the true successors of the early Hasids and their teaching quitted Judaism and found their natural home in the bosom of primitive Christianity."

After a period of rule by the High Priests, Mark Antony made his friend Herod King of the Jews. Herod was a gay adventurer, often on the verge of bankruptcy, accustomed to Roman society, and very far removed from Jewish piety. His wife was of the family of the High Priests, but he was an Idumaean, which alone would suffice to make him an object of suspicion to the Jews. He was a skilful timeserver, and deserted Antony promptly when it became evident that Octavius was going to be victorious. However, he made strenuous attempts to reconcile the Jews to his rule. He rebuilt the Temple, though in a hellenistic style, with rows of Corinthian pillars; but he placed over the main gate a large golden eagle, thereby infringing the second Commandment. When it was rumoured that he was dying, the Pharisees pulled down the eagle, but he, in revenge, caused a number of them to be put to death. He died in 4 B.C., and soon after his death the Romans abolished the kingship, putting Judea under a procurator. Pontius Pilate, who became procurator in A.D. 26, was tactless, and was soon retired.

In A.D. 66, the Jews, led by the party of the Zealots, rebelled against Rome. They were defeated, and Jerusalem was captured in A.D. 70. The Temple was destroyed, and few Jews were left in Judea.

The Jews of the Dispersion had become important centuries before this time. The Jews had been originally an almost wholly agricultural people, but they learnt trading from the Babylonians during the captivity. Many of them remained in Babylon after the time of Ezra and Nehemiah, and among these some were very rich. After the foundation of Alexandria, great numbers of Jews settled in that city; they had a special quarter assigned to them, not as a ghetto, but to keep them from danger of pollution by contact with gentiles. The Alexandrian Jews became much more hellenized than those of Judea, and forgot Hebrew. For this reason it became necessary to translate the Old Testament into Greek; the result was the Septuagint. The Pentateuch was translated in the middle of the third century B.C.; the other parts somewhat later. {321}

Legends arose about the Septuagint, so called because it was the work of seventy translators. It was said that each of the seventy translated the whole independently, and that when the versions were compared they were found to be identical down to the smallest detail, having all been divinely inspired. Nevertheless, later scholarship showed that the Septuagint was gravely defective. The Jews, after the rise of Christianity, made little use of it, but reverted to reading the Old Testament in Hebrew. The early Christians, on the contrary, few of whom knew Hebrew, depended upon the Septuagint, or upon translations from it into Latin. A better text was produced by the labours of Origen in the third century, but those who only knew Latin had very defective versions until Jerome, in the fifth century, produced the Vulgate. This was, at first, received with much criticism, because he had been helped by Jews in establishing the text, and many Christians thought that Jews had deliberately falsified the prophets in order that they should not seem to foretell Christ. Gradually, however, the work of Saint Jerome was accepted, and it remains to this day authoritative in the Catholic Church.

The philosopher Philo, who was a contemporary of Christ, is the best illustration of Greek influence on the Jews in the sphere of thought. While orthodox in religion, Philo is, in philosophy, primarily a Platonist; other important influences are those of the Stoics and Neopythagoreans. While his influence among the Jews ceased after the fall of Jerusalem, the Christian Fathers found that he had shown the way to reconcile Greek philosophy with acceptance of the Hebrew Scriptures.

In every important city of antiquity there came to be considerable colonies of Jews, who shared with the representatives of other Eastern religions an influence upon those who were not content either with scepticism or with the official religions of Greece and Rome. Many converts were made to Judaism, not only in the Empire, but also in South Russia. It was probably to Jewish and semi-Jewish circles that Christianity first appealed. Orthodox Judaism, however, became more orthodox and more narrow after the fall of Jerusalem, just as it had done after the earlier fall due to Nebuchadrezzar. After the first century, Christianity also crystallized, and the relations of Judaism and Christianity were wholly hostile and external; as we shall see, Christianity powerfully stimulated anti-Semitism. Throughout the Middle {322} Ages, Jews had no part in the culture of Christian countries, and were too severely persecuted to be able to make contributions to civilization, beyond supplying capital for the building of cathedrals and such enterprises. It was only among the Mohammedans, at that period, that Jews were treated humanely, and were able to pursue philosophy and enlightened speculation.

Throughout the Middle Ages, the Mohammedans were more civilized and more humane than the Christians. Christians persecuted Jews, especially at times of religious excitement; the Crusades were associated with appalling pogroms. In Mohammedan countries, on the contrary, Jews were not in any way ill treated. Especially in Moorish Spain, they contributed to learning; Maimonides (1135-1204), who was born at Cordova, is regarded by some as the source of much of Spinoza's philosophy. When the Christians reconquered Spain, it was largely the Jews who transmitted to them the learning of the Moors. Learned Jews, who knew Hebrew, Greek, and Arabic, and were acquainted with the philosophy of Aristotle, transmitted their knowledge to less learned schoolmen. They transmitted also less desirable things, such as alchemy and astrology.

After the Middle Ages, the Jews still contributed largely to civilization as individuals, but no longer as a race. {323}
Top of Page


Review of   Bertrand Russell   Freedom and Organization 1814-1914   published 1934

History of the nineteenth century by Bertrand Russell and Patricia Spence. Impelled by Russell's affection for Victorian England, and by the disaster of the 'Great War'. But totally ignorant of facts about Jewish and other finance.
[This book was reissued in 1965 by George Allen & Unwin as an Unwin Paperback in two volumes, 'Legitimacy versus Industrialism 1814-1848' and 'Freedom versus Organization 1776-1914'. I don't know if there were changes in the text.]

I'll list here the contents (capitalisation in the original)
PART ONE: The Principle of Legitimacy
    I. NAPOLEON'S SUCCESSORS
    II. THE CONGRESS OF VIENNA
    III. THE HOLY ALLIANCE
    IV. THE TWILIGHT OF METTERNICH

PART TWO: The March of Mind
  Section A: The Social Background
    V. THE ARISTOCRACY
    VI. COUNTRY LIFE
    VII. INDUSTRIAL LIFE
  Section B: The Philosophical Radicals
    VIII. MALTHUS
    IX. BENTHAM
    X. JAMES MILL
    XI. RICARDO
    XII. THE BENTHAMITE DOCTRINE
    XIII. DEMOCRACY IN ENGLAND
    XIV. FREE TRADE
  Section C: Socialism
    XV. OWEN AND EARLY BRITISH SOCIALISM
    XVI. EARLY TRADE UNIONISM
    XVII. MARX AND ENGELS
    XVIII. DIALECTICAL MATERIALISM
    XIX. THE THEORY OF SURPLUS VALUE
    XX. THE POLITICS OF MARXISM

PART THREE: Democracy and Plutocracy in America
  Section A: Democracy in America
    XXI. JEFFERSONIAN DEMOCRACY
    XXII. THE SETTLEMENT OF THE WEST
    XXIII. JACKSONIAN DEMOCRACY
    XXIV. SLAVERY AND DISUNION
    XXV. LINCOLN AND NATIONAL UNITY
  Section B: Competition and Monopoly in America
    XXVI. COMPETITIVE CAPITALISM
    XXVII. THE APPROACH TO MONOPOLY

PART FOUR: Nationalism and Imperialism
    XXVIII. THE PRINCIPLE OF NATIONALITY
    XXIX. BISMARCK AND GERMAN UNITY
    XXX. THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OF THE GERMAN EMPIRE
    XXXI. IMPERIALISM
    XXXII. THE ARBITERS OF EUROPE
Conclusion | Bibliography | Index
Admirers of Russell presumably read this book as another specimen of his style, wit, and insight.

The book is in Russell's modular style, which provides a framework; whether the framework is accurate is another matter. The book is available free online, and I don't have time or inclination for a full review. Here are some revisionist comments, which readers might find helpful.

Russell's information is all derivative; he regarded the task of historians as brilliant commentary on spadework done by many others. If they are honest and competent, that's fine. If they miss details, it's less fine—for example, 'capitalism' must have needed travel, communication, legal, geographical, and no doubt other subtleties, which Russell tends to ignore, even if he knew them.
    His arrangement of topics is largely retrospective, as interpreted through English-speaking historians and news sources. So that (for example) the unification of Germany and the 'German Empire' emerge, presumably menacingly.

Examples: He takes it for granted that the US Civil War was caused by slavery. He assumes the 'Congress of Vienna' (Henry Kissinger allegedly did a PhD on this) was a tussle between European powers, with no Rothschild interest. He regards Napoleon as purely a soldier of fortune—he has no idea of forces behind the 'French Revolution', and generally assumes any war was fought necessarily, because the opponents were unreasonable—the modern model of funding both sides is completely missing. Russell has a rather negligent attitude to law, regarding it as an effect of ideas, rather than a cause—when in fact laws may well have long-term consequences, not understood at the time. He doesn't understand the dynamics of religions, taking an established church view that they sit there, doing not much, taking a bit of money, but harmless and ineffectual.

Enclosures, Speenhamland Scheme, Poor Laws, Child Labour are described in The Social Background, but for my taste the descriptions are in the 'culture of critique' tradition of carping unhelpful criticism. What should they have done?

His chapters on the Philosophical Radicals (include Bentham, James Mill and Ricardo, with Francis Place and John Stuart Mill and Francis Burdett and doctrines of Mandeville and Hume and Helvetius in other roles).
    From a modern perspective, most of this material is Jew-related if discussed honestly: James Mill worked for the East India Company, probably writing a scrubbed paid history. Ricardo of course was a Jew, who made a lot of money. Bentham's doctrines, for example the greatest happiness for the greatest number principle, and democracy, were probably designed to advance Jews, under the pretext of advancing people generally. Russell is Jew-oriented all the way through: he hardly mentions the Opium Wars, has a bit on Irish famine, mentions India's penal code (drawn up by Macaulay, he says), has nothing on the Bank of England, says Stonewall Jackson couldn't understand bankers, says little on Jews and the Boer Wars, says nothing about the Ottoman Empire (one of the Jewish Zionist causes of the Great War), and treats aristocracies as self-enclosed, despite continual Jewish penetration.

• A difficult book, since everything in it, including the omissions, is Jew-naive Whig history. Useful as a guide to British official views, though not by politically-informed people; it needs careful reading to decode the movements and beliefs and actions, to reveal Jewish machinations. Russell was aware that earlier military histories had been made out of date by economic histories, but, in fact, regrettably, he was himself in the same tradition—don't talk about money.
    (Note: On Marx, Russell said (Dear Bertrand Russell) you 'will find my opinions on Marx in the relevant chapters' of this book).
Top of Page

Power by Bertrand Russell   Review of   Bertrand Russell   Power: A New Social Analysis   published October 1938

Bertrand Russell wanted to invent a new science of human power, June 26, 2010/ 4 Sept 2013/ 4 Sept 2014/ 18 March 2015/ 4 July 2015/ 18 Sept 2015
Russell intended this book to found a new science, of human power, in the societal sense. Power meaning 'the production of intended effects'. (His definition, not mine. He seemed to assume power-loving men would always know what they wanted, and how to get it).


LONG REVIEW WARNING!

Although this book is well worth reading, five stars for breadth of content, there are innumerable difficulties; which I'll try to sketch out... starting from the chapter headings -

I THE IMPULSE TO POWER/ II LEADERS AND FOLLOWERS
These chapters try to integrate practical needs (e.g. houses have to be built somewhere) with giving and taking orders.

Russell is emphatic (following Darwin) that man is an animal, but differs from other animals in having 'imagination'. He cannot just mean the ability to conjure up images in 'the mind's eye', since some forms of mental ability, for example a speech, or a law, are not images. Russell saw no reason to differentiate between 'men'. If you consider monkeys, they very roughly have similar strength, limbs, vision, calorie consumption, and anatomy, to 'men'. A visitor from Mars might be puzzled that they build no houses and make no music. Russell had no theory to begin to explain differences in 'imagination', and resulting differences in ambition, and in struggles for power.

Worth noting that Russell (like us) belongs to a stage in anatomy when the brain was not understood; he distinguishes anatomy from human motivations, without knowing whether these latter are genetically determined. Russell does not see the biological nature of life as imposing limitations: it's obvious that people have their own surroundings, their own sights and sounds and landscapes and associates and surroundings, and their own spheres of knowledge—concrete things which impose limits. In 500 AD Britain was divided amongst tribes; modern ease of travel has changed that, but, if things collapse, who can say whether this will not happen again?

Russell has what seems now a strange attitude to human beings; possibly this is explained by the transition from a religious view to Darwinian. He says for example ' ... each of us would like to conceive of it [social co-operation] after the pattern of the co-operation between God and His worshippers, with ourself in the place of God. ...' and 'Every man would like to be God, if it were possible.' Not quite the same as pecking order, or monkey bands.

'Some men's characters lead them always to command, others always to obey; between these extremes lie the mass of average human beings..' (Russell seems pretty completely to discount competence, strength, dexterity, and learning and understanding the ways things are done). Russell mentions the family, for example in China, but there's more scope for kidnapping, adoption, rape, unassignable parents, making orphans, castration and so on than he seems to realise; he follows Plato in only tinkering with the family. He thinks the 'confidence necessary to be a leader' has commonly been 'a hereditary position of command'—he says nothing of education through books, or training of princes.

Russell is unrealistic in appraising the natural limits of learning; how can people with no experience of (e.g.) planning or judging schemes or technical issues or languages gain 'power' in these things? I think he assumes, as his model, schools and training, which people may or may not choose and may or may not succeed it. But this seems to omit large parts of life; strata and classes and groups. Russell dodges the issue: '... the men who are active in public events' desire to obtain power. He talks as though 'public events' are obvious to everyone, which they aren't, and that power-loving types will work for and operate them.

And Russell is unrealistic in assessing knowledge. He writes 'A large proportion of the human race... is obliged to work so hard in obtaining necessaries that little energy is left over for other purposes;...' but this may contain a subtle error. How hard, in fact, do people in 'Third World' countries, as they have come to be called, work? I've seen it stated that 'slash and burn' primitive agriculturalists work much less hard than modern whites. And what would they do with spare energy if they had it? Imagination may be 'the goad that forces human beings into restless exertion', but imaginations are limited.
      But there is a very important point here, since 'energy left over for other purposes' must include all cultural achievements in the broadest sense. Some will be time-wasting; some cruel; some family-related, for example. With modern techniques, enormous scope has opened up—and this includes vast frauds.

Russell doesn't distinguish carefully between people who aim to influence powerful people, and people who aim at overall communities of some sort. Jews seem to be inbred into attacking human hierarchies, for example. But differences of this sort are all subsumed under 'power'.

Russell is not impressed by 'economic causation'. He writes: when a moderate degree of comfort is assured, both individuals and communities will pursue power rather than wealth: they may seek wealth as a means to power, or they may forgo an increase of wealth in order to secure an increase of power, but in the former case as in the latter their fundamental motive is not economic. This is not as helpful as might be thought. What is a 'community'? The activities of Jews have focussed attention on the possibilities of some parts of an apparent community acting against other parts. What is a 'moderate degree of comfort'? Russell writes as though human societies have always had the option of increased 'comfort'; very likely a mistake, given that many people, including Russell, believed that most people don't ever have new ideas.

