13 October 2010

Why are Funny People Never Conservatives?

Are there any conservative comedians?
A conservative comedian is as much of an oxymoron as noisy silence.
Some of the most pointed commentary & illuminating discourse comes from comic figures. Some of my personal favorites are Marx Brothers, Lenny Bruce, Mort Sahl, George Carlin, Woody AllenChris Rock, Dave Chappelle, Larry David, and Jon Stewart.

Are there any conservative-leaning comedians that are actually funny?
The only conservative comedian who makes us laugh is Stephen Colbert - and his schtick is a spoof. Ironically, Colbert is funny because, in character, he exposes the pointless indefensibility of a self-righteous, conservative viewpoint.

The best political comedians illuminate the absurdity or hypocrisy of any institution. Religious institutions are a ripe target. Mort Sahl takes aim with
Most people past college age are not atheists. It's too hard to be in society, for one thing. Because you don't get any days off. And if you're an agnostic you don't know whether you get them off or not. ~Mort Sahl
The hypocrisy of political dogma is ripped by George Carlin's pointed joke about the absurdly hawkish nature of conservatism,
Once you leave the womb, conservatives don't care about you until you reach military age. Then you’re just what they’re looking for. Conservatives want live babies so they can raise them to be dead soldiers. ~George Carlin
Chris Rock's solution to gun violence seems both absurd and pragmatic
Gun control? We need bullet control! I think every bullet should cost $5,000. Because if a bullet cost $5,000, we wouldn't have any innocent bystanders. That'd be it. Every time someone gets shot, people will be like, ''Damn, he must have did something. Shit, they put $20,000 worth of bullets in his ass.'' People would think before they killed somebody, if a bullet cost $5,000. ''Man, l would blow your fucking head off, if l could afford it. l'm gonna get me another job, l'm gonna start saving some money, and you're a dead man! You better hope l can't get no bullets on layaway.'' So even if you get shot by a stray bullet, you won't have to go to no doctor to get it taken out. Whoever shot you would take their bullet back. ''l believe you got my property.'' ~Chris Rock
Lenny Bruce was succinct in his assessment of justice
In the Halls of Justice, the only justice is in the halls.
Lenny Bruce
Waxing deftly about our proclivity to political expedience, Groucho Marx quipped,
Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.

Comedians instinctively understand and exploit human foibles. Conservatives ignore them. Conservatives live in the haughty and delusional atmosphere of human exceptionalism and infallibility.

I contend,
Whenever you feel infallible, you're poised for a comic fall.
How many social conservatives are scandalously discovered ostensibly "hiking" the Appalachian Trail or desperately looking for love by toe-tapping in the MSP airport rest room?

It is almost impossible to be conservative and also be funny, because
Being funny is about being human.
Stand up comedy is a profession about collective humanity. On the other hand,
Conservatism will always carry the distinctly un-funny encumbrance of individual exceptionalism.
Comedy has always been centered about human-kind’s collective fallibility. I don't see that changing any time soon.

I would, but I need the eggs

One of the most beautifully human soliloquys is found in the closing scene of the virtuosic Woody Allen comic film Annie Hall, where narating protagonist Alvy Singer illustrates his point about the need for human connections:
...this guy goes to a psychiatrist and says, "Doc, uh, my brother's crazy; he thinks he's a chicken." And, uh, the doctor says, "Well, why don't you turn him in?" The guy says, "I would, but I need the eggs."

1 comment:

  1. Maia MacNealOctober 13, 2010

    Hahahah Dad, this is my favorite blog to date. Genius.


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