Friday, March 20, 2009

Shakespeare on Congress, AIG

King Lear, Act IV, scene vi:

What, art mad?
A man may see how this world goes with no eyes.
Look with thine ears: see how yond justice rails upon yond simple thief.
Hark, in thine ear:
change places; and, handy-dandy, which is the justice, which is the thief?

Thou hast seen a farmer's dog bark at a beggar?

Ay, sir.

And the creature run from the cur?
There thou mightst behold the great image of authority: a dog's obeyed in office.

Thou rascal beadle, hold thy bloody hand!
Why dost thou lash that whore?
Strip thine own back;
Thou hotly lust'st to use her in that kind
For which thou whipp'st her.

The usurer hangs the cozener.
Through tatter'd clothes small vices do appear; Robes and furr'd gowns hide all.
Plate sin with gold, And the strong lance of justice hurtless breaks:
Arm it in rags, a pigmy's straw does pierce it.

None does offend, none, I say, none; I'll able 'em:
Take that of me, my friend, who have the power
To seal the accuser's lips. Get thee glass eyes;
And like a scurvy politician, seem
To see the things thou dost not....

In other Shakespeare news:

Lefteris Pitarakis/AP
A detail of the Cobbe portrait.
Scholars Doubt Authenticity of New Shakespeare Portrait