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Feature Topic: The Relationship Between Justice and Truth

 Religion and Ethics Newsweekly - Headline :  Obama Appeals to Social Justice and National Character in Health Care Reform Speech 11 Sept 2009

Malcolm Muggeridge - 1972 

Malcolm Muggeridge (1903-1990) was a British born journalist popular in the nineteen hundreds.  Initially attracted by Communism, Muggeridge and his wife lived in Moscow in the 1930's where he acted as a correspondent for the Manchester Guardian.  Increasingly, Muggeridge recognized the failings of Communism and Stalin's regime, but his writings exposing the widespread famine in the Soviet Union were censored by his editors and refuted by other journalists and publications (most notably, the New York Times).  Below is an excerpt from Chronicles of Wasted Time, a collection of Muggeridge's publications.  In it, Muggeridge rebukes immoral policies enacted under the "false face" of justice and provides a chilling example of the cynicism that can exist in government.

"...truth is very beautiful; more so, as I consider, than justice -- today's pursuit -- which easily puts on a false face.  In the nearly seven decades I have lived through, the world has overflowed with bloodshed and explosions whose dust has never had time to settle before others have erupted; all in purportedly just causes. The quest for justice continues, and the weapons and hatred pile up; but truth was an early casualty.  The lies on behalf of which our wars have been fought and our peace treaties concludes!  The lies of revolution and of counter-revolution!  The lies of advertising, of news, of salesmanship, of politics!  The lies of the priest in his pulpit, the professor at his podium, the journalist at his typewriter!  The lie stuck like a fish-bone in the throat of the microphone, the hand-held lies of the prowling cameraman!  Ignazio Silone told me once how, when he was a member of the old Comintern, some strategem was under discussion, and the delegate, a newcomer who had never attended before, made the extraordinary observation that if such and such statement were to be put out, it wouldn't be true.  There was a moment of dazed silence, and then everyone began to laugh.   They laughed and laughed until tears ran down their cheeks and the Kremlin walls seemed to shake.  The same laughter echoes in every council chamber and cabinet room, wherever two or more are gathered together to exercise authority.  It is truth that has died, not God."

Malcolm Muggeridge, Chronicles of Wasted Time, (Vancouver:  Regent College Publishing, 2006), 19-20.