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Rudyard Kipling, Revamped for Blagojevich

by Rachel Levitt


Tags: Politics, US, Blagojevich, political scandal, poetry, Rudyard Kipling, Claudia Rosett, The Weekly Standard,

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, whose scandals are rivaled in size only by his hair, made an impassioned plea during his press conference on Friday for support and non-judgment from the media. His speech included a passage from Rudyard Kipling’s famous poem “If.” 

“If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating…”

On her blog, journalist Claudia Rosett has reworked the poem to more accurately reflect Blago’s situation. Here's a key stanza:

“If you can keep your job while all about you
Are fielding bribes and blaming it on you,
If you can duck the Feds while all men doubt you,
And bleep-ing show the charges are untrue,
If you can fight and not be tired by fighting,
Or, being wiretapped, profess surprise,
Or argue that there will be no indicting
Because it’s all a bleep-ing pack of lies...”

(Thanks, Weekly Standard)