Friday, September 11, 2009

publish and be damned


When a blackmailer tried to extort money from the first Duke of
Wellington to cover up a disreputable aspect of his past, the duke's
response was: "Publish, and be damned." He had enough confidence
in himself not to be swayed by this threat to his good name. Sure
enough, his reputation remained unsullied, and indeed he won
respect for allowing the story to be known. He knew the blackmailer
lives off fear, and if one shows no fear, a blackmailer is powerless.
.
The subjects of blackmail and hate mail have been bounced around
a lot at the manor lately. There is something to be said for standing
up for what you know is right, as in the wise words of Thoreau, "For
an impenetrable shield, stand inside yourself".

55 comments:

  1. I stand with the Duke and Thoreau!

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  2. Hello Willow,

    Great picture of the Duke. His portraits always exude a powerful personality, which is no doubt why he did not fear his enemies, on whichever battlefield.

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  3. keep standing. if you give in you give power.

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  4. this is perfect timing for me. My step daughters are being (for lack of a better word) bitchy to my kids, and this time I know mine didn't do anything wrong. Not true always, but this time I know. Anyway, we need to stand inside ourselves and be strong. Maybe the evil forces will take a chill pill...

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  5. Here on the farm we believe in integrity and wear Wellington boots!

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  6. I LOVE that Arija! I'm puttin' on my Wellies today!!

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  7. I'm with anyone who doesn't want to pay off their blackmailer-it's far better to call their bluff (depending of course on how Royal you are and what scandal is about to come out)

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  8. Live without shame, and it doesn't matter who says what about you. Wow.

    When my parents were working for Civil Rights, we got a lot of hate mail and even ugly phone calls, always anonymous. My mother called the hate mongers "cowards."

    In spite of the hate mail, and the fact that someone put a cross in our front yard, then set it on fire, my parents continued their work, openly and shamelessly. How I wish they could be alive today to see President Obama. They would be so happy.

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  9. He sounds like a Scorpio. What a terrific quote. xx

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  10. Is that a round-about way of saying you are being blackmailed, and that you are about to divulge some scandalous secret from your past?

    Walk in the truth, sister! Walk in the truth!

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  11. Carlarey, actually, yes, in addition to hate mail, someone in recent months, has attempted to blackmail me. Don't worry, it's not one of my bloggy friends, but an extended family member. And I'm proud to say, I held my ground.

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  12. Yes, well, that would be me. Say what you want. The people who know me, know me.

    Getting more hate mail Willow?

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  13. My kind of man! Bold and forthright! :)

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  14. I just read a bit of a Louisiana politician running for office, despite revelation of a similar previous indescretion for which he apologized.

    He pretty much seems to agree with the Duke, it seems.

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  15. Blackmail is such a neat plot device ... but I am always hoping that the blackmail-ee stands up and says just that .. go ahead .. print it, say it. Just as I always want the person with the gun being pointed at him/her and threatened to confess/spill whatever would say go ahead shoot me.

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  16. "If no one shows fear, a blackmailer is powerless."

    Having witnessed someone in the act of blackmailing and bribing, it is evident that standing your ground for the truth has a lot of power. And having a clear conscience is extremely powerful. It's pitiful to watch someone weave a web of lies and deceit and become more and more tangled in that web of their own making. It brings to mind another quote, "The truth will set you free." Evidently, a hard lesson for some to learn.

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  17. Betsy, truth is so powerful.

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  18. A lot of emotional blackmail goes on over here in my house. We try not to do it... but... when it works it works....

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  19. Those who stupe to such lows as attempting blackmail or sending hate mail are lacking in their own personal lives. Never give them power by acknowledging them. Whatever has happened in ones life prior to today is simply a building block of who and what they have become. Persons who feel they must reveal something hurtful about another human being should be pitied and nothing more. Return kindness for hatefulness and see what happens.

    Good luck with this situation, Willow, you are a remarkable and talented woman. Remember, we choose our friends and are stuck with our family.

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  20. Holy crap Willow. Is the Manor really the bat cave? You are really a superhero crime fighter right? Batwoman in Wellies? That could work! All the best.

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  21. I've loved that saying on your sidebar for a long time - standing up takes courage! and I admire that even when I disagree with the stand!

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  22. Aside from the "disreputable aspect of his past", he seemed to be a man of great character!

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  23. I needed the reminder to
    "stand inside myself" today.

