Posts Tagged ‘David Mitchell’

Vox Political: Adam Hills Fighting ISIS with Mockery and Satire.

November 18, 2015

Mike over at Vox Political has written a very good piece about Adam Hills and his strategy of combating ISIS through ruthless mockery and satire. Hills, you will remember, is the Ozzie presenter of the satirical show, The Last Leg, whose regular inmates also include Victoria Coren’s other half, David Mitchell. He quotes Hills as saying that he was at a meeting with Australian diplomats and politicos in which the Middle East was discussed. They told him that ISIS are committing their atrocities in the West in the hope of creating a backlash against Islam generally. They will then try to present themselves as the true defenders of Islam to the region’s embattled peoples.

And so Hills has taken a different strategy. He attempts to fight them not by attacking Islam, but by sneering, mocking and satirising ISIS in order to deny them support and credibility. For example, he held a competition to see what they should be renamed, so long as their new monicker included ‘isis’. The winner was a lady, who suggested they be called ‘Cystitis’. And so they were on the great man’s programme.

And Hills also explains how you too can help defeat ISIS. It’s simple. You think of all the horrible, bigoted jokes about Islam, and just make them about ISIS. Thus you attack them, while stopping them promoting the racial and religious fears they want to provoke. Simples! as that wretched Meerkat would say.

The piece is at http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2015/11/18/adam-hills-explains-how-ordinary-people-can-fight-terrorism/. As well as quoting Hills, it also has videos of him ripping ISIS a new one. Not that the terrorists aren’t already full of ar****les.

This is exactly what we should be doing, and what the nations of the Middle East are doing already. Nick Knowles, one of the founders of the anti-racist group, Hope Not Hate, wrote a message to the Czech prime minister on Monday expressing his disgust at his attendance at an anti-Islam rally. Knowles stated that he had been told by MI6 that this was precisely the reaction ISIS wants. They want Muslims to be hated and despised, so that they can gain recruits from alienated refugees. Hence the need to make the point that the enemy isn’t Islam, it’s ISIS.

As for mockery, this is what the peoples of the Middle East are already doing. The Young Turks carried a report a while ago about an Egyptian wedding, where the groom and his friends staged a mock ISIS kidnapping, before throwing off their disguises. ISIS were monsters, but they can’t stop people like themselves dancing and having a good time. The Egyptians have a reputation as the funny men of the Arab world. Just as Irish comedians are the stereotypical comic entertainers of the English-speaking world, so Egyptian comedians are in demand all over the Arab world as professional jokers. And in contrast to the dour image of Islam ISIS and terrorist organisations like it wish to promote, the peoples of the Middle East see themselves as a vivacious culture of joie de vivre. I read somewhere that despite living on opposite sides of the Med, the French and Egyptians instinctively understand each other. Given that seems to be the image each country has of themselves, of people who enjoy life and good things, I’m not particularly surprised.

And The Turks pointed out that the Egyptians weren’t alone. All over the Middle East, apparently, there are TV programmes giving the supposedly fearsome and invincible warriors of the Islamic State a damn good satirical kicking. These include spoofs of talent shows, in which their fighters are shown to be stupid and utterly incompetent, their guns falling to pieces when they try to strip them down and put them back together.

ISIS are butchers, but that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t treat them as clowns.

And we do need to make a clear difference between ISIS and Islam. Looking around one of the remaindered bookshops in Bristol last week, I found several shelves full of books pointing out that ISIS don’t speak or represent the world’s Muslims by any stretch of the imagination. I’ve forgotten the exact title of one of them, but it clearly pointed this out. If Islam is supposed to promote terrorism, then why out aren’t all of the 1.5 billion Muslims on this planet terrorists? The answer is clearly that while some terrorist groups are Muslim, this does not mean that the religion as a whole promotes or endorses terrorism.

The enemy is ISIS and murderers like it, who wish to create fear, hatred and suspicion. We can defeat them by rejecting this, and treating them with the contempt and disdain they deserve.

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Adam Hills and Wossy Tell the Rich to Pay their Tax

February 14, 2015

Mike over at Vox Political has just put up a short piece about Adam Hill’s exhortation on last night’s The Last Leg for the rich to pay their tax. He was supported in this Jonathan Ross, showing his usual bizarre taste in clothing, as well as Josh Widdecombe, David Mitchell and Alex Brooker. He also has the clip of that section of the show. Naturally, this follows the revelations that not only were HSBC helping people to avoid paying tax, the government also knew all about it. What is interesting is when Wossy and the others talk about how they don’t try to avoid paying tax, because it supports the very infrastructure they use – schools, roads, hospitals and so on.

Mike’s piece is A message for rich tax-avoiders from The Last Leg, and it’s at http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2015/02/14/a-message-for-rich-tax-avoiders-from-the-last-leg/. Go over there and have a good laugh. If you can stand the sight of Wossy’s jacket.