Praise Without Pay’s …

A century ago, in August 1921, Labour Councillor Jack Wooster told crowds demonstrating in support of Poplar’s rebel councillors that “Sympathy without relief [the name back then for welfare benefits] is like mustard without beef”.


Sympathy without relief
is like mustard without beef
or lettuce without leaf

Platitudes without resources
are like arms without forces,
like starters without main courses

Praise without solidarity,
promise without parity,
is not justice but charity

Heroes without wages
are like books without pages
or shows without stages

And wages without rises
are like wins without prizes,
shocks but not surprises

Pity without money
is like bees without honey –
It’s not f***ng funny.

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