Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Teaser Tuesday (11-5)

Sunday, Monday, Happy Days
Teaser Tuesdays, happy days.

"And in the day that we sweep to victory at the ballot-box, and you refuse to turn over to us the government we have constitutionally and peacefully captured, and you demand what we are going to do about it --- in that day, I say, we shall answer you; and in the roar of shell and shrapnel and in whine of machine-guns shall our answer be couched. You cannot escape us." 

From Jack London's The Iron Heel. Ernest Everhard, London's hero, is responding to the Oligarchy's intention to maintain their control of the government through brute force. He's deliberately echoing their previous statement, with which the trusts revealed their true nature. That is below.

"This, then, is our answer. We have no words to waste on you. When you reach out your vaunted strong hands for our palaces and purpled ease, we will show you what strength is. In roar of shell and shrapnel and in whine of machine-guns will our answer be couched. We will grind you revolutionists down under our heel, and we shall walk upon your faces. The world is ours, we are its lords, and ours it shall remain."  [...]

"I am answered," Ernest said quietly. "It is the only answer that could be given. Power. It is what we of the working class preach. We know, and well we know by bitter experience, that no appeal for the right, for justice, for humanity, can ever touch you. Your hearts are hard as your heels with which you tread upon the faces of the poor. So we have preached power. By the power of our ballots on election day will we take your government away from you --"

"What if you do get a majority, a sweeping majority, on election day?" Mr. Wickson broke in to demand. "Suppose we refuse to turn the government over to you after you have captured it at the ballot-box?"

"That, also, have we considered," Ernest replied. "And we shall give you an answer in terms of lead. Power, you have proclaimed the king of words. Very good. Power it shall be. And in the day [...]"

There the teaser picked up.


  1. Wonderful teaser, direct and to the point. My TT: http://www.rundpinne.com/2010/05/teaser-tuesdays-forty-eight-x-lemuria.html

  2. After I read your teaser, I went and read your post on The Iron Heel ... and then I added my library's copy to my hold list. Thank you for giving me something else to read!

  3. Lynn: I think that justifies the existence of Teaser Tuesdays, then! Hope you enjoy.


Thank you for visiting! Because of some very clever spambots, I've had to start moderating comments more strictly, but they're approved throughout the day.