Where is Tom Lehrer when you need him?


As I note the shortlist for this year’s Orwell Prize. The most high-profile entry is Ed Husain’s The Islamist, which may be the people’s choice, but I am tickled to see Nasty Nick’s What’s Left? get a nod.

If you want a little wager, I suspect Nick might be worth a punt. The OP judges have in the past shown themselves quite partial to the tribunes of Decency. Aaro (so light, so fluffy) is a past winner. So is Wheen. So, saints preserve us, is Mad Mel. And, if you prefer to go upmarket, both Ignatieff and Timothy Wishbone Ash are past recipients.

And so a book that has a terminological inexactitude on just about every page gets put up for an award for political writing named after the author of “Politics and the English Language”. I’d like to think old George would have a little chuckle over that.


  1. NollaigO said,

    March 29, 2008 at 8:08 am

    You must have had in mind the line

    ..and to lie she knew was a sin…

  2. Piers said,

    March 31, 2008 at 3:46 pm

    how about:

    don’t solicit for your sister
    that’s not nice
    unless you get a good percentage
    of her price


    let no one else’s work
    evade your eyes

    plagiarise, plagiarise, plagiarise
    only please be careful
    to call it research

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