Friday, November 19, 2010

Neutral language

~ Norman Campbell

Although we're quite respectable,
And virtuous, and old,
We love a lie, delectable,
If it's discreetly told.
A libel that is hot with spite
Affords us infinite delight.

But, oh! the Law's severity
Holds as an iron band;
It curbs our wild temerity,
And stays our dauntless hand.
Much defamation we would dare,
But Damages make us forbear.

Our duty to society
Is ever in our mind;
We stand for strict propriety -
For fear we should be fined.
We keep our sheet from libels free
Because it pays us best, you see.

We ever strive to stimulate
An arctic air of probity,
And virtues oft we fabricate
From nauseous necessity;
The pen is greater than the sword -
But Costs are things we can't afford.

First published in The Bulletin, 13 May 1915
Cartoon by Michael Leunig.

My week?  There have been some challenges but we are working with stakeholders to ensure a positive outcome. Code for 'flying by the seat of my pants'. At least there's swimming tonight. Some things stay the same.


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