Comedians may be taking over American politics. Or so hopes John Avlon in The Daily Beast. And that does not mean that all USA politicians are clowns. Actually ‘I forgot to duck’ uttered by the shot Ronald Reagan were the last words of a President that made me laugh – but then again, and according to Gore Vidal, Reagan was a professional actor ‘hired to impersonate a president’ so he doesn’t count. Avlon reckons that ‘laughter and satire is the only sane response to the sickening spin cycle we’re subjected to on a daily basis’ To which I say: ‘Congruence at last!’
Comedians and satirists have philanthropically been doing their best for humanity for centuries. Think Shakespeare, Swift, Mark Twain, Lenny Bruce, Bill Hicks and our very own Chris Morris and Howard Jacobson. However such comic prophets have been far outnumbered by the ludicrously rich, mind-numbing, ‘Have you ever noticed?’, socially irrelevant blabbermouth ‘funnymen’ who are irritatingly ubiquitous. Maybe this is about to change in America. Two men are leading the Comic Revolution, John Stewart and Stephen Colbert.
John Stewart,voted ‘most trusted man in news’ last year plans a pre-election ‘Rally to Restore Sanity’ in which he has advised people to wear banners saying “9/11 was an Outside Job” and “I disagree with you, but I’m pretty sure you’re not Hitler”.
My personal favourite Che Guevara of comedy is Stephen (“Keep your facts, I’m going with the truth”) Colbert who also plans a ‘Keep Fear Alive’ rally which as a Provocative Therapist, I might feel obliged to attend! Just watch him testify at a real Government Congressional Immigration Hearing which explains why the ‘audience’ only chuckled while I cried with laughter.
Comedy has the capacity to mirror truth in medicine as well a politics. Anyone want to invite me to testify to a select committee on Health in the House of Commons? Accept it dear readers, America is always going to be two steps ahead of us in everything.
Provocative Therapists know the power of satire in counselling. When patients get their Inner Joke (the joke of how they are preventing themselves from finding happiness) they change. And people can change. And America can change. And it wasn’t a comedian who said that, it was President Barack Obama.* Hear! Hear! and Ha! Ha!
* Well he was only a presidential candidate when he carved the word ‘change’ in stone but that’s not important as long as he doesn’t lose his sense of humo(u)r now.