He regards people as being influenceable in three ways—direct force, economic effects—goodies vs fines—and beliefs. He goes on to look at variations on these themes...

III THE FORMS OF POWER/ IV PRIESTLY POWER/ V KINGLY POWER/ VI NAKED POWER/ VII REVOLUTIONARY POWER/ VIII ECONOMIC POWER/ IX POWER OVER OPINION
Russell identifies 'power' as a central concept, like energy in physics, presumably derived in the same way by slowly noticing phenomena have things in common. He doesn't consider extensions of biological features: he does not (e.g.) examine sight and feeling and hearing and the brain, though he gives a bit of space to Aesopian analogies—performing animals, and the sheep version of a 'Judas goat', as examples. Quite often he uses metaphors evidently based on things like kinetic energy, or stored energy. It's never quite clear whether his examples are idiosyncratic, one-off, unrepeatable illustrations which are only used e.g. to show power coalescing into ever-larger units, or whether the processes they illustrate are in principle considered to be capable of recurring. For instance, he says at one point that given a totalitarian state, all the forms of power he's considered become outdated and only of historical interest. He says somewhere else China has 'always been an exception to all rules'. He says the most successful democratic politicians are those who become dictators: 'Lenin, Mussolini, and Hitler owed their rise to democracy.'—omitting the small matter of the 'Great War' and its causers, and the incompleteness and novelty of 'democracy'.

Most historians are (or are believed to be) experts in just one period, country, or subject. Russell in effect follows this: he has no general consideration of transitions, though he has bits here and there: The usual plan [of innovators] is to minimize the elements of novelty in their system. The usual plan is to invent a more or less fictitious past and pretend to be restoring its institutions. In 2 Kings xxii we are told how the priests 'found' the Book of the Law, and the King caused a 'return' to observance of its precepts. ... Note that Russell is not aware of the possibility of large-scale fakes: if Fomenko and others are even partially true, much of history was simply copied with modifications. Note also the omission of transitions may show Jewish influence: Jewish academics are likely to discourage examination of ruin and collapse.

It's worth noting that Russell says a lot about 'traditional power', but without assigning it a chapter of its own.

'Priestly power' omits all consideration of science; and yet surely astronomy and calendars, or knowledge of food and agriculture and animals, were the bases of many traditional priesthoods; the working-out of calendars for example is a considerable achievement. Russell writes The truth is that the respect accorded to men of learning was never bestowed for genuine knowledge, but for the supposed possession of magical powers. This was Russell's way to try to reconcile the power of science with the employee status of scientists.

His separation of 'priestly power' from 'kingly power' seems to be a tribute to Christianity and perhaps 'medicine men' or 'shamans'. In most societies, surely, there was not such a notable demarcation.

Russell gives 'naked power' a foundation-stone status to his structure, rather than one of the forms of power which can transmute. He thinks 'naked power' is fundamental. And yet surely there are costs associated with military power: resources needed for manpower, upbringing, weaponry, food, training, risks and so on. Russell comes close to censoring out the relation between money and force. And his use of the phrase 'naked power' is worryingly elastic; not just killings and direct force, but this: '.. a Socialist may feel it unjust that his income is less than that of his employer; in that case, it is naked power that compels him to acquiesce.' Russell seemed to believe that anyone 'convinced' by reading and oratory could step into the shoes of a rival and is only prevented by sheer force.
    It's worth quoting Russell on 'the great abominations of human history' to show the extent to which he had been duped by Jewish attitudes and lies: '... not only ... war, but others equally terrible if less spectacular. Slavery and the slave trade, the exploitation of the Congo, the horrors of early industrialism, cruelty to children, judicial torture, the criminal law, prisons, workhouses, religious persecution, the atrocious treatment of the Jews, the merciless frivolities of despots, the unbelievable iniquity of the treatment of political opponents in Germany and Russia at the present day [i.e. 1930s]—all these are examples of the use of naked power against defenceless victims.' Russell accepted all the traditional Jewish lies via their media, but more important is his casual remark, in passing, about war. The 'Great War' ended about twenty years before Russell wrote; Russell was as engaged in opposing it as was possible for someone outside the inner circles. There were direct deaths, injuries, deaths caused by blockades, and deaths attributed to influenza rather than impoverishment. Something like 10 million dead, 20 million wounded, 10 million civilians. Russell barely mentions them, and does not mention Islamic mass slaughters in his list. These attitudes are just as Jews like it—no mention of goyim, and an alliance with Islam when they think it's to their advantage.
    I think, though I'm not sure, that Russell has a rather schoolboyish attitude to 'winning' and 'losing' wars, possibly traceable indirectly to the 19th century public school education system in Britain in which Greek and Latin literature was given primacy, and Caesar regarded as a valuable training manual. Russell writes Pursuing the history of his [landowner's] title backwards, we come ultimately to some man who acquired the land by force—either .. of a king in favour of some courtier, or a large-scale conquest such as those of the Saxons and Normans. This is reminiscent of people who wander around enviously in country houses, without any idea of the complications of running such places.

His category of 'revolutionary power' was no doubt influenced by the USSR. It's unlikely that revolutions are anything like as common as Russell seemed to think. This is an illusion—shared by many writers and journalists of the time—caused by the Jewish coup in Russia being mislabelled a 'revolution'. He includes early Christianity, the Reformation and 'rights of man' revolution, this latter let's hope not too optimistically. Russell has, perhaps unconsciously from his childhood, absorbed the view that Jesus was an heroic isolated figure, struggling against huge odds against an evil system, with only his personality to lead, eventually, to triumph. A different view—that 'Jesus' was made up, and that the Roman Emperor decided to invent an artificial religious system designed to be acceptable to most tribes and groups, to try to hold his empire together, and which he was in a position to enforce, would seem far more convincing. Similarly, with the Reformation, Russell views the reformers like this: '... the ardent innovator ... Such men have seldom been believers in free speech. They have been willing themselves to suffer martyrdom, but have been equally willing to inflict it... in the past, determined men could speak freely in spite of governments... etc.' The view that many Europeans were increasingly irritated by the Church taking ever-more money from them, and provoking a perfectly reasonable calculated reaction, is not present in Russell.
    This category incidentally also shows Russell assumes things will evolve for the better—his whole book shows developments as tending to be beneficial. Thus he says e.g. 'Monarchy consequently remained weak until it had got the better of both the Church and the feudal [i.e. Germanic] nobility'. Russell is weak on the actual geography of the world: he doesn't consider e.g. Europe as subdivided by mountains and other obstacles, and thus packed with 'defensible space', as opposed to say the steppes of Russia or prairies of north America.
    Russell is in my view weak in his chapter on economic power; his description of 'economic power' in its most 'ultimate analysis' is this: '... economic power ... consists in being able to decide ... who shall be allowed to stand upon a given piece of land and to put things into it and take things from it ...' His examples are oil, gold, iron ore, rent and crops and ownership, and industrial lock-outs. I've omitted labour, and military work, which Russell mentions, but Russell seems stuck in the mindset of some economists, talking of 'land, labour, and capital', and probably with farm productivity in mind or landed aristocracies. Much of economics is concerned with processing materials, packing and storing and moving them, organising and building, and innovating, and planning, for all of which Russell seems to have little accurate overview.

'Economic Power' seems to me largely a collection of miscellaneous accounts of financial and legal arrangements. He includes Berle & Means, with 1930s 'modern executives analogous to kings and Popes. '.. by a very careful ... investigation they [conclude] ... that two thousand individuals control half the industry of the United States.' This uses 'control' in a misleading sense, I think. The phrase 'separation of ownership from control' is deliberately misleading: paper money owned by Jews allows any assets to be bought out, sooner or later. The managers are temporary, even though in a sense while they are employed they have some control. Separation of ownership from day-to-day running sounds more accurate. Russell says of what's now Zimbabwe: '... Rhodesian goldfields belong to certain rich men because the British democracy thought it worth while to make these men rich by going to war with Lobengula.'
    Russell notes that fines make some options unattractive. But he is far less aware of the way in which token jobs can be handed out, quite a serious consideration today; for example 'positive discrimination' by race, or the handing out of 'work' to unqualified people for political reasons, go unmentioned, even speculatively. There have been plenty of nepotistical eras; it's disappointing to find Russell has little comment on such short-cuts to power.
    Russell doesn't seem aware of some possibilities in organised groups which have economic effects: he says 'The power of trade unions is the converse of the power of the rich' but of course some unions, such as the NUJ now in Britain, and 'UNISON', and unions of 'public servants', are more opposed to the poor than the rich. Unions of civil servants can enforce astonishing frauds on the public. Russell's verbalisms don't manage to capture the fluid sets of the real world.

    Russell regards credit as the ability to transfer a consumable surplus from group A to group B, but doesn't mention the time element—which could be many centuries of debt, many centuries of production which never existed at the time of the original credit, 'consumable surpluses' perhaps extending over centuries. He doesn't mention the problem of trust in paper money and credit. He describes then-modern corporate capitalism as presented by Berle and Means, but without defining 'capitalism' or having evidence why financial power should coalesce—not surprising as he had no idea about the Federal Reserve and similar structures. He follows (I think) R H Tawney of Religion and the Rise of Capitalism in assuming the Catholic Church (then possibly the wealthiest organisation ever) in thinking the Church has a 'debtor's morality'. The issue must have been more complicated than that. Russell assumes 'usury' simply means interest, but there appear to be technical issues of definition of which he knew nothing. For example, The Merchant of Venice specifically says of usury (the precise wording isn't known)
And if the sums are not repaid on time
Then, as forfeit, they would take everything;
All that the man has earned in his lifetime...
    There is just one mention (in effect) of Jewish money power. And even that is in the wrong chapter. Russell writes: 'The word 'tyrant' did not, originally, imply any bad qualities ... but only an absence of legal or traditional title. ... The first age of tyranny was that in which coinage first came into use, and this had the same kind of effect in increasing the power of rich men as credit and paper money have had in recent times. It has been maintained [footnote: See P.N. Ure, The origin of Tyranny] ... that the introduction of currency was connected with the rise of tyranny...' In all of Russell's writings, I know of only one other comment of that sort, though I don't have the source, in which Russell described paper money power, in the 1930s I think, allowed to be in the hands of private groups, as 'very unwise'.

    Russell talks about 'coloured labour': 'Let us consider.. the power of the plutocracy in a democratic country. It has been unable to introduce Asiatic labour in California, except in early days in small numbers...' For some reason, he splits 'power over opinion' from creeds. It's worth noticing this is a Christian outlook, as many 'creeds' are not of a nature that can be separated from actions—Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Confucianism interlock with their followers' habits. Russell's concept of 'power over opinion' is in essence rulers over subjects, within nations: deliberate lies by subgroups—Jews being the obvious example, then and now—are elided away: '.. the Churches, business advertisers, political parties, the plutocracy, and the State' comprise systematic large-scale propaganda in democratic countries, according to Russell. His entire discussion of power over people's minds is in terms of religion, as in his following chapter: lies, spying, concealment, academic fraud and so on are barely mentioned. On secret societies, he as was traditional mentions Communists and Fascists, but says Italy was filled with secret societies, after Napoleon; no discussion of the vast network of Freemasons.
    To show Russell's underlying error here, consider this: .. Belief, when it is not simply traditional, is a product of several factors: desire, evidence, and iteration. When either the desire or the evidence is nil, there will be no belief; ... To produce a mass belief ... all three elements must exist in some degree; ... More propaganda is necessary to cause ... belief for which there is little evidence than ... for which the evidence is strong, if both are equally satisfactory to desire... This omits intentional lies and all forms of top-down propaganda. How many people desired to believe in moon landings, or U.S. bases round the world, or nuclear weapons, or Jewish paper money, or wicked Vietnamese peasants? Russell would probably say that believers felt flattered that their country is strong, or something similar. But in fact the belief is produced simply by being told it's true, of course with large-scale iteration, and, in the case of false flag psychological operations, faked and uncheckable evidence. This process certainly worked with Russell!
    It also omits paid beliefs, which may be slogans, credos, manifestoes, ill-defined statements, aspirations, or whatever, which Russell almost always ignores. I'm not sure why: Was he so certain of his own income that he simply had no grasp of other people being in a modern phrase 'incentivized'? Surely not. Perhaps it was an uneasy feeling that, once desire to believe was linked with money, then the roots of money deserve examination? Anyway, clearly 'desire, evidence, and iteration' should be replaced by something like 'desire, evidence, iteration, and widely-defined self-interest'.

Russell gives examples of mixtures of types of power, in everyday life. He uses animals to illustrate (e.g. pigs hoisted onto ships, donkey and stick and carrot, flock of sheep following a leader which was dragged into a ship, and trained performing animals). I'll quote here Russell on Germany (note that he uses the slang 'Nazi'):
Let us apply these Aesopian analogies to the rise of Hitler. The carrot was the Nazi programme (involving, e.g., the abolition of interest); the donkey was the lower middle class. The sheep and their leader were the Social Democrats and Hindenburg. The pigs (only so far as their misfortunes are concerned) were the victims in concentration camps, and the performing animals are the millions who make the Nazi salute.
    This is all highly misleading. Germany's loss after Britain declared war—the 'Great War'—left deaths and chaos and starvation; the idea that 'the lower middle class' was a well-defined bloc twenty years later cannot be correct. Russell's contempt for millions of German and Austrian voters doesn't match his support for democracy. But probably most important is his misstatement of NSDAP policy: it was not 'the abolition of interest' but the removal of Jewish money power and corruption—interest was not 'abolished'. Russell omits the most important aspects of the 'Nazi' programme, in his 'Britzi' way.
    (It strikes me that Russell made little effort in his animal analogies. For example, a horse may be attracted by carrots and driven by a stick; but a horse may also be faced with a firm sheltered path, a downward slope, and a friendly herd in the distance).

X CREEDS AS SOURCES OF POWER/ XI THE BIOLOGY OF ORGANIZATIONS/ XII POWERS AND FORMS OF GOVERNMENTS/ XIII ORGANIZATIONS AND THE INDIVIDUAL
Russell considers 'The classic example of power through fanaticism is the rise of Islam' which added nothing to Arabic economic power or technique, but nevertheless 'won'. It's a typical example from history taken from these not very satisfactory chapters. (Russell never comes up with the Judaic equivalent). Russell was trying to decide whether fanaticism is likely to succeed, and comes up with the classic liberal denial of this possibility: 'the cases in which fanaticism has brought nothing but disaster are much more numerous than those in which it has brought even temporary success. It ruined Jerusalem in the time of Titus, and Constantinople in 1453 ... It brought about the decay of Spain.. through the expulsion of the Jews and Moors ... the most successful nations, throughout modern times, have been those least addicted to the persecution of heretics. ... it is necessary to find a compromise between two opposite truisms. The first.. is: men who agree in their beliefs can co-operate more whole-heartedly than men who disagree. The second is: men whose beliefs are in accordance with fact are more likely to succeed than men whose beliefs are mistaken. ..' Russell has no model of intra-national conflicts.

