Wednesday, November 09, 2005

A Tribute

A couple of days ago, Pete of The Curator's Egg left a rather splendid poem in a comment to a post. I'm reproducing it today as a tribute to democracy. I had feared that a lament would be required but the House of Commons was having none of it. Here here.

Well, I say "none of it" but "very little of it" would be more accurate; they did double the maximum detention period available to the police. That's something to bear in mind when Saftey says that these MPs have "weakened" our ability to combat terrorism. I've already heard him say it at least twice tonight. Well I never, a downright lie. Who'd have thunk it? But I digress.

And now, over to Pete:

CHARLES, who craved security and ended by putting everyone in prison.

Charles Clarke was one whose tender years
Were plagued by unspecific fears.
Throughout the childhood of this waif
His one desire was to be safe,
No matter what might be the price.
He would not listen to advice
Of those who, older and more wise,
Had swiftly come to realise
That absolute security
Bought at the cost of liberty
Can be too high a price to pay -
And won't protect you anyway!

So thus it was, to tell the truth
The child became a craven youth.
Despite this inauspicious start, he
Went and joined the Labour Party.
At length he joined the good and great -
Became Secretary of State
With policies galore to sell -
But, oh! the lies he had to tell,
Facts to conceal, and on occasions,
Deliberately false evasions.

The good and honest would, if pressed
To do such things, have been so stressed
They would be quite reduced to tears.
But Charlie, driven by his fears,
Was to such feelings quite inured
As long as he could be assured
That SAFETY would be paramount,
All else would be of no account.

No need to care about the loss
Of liberty - who gives a toss?
The most important thing of all
Is building round us all a wall
So no-one can get out or in,
Or else the terrorists will win.
So in our secure little heaven,
Where cameras watch 24/7
We'll be quite safe, and here we'll stay,
Freedom securely locked away (1) -
Safe from those who would destroy it
And from those who should enjoy it.

Thus Charlie brought to middle years
His strangely unspecific fears
And since he never learnt to bear 'em
He made quite sure we all would share 'em.

The moral of this sorry fable
Is - danger is inevitable. (2)
For freedom cannot be defended
By taking measures that will end it,
And if you simply won't attend
We'll all come to a wretched end
As Charlie keeps his hand on nurse
And helps us find that 'something worse'.

(1) Along with all who have opinions
Considered 'awkward' by his minions.

(2) The fact I won't apologise
Will surely come as no surprise
Given the amount of time
I wasted trying to find a rhyme

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