Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Political Humor

Political humor is a strange beast. When done right it can be the funniest thing in print. I think was Dana Carvy who used to make wicked
fun out of the first President Bush and was invited to the White House to have dinner with the President as a result. The jokes about Ronald Regan
and Jelly Beans, Jimmy Carter's teeth, Gerald Ford's stumbling down steps were all funny and laughed at by the politician as well as their
opponents. Sometimes political humor makes its way into political advertising. With such famous
lines as “3500 years ago Moses said 'Load up
your camels and asses and follow me and I'll Lead you to the Promised land Today LBJ tells to smoke your camels and sit on your asses this is
the promised land.”

Other times political humor can be simply vile and sophomoric. In its worst form it can be seditious. I believe that the ability to laugh government
and to lampoon leaders is one of the most basic of liberties. Martin Luther once said something to the effect of “The best way to defeat the devil
is first to quote scripture to him and second to laugh at him” This is kind of true with politicians as well.
Being able to laugh at them selves is
a virtue for politicians.

More than that, being able to put potentially contentious issues in a humorous format can allow us to discuss and
examine these issues with less rancor is a good thing.
Being able to allow dissent, especially through humor is something that PRC government needs to learn.
It might also be a good lesson for Hong Kong politicians. Would Sir Bow-Tie look less stiff if we thought
he could laugh at himself?

Until Next Time
Fai Mao
The Blogger who enjoys political humor

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