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The Culch no image

Published on March 15th, 2009 | by Allan


The flabby hand of Government in the mouth of Satire

Public Inquiry and The Irish Bulletin are both covering RTE’s editorial decision to tone down Nob Nation’s pieces on our buffoonish Taoiseach Brian Cowen.

Satire is what keeps right minded people from going insane during regimes of inadequacy. I submit that the Daily Show and Colbert Report sustained the mental health of America during the Bush years. There is an inverse relationship between the strength of satire’s bite and the depths of ineptitude and moral bankruptcy plumbed by the political class, so if Oliver Callan is going harder on Brian Cowen than usual it should be seen as a barometer of Cowen’s performance.

The real issue here is that RTE is emerging as an unreconstructed mouthpiece of Government, prepared to lean on its own talent rather than risk the disapproval of Leinster House. No better evidence of this is the totally discredited Prime Time, broadcasting as live a prerecorded autocue reading by Maire Hoctor.

Satire allows the venting of steam. Cowen’s people would want to weigh the sensitivities of Brian against the palpable anger on the street, and then back off and let Nob Nation get on with keeping us sane.

(The views expressed in this post, as with all the others, are this here blogger’s personal opinions and don’t represent the views of other contributors)

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About the Author

Allan is a Galway based cartoonist with a smörgåsbord of interests including visual art, music, technology and politics, and has always wanted to use smörgåsbord in a sentence. He also blogs at Caricatures Ireland.

6 Responses to The flabby hand of Government in the mouth of Satire

  1. Anthony Sheridan says:

    I agree with your analysis Culch.ie. Thanks for the link.

  2. Allan says:

    Cheers Anthony.

  3. Darren says:

    More of this please and don’t be too hasty with your disclaimer – you have agreement from me.

    When they are being told to tone it down, it means they’re doing their job right. Remember Spitting Image in the 80s/90s. Before its decline it was an important part of Britain’s political system.

  4. Green Of Eye says:

    I completely agree with you Alan. Our cash is good enough when it comes to funding and licenses but heaven forbid the wrath of the government or the ‘reputation’ of Cowen be soiled (Biffo is seemingly unaware that it currently lies filthy and tattered on the ground).

    I guess that would mean independent broadcasting/journalism right? Independent of government or religious institutional sway? My arse. Rte should be ashamed of themselves.

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