Another query from the same person

Jim Farmelant farmelantj at
Fri Feb 23 18:16:15 MST 2001

A friend of mine who is currently in India has sent
the following request concerning a quote from
Lenin.  Can anyone here help him out?

Jim Farmelant

"For now I send a request of my own. This week I spent
a day at the Delhi School of Economics as a follow-up
to the lecture there last week. During lunch in the
chairman's office and for an hour or so afterwards, we
had in effect an curious kind of seminar, i.e. with
one student (me) and five professors. One of them is a
top Indian student of Samuelson. I said to him: "I've
been told that in his Nobel-Prize acceptance speech
Samuelson compared his work in economics explicitly
with Newton's in physics, but Prof. X tells me that
Samuelson's psychology is mere common-sense
psychology, not based on any highly elaborated
would-be scientific school of psychology; so I
consider Samuelson less intelligent than Alfred
Marshall, who at least had the insight to say that
'every change in social conditions is likely to
require a new development of economic doctrines.' What
do you think of this criticism?" This set him back and
he hemmed and hawed uncomfortably for a while, but
then, after admitting that Samuelson was vulnerable on
this score, came up with some suggestions as to where
I might look to find him admitting that his models
were inapplicable e.g. to Soviet Russia. This was all
very courteous and collegial, and then just as were
all taking leave of each other, he asked if I could
help him with a bibliographic problem. Lenin is said
to have written - somewhere - about the question of
when (i.e. under which circumstances) it would or
would not be a good idea for workers to go on strike.
But my friend the student of Samuelson hasn't been
able to find the passage (or essay) in the collected
works of Lenin. I told him I don't know but I have a
Marxist friend in the USA who is good at solving this
kind of problem and I would pass ask him to send me
the information. Can you do this? "
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