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Justin Trudeau's S-bomb: Is it wrong to swear on the job? Add to ...

Justin Trudeau blew it the minute he called the Environment Minister a piece of doo-doo, using a four-letter word that starts with S.

Now he’s knee-deep in damage control.

The Montreal Liberal MP apologized Wednesday after Question Period, saying he “lost his temper.”

But he didn’t miss the opportunity to explain why he’d lost his cool. Environment Minister Peter Kent had “dared” to chastise NDP environment critic Megan Leslie for not attending a climate-change conference in Durban, South Africa, even though the government prevented members of the opposition from doing so, Mr. Trudeau said.

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Lesson learned: Swearing in the House of Commons is a sure-fire way to get your point across – even if you have to apologize first.

But Mr. Trudeau Jr. is hardly the first to pepper his opponents with four-letter words.

Recently, New Democrat Pat Martin gained extensive media coverage for his F-bomb tweets over the Harper government’s repeated invocation of closure. And unlike other salty-mouthed politicians, including Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, he saw no need to apologize.

Political strategy aside, profanity on the job may be a sign of the times. Contrary to our reputation as a polite society, Canadians are more likely to spew expletives at work than people in the United States or Britain, CTV has reported.

Cursing at the boss isn’t recommended. But swearing on the job can reduce stress and boost employee morale, a British study found.

Researchers at Britain's University of East Anglia concluded that keeping emotions bottled up was less healthy that letting it rip and moving on. They also said that swearing was more common among lower-level employees compared with those in management and executive positions. (MPs, take note.)

Gone are the days when politicians were known for eloquent discourse. But there’s no doubt the House of Commons could use a morale boost.

Do you think it’s okay for politicians - or your colleagues - to curse on the job? Do you?

Follow on Twitter: @AdrianaBarton

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