Russell has long passages on the medieval Roman Catholic Church, probably the basis of his History of Western Philosophy. He quotes Gibbon, but not Gibbon's views of the long-term effects of the Church. He thinks the most important Christian doctrine was 'We ought to obey God rather than man.' He does not attempt to trace the divergent opinions on what happened in Palestine.

Powers and Forms of Governments Russell looks at the power structures of all organisations, though he soon elides this into national governments only. (I had to recheck the chapter title—'Powers and Forms of Governments'—for its plural of 'Governments'). On organisations, Russell regards law and medicine purely as professions with internal rules, but is not aware of the possibilities of legal frauds and corruption and medical frauds. In Britain in the 1930s, they were unthinkable, or at least unspeakable. He had no idea of the immense longevity of Galen's influence on so-called medicine, for example.
    His analysis of organisations, and their internal government and density of control over members, assumes general good behaviour, and fails to deal with criminals, determined long-term liars, vicious invasions, vicious subversives, and the sort of behaviour attributable to Jews. It therefore fails to get to grips with the most serious problems.
    Another issue is the purpose of organisations. (Russell allows organisations to have 'unconscious' purposes, though disappointingly gives no examples). Russell was aware of multiple purposes: somewhere he says a railway company has the purpose of providing rail travel, but also of making a profit. In truth, who can say what the purpose of the BBC is? State propaganda? Jewish propaganda? Profit-making? Secure lifetime employment? Or the purpose of (say) a cancer research establishment now: is it to maximise revenue from fake research? To avoid finding a cure? What is the function of a 'civil service'? Or, to take an example current at the time, the 'Focus Group' which appears to have been Jewish was funding Churchill to take Britain into war with Germany, so that Jews wouldn't lose their money-making capacities from Germany and elsewhere. Churchill didn't build up an organisation (as Napoleon III did). Nor did civil servants and politicians carry out their duties of checking on the nominal reasons Churchill wanted war. Russell's view of organisations resembles his view of nations: he thought of them as neat subsets with firm boundaries with members mostly working together, and had no place for interactions and secret overarching groups such as Freemasons and Common Purpose. Russell does not face the issue that organisations may work against their members: military commanders may plan deaths, media propagandists may wreck their employees' lives, teachers may spend a lifetime telling useless lies, employees may be forced to train foreign replacements, actors' unions may be more interested in promoting myths than increasing actors' pay.
    Here's Russell on the British 'Labour Party': '... The [party] programme is decided in a manner which is nominally democratic, but ... influenced by a small number of wire-pullers. ... the leaders decide... whether they shall attempt to carry out the programme; if they decide not to do so, it is the duty of their followers to support their breach of faith by their votes, while denying, in their speeches, that it has taken place. ...' Russell chooses not to notice Jews and the 'Conservative Party'.

Russell tends to subtly smuggle in some implicit assumptions, usually I think where they support the traditional Anglo-Saxon comfortable myths. He says: 'Human beings['] ... desires, unlike those of bees in a hive, remain largely individual; hence ... the difficulty of social life and the need of government...' which all sounds very reasonable until reflection on groups, languages, customs, and learning cast doubt on 'individual desires': most people copy almost everything, such as food, housing, styles of dress, language, habits. Another implicit assumption is embodied in the word 'government': what about the results of invasions, attacks, bombings, and violent imposed regimes? Are they 'governments'? He says '... the most successful nations, throughout modern times, have been those least addicted to the persecution of heretics ...' but Russia in 1910 or so had a very casual attitude to Jews in Siberia, such as Lenin: if the Russians had killed every one of them, Russia might have survived the coup and millions of lives might have been saved.
    Here's another implicit assumption: 'In times of peace all governments take steps ... to insure willingness to fight when the moment comes, and loyalty to the national cause at all times.' Russell has no place for treachery, loyalty to bribes, the 'national cause' as something subsidiary: consider for example Ireland giving up all it fought for for a few Jews in the time of the 'European' Union.
    And yet another widespread assumption: '... The advantages of successful war are doubtful, but the disadvantages of unsuccessful war are certain. If ... the supermen at the head of affairs could foresee who was going to win, there would be no wars. ... in every war the government on one side, if not both, must have miscalculated ...' Russell simply has no clue that subsets on one or both nominal sides might benefit from war, and want war.     Here's Russell (at the end of the chapter 'Organizations and the Individual') on the 'national State', no doubt heavily influenced by the 'Great War' twenty years or so before: 'The contests of States ... are all-in contests. The whole civilized world was shocked by ... the murder of one Lindbergh baby, but such acts, on a vast scale, are to be the commonplaces of the next war ... No other organization rouses anything like the loyalty aroused by the national State. And the chief activity of the state is preparation for large-scale homicide. ...'
    Russell is dishonest about war; he simply will not recognise that some groups (not just technicians) want war. Here's a short extract from the earlier chapter Economic Power: ' ... A nation cannot succeed in modern war unless most people are willing to suffer hardship and many people are willing to die. .. to produce this willingness, the rulers have to persuade their subjects that the war is about something important—so important, in fact, as to be worthy of martyrdom. ...' In fact, powerful countries may lose little, or gain, from war; 'most people' are paid, in many cases more than in peacetime; and the probability of death is not very high.

Russell, as anyone trying to analyse the mid-term in human existence, has a view on the decline of civilisations. His two main examples are ancient Greece and Renaissance Italy, though he knew about Haiti, and in pessimistic moments during the 'Great War' wondered about Europe. '... the relations of States. There are innumerable instances of small States growing into great empires by conquest, but hardly any of voluntary federation. For Greece in the time of Philip, and Italy in the Renaissance, some degree of co-operation between different sovereign States as a matter of life and death, and yet it could not be brought about. ...' 'In both ages, after ... about a hundred and fifty years, all were extinguished .. by more cohesive nations...' In fact, it's difficult to defend the idea that there were innumerable great empires; or that groups of invading looters were 'cohesive'.

XIV COMPETITION/ XV POWER AND MORAL CODES/ XVI POWER PHILOSOPHIES/ XVII THE ETHICS OF POWER
Four more chapters dealing with (roughly) people's attitudes to power. 'Competition for power is of two sorts: between organizations, and between individuals for leadership within an organization. Competition .. only arises when they have objects which are more or less similar, but incompatible'. Russell lived of course during a time of great expansion in technology; competition seemed inevitably to lead to absorption and unification. But he had no general formulation of the balance of forces which may prevent such monopolisation.
    'Competition' ought to be the most interesting chapter in Russell's book: he divides influences on people into propaganda, force, and economic influences, and competition can and does happen within each grouping, and also between them. But the chapter fails to work well; it's bitty, and deals only with a few historical events, and these are made to seem only end-points in the switch from one monopolistic group (Stuarts) to another (American industrialists).
    Here's Russell on ideas about competition in the 19th century: '... America [i.e. USA], with the longest Liberal tradition, was the first to enter the stage of trusts, i.e. of monopolies not granted by the State, like those of earlier times ... It was discovered that competition, unless artificially maintained, brings about its own extinction by leading to the complete victory of some one of the competitors. ... broadly speaking, where increase in size ... means increase of efficiency. ...etc..' Russell mentions Rockefeller; elsewhere he mentions Fisk and Gould, and Carnegie, like everyone else in the late 19th century. But Russell does not discuss monopolistic tendencies in finance; as always, he shies away or suppresses such material. He misses the entire movement for realism about Jews and about private central banks.

    The huge weakness in Russell on competition is that he lacks a large overview. Russell starts: 'The nineteenth century, which was keenly aware of the dangers of arbitrary power, had a favourite device for avoiding them, namely competition.' Taking the largest view, clearly any future generations are entirely derived from the contemporary groups of people; short of genetic engineering, there are no other sources. What effects can competition have on the entire human genetic structure? What's the point of shifting ownership from one group to another, if the net resulting effect leads to civilisations which are unsustainable by future people? Russell's discourses include competition in armed force (he thought 'German Nazis' 'proclaimed ... national war is the noblest of human activities') and propaganda (not just economics).
    He gives precise dates for 'freedoms desired by Liberals' (meaning Laissez faire; but excluding the Jewish component—USA 1776, England 1824-1846, France 1871, Germany 1848-1918; Italy the Risorgimento, and 'even in Russia' the February Revolution) and for 'freedom of propaganda... destroyed' (France 1793, Russia 1918, Germany 1933—again excluding the Jewish component. But the missing overview means Russell had mastered a lot of material, but not enough to make a full theory.

    'Power and Moral Codes' (the longest chapter) is Russell on (in effect) the spread of Christianity, or universal sympathy and ethics, a process he considers will continue until the world is conquered by it. Russell has nothing on the genetics and/or characteristics of groups; to some extent groups evolve to match their surroundings, and nominal belief systems may have little effect faced with nature's instincts. Moreover, Russell was aware via Santayana that ethics are not objectively provable. I think all this explains the unsatisfactory length and confusion of the chapter.
    It's interesting to find Russell is aware of Jews, at least in the Old Testament, and mentions Saul, king Agag of the Amalekites, and destruction of everything of the Amalekites, except for Agag and some cattle and goods, which were spared, and the regret of 'the Lord' over this lapse. (Deuteronomy vii 1-4 and 14, and 1 Samuel xv 8-11). Russell assumes the traditional model, that people are more or less similar, and that early Christians wanted to extend sympathy to the world, and encoded this view into Christianity. I don't think he ever compared this theory with Roman Christianity, with its endless wars.
    Just as Russell is unconsciously Christian, Russell is unconsciously nationalistic: his view of world government is that it has to be a federation of states, and considers this is obviously true for everyone. The idea of 'multicultural societies' is almost completely missing, though he notes that Roman Catholicism never worked out a theoretical separation from those things 'that are Caesar's'. Similarly, Russell doesn't deal well with empires, monarchs claiming rule over other kingdoms, multinational companies, forms of expertise which transcend nations, or elites which straddle other groups, including Jews. Since this sort of thing has always been fairly common, it's a serious omission. A related issue is Russell's underestimation of possible civil wars and civil strife.
    Here's a short extract, on wars, illustrating Russell's unconscious and unexamined assumption that nations are solid single units, which conflicts strongly with his view of 'man' as self-interested individuals and groups, rather atomised and with no obvious motive for cohering into large blocs:-
... The advantages of successful war are doubtful, but the disadvantages of unsuccessful war are certain. If, therefore, the supermen at the head of affairs could foresee who was going to win, there would be no wars. But in fact there are wars, and the government on one side, if not on both, must have miscalculated its chance. ...
This passage looks finely analytical at first sight, but Russell has no logical space for such ideas as (i) Taking advantage of alliances which are not meant seriously (such as the announcements about Poland before the Second World War), (ii) Using military groups to make profit for other groups (such as invading China and the destruction during the opium wars, for Jews), and (iii) Wars as money-making schemes for Jews at the expense of their host country (such as the Vietnam 'War' to consolidate Jewish money power in the USA, under the guise of action by 'the USA', while damaging the host and damaging Vietnam and the Vietnamese in the most sordid and cruel fashion).

Russell's absorption of anti-German propaganda is shown by his refusal to allow Hegel to admire communities, rather than individuals. He is always anxious to assert that a State (in Hegel, this might well be a city state) may be unpleasant. He even wrote (not in this book) that 'nothing could be worse than Hitler'. But of course the fact is some communal action is necessary to achieve very many ends that Russell wanted.
... I consider that whatever is good or bad is embodied in individuals, not primarily in communities. Some philosophies which could be used to support the corporative State—notably the philosophy of Hegel—attribute ethical qualities to communities as such, so that a State may be admirable though most of its citizens are wretched. I think that such philosophies are tricks for justifying the privileges of the holders of power, ...
It seems odd to find Russell supporting a version of something like hero worship, of chosen individuals. Russell may have regarded himself as a 'hero' in this sense: [1] He considered himself a pioneering mathematician. But others did not: George Spencer Brown, who visited Russell, was surprised to find Russell had that belief. [2] Russell regarded Christ as ethically supreme (I think) apart from a few details, such as being nasty to the Gadarene swine. Russell seems to have existed before the idea of 'comparative religion', which itself of course has been perverted. Buddhism seems to admire nirvana; Judaism and Islam are both viciously tribal; Confucius was family- and community-centred; novelties such as Christian Science and Mormonism don't promote love of everyone. But Russell admired ethical innovators of the type of Christ, and believed other people did, too. And this despite what he regarded as 2,000 years of Christian failure.

Russell uses the word 'ethics' in a muscular Christian/Jewish sense: the imperative tense, the ethical thing to do is such-and-such, and I know what it is; rather than an analysis of what 'ethics' means. He says
... Social co-operation is possible in regard to the good things that are capable of being universal—adequate material well-bring, health, intelligence, and every form of happiness which does not consist in superiority to others. ...
The ultimate aim of those who have power (and we all have some) should be to promote social co-operation, not in one group as against another, but in the whole human race. The chief obstacle ... at present is the existence of feelings of unfriendliness and desire for superiority. Such feelings can be diminished either directly by religion and morality, or indirectly by removing the political and economic circumstances which at present stimulate them— ... competition ... between States and ... for wealth between large national industries ...

This is an updated utilitarianism, excluding happiness based on theft, violence, fraud, triumphant war, and so on. It assumes 'good things' are self-evident, and that 'adequate material well-being' is in fact possible. Lewis Fry Richardson (about ten years Russell's junior) may be nearer the mark when he looks at minimising violence, or maximising beauty, or minimising poverty, or maximising wealth per person, or maximising the number of souls, or maximising personal subjective happiness over a lifetime (my examples); or many other imaginable ideals.

