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Robert Hutton is the author of Romps, Tots and Boffins (E&T, 2013). He has been UK political correspondent for Bloomberg since 2004; previously, he worked at the Mirror and Financial Times. Having read Artificial Intelligence and Computer Science at Edinburgh University, he is believed to be the only member of the Parliamentary Press Gallery to have built a rugby-playing robot. He lives in south-east London with his wife and sons.
How do you apologise when you're not sorry? Where can you make a fortune out of pretending to know the future? What's the best way to steal credit and avoid blame? These are the vital life skills that people need if they're going to make their way in the world. And they all involve one ingredient: flannel, the art of not saying what you mean. It's not exactly lying, but it's definitely not telling the truth. In Romps, Tots and Boffins, Robert Hutton brilliantly 'laid bare' the true meanings of the words we read in the papers. Following popular demand, he now turns his razor-sharp eye to the best, worst and most outlandish examples of waffle, fudging, obscurity, blame-shifting and point-scoring. In areas from politics to sports, academia, religion and self-help, it seems that glory, money and power flow far more freely to those who sidestep bald, ugly realities. You can steer a truck through the gap between a lie and the simple truth. This book tells you how to load the truck.