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The Xenophile Historian

K. U. P.

(Kimball's Unauthorized Perversion)

Comedemocracy: A Theory

(I have heard many ideas on how to build a better system of government. Written in 2002, this is one of the best columns I've read on the subject. Mr. Bodek suggests that the world's funniest people also do the best job of governing themselves. I guess that means that as long as we can laugh at ourselves, there's still hope for us.)

Comedemocracy: A Theory

By Martin M. Bodek

I have a theory I'd like to share with you that I believe can withstand scientific scrutiny. I submit that nations with a sense of humor become peaceful and/or democratic, while nations with no sense of humor become vengeful and/or, um, whatever the exact opposite of democratic is.

Let us look through the political situations of some notable countries to determine if my theory proves true:

The Americans: No other country in the world has more standup clubs and comics than the United States. We also produce more situational comedy on earth than any other nation. We've got various comedy awards shows testifying to that fact. Hence, because we've got such a great sense of humor, we're peace-loving and democratic.

It wasn't always like this though.

We used to be British, but then sought out the Americas so we could drop our quasi-Aussie accents and find better methods of personal hygiene. We set out for America and found a funny native people making rain dances, naming their children after rivers, mountains, and other inanimate objects, and laying the groundwork for the second funniest Seinfeld episode ever, you know the one where he dates Winona? We couldn't quite understand this comedy, so we cut them to pieces. Why did we do this? Because of Comedemocracy Theory # 2.1b:

When a non-funny nation encounters a funny nation, the former will seek to destroy the latter. I will get back to this point.

We didn't establish a democracy until the funniest founding father of all, Benjamin Franklin, wrote a book about beer. Now, that was Funny -- so we established a democracy almost immediately thereafter.

It then took our funniest President, Abraham Lincoln (Hey, I read that in a poll that quoted a survey which excerpted a study) to realize slavery wasn't funny, so he proclaimed it emancipated. The South didn't find this funny, so they had Lincoln killed according to rule 2.1b.

Told you I'll get back to this point.

Once slavery was abolished, our democracy became stronger because black folk are the second funniest people on earth (First are the Jews, which we'll discuss below); so funny in fact, that select jokes that would fly right over a Caucasian fellow's head have caused people to spontaneously combust in places like the Apollo Theater.

The British: They were ticked off for a while because the Americans kept whooping their rears in battle, but one day a press photographer caught Queen Elizabeth in an uncompromising position and Britain has been peaceful and hilarious ever since, producing such comic luminaries as Benny Hill, Monty Python, and Prince Charles' resemblance to Alfred E. Neuman.

Today, they produce the funniest TV commercials on the planet, hence a strong democracy and America's greatest ally.

The French: These people have been ticked off ever since they were forced in grade school to pronounce words way differently than they were spelled. "Champs Elysees" is pronounced "Shawns Elizay" for pete's sake! This tickles the government pink, hence they're officially a democracy. It drives the people crazy, though. Hence they hate Jews, finger-point at pretty much everyone else on the planet, and are consistently the first nation to "cast the first stone." They will be a peaceful country when they finally pronounce words as they're spelled. Until then, the phrase "Tour de France" will continue to be pronounced as "That race where American Lance Armstrong kicks French tushy."

The Jews: Aside from proudly and heavily contributing, disproportionately to our size, to various Nobel-laureate categories, Jews supply more comedians than any other nation or people on earth. The list of funny Jews include Jerry Seinfeld (You know, from the show "Seinfeld"?), Mendel Berlinger (Milton Berle), Adam Sandler ("Little Nicky" was funny, I don't care what you say), Paul Reiser, David Brenner, Jon Stewart (I stopped watching Seinfeld at 11:00 PM so I could watch his show), Melvin Kaminsky (Mel Brooks), Alan King, Don Rickles, Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman), Rob Schneider, Bob Einstein (Super Dave Osborne), Jon Lovitz, Carol Liefer (Seinfeld writer. Elaine was based on her), Jackie Mason, Andrew "Dice" Clay (Okay, he doesn't quite "represent," but he's a revolutionary), The Marx Brothers, Lewis Black, Jacob Cohen (Rodney Dangerfield), Al Franken, Jerry Lewis (In his youth, admittedly he's a sourpuss now), Billy Crystal, Jerry Stiller, Rita Rudner (My favorite comedienne), Gilbert Gottfried, Allen Konigsberg (Woody Allen), Nathan Birnbaum (George Burns), Elayne Boosler, Richard Belzer, Bill Maher (How about that! I didn't know this until I started doing the research for this list.), Andy Kaufman, Garry Shandling, Richard Lewis, Howie Mandel, and all Three Stooges, may their memory be blessed.

Why are we so funny? Because it's our only defense after having been kicked out of every country on earth besides the U.S. (So far). It's also why Israel is such a powerful democracy despite being surrounded by 21 Arab countries. A Palestine would make it 22, but they'll still be angry and Jews will still be funny. So ha! (pun definitely intended)

The Arabs: The most ticked off people on earth. Why? Because they're not funny, no sense of humor whatsoever, no Palestinian Comedy Awards show to speak of. Also, their women are covered up in Burkas, which is another theory I have that I'll discuss at another juncture. If Osama Bin Laden would've had a cave jester, he would've been happier and not have been so peeved at the U.S. Somebody's gotta e-mail these people some jokes, particularly the ones about Bin Laden himself, it'll liven 'em up a little.

So what can the U.S. do to turn humorless countries into yukfests, hence, creating flourishing democracies? The very same thing Luke Helder was trying to hint towards with his midwest terror rampage:

Bomb them all with smiley face patterns.

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