Ally Fogg comments for The Guardian:
The best political comment tumbles through the ages like a snowball, gathering mass and momentum with each new appreciation. Whatever our politics, most of us can still find validation or inspiration in the works of Paine or Burke, Mill or Marx. So when invited to write in praise of my own ideological idol, the pioneering anarchist and feminist Emma Goldman, I was not surprised to find her words still rang true and clear. But as we approach the 100th anniversary of Anarchism and Other Essays, her first and best book, what is astonishing is the continuing relevance of her subject matter. Rereading the book today, one could easily be browsing any given week on Comment is free.
Could there be a better riposte than this to the New Labour stalwart and scourge of sex traffickers, Denis McShane:
"What is really the cause of the trade in women? Exploitation, of course; the merciless Moloch of capitalism that fattens on underpaid labour, thus driving thousands of women and girls into prostitution ... Naturally our reformers say nothing about this cause. They know it well enough, but it doesn't pay to say anything about it. It is much more profitable to play the Pharisee, to pretend an outraged morality, than to go to the bottom of things."
In the aftermath of the papal visit, how is this for a defence of aggressive atheism:
"Religion! How it dominates man's mind, how it humiliates and degrades his soul. God is everything, man is nothing, says religion. But out of that nothing God has created a kingdom so despotic, so tyrannical, so cruel, so terribly exacting that naught but gloom and tears and blood have ruled the world since gods began."
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