Much of this material is 1930s-specific: Spanish Civil War, Stalin, Italy, and so on. Russell is surprisingly insular, and always takes the conventional 'western' side, i.e. 'liberals' plus 'Jews' (in quotations because of the Khazar connection) as against foreigners, something which sits very uneasily with supposed philosophical objectivity. British EmpireHe says nothing much about the 'British' Empire as it was called (i.e. the second, excluding the earlier north American empire), though it must have been a significant part of his worldview. (The 1924 Exhibition at Wembley was only about fifteen years earlier; in 1933 the Japanese walked out of the League of Nations, apparently protesting against the hypocrisy of the British retaining their own Empire). Good King Charles's Golden Days from the Vicar of Bray are mentioned; but the days were not golden for everyone. Thus there's a section on Mussolini fire-bombing in Abyssinia—but not on the British bombing Iraq at the same time. Russell doesn't attempt to distinguish the NSDAP (bottom up) from Italian Fascism (top down), in the conventional manner of doing everything possible not to analyse them. His comments on 'Jews' are completely conventional (and yet he had seen for himself 'Jewish' groups taking over and inventing the USSR, and knew about Bela Kun in Hungary and Kurt Eisner in Germany). Hitler and Stalin are regarded as worshipping Wotan and Dialectical Materialism (in this way Russell is spared the examination of their actual writings and deeds and associates; it's similar to 'oriental despotism', a phrase also used by Russell). Japan has 'dangerous thoughts' as a problem, but apparently nowhere else. Secret societies are attributed in particular to Italy—Freemasonry in France and Britain is ignored, despite being enormously more important. The Spanish Inquisition is frowned upon; and yet Spain was unique in having the problem of dealing with both 'Jews' and Muslims, both holding as a religious axiom a belief in telling lies. Russell is aware of power behind the scenes; but his only named example is Baron Holstein of the German Foreign Office under the Kaiser. Russell says Liberals and democrats led 'the revolt against Spain in Latin America'—when it was part of American imperialism. There are some references in Russell's oeuvre to sadism; note of course that idea is implicitly attributed to a Frenchman. His example of political assassination is by Napoleon III, not any of the numerous 'Jewish' murders, such as British Prime Minister Spencer Perceval, over Jewish money and the then-new USA. 'It would be a mistake to suppose that big business, under Fascism, controls the State more than it does in England, France, or America. On the contrary, in Italy and Germany the State has used the fear of Communism to make itself supreme over big business as over everything else.' — 'communism' is, incorrectly, not attributed by Russell to 'Jews'. He loathes the German philosopher Fichte, giving a quotation on children made impassive by miseducation, and yet many British and especially Jewish 'thinkers' had essentially identical ideas. Fichte and Nietzsche are more or less pointed out as believing they are 'God', and yet the Talmud makes Jews and/or their priests God or his superior. His brief examination of fanaticism includes Biblical references, early Islam, Cromwell, and of course Germany, Japan, and Italy, but carefully avoids fanaticisms of the US and UK (British War with US? Opium Wars? US Civil War? British Empire? Boer Wars? Great War?) and in Talmudic writings. He quotes that Lutherans in Germany had an almost slavish subservience to state power, but does not point out the same thing as regards the Church of England. He says 'freedom of propaganda was destroyed' in France in 1793, Russia in 1918, and Germany in 1993, but has no idea of the extent of suppression by, for example, the BBC. He states that 'commerce has lost its importance' since the days of shipping and trading companies, concealing the way in which many commodities (such as oil) are subsumed under (for example) artificial countries and artificial leaders designed for the purpose.

XVI POWER PHILOSOPHIES
Philosophy being Russell's speciality, it might be expected that this chapter might hold special insights. He uses his phrase in a special sense: first, he states that philosophy is a combination 'of desire with observation'. What he means is that, at any time, some things are not known; and these are liable to be perceived through a subjective lens of one sort or another: desire for knowledge, for virtue, for enjoyment, for beauty, for mystical union, or whatever. But one such lens is the desire for power. Such a philosopher 'seeks to ... decry the part played by facts that are not the result of our own will. ... men who invent theories which veil their own love of power... .' This sounds odd to me; luckily Russell provides four examples: Fichte, who invented, or was said to have invented, German nationalism and who comes under prolonged attack from Russell, probably because he's German; pragmatist's attack on the common view of truth; Bergson, who said 'it is only in action that life can be understood'; and Nietzsche, who (Russell says) stated 'the herd have no value of their own account, but only as a means to the greatness of the hero'. Some readers will notice that at least two well known philosophies, or religions, which Russell does not mention, are explicitly power-based, though not even in any unconscious sense.

Russell appears to misrepresent Fichte. Fichte 'maintains that everything starts from the ego'. And the reader is supposed to say 'Everything starts from Johann Gottlieb Fichte! How absurd!...'. But of course each separate individual has his or her own ego; it's hard to see how evolution could lead to anything else. Anyway, Russell writes 'In this way [i.e. mutual delusion] it is possible for solipsism to become the basis for a certain kind of social life. A collection of lunatics, each of whom thinks he is God, may learn to behave politely to one another. But etc'. To people brought up with most religions tucked away in their background, this seems idiotic. However Jews believe, or say they believe, that they, or Rabbis, are 'God'. A collection of lunatics, indeed.

However, Russell thinks Hitler believed himself to be Wotan, and Stalin 'Dialectical Materialism'. These of course are a long way from his list of rather ineffectual philosophers; Joad, Russell's media-savvy but low quality contemporary, perhaps was nearer the mark with his comment The .. notion of the influence exercised by philosophers upon .. events appeared to me to be arrant nonsense, which nobody who had ever spent five minutes with an accredited philosopher.. could seriously entertain for one moment.... Russell was feeling for something—dislike of cruelty or militarism, perhaps—but did not pin it down in this chapter. And part of his failure was undoubtedly due to his lack of understanding of Jewish extreme tribal ethics, and its extension to Islam.

XVII THE ETHICS OF POWER
It took me some time to understand that many of these chapters are not part of a chain of argument; they are stand-alone, like modules in modern universities, and have the same effect of handily permitting connections to be not drawn. This chapter lists some policies which (in Russell's view) lead to well-ordered communities. Russell has a touching naïveté, lacking in anthropological insight. He considers people who have not been badly treated when young are nearly always satisfied by a career. He doesn't seem to appreciate that wars and so on are, in fact, often started by people who are very 'comfortable' in the material sense. At least, he doesn't appreciate it in this chapter: but in another chapter he knows perfectly well that vast numbers of sons of Muslim leaders had wars with each other. And he assumes a European pattern of education and achievement and career structure, which seems unlikely to apply to primitive peoples, and must have seemed just as unlikely at the time, to Russell. In other writings he stated that democracy couldn't work in Africa—he made fun of Lloyd George for thinking it could.

Russell considers men who are attracted into war because it needs skill, for example in 'bomb throwing'. (This was written before mass heavy bombing). And in effect says men should be offered careers which are unlikely to result in net harm. I don't think he thought this through: his friend J M Keynes helped in the financing of the 'Great War', in effect by getting indebted to Jews in the USA, but Russell doesn't consider Keynes as an example of a careerist attracted into war.
    The rest of the chapter concerns logic: Russell liked Leibniz on 'compossibility', and produces examples, such as: 'Perhaps in time there will be a population in which everybody is fairly intelligent, but it is not possible for all to secure the rewards bestowed on exceptional intelligence'.

XVIII THE TAMING OF POWER
Russell has a page or so on the unsolved problem of power, giving historical examples of the traditional educated type: Confucius, Greek cities' tyranny and democracy etc, theocracies, and so on. It's striking how the 'hostile elite' idea is completely missing, unless 'oligarchy' is counted. Russell asks (in effect) how can cruelties and oppressions be stopped?

Russell has four preconditions—political, economic, and propaganda (shouldn't one of these be force?); and the psychological condition of people. There are about fifteen pages on these preconditions, and arguably they are the most important in the book. Russell sketches out what's needed for worldwide justice and progress.
    At least, that's the idea. In fact, the sections are lists of problems, rather than solutions:
I. POLITICAL CONDITIONS [to 'tame power']. Virtually all of this section is on democracy. However, this is of course an arithmetical issue: the bigger a population, the less 'power' on average each person has. Russell lists a lot of problems with democracy, including minorities with power over majorities, and majorities with power over minorities. In fact, he gives so many examples it's clear that 'democracy' has not been defined. It looks very much like a word without denotation. The thorny problems of democracy—the issues of technical competence, of simple lack of interest, of the fake forms of propagandized 'democracy'—are not even mentioned. One of his post-1945 books talks of England as a 'full democracy', rather astonishingly.
    The end of the section has a characteristically Russellian statement (based on considerations of policing) '.. a confession shall never, in any circumstances, be accepted as evidence.' And he says 'there must be two police forces and two Scotland Yards, one ... to prove guilt, the other to prove innocence..'
II. ECONOMIC CONDITIONS. Here's one of Russell's attitude which persisted through his life; there is similar wording in many of his books. 'Marx pointed out that there could be no equalization of power through politics alone [i.e. democracy] while economic power remained monarchical or oligarchic.' Many people must have puzzled over this; after all, if people have a vote, they can vote on economic issues, can't they? In fact this is part of the Jewish push to avoid discussion of Jewish high finance: Sidney Webb brushing aside 'currency cranks' illustrates the point. And it shares with many 'social scientists' the omission of actual physical bodily and mental needs.
    Russell wants state ownership, but hedged with democratic safeguards, giving a long extract from Assignment in Utopia by Eugene Lyons describing the USSR, failing to identify the crucial Jewish activity. Russell considers 'economic activity' to be what big corporations did. He assumes without proof that private ownership with safeguards is worse than state ownership with safeguards. He has nothing to say about the structure of corporations, beyond quoting descriptions. He says little about housing, purely I think because it's not obviously manufacturing and trade and business. And yet of course housing is an essential part of 'economics', with its own special rules. This section is not at all convincing or helpful.
III. PROPAGANDA CONDITIONS. This section is much shorter than the previous section on economics, but is just as unsatisfactory. Russell makes the usual comments on agitation, without breaches of the law. But the really serious issues, including which records should be open to the public, are not addressed. Russell regarded the BBC as a paragon of virtue, most of the time. Then as now, this is staggeringly naive. Russell believed advertisers led the way in modern propaganda, though of course there are huge limitations to the success of commercial advertising. As with Chomsky's Media Control: the Staggering Achievements of Propaganda, Russell concentrates on selling domestic items, not on selling wars, death, and disaster.
IV. PSYCHOLOGICAL AND EDUCATIONAL CONDITIONS. '.. Every man and woman in a democracy should be neither a slave nor a rebel, but a citizen..' Russell wants people to be kindly and unfanatical, and educated to be critical. He has an entire page on the desirability of exposing children to different and conflicting points of view. In fact, he seems to have omitted material on Jew realism all his life. (And I wonder whether he tried this on his own children; from what I could see, his daughter Kate Russell had no interest in such things, mainly wanting to romantically 'marry well', and later 'divorce well'). Russell thought advertisers led the way in propaganda, and that newspapers present opposite views from which the truth could be detected. His attitude to ordinary people dated from the start of the Great War in 1914. He knew people were excitable, and frantically applauded the future destruction, and their own deaths, resulting from supposedly glorious war; he knew this—because he'd read Jewish correspondents in newspapers. The sheer magnitude of Jewish lies was a closed book to him. And he had no idea of the length of time spent preparatory to wars: the 19th century English press had anti-German and anti-Russian propaganda on permanent drip-feed. As for kindliness in education, this was not wanted by the people, probably mostly Jews, who wanted war and white deaths. In effect, state education took over from the Church of England (and German equivalents) as a distributed system by which vast numbers of propagandised teachers in turn propagandised their classes.

Russell had some mathematical skill, so it surprises me he didn't to find try some method of predicting quarrels and perhaps countering them. If group A has power measured as 100 units, and B has 75, and if A fights B, the relative and absolute power balances are likely to change. There's scope for group C to benefit, too. Could two groups always gain by combining? Is there some cost-benefit rule that determines likely alliances? Or is there maybe some approach through set theories, and the showing-up of intersecting sets? Does genetics of human populations help show how exceptional characters affect things?—Russell wrongly assumes all human communities have identical abilities and characters. All minorities are in a sense opposed to everybody else; what is the best balance between assertion of minorities and general interests?
    Russell's atomistic analysis omits the whole problem of complicated human life: there seems no reason why human groups should cohere, or co-operate. He falls back on such ideas beliefs in common, sentiments of community, but seems to underrate (for example) Hegel, for praising communities or city states. Maybe his upbringing left him feeling lonely and isolated. Throughout his book there's belief in isolated great men which allows him (for example) to claim that makers of revolutions are very different characters from their successors, as a revolution becomes traditional: he has no idea there *may* be a constant pressure behind the scenery and puppet actors.
      Another omission (very common is people educated on traditional lines, probably in all countries with educational institutions) is what could be called analysis of cryptocracies, mysterious or concealed groups. 'Educated' people don't like to admit they have gaps in their knowledge. For most of human life, people must have lived in smallish groups with little awareness beyond their own senses, unaware even that other languages existed. Such events as invasions, press gangs, taxes, battles, and the actions of remote groups of aristocrats could, presumably, not have been understood in any detail. Cryptic regimes must have been common, not necessarily in any sinister sense: many people must have found later in life that their schooling, housing, work and so on had aspects which they didn't know at earlier times in their lives. But true cryptocracy goes deeper—and its practitioners typically are never able to reveal their methods. It must be one of the tragedies of, for example, the Rothschilds, that they can never write honest autobiographies.
    Russell's approach has something in common with 'classical' economics. He certainly seems in need of something like a 'marginal revolution', recognising the importance of changes in power, rather than absolute power. After all, everyone proceeds step by step.
    Russell liked history, and the great advantage of history as a guide, as in Power, is that the events did actually happen—but only if it's reliable history. Nobody uses a theoretical model of human behaviour to guess. But Russell was naive about historians. Russell conforms to the Victorian English view of world history: ancient times; then Greece and its splendour; then Rome and its great (if unintellectual) empire; then—well, the Middle Ages; then the Renaissance, Reformation, and modern Europe. The rest of the world is almost elided away: Russell says nothing about Arabia and its vast slave trade with Africa; nothing about Huns, Mongols, and other migrating tribes and groups; nothing about Turks and the Ottoman Empire; nothing about the Byzantine Church despite its longevity; nothing about the Dutch East India Company; almost nothing about China; a few comments by Rivers on primitive societies.
    Russell's own mock obituary (1936; written after Russell's 60th birthday, and before Power) predicted a BBC organ would describe him as 'the last survivor of a dead epoch.' Unfortunately, he was more or less correct; there is nothing new in this 'new social analysis'. Considering changes such as air warfare, Russell's words were not new, and not even analytical.
    Anyway; disappointing and tantalising. Russell saw that 'abstraction' is better than piecemeal oddments. His attitude is shown by a passing remark in his book on relativity, to the effect that finance is abstract: a financier just has to know if prices will go up or down—a passive view of finance. He considers that Einstein's work was synthesis, in an age of analysis. We can see here how Russell, whose practical skills were zero, was led astray by a Platonic view of ideas of perfection: no doubt, as with structural engineers, abstraction succeeds, leaving architects to decorate. But simple description is not enough: Russell outlines and describes such things as corporations and aristocracies and modern life in modern countries, but doesn't explain how they happened, or why they did not happen in very many places. Russell describes organisations, from chess clubs and racehorse owners to police and big business, but none of these are the same as governments, which may have activities straddling all these things. This is not abstraction; it is more like distraction.

Power needs updating, and in fact rebuilding, with revised human biology, revised history, notably of the 500-year war of 'Jews', a revised approach to what 'power' means and its categories, and revised examples both in time, and from around the world. Russell is in the long European tradition, stretching back to the penetration of Jewish influences after the Americas were discovered. He is about 500 years out of date.

