"If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face, forever."
George Orwell
[Eric Arthur Blair] (1903-1950) British author
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Not forever, George.
 -- David L. Rosenthal     
    Then how long? A year? A decade? A century? How about a millenium? Just how long should a police state be allowed to stamp people into the ground? I propose NEVER!
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
    I can't imagine humankind could take it forever, but I can certainly see Cheney's picking up George's boots and stamping them on any face he chooses until the illiterati wake up.
     -- Dick, Fort Worth     
    If the US continues down the path of Fascism, who will come to the aid of the nation? China? Sorry, folks, this one is for all the marbles -- if the US goes, it could carry on for centuries -- long enough to erase the idea of individual freedom from all but the minds of 'radicals' (enemies of the State).
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    George is talking about what in his time seemed the inevitability of the socialist take over of the entire world. I am not sure that we aren’t still in as much peril since we now think that communism is dead. Letting our guard down may be more devastating that if the Soviet Union had continued. Look around. We accept outright communist/socialist teaching in our schools all the way down to kindergarten. We have communists writing our textbooks. We have socialists as a majority of our journalists. We almost never hear a personal opinion from some celebrity that is not socialist in nature. They spew their ignorance unchallenged and believe it to be wisdom. Most of them have no idea what will happen if their philosophy becomes the ruling thought process. They just continue to be politically correct with no brain engaged. Where ignorance flourishes Democrats happen.
     -- warren, olathe     
    Sadly, George was all too right. Socialism (and its attendent cousins Fascism, Nazism and Communism) aren't dead and they have taken root in the US. The leftists are now poised to take even more than they have already. They have most Americans squabbling about who gets more money and who they can stick it to, creating more and more sheeple. The Democratic Party is absolutely out of control and The Republican Party is only better by a marginal degree. Its all about controlling people. Better be prepared to fight for your rights someday.
     -- David, Tampa Bay     
    Bush/Cheney are not the problem except in the sense that they made it possible for the next administration to lace up the boot, and that's what's about to happen. Socialism always fails, but it often murders thousands in the process. Just read Hayek. I can only hope I will not live to see what my grandchildren will have to deal with.
     -- Bill, Memphis     
    Do any of you even realize that George Orwell was a socialist himself?
     -- Alex, Houston     
    In this comment thread: people who completely missed the point of George Orwell's canon of works.
     -- Bryan, London     
    Are people so deluded and narrow minded as not to see that the totalitarianism that Orwell opposed throughout his life is not just that of Communism, and Fascism, but that of the society we live in today. The idea of a 'police state' is just as relevant in the USA or the UK as in China or Cuba. It just takes a different form. I agree with Bryan from London, expand your minds.
     -- Jonah Conrad, London     
    Forever? Who would stand for it? We would.... you see, the face being crushed doesn't even recognize that it is being crushed. The face looks up at the boot's owner and says. "Thank you for protecting me. How can I help you become more powerful?"
     -- Kendall, Chicago     
    Any ideology in the world can be perverted into evil. Orwell as a moderate and non-dogmatic socialist knew that. As a democratic socialist I fully acknowledge that many people have been murdered in the name of socialism - i.e. under the Soviet Bolshevik police state and purges of dissidents, the murder of Jews in the name of National Socialism, and the killing fields of Cambodia under Pol Pot who killed off about one-sixth of his population under socialism. Democratic socialists like Orwell had the courage to not blindly follow the political left in its entirety, and he challenged lefist fanatics. I challenge Marxist lunatics every time I here them. The political right has to be careful to not fall into dogmatism, or just as they fear that leftists will fall into communism, they will fall into being reactionaries. As a socialist my advice is this: BEWARE OF ANY SOCIALIST, CAPITALIST, NATIONALIST OR OTHER "IST" WHO PROMISES A UTOPIAN FUTURE! Utopia is scientifically impossible!!! The world is imperfect just as people are, and that world is beautiful. It's the dream world of utopian fanatics who want a perfect society, a perfect people, a perfect race, a perfect universe that is sick and disgusting - because it always leads to tyranny.
     -- Ryan, London, Canada     
    Anyone from any political ideology who smugly looks down upon other people and insults them for not following the "true way" as they see it is a person who has elements of authoritarian collectivism in their mind. I have nothing against individualism, but I really think people need to learn to "love thy neighbour" and "treat unto others as you would treat unto oneself" - those are valuable lessons from the New Testament. Sadly, too many people today are so self-centred and busy with work to even get to know their neighbours these days. What a sad reality. Learn to love other people in spite of their flaws and in spite of differences and you will become a truly good person. That's why I can be friends with conservatives, because I don't shout them down because I disagree, I respect them and thus they respect me, I learn mistakes in my world view from them, and then they do so from me. Nobody's perfect, so don't buy any argument from any politician from left, right, or center who smugly claims to know all the answers - because they are either liars or delusional.
     -- Ryan, London, Canada     
    Extreme collectivism and extreme individualism are paths to violence. Somewhere inbetween is better, but it can never satisfy extremists on the far-left and far-right who will scream injustice.
     -- Ryan, London, Canada     
    Funny, because as I recall, Orwell was a social progressive. He was pro-socialism, not pro revolutionary socialism. Silly Americans.
     -- lozzer, lincolnshire     
    Incrementally, with persistence, obama in this direction.
     -- blindly, following, cus I'm told to     
    Utopia is not impossible. But it's not going to come with everyone bickering over such silly things as who gets to dictate their way of life over everyone else. We have the technology now to end human hunger, as well as our dependence on fossil fuels, and more than enough space to go 'round... But we have to stop following ideologues who promise the world but have nothing to offer.
     -- Jeshua, Bethlehem     
    Wake up dudes. Over 90% of the worlds wealth in the hands of 1% of the population, meanwhile - millions die from financially preventable diseases. The boot is already pounding the human face into the ground. You are all still caught up in ridiculous partisan notions of Republican vs Democrat...without even realising who the real 'enemy' is..
     -- Guy Fawkes, London     
    Agreed. Watch people who win: they want to decimate, to humiliate, and to inhibit the hopes of retaliation. The boot MUST stomp forever to uphold the realities of he who wears the boots. One may do a lot with a boton except sit on it. We live in a culture of domination, ferocious politics, and profit at the expense of people, property, and the plant.

    Orwell was dead on. Rock on George.
     -- Matthew J. Cote, San Francisco     
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