From V. I. Lenin, Collected Works, 4th English Edition,
Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1968
A LITTLE EXPLANATION
The question whether our Cadets are democrats or a party of the
liberal-monarchist bourgeoisie is of great scientific interest.
Let us recall that even the Trudovik (bourgeois democrat)
Vodovozov showed vacillation on this question.
Concerning this question, Pravda referred to Mr.
Gredeskul's recent statements, repeated in "Rech ".[*]
Rech answers: "We do not know what statements by Mr.
Gredeskul Pravda is talking about."
How very nice, isn't it? Pravda said in clear and precise
terms that it was speaking of the statements repeated in Rech.
Well? Can it be that Rech does not know what is published in
Rech ?? Would it not be more natural to suppose that the liberals
want to forget certain things in their recent past for the sake of
their pre-election playing at democracy?
Be that as it may, I shall quote, with a view to clarifying an
important scientific question, what Mr. Gredeskul said in a series of
public lectures and what he repeated in Rech No. 117
(2071), without the editors making a single reservation.
"At the very end of my lecture," wrote Mr. Gredeskul, "in arguing
against the contention of Vekhi that the Russian emancipation
movement had failed (allegedly through the fault of the intelligentsia)
and comparing it with the opinion of those who stand much further to the
left than P. B. Struve but who likewise believe that the movement has
brought us absolutely nothing, I upheld a thesis to the contrary, saying
that a very great deal had been done, that the very foundations had been
laid for the future constitutional edifice, and very deeply and solidly,
too, in the very midst of the masses of
* See p. 246 of this
volume. --Ed. [Transcriber's Note:
See Lenin's "Questions of Principle". --
the people. To provide a critical confrontation for these two
assertions and at the same time to express an idea which I also consider
of the utmost political importance for our time, I brought both of them
into relation with the future and said that from the point of view of
the former (if nothing had been done in 1905-06), everything had to be
started from the beginning, or, in other words, a second movement had to
be organised, whereas from the point of view of the latter assertion
(that 1905-06 had seen the laying of the foundations for a Russian
constitution), the opposite was true -- no second popular movement was
needed but merely quiet, persevering and confident constitutional work.
"It was at this point that I was interrupted by the Lepaya chief of
police (it happened in Lepaya). In this manner there ensued in Lepaya a
police demonstration against a public denial of the need for a new
revolution in Russia" (Rech, 1912, No. 117 ).