    Something Missing... An important part of the world, but entirely missing from Russell, is the way hierarchies react together. I'll try to illustrate with several examples, chosen to be diverse:
  [1] Business and company hierarchies: new employees see companies in a different way from long-term employees. Dissatisfied employees may see self-employment as an ideal: but people starting self-employment may need to build, or be part of, new organisations. In either case, there's a difference between people at different levels: at the highest level, decisions may involve selling the entire structure, moving it somewhere else, or otherwise doing things which mid-range people may well never even think about.
  [2] If populations in countries increase over time, new possibilities come into being, such as taking account of types of people who previously were too few to take into account. For example, in medicine, diseases may be discovered which only a few people have.
  [3] If countries are controlled by people concerned with conquest, there are obvious possibilities for alliances, any of which may have very difficult details to work through. And there are possibilities for tariffs, boycotts, dumping, promotion of crime, moving of populations.
  [4] Russell has a straightforward view of legal systems: parliament makes and unmakes laws, some people study law, some practitioners are better than others, fines make actions unattractive, some practitioners are struck off, the police are a separate hierarchy (and, according to Russell, there should be another Scotland Yard collecting evidence of innocence). But he's not good on the way laws can and do embody other groups' wishes.
Russell classifies human power in various types (usually as described in traditional history books) but has, in my view, little to say about the way the resulting chains and tangles of people and colleagues interact.
NB a new British paperback edition has a painfully embarrassing cover design—with an electric power plug. The 1960s paperback showed what looked like a coin with Alexander the Great brandishing a shield and spear, a neat combination of propaganda, military and economic powers.
Top of Page

image   Review of Bertrand Russell NWO   Bertrand Russell: Authority and the Individual

Signpost en route to world government?, 10 Oct 2010

This is the text of a BBC radio series—the very first 'Reith Lectures', a series of 6, broadcast in 1948.

Fascinating, but rather baffling mixture. Russell said afterwards that everyone agreed with what he said, so he thought he must have been wrong. The Soviet Union was reportedly furious at social Darwinist references from Sir Arthur Keith.

Anyway Russell's object was to
[1] Promote world government. This was to avoid nuclear war. The sole function of world government was to prevent war. [Note: this is unlike any usual conception of government, and isn't described in any detail]
[2] Permit competition between states. There should be competition, but not war. Everything should be hierarchical, with lower levels allowed the maximum of freedom compatible with the layer(s) above. The internal arrangements of each state, or territory etc, should be their own business only.

That in essence is his world government idea.

Subsidiary to that are various other aims (roughly, 'the individual') Russell thinks
[1] Moral reformers of the first rank usually opposed cruelties, and were themselves opposed by the masses. This is obviously taken straight from Christianity, 'Jesus' and e.g. Wilberforce; Confucians, Taoists, Jews, Muslims would recognise none of this.
[2] Intellectual progress—this means poetic, mystic, artistic, scientific—is necessary, and the best that can be done is insist on free speech. Competition should be intellectual and academic, not economic. (It's not clear where propaganda would slot in—probably it's expected not to flourish. A philosopher's idea of competition, not a businessman's. And of course could conflict with internal arrangements!)
[3] Diversity is important, because it gives material for selection to work on—uniformity is not helpful.
[4] The long view of history suggests units get larger and larger, the entire globe being the obvious limit. (Russell doesn't really consider that maybe this is an artefact of the last couple of thousand years, and may not last, though he does date modern states to the invention of gunpowder, 15th century).
[5] Poverty is a cause of instability. He specifically instances south east Asia, mainly I suppose China and India; the huge population growth in Africa wasn't then clear. (Again, who knows; poverty-stricken hordes in remote areas may well be more stable than worldwide relative equality).

Much of Russell's argument is highly dubious: he says scientists are indifferent to money, which may have been true in Victorian times and earlier, but certainly doesn't apply now, though of course he was thinking of really first rank people. Another oddity is his distinctively 20th century omission of Jews; for instance he says the career of Lenin was astonishing—when of course it was simply a matter of being funded. Interestingly, he says nothing of mass migrations—in those days, expensive ocean liners were almost the only method of migration, so the modern stuff is totally omitted. He offloads (e.g.) shortage of oil and uranium onto the future—with luck, inventors will invent new inventions.

Recommended as the product of someone who spent his life thinking, and was trying to sum up after the immense catastrophes of 20th century wars, though he wrote this book on what turned out to be the eve of the Second, which he clearly expected to happen. But it's not even remotely definitive. Russell usually regarded his books as finished objects and never returned with new material.
Top of Page

Why Men Fight = Principles of Social Reconstruction 1916
Principles of Social Reconstruction was one of Russell's Great War books. The title echoes his Principles of Mathematics (and Plato's Republic); one assumes he felt it was a serious work. He says, in his Autobiography, that his flaring disputes with D H Lawrence help prompt this book: for all his life Russell considered men love war, at least when prompted. After all, the newspapers through that war told him just that.
    From an Internet perspective, the failure of Russell consists in his inability to identify and separate out Jewish influences: Jewish subversion and aggression and war-mongering, plans for the Middle East, influence on Churches, influence on education, influences on property and love of money, influences on sex and reproduction, are all unknown or ignored by Russell.

March 2017
Here's my online computer version of Principles of Social Reconstruction. For my taste, it makes saddening reason: Russell clearly hadn't a clue.

Russell said of this book (Autobiography, vol 2, First chapter 'The First War'): ‘During the summer of 1915 I wrote Principles of Social Reconstruction, or Why Men Fight as it was called in America without my consent. I had no intention of writing such a book, and it was totally unlike anything I had previously written, but it came out in a spontaneous manner. In fact I did not discover what it was all about until I had finished it. It has a framework and a formula, but I only discovered both when I had written all except the first and last words. ...’
    The book was first given as lectures, though Russell doesn't state where, as far as I can find; probably Cambridge. Stanley Unwin wrote to him (Nov 29 1915) offering to publish. ‘This was the beginning of my connection with Allen & Unwin.’
    ‘To my surprise, it ['Principles of Social Reconstruction'] had an immediate success. I had written it with no expectation of its being read, merely as a profession of faith, but it brought me in a great deal of money, and laid the foundation for all my future earnings.’
I suspect this book was one of those attacked by Anthony Ludovici as meaningless emotionally-charged rhetoric, which Ludovici felt modern man should scornfully reject. The Times review (below), a puzzled comment, seems most to the point. The Nation was essentially Jewish, as was the New Statesman; this book established Russell as a 'useful idiot'. His lectures were delivered before the USA entered the 'Great War'. And before Russia was taken over.
This book may have had more influence than is generally supposed, because academics disliked Russell for many of his ideas, and in particular his opposition to 'nuclear weapons' and the USA's genocide in Vietnam. And many of them wanted to pretend they were original; this was an aspect of Jewish intrusion and damage to US university life. Russell says somewhere that he was an inventor of sociology. Just a few comments:



image   Review of Utopians   Bertrand Russell: Roads to Freedom: Socialism, Anarchism & Syndicalism

Interesting though inconclusive, 10 Oct 2010

The correct title was 'Roads to Freedom'—'Proposed' was added without his permission by the American publisher. The seed for this book was the First World War, which Russell correctly perceived as a disaster. In the 1950s and 60s this book was available in bookshops (in the UK, published by the now-defunct Allen and Unwin)—the other reviewer presumably remembers this.

As with H G Wells, Russell wanted to consider reconstructing the world ('Principles of Social Reconstruction' was his book on that). His main limitation in my view was his impracticality in a physical sense: he knew little about food and water and buildings and population, and was therefore rather ungrounded—like many people he was over-impressed by verbosity, possibly a Christian heritage—all the material quoted is bookish stuff. (His first book, 'German Social Democracy', had the same fault). Russell admired Marx, regarding him as a first-rate thinker—Russell wasn't the only person to be lured by the novelty of the then-new immigration of Jewish 'intellectuals'. Russell liked Bakunin, and also had hopes for the trade union movement, which within living memory had been illegal. Looking back, I personally think that movement was compromised right from the start, so that 'socialism' mutated into various horrors.

The book isn't too long and I recommend it both for its enthusiasm, but also for mulling over and contemplating the traps lurking in wait for reformers.
Top of Page

image   Review of Bertrand Russell   Katharine Tait: My Father, Bertrand Russell

Revealing book by Russell's daughter; but doesn't reveal attractive things, 18 Oct 2010

Russell's nearest and perhaps dearest didn't write much about him. This book is therefore exceptional. Unfortunately Katharine Tait comes across as an entirely egocentric person. The book is more about her than him. Born 1923, when Russell was about 50; the main impressions of this book (at least, to me) are (1) she was rather stupid, (2) Russell's life seen through her eyes was appallingly chaotic and financially and emotionally on the margin of holding together.

There's quite a lot on her early years, Cornwall, and the experimental school in Telegraph House—the school seems to have made the building unsaleable. She says she teased her brother John so persistently it became habitual. It's clear she learned nothing from her father—she clearly never understood things like Kepler's Laws, and all Russell's books she quotes are popular titles, of which she gives the American versions. Russell disliked religion, but Katharine took the practical female view, e.g. envying some curate his house. (She also married a cleric, and went to Uganda presumably to convert the natives; then returned to somewhere higher paying in the USA). She dreamed about magic, marriage, and secret love.

It's painful to hear that Russell told her lies, which confused her for years: e.g. that the Duke of Wellington had a small tail, that Hungary was originally called Yum Yum, that an elephant was coming down the drive (every April 1st), that Mad King Ludwig was ascertained to be mad because he 'bubbled his soup' (her phrase). Russell called her 'woggywog' and pretended she wasn't Kate, which she says worried her.

Russell said in his book 'The Conquest of Happiness' that women are superior to men, because men judge women by looks rather than character. Patricia Spence seems to have conformed to his sexual stereotype. Aged about ten, Katharine watched Russell write 'Freedom and Organisation 1814-1914', sitting upright at his desk, writing, having planned his book in his head, and discussed it with 'Peter'.

In 1938, Russell moved to the USA—to the University of Chicago, Rockefeller's "best investment". After a couple more moves he wrote 'History of Western Philosophy'; Katharine, 15ish when they moved, was at Harvard (or Yale?) and got married—so there are large gaps in her account after about 1945. When Russell was doing his best to be an activist on nuclear war and Vietnam, she has nothing intelligent to say, despite being over 40 by then.

She was filmed, and shown on BBC TV as part of a two-part programme on Russell. She found it hilarious that poor Russell could never find a woman intelligent enough (unless Edith Finch counts).

Not a wonderful book, but possibly helped her weather the financial problems of divorce and her five children.
Top of Page

Russell book jacket   Review of Bertrand Russell   Rupert Crawshay-Williams: Russell Remembered

Affectionate account of Russell from 1945, 7 May 2009

The author met Russell first as one of a small party, I think with Clough-Ellis or whatever the architect of Portmeirion was called; and he recalls his feeling of nervousness over possible embarrassments that might take place, or yawning silences, whatever. In fact he says Russell liked gossip and small talk. He records his later surprise that Russell and his wife felt nervous about asking them, in turn, to call. He couldn't believe Russell was so isolated.

Crawshay-Williams says at the time he knew nothing of philosophy; extraordinarily, Russell allowed him to read the MS of Human Knowledge while it was being written. C-W also reviewed volume 1 of Russell's Autobiography! And he puts in philosophical footnotes, clearly feeling that philosophy has rubbed off onto him. (C-W's book 'The Comforts of Unreason' was published in 1947). Some of this book was jotted down after chats (there's a similar constructed-from-jottings book about Whitehead, by Lucien Price) but tape recorders, when they became available, were cumbersome.

Great many famous people in passing: Brockway, Cantor, Deutscher, John Dewey, Eddington, Fermi, Anatole France, J B S Haldane, Alger Hiss, Holroyd, Julian Huxley, William James, Storm Jameson, Roy Jenkins, Arthur Koestler, G E Moore, Kant, Kennedy assassination, Keynes, Kingsley, Vachel Lindsay, Frank Lloyd Wright, Malinowsky, Ottoline Morrell, Nasser, A S Neill, David Pears, Michael Postan, Schweitzer, Susan Stebbing, several Stracheys, Julian Trevelyan, Trotter of crowd psychology, Voltaire, Alan Wood.

This was the time of the 'Brains Trust', and 'History of Western Philosophy'; up to Russell's Vietnam War Crimes Tribunal. Linguistic philosophy, atomic weapons, Kennedy's assassination, Khrushchev make appearances.

A typical bit of philosophy is: 'Russell is by no means alone in this habit of first assuming that we know certain propositions to be true, and only then enquiring how we know them. This assumption is at the basis of the whole controversy as to whether certain statements can be both synthetic (empirical) and at the same time a priori (i.e. known to be true without experience, as 'Two plus two equals four'..) One of these controversial statements is 'Nothing can be both red and green all over. Yet there seems to be no agreed way of formally demonstrating that it is true in this absolute sense. ..'

If you like Russell, this book gives a good account of the final period of his life, viewed by a sympathetic neighbour.
Top of Page

Review of Very limited look at numbers, fractions, some algebra   Bertrand Russell: Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy

Disappointing
March 2013
1919 book (one of a series of titles by various authors for a philosophical library) is a rather depressing illustration of Russell's uncreativity. There's an exhaustive treatment of numbers (including irrationals etc) and things like continuity—all part of what was at the time called 'analysis'. This is of historical interest; for example Pythagoras was puzzled by the square root of two being, literally, irrational. After algebra, transcendental numbers appeared. The most recent when Russell wrote was Cantor on the infinite; most of which Russell claimed to have worked out independently.

But any wide view—that is the next possibly mathematical advance? Is there some intellectual continuity from enumeration to such analysis of change as is found in calculus? Is arithmetic a picture of the world, as geometry perhaps is? What is it that makes some things more amenable to 'mathematics' than others? Given some new phenomenon, or for that matter something long accepted, is there some 'mathematical' methodology to try to deal with it? Are fuzzy concepts able to be trapped mathematically; if not, what limits are there?—such questions are not part of Russell's work, certainly not in this book. Russell swallowed completely the supposed evidence for relativity. He contributed nothing to physics, which was supposed to have come to some sort of apex with H-bombs: had he known more, he might have played a part in debunking what now appears to be a massive hoax.
Top of Page

Review of Bertrand Russell   Human Society in Ethics and Politics (published in 1954)

Collection of Essays on the Theory and Practical Application of Ethics. BUT freighted with Ethics from Christianity, and Cold War and Other Wrong 'Useful Idiot' Assumptions. Oct 2015
A difficult book to read, and difficult to review. Five stars for importance: anyone who can conclusively demonstrate a valid theory of ethics, and not only that but go on to show how to politically achieve it, will have achieved something stellar and magnificent. I don't know how far Russell thought this book would make him the Newton of ethics, as Bentham did. But of course the book wasn't popular, or convincing. I was tempted to give a higher rating, because there is meat in there accessible with some effort, but perhaps a virtuous book ought to minimise the effort needed to digest its ideas.

