Ty kontroverse stran Kiplinga myslím asi nejlépe shrnuje úvodník k jiné jeho knize (daleko méně známé, ale také výtečné, „Stalky & Co.“):|
... among and alongside all these bad attitudes which seem calculated to outrage the values that most educated people today affirm - values which can be roughly summed up in the term liberal democracy - there exist other attitudes and values whose absence from contemporary life we all feel and are probably the worse for. The values are described by obsolete words like honor, truthfulness, loyalty, manliness, pride, straightforwardness, courage, self-sacrifice, and heroism. That these virtues exist as active and credible possibilities in the world of Stalky & Co., and that they seem not to in ours - or, if they do, appear almost solely in corrupted forms - must give us pause. Such a fact may serve to remind us that the moral benefits, conveniences, and superiorities of modern domestic societies have not been acquired without cost. Part of this cost seems pretty clearly to have been paid by a diminution in the older masculine virtues ... In the moral life of history there are apparently no gains without losses. Few books urge us to confront this contradiction more barely and boldly than Stalky & Co. — a přesně totéž platí i pro další Kiplingovy věci, obzvlášť pro leckteré jeho básně.