    Jjjj

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  24. I needed the reminder to
    "stand inside myself" today.
    (and I must agree, Wellies always help!)

    Jjjj

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  25. I hope you are not having to deal with such ugliness. You do not deserve it. But you have the right idea here. "Publish and be damned!"

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  26. This entire page of posts is so entertaining and thought provoking. And you have me longing to pull on a sweater and a kilt. Have a happy weekend, Willow.
    Catherine

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  27. Willow, that portrait is wonderful!

    I am sorry to learn that you've been the intended victim of blackmail. Coming from a family member makes it that much more tragic.

    I also wholeheartedly agree with what Jeane wrote. I may not always agree with the stand someone takes, but I do admire their passion for doing so.

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  28. Brava! Through the eight years that I've had to deal with a blackmailing cyber stalker, I've learned that to take away their power is the strongest weapon their is.

    Hang in there!

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  29. Stand tough--I'm sure you will!

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  30. Thank you for visiting my Pick a Peck of Pixels blog and for commenting there on my post about Fountain Pens.

    I suppose that is how Joe Wilson felt and he is suffering the consequences. At least his Democrat hopeful, Rod Miller, got over $700,000.00 toward his election campaign in one day after the lunatic remark Wilson made. If I could, I would vote for Mr. Miller.

    I like the idea behind the post today.

    My midget friend told me when I first began going around the country speaking at colleges and universities.

    He said, "You know more than anybody in the audience about your subject. Be yourself and everything else be damned."

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  31. The Duke was right. Happy week-end to ya, Willow!

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  32. Yup, Joe Wilon's smark aleck stunt sure did backfire, didn't it, Abe?

    I love the wise advice your friend gave you.

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  33. Well said Willow and 'publish and be damned indeed'.
    Blackmail and such is the work of a moral coward and must be resisited at all costs..
    Stay strong Willowy One...Im sure you will with the support of your family.
    Ps Did you know that Apsley House, the Dukes residence had the rather unique address; 'No 1, London'.
    'One' has indeed arrived with an address like that!

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  34. And I hope that to whoever those wise words and that straighforward quoted were directed will heed the message well.

    Nicely written, beautifully executed.

    Greetings from London.

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  35. I have loved that Thoreau quote ever since I saw it on your sidebar, on a day in need...

    I was struggling with some negative stuff and how to handle it, then I saw that quote and it was the answer.

    Peace - Rene

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  36. this has been a common theme at work lately -- stand up for yourself or noone else will!

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  37. Life is too short for lurking with those who are stuck in the muck--I prefer to spend my time among those who are flowering in the breeze.

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  38. right on.

    you are true to yourself i know.
    and i do try very hard to stand inside myself.
    xx

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  39. Maybe they're just jealous of your light fixtures...makes my back hurt just looking at them...

    ...right on Sista!!!

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  40. This is not good Willow, life's too short for all that yukky stuff.

    I recently put a disclaimer up over @ The Hedge as MOTH was whingeing that I may have been misreprenting him - oh please!
    'Any opinions, design concepts, renovation & building tips and other details should be taken with a grain of salt and a large margarita.' Stay strong.
    Millie ^_^

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  41. What a curious and insightful story; a moral for these days of fear mongering.

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  42. Willow

    Let those cast the first stone without sin.... totally agree better to put yourself out there then give in to fear and worst --- abuse --- what cowards blackmailers are...

    Joanny

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  43. What the heck, Willow? This person's been doggin' you for awhile if it's the same one you posted about some time back. Do it and be done with it, I'd say. Wait, I think you did.

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  44. love this! wise words indeed. there's no match for truth and integrity.

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  45. Well said Willow, I believe in Karma, A person himself is the sole doer and enjoyer of his karmas and their fruits.

    I hope that the hate mail that you have referred to in the past has stopped.

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  46. Good for the Duke--and good for you!

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  47. Yes, we must be vigilant against other's slander. We don't have to attack but we must stand our ground and not be intimidated...especially when among family.

    Thinking of you lot in this time. Wishing for the best all round.

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  48. How dreadful that someone should try blackmail!
    My criminal law teacher at University reserved his utmost distaste for blackmailers because they tend to do it even to people who are bound to help them like their own lawyers...
    Sick people.

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  49. Good that you are standing your ground and good that we can choose our friends because as sure as hell, we cannot choose our family!!

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Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)