The title always struck me as odd, with its strange use of 'in'. There's also his implicit belief that one 'human society' exists; Russell was untroubled by anthropological questions. The title must have been chosen to try to fit the chapters: the first nine were written in 1945-6; twelve others in 1953; and 'Politically Important Desires', which was delivered in Stockholm on receiving his Nobel Prize for Literature, and therefore I presume written in 1950.
      This period spans the post-Second World War era, following the blanket censorship of the war and more or less up to the announcement of the Soviet 'H-bomb'. ('Soviet' meant Russia, which was renamed the USSR, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, after the 1917 Jewish coup. But Russell always referred to it as 'Russia'). Russell probably believed in complete Jewish innocence, complete German and/or Hitler guilt, regrettable Russian violence, the USA as run by Americans, the completeness of technical fixes, absence of genetic reactions to events, and the truth of atomic bombs. He believed Hitler's policy was the same as Bismarck's—incredibly, in a world where Jews in Russia were fed with money and weapons, mostly by Jews in the USA. All these beliefs were known at the time by 'elites' to be wrong, and they now appear wrong to many people, which complicates the interpretation, and also makes Russell look something of a fool.

Russell writes very badly on ethics. I *think* because there was not much in the way of analysis of ethical ideas. Isaiah Berlin liked to invent, or use, Greek-based words to categorise types of philosophical theories; but the same process doesn't seem to have been applied much to ethical ideas, because of course consigning them to categories annoyed religiously-dogmatic types, or was liable to charges of blasphemy, or otherwise was discouraged. Russell was of course aware of the external view of life on earth, the solar system as a tiny part of the Milky Way, which makes it obvious that there's no such thing as objective ethics. So, much of his ethics section is verbiage which could have been reduced by some classificatory system.
      Russell was heavily doped by his upbringing: George Eliot saying 'There is no God and yet we must be good' was regarded as sophisticated humour. His category of 'superstitious ethics' illustrates a problem: what Jew for example would admit that twirling a chicken over his head is 'superstitious'? Russell also had a tiresome tendency to assume people were fools, without taking into account propaganda; despite his awareness of the power of propaganda. Here's a typical online quotation: 'The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widely spread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible.' Probably everyone who ever lived has believed they need food to survive; that they need water, or they will feel thirst; that they have to sleep now and then; that they dislike extreme cold, and extreme heat; that fire can harm them; that if they're stabbed or hit, they will feel pain or worse. If so, these people would all have been entirely correct.
      And Russell, as he explains in this Autobiography, felt deeply that some acts are evil, and others good, and despite talks with Santayana that feeling remained with him. No doubt it remains with many people; I hope so, I think. In War Crimes in Vietnam he did what he could to express horror and disgust at what he took to be American actions, but he had no idea that there are people with no such reactions. However, he seems to have had little idea of the genetic roots of behaviour.

I think it's fair to say that Russell looks at human groups and says, in effect, well, it's unfair to discriminate in favour of one of these as against the other. Therefore everyone should be nice to everyone else. His interpretation of ethics is, broadly, that anyone who says people ought to get along is ethically a good person. But Russell also as I've noted elsewhere almost invariably uses examples (as does J S Mill) which make other groups—savages, Moslems, cannibals, Germans, Catholics, Americans, businessmen, Amish, Hindus, Fascisti, Japanese—look silly and irrational. In this way he combines a supposedly general ethic with arrogance about his own kind. The most important example at present is probably so-called Jews, who simply deny that any other groups should even be considered human. Russell's argumentation fails in the most important case.

Much of Russell's material on the intersection between ideas and the real world don't seem soundly based. For example, on 'free will', Russell's main concern is that if people believe in free will, they may suddenly stop doing their work. I think it's true to say Russell never understood 'free will'. He thinks that man has always sharply distinguished other men, as either friends or enemies, but of course this is untrue—no town or city could exist if it were true, opening the possibility to unnoticed criminals and subversion. Russell has an argument from anthropology which is tiresome, on sending out a questionnaire to 'leaders of religious thought throughout the world'. He doesn't seem perturbed by this empirical intrusion into theory; suppose (for example) they all agree; they might still be wrong. He seems to miss the point of arguments for religious revival, which as far as I can see is the claim that it worked in the past, and so it should work now. Russell stresses (e.g.) Christian states at the time of the late Roman Empire fighting each other, which most modern people would probably not believe. Russell also assumes that his newspapers and the BBC give him reliable information: he had absolutely no idea of the extend of Jewish media control.

Russell was followed in the official English-speaking ethics world by P H Nowell-Smith who may or may not have written well. John Rawls (American?) was another; I doubt he had anything to say on world issues. But the whole development of philosophical ethics has been (as far as I know) submerged by the huge torrent of Jewish-paper-money funded material, including in particular the fraud of the 'Holocaust' and 'Jewish' horror that anyone could fight to remove Jewish control over money. An example is Grayling. Russell, although awash with errors, doesn't compare badly with the subsequent deluge of filthy water—he at least tried to take things seriously.

Here's the chapter list:
PART 1: ETHICS [Object: 'to set forth an undogmatic ethic ....'] 1. SOURCES OF ETHICAL BELIEFS AND FEELINGS | 2. MORAL CODES | 3. MORALITY AS MEANS | 4. GOOD AND BAD | 5. PARTIAL AND GENERAL GOODS | 6. MORAL OBLIGATION | 7. SIN | 8. ETHICAL CONTROVERSY | 9. IS THERE ETHICAL KNOWLEDGE? | 10. AUTHORITY IN ETHICS | 11. PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION | 12. SUPERSTITIOUS ETHICS | 13. ETHICAL SANCTIONS
PART 2: THE CONFLICT OF PASSIONS [Object: '.... and to apply this ethic to various current political problems. .. does not attempt to be a complete theory of politics. .. I deal only with those parts that, in addition to being closely related to ethics, are of urgent practical importance...'] 1. FROM ETHICS TO POLITICS | 2. POLITICALLY IMPORTANT DESIRES | 3. FORETHOUGHT AND SKILL | 4. MYTH AND MAGIC | 5. COHESION AND RIVALRY | 6. SCIENTIFIC TECHNIQUE AND THE FUTURE | 7. WILL RELIGIOUS FAITH CURE OUR TROUBLES? | 8. CONQUEST? | 9. STEPS TOWARDS A STABLE PEACE | 10. PROLOGUE OR EPILOGUE?

A typical example of Russell doing his best to set out starting-point is his account of Leibitz and 'compossibilities' (presumably not verbatim from Leibnitz). 'Borrowing a term from Leibniz's account of possible worlds, we may call two desires or impulses "compossible" when both can be satisfied, and "conflicting" when the satisfaction of the one is incompatible with that of the other. If two men are both candidates for the Presidency of the United States, one of them must be disappointed. But if two men both wish to become rich, the one by growing cotton and the other by manufacturing cotton cloth, there is no reason why both should not succeed.' This is slightly reminiscent of Jack Sprat. Of course, if people are happy with the equivalent of only eating meat, or fat, we have no problem. In practice, this is not much help.

In Chapter 1, to give the feel of Russell, we have, and I quote at length:
Let us begin with egoism, by which I mean the doctrine that every man does--or should--pursue exclusively his own interest. To make this doctrine precise, we must first define what we mean by a man's "interest''. The most precise definition is that of the doctrine called "psychological hedonism", which asserts that every man not only does, but inevitably must, pursue exclusively his own pleasure. This doctrine was held by all the earlier utilitarians. It followed that, if "virtue" consists in pursuing the general good, the only way to make men virtuous is to produce a harmony between general and private interests, by insuring that the act which will produce the maximum of pleasure for myself is also that which will produce the maximum of pleasure for the community. In the absence of the criminal law I should steal, but fear of prison keeps me honest. If I enjoy being praised and dislike being blamed, the moral sentiments of my neighbours have an effect similar to that of the criminal law. Belief in everlasting rewards and punishments in the next life should, on a rational computation, be an even more efficient safeguard of virtue.

But it is not the case that men desire only their own pleasure. There is a confusion arising from the fact that, whatever you may desire, you will obtain pleasure from achieving your object, but in most cases the desire is the source of the pleasure, whereas psychological hedonism supposes the anticipated pleasure to be the cause of the desire. This applies especially to the simplest desires, such as hunger. The hungry man desires food, whereas the well-fed gourmet desires the pleasure to be derived from food. The desire for food is one which we share with the animals, whereas the desire for the pleasure of good food is a sophisticated product of cookery, memory, and imagination.

Further: the pleasure to be derived from achieving a desired object consists, in general, of two parts, one that of achievement, the other that belonging to the object on its own account. If you chase round the town in search of oranges, and at last obtain some, you have not only the pleasure that the oranges would have given you if you had obtained them without difficulty, but also the pleasure of success. Only the latter is always present when a desire is satisfied; the former may, on occasion, be absent.

The psychological hedonist is thus mistaken in supposing that what we desire is always pleasure, but he is mistaken also in another respect which is, for us, of even more importance.

What a man desires need not be an experience of his own, or a series of experiences, or anything to be realized in his own life. It is not only possible, but usual, to have objects of desire which lie wholly outside our own lives. The most common example of this is parental feeling. A large percentage of mankind, probably a majority, desire that their children shall prosper after they themselves are dead. The same thing is true of wives, and of some women who are not wives; Charles II [etc]

From Chapter 5, Partial and General Goods, we find
'General good' = total satisfaction of desire, no matter by whom enjoyed.
Various systems of morality.. differing views as to class whose good an individual should seek. .. Each embodied in familiar maxims. ... Christ taught.. 'though shalt love thy neighbour as thyself'.. [also Buddhists and Stoics] ... Since the rise of nationalism ... the good of one's nation for that of all mankind.. "for king and country". Russell knew some Russian revolutionaries during the Russo-Japanese war who drank a toast "to the failure of Russian arms" [These very likely Jews, of course]. ... Some.. loyalty to their colour .. Haiti.. Kipling's lesser breeds without the law.. Chinese till 1840, Japanese till 1945. .. the belief that only the good of one race is important...

Russell is dishonest in claiming that nationalists are interested exclusively in one nation or race. Generally, they know perfectly well that they have enough trouble staking their own claim.

Chapter 7, 'Sin'. It took me years to realise that by 'sense of sin' Russell seems to mean ANY feeling that something is wrong, including say murder or incest or war work or lying. He didn't distinguish this properly from 'superstitious ethics' and I was baffled by the way discussion of things he clearly disapproved of seemed to be mixed with irrational feelings of guilt over silly things.
    Russell states 'sin' is always a feeling in opposition to some authority, rather than something endogenous. Examples include: 'Disobedience, if it is to feel sinful, must be disobedience to an authority inwardly respected..' and '... a sense of sin ... may be .. a subconscious association with parental disapproval, or it may be fear of the bad opinion of a man's own herd ...' But he mixes this with 'it was connected with ritual defilement and with breaches of tabu' and 'the sense of sin reached its acme in St Augustine' and with behaving 'against the Will of God'. And he speculates that Columbus may have felt sinful if he didn't risk his voyage, and Thomas More sinful if he hadn't studied Greek.

Russell was very liable to feelings of sinfulness; or at least claimed he was—for example, in his autobiography he says he felt more at ease in a small Christian church than in the ruins of the Parthenon, and claimed the Greeks had had no 'sense of sin'. This seems to me a piece of wrong, hypocritical, or misplaced official self-criticism. It's comparable in my view with 'pathological altruism' as a self-criticism of the West. In neither case does it correspond closely with the real world, though there's a bit of truth in it. In wars and atrocities, there is little sign of either a feeling of sin or an attitude of altruism.


Here's part 2, The Conflict of Passions. Turning from Russell's inadequate theorising, we find practical matters, though mostly seen from a pre-First World War viewpoint. This is unfortunate, since the topics themselves—Forethought and Skill, Cohesion and Rivalry, Scientific Technique, Conquest?—needed more insight than provided by British political puppets and lightweight observers.

Chapter 7: Can Religious Faith Cure Our Troubles? And here we have Russell's summary of the history of the world during much of his adult lifetime. It's a newspaper-like view without the slightest grasp of Jewish behind-the-scenes malevolence:
What has happened in the world since 1914 has proceeded with a kind of inevitability that is like that of Greek tragedy. It is an inevitability derived, not from external circumstances, but from the characters of the actors. Let us briefly trace the steps in this development.
    The Germans in 1914 thought themselves strong enough to secure by force an empire comparable to those of Britain, France, and Russia. Britain, France and Russia combined to thwart this ambition. Russia was defeated and, in the Revolution of 1917, abandoned its traditional Imperialistic policy. The West had promised Constantinople to the Russians, but, when the Russians made a separate peace, this promise fell through. Britain and France, with the help of America, defeated the Germans after the Germans had defeated the Russians. The Germans were compelled to accept the humiliating Treaty of Versailles and to profess a belief in their sole war-guilt. They were "wicked" because they had made war. The Russians were "wicked" because they had made a separate peace, and, still more, because they had repudiated their war-debts. All the victorious nations combined to fight Russia, but were defeated, and were somewhat surprised to find that Russia no longer loved them. The Germans meanwhile suffered great distress, which was much aggravated when the folly of the American Republican Government brought about the Great Depression. Suffering produced hysteria, and hysteria produced Hitler. The Western nations, hoping that Hitler would attack Russia, did not oppose him. They had opposed the comparatively blameless Weimar Republic, but in befriending Hitler they proved to all mankind that they were totally destitute of moral standards. Hitler, fortunately, was mad, and, owing to madness, brought about his own downfall. The West had been delighted to accept Russia's help in bringing about this result, and, whereas at the end of the First World War Russia and Germany had been alike weak, Russia at the end of the Second World War was strong. Britain was traditionally hostile to Russia, but from 1907 to 1917 had been forced into a semblance of friendship with that country by fear of Germany. At the end of the Second World War a quite new international pattern developed. Western Europe had ceased to count. Russia and the United States were alone powerful. As has always happened in the past in more or less similar situations, these two Great Powers were mutually hostile. Each saw a chance of world hegemony. Russia inherited the policy of Philip II, Napoleon and the Kaiser. America inherited the policy which England had pursued throughout the 18th and 19th centuries.
    In all this there was nothing new except technique. .. The situation would be exactly what it is if Russia still adhered to the Orthodox Church. What our propaganda would be can be seen by anybody who reads the records of the Crimean War. ..'

It's worth quoting Russell at length on early Christianity:
    It is completely mysterious to me that there are apparently sane people who think that a belief in Christianity might prevent war. Such people seem totally unable to learn anything from history. The Roman State became Christian at the time of Constantine, and was almost continually at war until it ceased to exist. The Christian States which succeeded to it continued to fight each other, though, it must be confessed, they also from time to time fought states which were not Christian. From the time of Constantine to the present day there has been no shred of evidence to show that Christian States are less warlike than others. Indeed, some of the most ferocious wars have been due to disputes between different kinds of Christianity. Nobody can deny that Luther and Loyola were Christians, nobody can deny that their differences were associated with a long period of ferocious wars.
    Russell doesn't name any of the states, presumably regarding knowledge of Rome as something common to most people. More seriously, he has no idea of actual historical processes. He states, in the passive, that the 'Roman State became Christian', when Constantine was selected to bring about that change, which was then enforced by violent persecution. In the same mental flow, he has no idea of the forces behind such people as Luther and Loyola.

