Evgrafovich Mikhail Saltykov-Shchedrin. Liberal

In some countries, there lived a liberal, and, moreover, such a frank, no one word is not rumor, and he will shout at the top of his voice: "Ah, gentlemen, gentlemen! what you do! because you are ruining yourself! "And none of it is not angry, but, on the contrary, everyone said," Let warned — we are still better! "- Three factors — he said — should be at the basis of every community: freedom, security and self-activity. If society is deprived of his liberty, it means that they live without ideals, without burning thoughts, having no basis for creativity, no faith in his coming fate. If society recognizes itself unsecured, it imposes on him and makes printing depression indifferent to his own fate. If society is devoid of initiative, it becomes unable to device their businesses and even gradually loses idea of the fatherland.

Here's how liberal thought, and I must tell the truth, the thought correctly. He saw that the people around him, like poisoned flies roam, and said to himself: "That's because they do not realize that they are the builders of their own destinies. It convicts, to which happiness and misfortune comes without any foresight on their part, which had not been given selflessly to their feelings, because they can not determine whether it is feeling or some phantasmagoria. " In short, the liberal was firmly convinced that only these three factors can give solid foundations of society and lead to yourselves all the other benefits necessary for the development of the public.

But that is not liberal, not only noble thought, but was eager to do good work. Treasured his wish was that the beam of light that warms his thought, finessed the surrounding darkness, made the sign of it, and all living watered favor. All the people he recognized his brothers, all equally encouraged to enjoy their favorite pavilions round about him under ideals.

Although this desire to translate the ideals of the field empyrean on a practical basis pripahivalo not entirely trustworthy, but the Liberal blazed so sincerely, and, moreover, was so sweet and gentle to all, that he was even willing to forgive disloyalty. And he was able to express the truth with a smile, and a simpleton, where you have to pretend to show off and selflessness. And most importantly, never, he did not demand anything, step on the throat, but always possibly.

Of course, the term "possible" did not represent his zeal for nothing particularly flattering, but the liberal peace with him, first, for the sake of the common good, which he always stood in the foreground, and, secondly, to protect its ideals of futile and premature death. Moreover, he knew that the ideals it animates, are too abstract nature to affect the lives directly. What is freedom? security? initiative? All this abstract terms, which should be the tactile fill content as a result came to public bloom. These terms are, in its generality, can educate society can elevate the level of his beliefs and hopes, but tangible benefits, drawn directly feeling of contentment can not bring. To achieve this benefit, to make the ideal of public, it is necessary to exchange it for little things and in this form to apply to the healing of ailments, depressing humanity. That's where, in exchange of the small things, and is produced by itself is an expression: "if possible", which of the two sides come into contact, one makes fairly abandon the closure, and the otherlargely reduce their demands.

All this is perfectly understood our liberal and, having secured these considerations, girded for battle with reality. And first of all, of course, turned to competent people.

— Freedom — in fact, it seems there is nothing wrong with not? — He asked them.

— Not only refused, but also very commendable, — said knowledgeable people — it's just slander us, as if we do not want freedom, we are actually only about her and are sad … But, of course, within …

— Um … "within" … I understand! What can you say about security?

— And it is welcome … But, of course, also in the range.

— And how do you find my ideal of public initiative?

— Its just lacking. But, of course, again within.

Well! within so within! The very liberal, well aware that the other way. Let him Savras without a bridle — he at one point that nakurolesil that for years and then not fix! And with the bridle — a holy cause! Savras goes and looks around: a well-TKO I were you, Savras, whip sharahnu … that's it!

And he began to liberal "within" wield: urvet there, there will cut down, and in the third place and just hide. A knowledgeable people looked at him and did not quite appreciate. At one time his work so carried away that you would have thought that they became liberals.

— Do it! — They encourage it — then go around, stushuy here, and there and do not touch. And everything will be fine. We would, dear friend, happy to you, the goat in the garden to start up, but see for yourself how we fence enclosed garden!

— I see something, I see — agreed to a liberal — but I was ashamed to break their ideals! so ashamed! Oh, how embarrassing!

— Well, a little For shame: shame eyes vyest! on the other hand, possibly, still undertaking its accomplished!

However, to the extent that the liberal idea possibly carried out, knowledgeable people guessed that even in this kind of liberal ideals do not smell like roses. On the one hand, too broadly conceived, on the other hand — not ripe, not ready to accept.

— Unbearable us your ideals! — Said the liberal knowledgeable people — we are not ready, do not hold out!

