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The Georgicks of Virgil, with an English Translation and Notes Virgil, John Martyn Ipsi in defossis specubus secura sub alta Otia agunt terra, congestaque robora, Pierius says it is confecto in the Roman manuscript. And Tacitus also says the Germans used to make caves to defend them from the severity of winter, .

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But that's not even the real point here.

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The nub of the matter is that it's the reluctance of those same journalistic kulaks to call Tricky out on some of the bullshit he says and does that has helped his career last for as long as it has done. And I say that as a fan.

The Stool Pigeon's King Canute-like stand against the digital tide

It's intriguing to note that rather than attempting to replicate the form of the traditional broadsheet or music-press feature as Mulholland's Tricky article does , many of the Stool Pigeon's finest moments — for example, Cyrus Shahrad's informative and knowledgeable piece on MF Doom, and Daddy Bones's less serious brush with Snoop Dogg — are unapologetically presented phone interviews. The reason these work so well here — as they used to in Andy Warhol's Interview — is that so long as both journalist and artist can commit the requisite amount of energy to the conversation, each will emerge with their dignity and mystique enhanced in slightly different ways.

Meawhile the writer won't have been obliged to track down their quarry on three separate occasions in an environmentally destructive sequence of different time-zones, solely to fabricate the illusion that they have spent the last six months with their subject, when in fact they're probably looking at a total mutual engagement of a couple of hours tops. It is probably not the dirtiest of the music journalist's professional secrets that at some point in his or her career even the most honest writers — however genuine their preference for the music of Albert Ayler over that of Free or Tiesto — will have felt obliged to misleadingly imply the existence of a face-to-face encounter when only a telephone conversation actually took place.

If the Stool Pigeon's more rigorous and straightforward approach promotes greater accountability in this area, that would be one more reason to be grateful for its continued existence.

Stool Pigeon

And let's not forget that — as anyone who has recently house-trained a puppy will tell you — an iPad's no good for insulating your kitchen floor against the toxic depredations of dog piss. This article contains affiliate links, which means we may earn a small commission if a reader clicks through and makes a purchase. All our journalism is independent and is in no way influenced by any advertiser or commercial initiative. In the more common figurative meaning a stool pigeon is a police informer, or criminal's look-out.

Most reference sources say that this expression derives from the hunting practice of fixing a dead or replica pigeon on to a stool to act as a decoy to attract other birds.

phrases, sayings, proverbs and idioms at

What the stool in question was isn't entirely clear. It certainly wasn't the three-legged piece of furniture we now know, but one of the many other meanings of the word. In the 16th century a 'stoale' was the base of a tree - what we would now call a stump, just the place for a decoy bird to sit. It is also possible that 'stool' is derived from 'estale', which is an early French word applied to a pigeon used to entice a hawk into a net.

Stool Pigeon | Board Game | BoardGameGeek

It isn't far from 'estale pigeon' to 'stool pigeon'. In the United States and United Kingdom, whistleblowers had been viewed for decades as someone not from this world. But this perception began to change rapidly once information leaked about whistleblowers in, say, the pharmaceuticals and defence research areas.

A whistleblower pointed out that a certain commonly used medicine has undesirable side effects, which fact was known to but concealed by the pharmaceutical company. The drug was banned, meaning multibillion-dollar losses to that corporation. Another blew his whistle on the unrealistic ambitions of an arms programme even as most scientists were busy persuading the government to spend additional billions of dollars on it.

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  4. Step by step, people started to realize that whistleblowers are not stool pigeons, but heroes who stepped out of the crowd, although they knew pretty well that their life would most likely turn for the significant worse. In actual fact, an individual eventually saved scores of human lives and billions of dollars, and often both. In , 79 percent of U.

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    4. World Wide Words: Stool pigeon.