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The Comedy of Corruption

Filipinos are among the happiest people in the world. They know how to get a good laugh out of the worst situations. They simply grin and bear it. Just consider how they get back at corrupt public officials — through countless jokes passed around by SMS. The Erap jokes come to mind. But can they match the Italians in the game of making humor an effective anti-corruption measure?

In connection with the raging brouhaha over the “ZTE-FG” Broadband Scandal, methinks Filipinos can learn a thing or two from an Italian comedian — on how to take humor farther and use it to fight corruption, literally. Beppe Grillo is a national celebrity in his home country for doing just that, not only using political satire as a tool to shame corrupt public officials but also as a tool of some sort to prosecute them. New Yorker correspondent Tom Mueller writes how Grillo became a comedian of corruption, and how his brand of humor has led to the public undoing — and prosecution — of many a corrupt Italian politician and corporation. Click here . (Warning to the faint of heart : this excellent essay is punctuated by adult language).

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Written by Romel

February 8, 2008 at 10:03 am

Posted in humor, Politics

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