Does anyone today even know what a Bolshevik is?

It has always been one of my favourite little sayings (and one that I may have erroneously thought was ascribed to Winston Churchill) -If you’re not a socialist when you’re young you’ve got no heart, and if you’re still a socialist when you’re older you’ve got no brain. Last night I was told by a guest during casual dinner conversation that when the guest had met me they considered me extremely left-wing and was surprised what a full-on capitalist I had now become. Naturally I responded with a diplomatic and sober version of “get stuffed, comrade” and carried on with an enjoyable dinner of Indian food and high-sugar dessert. It has got me to thinking (as I have on some other occasions) about the ways that people’s views of society and the world, and even people, change over time. Am I who I was last decade, or last year, or even last week? I think the answer is no. I personally believe that few people are actually self-analytical enough to know this about themselves.

I wonder who I will be tomorrow?

Cheerio!

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21 thoughts on “Does anyone today even know what a Bolshevik is?

  1. anyway who did say that if you’re not a socialist when you’re young you’ve got no heart, and if you’re still a socialist when you’re older you’ve got no brain? if anyone did say that

  2. Scoop said that, don’t know who else did, but he might not be saying that as today he might be someone else, I choose a muppet, maybe Kermit. He is smart and he may even have said that statement somewhere along the way to stardom.

  3. Quote update – so far what I’ve found with a quick Google search is that it might have been said by Churchill, or an anarchist Catholic priest. What are the odds?

  4. final word – found with a slow google search:

    Misattributed (Wicki-Quote)
    If you’re not a liberal when you’re 25, you have no heart. If you’re not a conservative by the time you’re 35, you have no brain.

    According to research by Mark T. Shirey, citing Nice Guys Finish Seventh: False Phrases, Spurious Sayings, and Familiar Misquotations by Ralph Keyes, 1992, this quote was first uttered by mid-nineteenth century historian and statesman François Guizot when he observed, Not to be a republican at 20 is proof of want of heart; to be one at 30 is proof of want of head.

    This quote has been attributed variously to George Bernard Shaw, Benjamin Disraeli, Otto von Bismarck, and others.

    Furthermore, the Churchill Centre, on its Falsely Attributed Quotations page, states “there is no record of anyone hearing Churchill say this.” Paul Addison of Edinburgh University is quoted as stating: “Surely Churchill can’t have used the words attributed to him. He’d been a Conservative at 15 and a Liberal at 35! And would he have talked so disrespectfully of Clemmie, who is generally thought to have been a lifelong Liberal?”

    Variants: Any man who is under 30, and is not a liberal, has no heart; and any man who is over 30, and is not a conservative, has no brains.
    Show me a young conservative and I’ll show you someone with no heart. Show me an old liberal and I’ll show you someone with no brains.
    If you are not a socialist by the time you are 25, you have no heart. If you are still a socialist by the time you are 35, you have no head

    end of story. I think

  5. Well, it’s nice to be wished a pleasant day. Falls very much in line with “I’d like to be the first to wish you happy birthday”.
    Thanks for the card and gift. Plan to spend it at Borders on Sunday.

  6. take 2:

    hope you enjoy your birthday tomorrow, that is saturday 19th. happy booking. sounds like a book kind of birthday.

  7. Happy Birthday… a great birthday to be celebrated knowing that we can choose as many pigeon holes as we like… in fact, we can choose so many labels that we become truly Unique in a generally confirmist kind of way. How about being a “liberal conservative” or even a “social realist”. Maybe you are the ‘DeCafe’ or the ‘Macchiato’ of Socialism… the ideals remain but are somewhat sweetened (or de-caffeinated) by the realities of.. well, reality. I say choose a different label each day… just so that no-one is sure.

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