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Full text of "Authority and the individual"

AUTHORITY   AND   THE   INDIVIDUAL
governments, in their turn, must leave as much scope
as possible to local authorities. In industry, it must
not be thought that all problems are solved when
there is nationalization. A large industry—e.g. rail-
ways—should have a large measure of self-govern-
ment; the relation of employees to the State in a
nationalized industry should not be a mere repro-
duction of their former relation to private employers.
Everything concerned with opinion, such as news-
papers, books, and political propaganda, must be
left to genuine competition, and carefully safeguarded
from governmental control, as well as from every
other form of monopoly. But the competition must
be cultural and intellectual, not economic, and still
less military or by means of the criminal law.
In cultural matters, diversity is a condition of
progress. Bodies that have a certain independence ofJ
the State, such as universities and learned societies,
have great value in this respect. It is deplorable to
see, as in present-day Russia, men of science com-
pelled to subscribe to obscurantist nonsense at the
behest of scientifically ignorant politicians who are
able and willing to enforce their ridiculous decisions
by the use of economic and police power. Such
pitiful spectacles can only be prevented by limiting
the activities of politicians to the sphere in which
they may be supposed competent. They should not
presume to decide what is good music, or good
biology, or good philosophy. I should not wish such
matters to be decided in this country by the personal
108   '