At the very beginning of _The Tacit Dimension_, Michael Polanyi reminds his reader why he turned to philosophy:
> I first met questions of philosophy when I came up against the Soviet ideology under Stalin which denied justification to the pursuit of science. I remember a conversation I had with [Nikolai] Bukharin in Moscow in 1935. Though he was heading toward his fall and execution three years later, he was still a leading theoretician of the Communist party. When I asked him about the pursuit of pure science in Soviet Russia, he said that pure science was a morbid symptom of a class society; under socialism the conception of science pursued for its own sake would disappear, for the interests of scientists would spontaneously turn to problem of the current Five-Year Plan. 
How ironic that modern capitalism seems to be asserting much the same thing. (And now, now it seeks to erode general education in favor of “workforce development”.)
More on [Bukharin](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bukharin) (Wikipedia).