Over at the Huffington Post, blogger Alf Lamont sets out to explain why the Left has a corner on the comedy market with funny men like the foul-mouthed misogynist Bill Maher, belligerent feminist Janeane Garofalo, and the clownish, but sometimes genuinely funny Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart. Lamont concludes that the Left has a monopoly on comedy because—with maaaaybe the exception of Dennis Miller– conservatives aren't funny. To support his conclusion, he lays out five points which, more than anything else, reveal his utter lack of self-awareness.
1. Comedy is inherently subversive...Those who hold the power know very well just how damaging and subversive well-placed satire can be, so those in power see little good coming from mocking themselves and the institutions they preserve.
Because fact is, Republicans hold the White House and both chambers of Congress.
2. Comedy is often a coping mechanism for adverse situations...You don't have to look too far or too deep to realize that comedy speaks to unfairness and injustice. If you haven't experienced them, if there's no struggle, there's less need to find a redeeming quality to your situation by injecting humor into your life.
Everyone knows that conservatives live such charmed lives that they never struggle with adversity. Being coerced to buy products they don't want and subsidize behaviors that violate their consciences, being told whom they may or may not rent to and how much they can charge, being subjected to a government imposed drought because an irrigation system might kill some tiny fish commonly used for bait—if you think things like these are unjust or unfair, you clearly don't know the meaning of justice or fairness.
3. It is easier to sell to the 99% than the 1%...Comedy is part of entertainment, and entertainment is a business. As a numbers game, its flat out more profitable to mock the establishment when the rest of us will be buying tickets to your shows.
So conservatives continue to outnumber liberals two to one, but conservatives are the 1%. Astounding mathematical insight right there.
4. Tradition...Let's face it, the tradition of Card-Carrying, Left-leaning, Pinko comics is a great one. A kid aspiring to comedic greatness can look to Charlie Chaplin, Lenny Bruce, George Carlin, Bill Hicks, Janeane Garofalo, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and Marc Maron, if they care to lean left. However, the pickin's are slim on the other side of the aisle. Like it or not, the success of lefty comics makes the leftist tradition of comedy a self-fulfilling prophesy.
Ok, so he was grasping to make it an even five points. This is like saying "there are no conservative comedians because there are no conservative comedians." Clever.
5. The truth...it is undeniable that the Right seems to be in a high speed dive towards absurdity so transparently errant, that it makes for simple fodder to those looking to mock. As Rory Albanese of The Daily Show pointed out during our panel," Santorum is Anti-College! How can you not make fun of that?" For my part, I've found that the most brazen lies about human sexuality, reproductive rights, health care, the environment, energy, foreign relations, and our president's background, all seem to be emanating from a political party who is having to do cartwheels of logic in order to keep from stumbling on its own silly reasoning.
The funny thing with this last point is that I don't think he even meant it to be funny.
But there you have it. Conservatives aren't funny because they aren't funny. Best not even try (I'm looking at you, Rob Long).