Two more titles I recall from Dr. Richter's reading list.
Long time readers will recall some of the details of my conversion experience from the dark side of collectivism back into the light of liberty at the hands of Dr. Richter. I have long lamented that I lost both my copy of The Road to Serfdom (an original first English edition from 1943) and more importantly the reading list he gave me to follow up on Hayek's after he returned to Germany. Since the list was tucked inside the Hayek work, I lost both somehow during the divorce from my first wife, Matthew's mother.
Memory is a funny thing, though, and I am still getting random flashes of what titles were on that list. Here are two of them that I chanced to recall in the same week recently. The first is a powerful memoir by Soviet defector Victor Kravchenko, entitled I Chose Freedom. I remember that this had a great effect on me at the time, almost as momentous as Whittaker Chamber's memoir, Witness, which was also on the list. Like Chambers and George Orwell, Kravchenko defected from Communism believing he was choosing death on the losing side but he did so because he thought it to be the right thing to do. This has always seemed to me to have been the very definition of moral courage.
The second title that I recently recalled is a penetrating analysis by Dr. Fred_Schwarz entitled You Can Trust the Communists (to do exactly what they say).
I will continue to work on reconstructing the complete list (there were some twenty titles or more on the page in Dr. Richter's precise handwriting) and I will also throw in some other titles I have found valuable in the almost forty years it has been since he gave it to me.
From "I Chose Freedom", p.21. Victor Kravchenko quoting his father, Andrei Fyodorovich Kravchenko:
"Always remember this: that no slogan, no matter how attractive, is any indication of the real policy of any political party once it comes to power."
I pray for you in your physical struggles and I thank you for the influence you have had on my life.
Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. James 1:12
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