A 4chan user with an open thesaurus at his desk could come up with the argument Russell Brand made on 23rd of October’s Newsnight when he was interviewed by Jeremy Paxman. Oh, the environment! Oh, economic ‘disparity’! Oh, ‘ignoring the needs of the many’!
Wow, Russell. Please tell me more about your ideas on policies? What’s that? You don’t have any? Then don’t waste the world’s time pretending to be Oliver Cromwell. Yet, people are falling for this act. There are many acting like it’s 1789 France and that the people are going to pick up their pitchforks and storm the Bastille. Facebook pages such as ‘Russell Brand for Prime Minister‘ really show the level of enthusiasm for the man. Yet this seems to go against even the adolescent level of observations Brand discusses.
We can all see where Mr Brand is coming from. Everyone has had moments in their lives where they disagree with the Political system. Yes, there are problems in the world, problems that all human beings should be passionate about, and yes, our government is imperfect. However, Brand offered no solutions or theories, simply stringing polysyllabic words together and throwing in ‘revolution’ willy-nilly.
Paxman questioned in the interview, “Is it true you don’t even vote?” Brand has never voted. By that stance, Brand is discouraging those who see him as role model to vote. He even states, “Why would I encourage a constituency of young people to vote?” Voting is a rite, not a requirement. As much as you choose who to vote for, you also reserve the option of abstaining. He shouldn’t vote because, as you can read in his article for The New Statesman, he is too discouraged by the idea of the political system to fully understand any policies or bills put forward by parties. The main problem with our system is that we are encouraged to vote based on things we could not truly understand, such as the EU trade agreements and the economy.
I agree with Brand that we should question the nature of voting. Why should I have a valid opinion on something I have never been fully educated on? However, Russell Brand’s idea of encouraging all not to vote would throw our country into an anarchist society based on lack of knowledge. Why shouldn’t a professor of Economy have a vote on Banking Reform? Why wouldn’t a Doctor have a vote on Healthcare? It even seems to stick a middle finger up to all that have battled, starved and given up their lives for the basic rite to vote. He insults people like Emily Davison, and with Brand having such a strong female following I can’t help but feel a guttural sense of disgust for his lack of respect for his own fans.
If you look past his extended vocabulary, ‘I come from the kind of social conditions that are exacerbated by an indifferent system that really just administrates for large corporations and ignores the population that it was voted in to serve’, none of what he says is actually grounded with facts or anything more than passing observations. He even boarders on shouting Illuminati level conspiracy theories at one point when asked how he thinks politicians get into power, ‘I imagine there are hierarchal systems that have been preserved through generations’. Just like the politician’s he is criticising, he too refuses to answer Paxman’s questions directly, often completely diverting the question to something he previously stated before making him repeat himself like a Creationist Republican.
The Left-Wing media are going wild for Russell Brand’s bait. And when I say ‘bait’, that’s exactly what it is. This was a stunt, full of half-baked political rants with no real substance. The biggest annoyance of this media storm is to see much respected papers like the Guardian placing him upon a pedestal on the backs of the people (most likely because of the amount they have invested into the persona of Russell over the years). You could even compare him to the character ‘Waldo’ from Charlie Brooker’s last episode of the fantastic series, ‘Black Mirror’. Russell Brand speaks of the UK’s problems, which are already common knowledge of voters. Everyone is angry at bankers and no one wants global warming. But like Waldo, he is an avatar of anger with no solution. If Brand did run for Government, I am sure he would get elected, but after that the only thing I can see Mr Brand doing is panic.
- WATCH: Russell Brand brings the message of revolution to Newsnight (newstatesman.com)
- I’m Gonna Take A Pass On Russell Brand’s Bloody Revolution (theawl.com)
- Why Russell Brand IS a ‘trivial man’ with his apathy-fuelled revolution (mirror.co.uk)