And so detailed and clear all their inconsistency and dishonesty have calculated that a liberal, no matter how bitter it was, had to admit that, indeed, in the company of his fatalistic there is any flaw: not climb into his pants, and that's that.

— Oh, how sad! — He murmured to fate.

— Weirdo! — Comforted him knowledgeable people — have something to cry! You do what you need? — The future is to ensure your ideals? — So in fact we want you to not let it. Just do not rush you, for Christ's sake! If you can not "possible", so pleasure though that otvoyuesh "anything"! After all, the "anything" has its price. Little by little, by little, slowly, but praying to God — look, one foot en you're really in the temple! In the temple, then, with the building no one looked, and you went and looked … And thank god for that.

Do nothing, and had to make up for this. If you can not "possibly" because "anything" you try to grab and say thanks for that. And liberal did, and soon so accustomed to his new position, that he wondered how he was so stupid, thinking that there could be some other limits. And all sorts of likening him to the rescue came. And wheat, they say, the grain did not immediately give the fruit and potseremonitsya. First, it must be put into the ground, and then expect it to happen as long as the process of decomposition, then it will sprout, which prozyabnet, the tube will go voskolositsya etc. That's how many enchantments should move the grain, before the fruit will give a hundredfold! So it is here, in the pursuit of ideals. Planted in the ground, "anything" — sit and wait.

And indeed planted in the ground liberal "anything" — sits and waits. Just waiting-pozhdet, not mired "anything", and all there is to it. On the stone it is, perhaps, random, or in manure soprelo — just try to make out!

— What's the reason for this? — Liberal muttered in great confusion.

— That is the very reason that you are raking it too broadly — meet knowledgeable people. — And our people are yet weak, raspodleyuschy. You're good with him, and he tries to spoon as you drown. Most have the skill to have to with these people keep themselves clean!

— Good heavens! Now what can we say about the cleanliness! Which I reserve something in the way out, and he ended up all his lost on the way. First "possible" acted on because "anything" moved out — it really is possible and even further down the hill to go?

— Of course, you can. You do not want to, for example, "as applied to infamy?"

— How so?

— Very simple. You say you brought us ideals, and we say, "Well, only if you want us to voschuvstvovali, it shall apply."

— Well?

— So, ideally, do not boast, but on our scale to reduce them so respect and act. And then, maybe, we'll see if the benefit … We, brother, also etched wolves, schemers, you see! The other day, General Crocodiles here that way otyavilsya same to us, "the Lord said, my ideal — the bullpen! if you please! "We are foolish, they believed, and now sit under his key.

Firmly liberal thought on hearing these words. Already he has from the original ideals of the labels were only one, and then there's meanness directly prescribed for them! Because that way, perhaps, before you know it, like himself found himself in the scoundrels. My God! reprove!

A knowledgeable people, seeing his brooding on his side were his hustle. 'If you're a liberal, start trouble, so no wonder, boil till the end! You have stirred up, you have ublagotvori … and act! "

And he began to act. And with regard to infamy. Try sometimes ashamed to say, aside slip away, and experienced people now on his sleeve, "Where, liberal, eyes squinted? Looking straight! "

Thus, the days passed after day, and behind them came forward and cause prosperity "in relation to dishonesty." Ideals, however, did not have much — one scum left — and did not lose heart liberal. 'Why is that I my ideals in deep meanness of the ovaries? But I did, for they pillar standing unharmed! Today, I wallow in the mud, and tomorrow will look out sunshine, dry dirt — and again I done, well done! "And these knowledgeable people listened to his boasting and assented:" That's right! "

And then, one day he was walking down the street with his friend, as usual, about the ideals kalyakal and their wisdom on what light extolled. Then suddenly he felt as if his cheek to him a few splashes fell. Where from? with what? Liberal looked up: Do not rain, they say? However, sees no clouds in the sky, and the sun, like a madman, at the zenith of playing. Poduvaet breeze though, but as dishwater poured out of the windows is not specified, and this operation can not be put suspicion.

— What a miracle! — Says a friend liberal — no rain, no slop, and in my cheek spray flying!

— And you see, that's around the corner some people hid, — said a friend — that's his business! He spit on you for your liberal business wanted, and to do so in the eyes of courage is not enough. Here it is, "as applied to infamy," the corner and spit, and you spray caused by wind.

1885 g


See also Konstantin Leontiev. What and how our liberalism is bad? 1880.

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