Chapter 10, Authority in Ethics, I think deals (in essence) with Jesus in opposition to the world of his time, and influencing people post mortem. Russell identified himself with someone heroically struggling against evil, though people with no belief in the Jewish 'Jesus' character, and no belief in any beneficent results from Christianity, will not follow Russell. Russell believes in, and often uses the phrase, "the interest of the community", as though such a thing is indubitable and present. Here's quite a precise statement: 'Many of the things that are best in the human species are due to the fact that it is not completely gregarious. The individual has his own intrinsic value, and the best individuals make contributions to the general good which are not demanded, and are often even resented by the rest of the herd. ...' The latter part sounds like Barbara Lerner Spectre.

I have a lot more material on this book by Russell; perhaps I'll write it up. But generally, it's clear Russell is a conventional 19th century radical, unaware of the intrusion in the 20th century of Jews or more imitators. And he has no idea of systematic propaganda. His precepts are of little use—should there be punishments for deception, for example?—and always assume conventional principles on what is good and bad—why should human populations which outgrow food be treated 'well'? Practically, in addition to his 19th century ignorance about Jews, he has no idea about the 'Fed' and paper money, the Jewish push for wars, and the phoney 'nuclear weapons' and 'Cold War' and 'Jewish' money frauds. It's terribly sad and terribly worthless.
Top of Page


Review of Bertrand Russell   PORTRAITS from MEMORY and other essays (published in 1956)

Russell aged about 80: about half his life had been lived before the First World War. Rather agonisingly affectionate memories of friendships and attempts at intellectual venture, totally innocent of the truth about post-1945 world. Added 20 May 2017
Worth reading for its sentimentality, and complete failure to assess the world situation. '... the absolute conviction of stability which made it an unquestioned axiom that no changes were to be expected anywhere in the world, except an ordered and gradual development towards a constitution exactly like that of Britain. Was ever an age so blessedly blind to the future? ...' Russell wrote in his short chapter on Lord John Russell.

His nine 'Portraits from Memory' are: Cambridge Dons (in the 1890s), Some of Russell's contemporaries at Cambridge, Shaw, Wells, Conrad, George Santayana, Whitehead, Sidney and Beatrice Webb, and D H Lawrence. Keynes is excluded; so is G E Moore, and Wittgenstein, suggesting Russell ducked the task of describing people he'd once considered his superiors. He also ducks the task of describing his family, such as Lord Portal, bomber of German cities.

'Six Autobiographical Talks' has two 'talks' on philosophy, starting with 'Why I Took to Philosophy'. 'Experiences of a Pacifist in the First World War' shows he had not the slightest comprehension of unified propaganda, made possible by newspapers and their control, nor any idea that significant groups of people want war, nor even that street violence could be a part of politics. 'From Logic to Politics' describes his view of individual psychology and the First World War, 'individual psychology' being what was described in newspapers of the time. 'Beliefs...' and 'Hopes...' are what one might expect; he hopes for a more evenly-divided world, which he considers would necessarily be cheerier and less prone to violence.

Some of this material reappeared in Russell's Autobiography. Most is affectionate, possibly too much so: Whitehead was anti-'Nazi', and blamed Germans for his son's death near the end of the Great War. Russell considers his Bergson-like philosophy was started by this event. Santayana as described by Russell is essentially a literary critic; his account of Goethe is a tour de force: Russell says nothing about Harvard's hiring policies in those days. Shaw and the Webbs are treated as 'socialists' in the UK sense, though Russell just about recognises that Mrs Webb learned the idea that directors keep shareholders in their place from her war-profiting father—my description, taken from Russell, who wrote of the Crimean war with no sort of insight. Russell never mentions that Webb was a Jew. All world events which Russell viewed politically, from Napoleon onwards, are treated as party political, and where necessary as between nations. Thus, he always refers to the USSR as 'Russia'. His Freedom and Organization 1814-1914 starts with the Congress and Vienna, and completely ignores finance and the Rothschilds.

Russell's discursive essays include How I Write, which includes near-plagiarism of Orwell's 1946 Politics and the English Language. And Russell's 'Symptoms of Orwell's 1984' is agonisingly ignorant of the forces behind Communism, a judgment reinforced by Why I am not a Communist.
    A Plea for Clear Thinking recommends '... we substitute a single abstract problem in which the letters A and B replace the names of nations or communities about which we have strong feelings..'. Russell, as always, assumes the important groups will be identifiable, and two in number.
    History as an Art is a long essay (as are John Stuart Mill and Mind and Matter). Russell wishes 'to set forth what those who are not historians ought to get from history.' The sweep of the essay—everything from what makes some things interesting—and literary style—and the decline of history in the grand manner—conceals the single most important puzzle of history, thrown sharply into light and shade by queries of secret Jew machinations. Russell does however refer to a number of historians and histories: Meyers, The Dawn of History ('... on four separate occasions drought in Arabia has caused a wave of Semitic conquest', Trevelyan's Social History and Clio, Milman's History of Christianity. And Augustine, Carlyle, Clarendon, Gibbon (and Tillemont, of the spade work), Hegel, Macaulay, Plutarch, Diodorus Siculus, Tonybee, Treitschke, Sarpi, and the Cambridge Ancient History. Russell thought in terms of drama, not accuracy, though fortunately he was modern enough not to take Jewish mythology very seriously.
    The Cult of Common Usage discusses the 'most influential school of philosophy in Britain at the present day...' Russell wrote the foreword to Words and Things (by Ernest Gellner, presumably a Jew) on this topic. Russell seems unable to connect dots with the Dons, Head Master, Senior Fellow, and others of his youth.
    Man's Peril (BBC radio) and Steps towards Peace (read for him at the World Assembly for Peace, Helsinki) were part of the unpredictable outcome of the Jewish fraud of 'nuclear weapons'. The various Peace movements were widely felt or believed to be Communist; another misunderstanding, since of course they were Jewish. Sigh. Soon after this book was published, Russell started activity against Americans and the Vietnam War. If only he'd known about war criminals such as Kissinger.

A wonderful book for students of the aristocratic Victorian outlook, and its persistence. And its failure to face facts about Jews and finance and concealed impulses.

Top of Page


Review 22 June 2017 by 'Rerevisionist' of Bertrand Russell   MY PHILOSOPHICAL DEVELOPMENT (published in 1959)

If you're interested in Russell, this book provides a good overview of his philosophical beliefs, twists, and turns. And it should have interest to people musing over fashions, propaganda, careerism, curricula, censorship, and related issues. It has 19 chapters, and an index of names. What I've called chapter 19 is what there was of Alan Wood's Russell's Philosophy, interrupted by Wood's death, highly flattering, written from Wood's notes from Russell's works, and I think later worked up into Bertrand Russell: the Passionate Sceptic. Chapter 18, Some Replies to Criticism, are four long reviews of books and articles, by Mr Urmson, Mr Warnock, Mr Strawson, and Professor Ryle. Russell in some cases objects to having his work—notably the Theory of Types—ignored; but the original pieces weren't I think specifically aimed at Russell. The sceptic will probably view them as careerist pieces, intended to contribute to nothing much except comfort. Note that Gellner's Words and Things (not included) was published in the same year, 1959, and Russell's continued attacks on Oxford philosophy continued.

Roughly, we have Russell when young (Christian commentaries, also included in his Autobiography, about ten years later—much of this book is republished from Russell's works, and will be recognised b some readers). Then Cambridge and Hegel and some others, for example Sedgwick. Moore gets a few sentences. Then Principia Mathematica. Then Wittgenstein, early and later. Then theory of Knowledge—Russell gives some detail as to why his Human Knowledge was less slap-dash than might have been thought. Then language. And 'retreat from Pythagoras', essentially on the horrors of the world.

It's difficult to decide how much impact Russell had. A J Ayer said (to Ved Mehta) the sine qua non of philosophers is vanity, and the philosophers quoted certainly seem to have their share. Russell gives two examples of others (an unnamed Mathematische Annalen author, and Reichenbach at California) who clearly were unfamiliar with Russell's work, perhaps because the notation had been off-putting. I'll try to review this book untechnically, treating it as an artefact of the past.

A considerable part of the impression left by Russell is his unoriginality. This is often a feature of official philosophy: philosophy courses, and such events as 'Philosophy in Pubs', deal with such things as the 'soul' (feminine gender), induction, dualism, and so on. Russell nibbled and chewed at pre-existing phrases and concepts, but originated very little. His 'First Efforts' are (for example) such things as Free Will, God, Uniformity of Nature, Reason, Primitive Morality—obviously unoriginal. So are his attitudes: consider this extract, which is clearly taken from Christian ideas as these were popularised to him: '... Suppose ... that I had the chance of saving a [drowning] man whom I knew to be a bad man who would be better out of the world, obviously I should consult my own happiness better [than being entirely selfish] by plunging in after him. For, if I lost my life, that would be a very neat way of managing it, and, if I saved him, I should have the pleasure of no end of praise. But if I let him drown, I should have lost an opportunity of death and should have the misery of much blame, but the world would be better for his loss and ... for my life.' Another extract from the same 1888 notebook is: '... Yet this inner voice, this God-given conscience which made Bloody Mary burn the Protestants, this is what we reasonable beings are to follow. ...' Here, Russell is obviously following a passage from his grandfather's library; but I doubt Russell ever stepped back to consider whether Mary had reasons of state, practical religious interests or what not, to support her views. His books show that, all his life, he assumed that supposedly theological wars were based on fanatically-held beliefs, rather than (say) funding for weapons for one or both sides.

Ordinary language is not specially adapted to discuss officially-accepted fashionable philosophy, though Russell never seems to have asked himself why. To quote from my Bertrand Russell: Dupe of Jews ordinary language has not developed in a way to make self-referential statements consistent, and indeed there's no reason why it should, any more than biological evolution would produce sense organs able to examine themselves—in both cases these things have quite enough work to do already. Even this is a generous statement: many black 'cultures' had no written language at all—it is about as new to them now air travel is to whites.

This book has a number of accounts of Russell's becoming aware of good work, for example by Frege. His History of Western Philosophy is a masterpiece of that type; grasping ideas, then explaining them, unnoticed errors and all, suited him. This outlook extended to novelties: there was an assault by Jews, increasing through Russell's lifetime, and the more-or-less abstract ideas parts—Marx, Cantor, Freud, Einstein, Wittgenstein—were regurgitated by Russell in a depressingly uncritical way, which in fact damaged him in his 90s.

For example, Bertrand Russell loved the 'space-time' idea, as did Whitehead; they both shoehorned 'intervals' into their philosophies. And this outlook extended to mathematics: the 20th century had some growth in mathematics, for example in statistical theories, in physics— much of this being fake, though—and in possibilities which came to something, in fuzzy sets, input-output analyses, structures of chemicals, electricity, broadcasting technology. Russell contributed nothing to any of this. His contribution was fine analysis of language and logic, but he seems somewhat naive about language, assuming English to be a perfect enough tool when supplemented by a few symbols. Somewhere he says language is made up of sounds; but looking at hieroglyphics of long-dead language, this seems inadequate. He says somewhere that the principle of induction would seem to show a baby would grow indefinitely. He agonises over the English use of 'or', in effect discussing such things as 'exclusive or'. He thought at one time that the number of things in the universe must be the largest possible integer.

Another pain-inducing aspect to Russell's life is the specific datedness of his work. To some extent this is inevitable. But one wonders what Russell would have done if Newton and calculus hadn't been invented, limits and all, with their associated scope for scepticism. Could Russell have invented calculus? Parallels and the supposed Euclidean problems point the same way. (Russell liked the idea of non-Euclidean geometry, but did nothing to clarify it in any way). He was aware of men's interpretation of animal behaviour: 'It seemed that animals always behave in a manner showing the rightness of the philosophy entertained by the man who observes them.' But he had little interest in differences between and within races.

Bertrand Russell shows a lack of understanding of (for example) Pragmatism in its various guises. He simply had no idea that Jews seem to have an instinctive interest in power, and not in truth. So Russell manufactures anecdotes and stories to illustrate why 'pragmatism' is obviously wrong, and is surprised to have them dismissed as silly. In the same sort of way, he had no comprehension of the NSDAP. I suspect this sympathetic failure explains his lack of interest in philosophies that were not 'Western', despite their presumed interest for the truth-seeker. Another lack of understanding is in careers: just as with vicars (he made fun of The Fairchild Family because a boy was punished by his father for not learning the necessary Latin), and with journalists (though the ones who praised him were spared), Russell seems to have had no appreciation that money and lifetime careers would tempt mimics and parasitical types into the world of philosophy, though it seems obvious enough. Similarly he stated that 'Logic ... considered a branch of philosophy ... [in] Aristotle, has been considered ... a subject only to be treated by those ... proficient in Greek. Mathematics, as a consequence, has only been treated by those who knew no logic. ... to the present century, this divorce [sic] has been disastrous.' But Russell's biggest failing was in politics. He might perhaps have done useful work on politics and states, teasing out interactions within groups of the same name, and between groups; but for his entire life he referred to Russia, the USSR and (no doubt) CIS as "Russia", missing fairly simple but essential understandings.

However, many men's lives are far less interesting than Russell's. Bear this in mind when reading my rather desolated and drained opinions. I don't suppose there are many comparable intellectual autobiographies of philosophers. But I hope Russell will come to be recognised as the last un-Jew-wise philosopher. He's the equivalent of people still unable to understand Wallace/Darwin.
Top of Page

Review of Bertrand Russell   Common Sense and Nuclear Warfare (published in 1959)

Russell on nuclear war
Bertrand Russell, 15 Years After Whatever Happened at Hiroshima Uploaded 24 November 2015 Oct 2015
Russell's '.. aim .. to show possible means of achieving peace in ways which should be equally acceptable to Communist Nations, to NATO nations, and to uncommitted nations..'. Russell in his entire life never looked below the surface of 'nations'; he simply had no idea that subsets may have their own aims. And in all his life he accepted the official lines in general assumptions: he opposed the First World War, but I don't think came up with anything factually based, except in the sense war is horrible for the victims. It's now obvious enough that the printed media of Russell's youth were dominated by Jews: Germany alone had 4,000 Jewish periodicals, and, in a version of conformity experiments, they dominated literary types. Though not typical Germans: Kurt Eisner got nowhere with his attempted Jewish coup in Germany. With Common Sense and Nuclear Warfare, I now take the view the entire nuke threat was made up, just another Jewish fabrication. However, it's of interest to Russell's readership to see what he made of this subject.

