I suppose it’s the first 4 letters which generate in my mind a sort of carrot up the arse, stiff upper lip, holier than thou image .
I think maybe it was a desirable trait in the days of Queen Victoria, when it denoted a moral, conservative stance. Nowadays, it is a trait of the progressives who are awake to any opportunity to denounce.
It is also the armour of the petty bureaucrat, who will follow the letter of the law despite great injustice being the consequence. e.g.:your visa renewal is refused because you paid the wrong fee; you must quit your job and leave the country.
These thoughts have been kindled by a recent article on Celebrity Slavery*:
The fashionable pursuit of reparations from celebrities, who might shell out rather than run the risk of ‘cancellation’ and humiliation, smacks of extortion.
Certainly the latter suggests a commercial morality: a skeleton of a rich man’s ancestors is far more valuable and attracts greater media attention.
Much easier to apply leverage to an individual than governments of former colonies where there are many of the estimated 40 million people still in slavery.
Researching rectitude, I came across this graphic of virtues:
They seem pretty wet to me, grounded as I am in the more traditional cardinal virtues of prudence, fortitude , justice and temperance.
Be careful, be brave, be fair and moderate in all that you do.
If you practise those virtues you don’t need to be woke, righteous, progressive or vociferous.
*Article by Peter Kurti, The Spectator, 21 January 2023,