Here's Russell's contents list:-
Introduction
I If Brinkmanship Continues
II If Nuclear War Comes
III Methods of Settling Disputes in the Nuclear Age
IV Programme of Steps towards Peace
V New Outlook Needed before Negotiations
VI Disarmament
VI Steps towards Conciliation
VIII Territorial Adjustments
IX Approach to an International Authority
X Some Necessary Changes in Outlook [Subdivided into: Fanaticism; nationalism; education]
Appendix I: Unilateral Disarmament [Replies to critics]
Appendix II: Inconsistency?


It's clear enough just from the chapter information that Russell has no opinions on the technology. (In Dear Bertrand Russell he was asked to give expert advice on inspection, and replied he couldn't, and what was needed were detectives and others). Russell seemed also not in touch with high-up, or supposedly high-up, officials: at the time of publication, Israel's atomic weapons development was supposed to have been in operation for ten years.

Here are notes I made from the book; Russell's various approaches to political problems are clear enough, for example the world government idea, which he conceives of as democratic and accountable; and his lessons from history, all assuming either nations or religions as their causes of conflicts.–

I: IF BRINKMANSHIP CONTINUES I F Stone's Weekly of Oct 20, 1958: General Putt before House Committee on Armed Services explains the USAF want missile base on moon. Russell has no way to assess the plausibility of this, or for that matter of I F Stone.

II: IF NUCLEAR WAR COMES Russell mentions Dr Libby, supposed developer of 'clean bombs'. Note that Russell spoke with Edward Teller, I think on a phone link; he disliked Teller, as of course well he might. Russell was not good on 'fall-out': he considered both long-lived and short-lived isotopes dangerous, and had no way to estimate how much fallout there might be.

III: METHODS OF SETTLING DISPUTES IN THE NUCLEAR AGE 'There is no reason except human folly for the perpetuation of a lower standard of life in Asia and Africa than that which now prevails in America.' Russell does not prove this statement, however. He often says in his books 'the techniques are known'—but without knowing, simply put, whether there's enough to go round, and whether people are up to the work.

IV: PROGRAMME OF STEPS TOWARDS PEACE

V: NEW OUTLOOK NEEDED BEFORE NEGOTIATIONS Russell states the situation is '.. definitely new in human history. In the conflicts between Christianity and Islam, it was war that decided which countries should be Christian and which Mohammedan. In the conflicts between Protestants and Catholics.. America, North and South, is Christian because European arms were more effective than those of Red Indians. This long history has become so deeply embedded in the outlook of both statesmen and ordinary men ..' Again, one wonders if this is true. There must have been countless occasions where two sides did not go to war if they were fairly equal, and when unequal.

VI: DISARMAMENT Russell quotes from 'Inspection for Disarmament', edited by Seymour Melman (1958) who no doubt was another Jew. Russell says it '[has] a valuable account of the devices by which the Germans, after the First World War, concealed the armaments which it created in defiance of the Treaty of Versailles.' I wonder if it had a valuable account of the devices of concealment by Stalin?

VII: STEPS TOWARDS CONCILIATION Russell's initial proposal is a Conciliation Committee. He gives his views as to composition and duties and confidentiality; the latter sounds like cabinet confidentiality.
    Here's his evidence this might work: 'Britain and Russia had hated and feared each other ever since the Crimean War, but, after over fifty years of mutual suspicion, they came to the conclusion that each had less to fear from the other than from Germany and, in the year 1907, they concluded an entente by which an end was put to all the divergencies between their policies. This happened through the common fear of Germany—a fear far less dreadful than the fear of nuclear warfare.' This of course is a tiny, partial, selected claim: they did nothing much to help Russia after 1917.

VIII: TERRITORIAL ADJUSTMENTS
    1 Europe: 'I do not think that the removal of American forces from Western Europe can become practical politics except as a sequel to an enforceable agreement for the abolition of nuclear weapons.' Russell does not know of, and therefore not consider, the idea of invading the USSR to liberate it from Jews. And no doubt this was the reason for the Jewish fakery over atom spies.
    2 Middle East:, '..the hatred of Israel in Arab countries is regrettable but understandable. Not only in Arab countries but throughout Asia, Israel is regarded as a piece of unwarrantable Western imperialism. The fact that the Jews originally came from Asia is forgotten; what is remembered is that, in the course of centuries, the great majority of them have become completely westernized. The west, however, cannot abandon the state of Israel after deliberately creating it and guaranteeing its protection. I think that the only thing that can be done is to fix unalterably the geographical frontiers of Israel and undertake that Russia and the West, jointly, shall prevent any aggression by or against the state of Israel. If there were no uncertainty, and if the Great Powers were united in the matter, Jews and Arabs would in time get used to each other and discover that mutual hatred serves no purpose.' It's obvious to us, now, that Israel had no intention of having its borders fixed.
    3 Far East: '..The conquest of China by the Communists is the severest blow that the West has suffered since Lenin's Government became secure. It cannot be denied that the Chinese Communists have given evidence of militaristic imperialism. Their intervention in the Korean war was as unjustified as it was unfortunate, and their conquest of Tibet was the kind of thing which is severely condemned when done by a western power..'  Russell has no idea of the mechanisms underlying 'communism'.
    'The importance of Formosa to America, like that of Cyprus to Britain, is strategic and bound up with preparedness for a nuclear war.' I'm guessing this statement is taken from the various 'experts' as prodded by Jewish planners and publishers.

IX: APPROACH TO AN INTERNATIONAL AUTHORITY About seven pages: Russell thinks many people like war, and will therefore be led, unconsciously, not to face the facts about necessary steps to peace:
'The great majority of those who have considered the conditions for secure peace are persuaded that the most important of these conditions is the creation of an International Authority with power to enforce its decisions. This, however, remains for the moment a purely academic opinion: while the East-West tension retains anything like its present acuteness, neither side would submit to any International Authority unless it could dominate it. The question is, at bottom, one of great simplicity: would you rather have a world in which both friends and foes survive, or a world in which both are extinct? Put in these abstract terms, most people would prefer the survival of their friends to the extinction of their foes. But when it is pointed out to them that this choice, if made in earnest, requires some very distasteful measures, they will refuse to admit the necessity of such measures and will persist in the course leading to universal death. In this chapter, I wish to suggest comparatively painless steps by which an International Authority could gradually come into existence. These steps will only be possible after the measures of conciliation considered in earlier chapters.

And here is a summary of Russell's proposed steps:–
The first thing.. is to confirm the advisory authority of the Conciliation Committee outlined in Chapter VII. ..

The League of Nations and the United Nations were both intended by their creators to be the germ of an International Authority capable of preventing war. Both failed, but the United Nations is perhaps still capable of being so reformed as to fulfil its intended functions. The reforms required are, however, very drastic..
.. one very vital measure.. is the admission to UNO of all States that desire membership. .. the most urgent case is that of Communist China. China is the most populous state in the world and may, within a few decades, become the most powerful. .. China is only the most glaring example of exclusion. There can be no good reason for keeping out any country which is willing to undertake the obligations imposed by the UNO.

There is a difficulty which faces all federal organizations, namely that some members of the federation are more powerful or more populous than others and it therefore does not seem just that all should carry equal weight. This problem faced by the framers of the American Constitution, and, as everybody knows, they adopted a compromise solution: In the Senate, all States are equal, but, in the House of Representatives, their weight is proportional to their population. Some arrangement will be necessary in the Constitution of the reformed United Nations if small States are not to have undue weight. The present arrangement, according to which all States count equally in the Assembly, but, in the Security Council, certain powerful States have a veto, is open to various objections which I shall consider presently. One possible solution - which, I admit, has its own difficulties - would be to divide the world into a number of subordinate Federations, each of which should be a member of the one World-wide Federation. These subordinate Federations should be framed in accordance with two principles: first, they should all be approximately equal in population so that there would be no serious injustice in counting each as one in the federation of Federations which would be the reconstituted UNO; the principle should be that, as far as possible, each Federation should have internal interests outweighing those concerning its external relations. It should be generally understood, though not formally decreed, that, in general, each subordinate Federation should have autonomy in regard to its internal affairs and that only disputes between Federations should come before UNO. In this way, the interference of the International Authority in local affairs could be reduced to a minimum.

The Veto, which was adopted in 1945 when the United Nations was created, was a practical necessity at that time. Both the United States and the USSR were agreed on this point. There is no likelihood that the Veto will be abolished until such time as East and West have become much more conscious of their common interests than they now are. But so long as the Veto exists, UNO lacks an essential characteristic of any Government. It is of the essence of a Government that it can enforce decisions upon recalcitrant members of the State which it represents. What should we think of a national State in which any burglar could veto laws against theft? There was once a national State constituted in this manner. It was the State of Poland. The liberum veto which existed in that country reduced it to impotence and rendered it incapable of resisting partition among its powerful neighbours. Nevertheless, it was this example which was followed when UNO was created. Already at that time the divergent interests of East and West made such a course inevitable. But if there is ever to be an International Authority capable of preventing large-scale war, it will have to be an Authority in which the Veto does not exist, since, otherwise, it will be unable to settle any dispute in which either side is prepared to use the Veto.

There will need to be, as in any Federation, a well-defined Constitution deciding which powers are to be federal. It should be understood that these powers must be only such as are involved in the prevention of war. There must be no interference by the Federal Authority with religion or economic structure or the political system. If some countries prefer parliamentary democracy, and others prefer some form of dictatorship, they must be free to persist in their choice. They must be similarly free if some prefer Communism and others prefer Capitalism. I think they must also be free to impose such limits upon individual liberty as they may consider desirable. I do not think that the Federal Authority ought to impose freedom of the Press or any other freedom upon any subordinate State. I say this in spite of realizing the importance of such freedoms. I say it because only the prevention of war gives outside States a justification for interference.

We have, I am afraid, already travelled a long way into Utopian regions, but there is a last step even more Utopian that must be taken if world peace is to be secure. There must be an International Armed Force sufficiently powerful to be certain of victory over the armed forces of any nation or likely alliance of nations. In the absence of this condition, the decrees of the International Authority may not be enforceable and may easily sink to the level of empty pronouncements like the Kellogg Pact. The International Authority will have to be free to create such armed forces as it thinks necessary and to impose such taxation as they may require. It will also need a legal right to limit the armed forces of national States so as to prevent any serious threat to its authority.

All this, however utopian it may appear, is only a close parallel to what happened in national States as a result of the invention of gunpowder. In the Middle Ages throughout Western Europe powerful barons in their castles could defy the central Government. It was only when artillery became able to destroy castles that the central Government was able to control feudal barons. What gunpowder did in the late Middle Ages, nuclear weapons have to do in our time. I do not mean that they have to be actually employed. ...'

X: SOME NECESSARY CHANGES IN OUTLOOK: FANATICISM, NATIONALISM, EDUCATION 'Issues that seemed to contemporaries as important as the issue of Communism or Capitalism seems to fanatics of the present day have repeatedly arisen in the past, and have been shown by the course of time to be not so tremendous as contemporaries suppose. There is a well-known passage in Gibbon in which he considers what would have happened if the Mohammedans had won the Battle of Tours. [732 AD] To Christians of that day, the issue appeared as momentous as the issue of our own time appeared to Senator McCarthy and to Stalin, but it may well be doubted whether the present-day world would be much different from what it is if the Mohammedans had been the victors and not the vanquished in that famous conflict. ...' This was a fairly popular opinion amongst people who thought themselves enlightened in Russell's time, in my view because of Jewish influence: they hate Christians and would presumably like Muslims to defeat Christians. But unlike Christianity Islam is solidly tribal.

Russell compares a boastful person with a boastful nation; the same comparison occurs in another of his books. There are other similes with instructional purposes in Russell: duelling seems silly; so war seems silly. Rough men fighting in the street is disgusting; war is disgusting. War is like people in a street of houses fighting to destruction.

One of Russell's grand historical generalisations is the comparison of the discovery of fire with the (alleged) discovery of nuclear power. His book is something like the construction of a special purpose fire brigade.
Nationalism 'We have become so accustomed to nationalism that it has come to seem an inherent part of human nature. History, however, does not bear out this view. In antiquity, there was hardly any nationalism except that of the Jews. In the Middle Ages, when ecclesiastics travelled freely throughout the Catholic world, their partisan feelings were centred upon their Church and not upon their nation. ... The nationalism of modern times has grown up, mainly, as a reaction against foreign imperialism. One may put its beginning at the time of Joan of Arc when the French were aroused to collective resistance against English conquest. English nationalism began with the resistance to the Spanish Armada, and found its classic expression, a few years later, in the plays of Shakespeare. German and Russian nationalisms had their origin in resistance to Napoleon; American nationalism, in resistance to the Redcoats. Unfortunately, there is a psychologically natural dynamic.. those who are fighting for freedom, not unnaturally, exaggerate their own merits and the demerits of the foreign oppressor. When they have won freedom, the beliefs formerly appropriate survive and are thought to justify foreign conquest. ..'
Well, maybe. Russell doesn't seem to include tribalisms: Genghis Khan? Turks? Huns? Ancient Greeks, Romans? Russell may have been suggesting nationalism is a stage, probably related to travel and propaganda, which may pass away, but this seems unconvincing; he seems to ignore small kingdoms—Cornwall, Aragon, Mercia, Sicily, Brittany...—though they must have had deep emotional attachments.
Appendices:
I UNILATERAL DISARMAMENT. '.. I have been led into a purely academic issue as if it were one of practical politics. Everybody knows that neither the United States nor the USSR will disarm unilaterally. The question whether either would be wise to do so is therefore no more than an exercise in theoretical ethics. ... It is true that I advocate practically.. the abandonment of the H-bomb by Britain and the prevention of the spread of H-bombs..'
II INCONSISTENCY?: Russell defends himself against the charge that he changed his mind; his autobiography shows he felt deeply about this—he suggested the USA should invade the USSR when it had a monopoly of nuclear weapons. If it had been true, it's a very defensible position. But Russell was (or seemed to be) utterly innocent on the Jewish issue. He also mentions the Baruch Proposal; almost certainly this would involve cryptic Jewish strangleholds over as much as possible.

Russell appended a Bibliography, everything dated 1958, including a New Scientist and including: Greville Clark & Louis B Sohn, World Peace through World Law; H W Heckstall-Smith , Atomic Radiation Dangers and What They Mean to You, Commander Sir Stephen King-Hall, Defence in the Nuclear Age; Philip Noel-Baker, The Arms Race, a Programme for World Disarmament; Linus Pauling, No More War!, and 10 Conservative MPs, A World Security Authority?

All these books swamped out any nuclear scepticism, as of course must have been intended. Russell's simple model—small units getting bigger, and terminating in one world-wide unit—must have appealed to the financial oligarchs! It's what they claim to want, with the small difference of deleting democracy. How they must have sniggered at Russell as regards nuclear matters, though.

This link includes a review of Bertrand Russell's America in which I've included comments on Jewish manipulation of Russell, on the Second World War, nuclear issues, and the Vietnam War.
And this is Bertrand Russell, Dupe of Jews with similar, but more general material by several authors.

Top of Page


HTML and all content ©Rae West. This file of Russell-only reviews first uploaded together 3 Oct 2015. New reviews added subsequently as dated.