A LETTER FROM FRANKIE BOYLE

April 30, 2010

A letter from Frankie Boyle

Obviously, it feels strange to be on the moral high ground but I feel a response is required to the BBC Trust’s cowardly rebuke of my jokes about Palestine.
As always, I heard nothing from the BBC but read in a newspaper that editorial procedures would be tightened further to stop jokes with anything at all to say getting past the censors. In case you missed it, the jokes in question are “ I’ve been studying Israeli Army Martial Arts. I now know 16 ways to kick a Palestinian woman in the back.
People think that the Middle East is very complex but I have an analogy that sums it up quite well. If you imagine that Palestine is a big cake, well…that cake is being punched to pieces by a very angry Jew”.

I think the problem here is that the show’s producers will have thought that Israel, an aggressive, terrorist state with a nuclear arsenal was an appropriate target for satire. The Trust’s ruling is essentially a note from their line managers. It says that if you imagine that a state busily going about the destruction of an entire people is fair game, you are mistaken. Israel is out of bounds. The BBC refused to broadcast a humanitarian appeal in 2009 to help residents of Gaza rebuild their homes. It’s tragic for such a great institution but it is now cravenly afraid of giving offence and vulnerable to any kind of well drilled lobbying.

I told the jokes on a Radio 4 show called “Political Animal”. That title seems to promise provocative comedy with a point of view. In practice the BBC wish to deliver the flavour of political comedy with none of the content. The most recent offering I saw was BBC2’s “The Bubble”. It looked exactly like a show where funny people sat around and did jokes about the news. Except the thrust of the format was that nobody had read the papers. I can only imagine how the head of the BBC Trust must have looked watching that, grinning like Gordon Brown having his prostrate examined. The situation in Palestine seems to be, in essence, apartheid. I grew up with the anti apartheid thing being a huge focus of debate. It really seemed to matter to everybody that other human beings were being treated in that way. We didn’t just talk about it, we did things, I remember boycotts and marches and demos all being held because we couldn’t bear that people were being treated like that.

A few years ago I watched a documentary about life in Palestine. There’s a section where a UN dignitary of some kind comes to do a photo opportunity outside a new hospital. The staff know that it communicates nothing of the real desperation of their position, so they trick her into a side ward on her way out. She ends up in a room with a child who the doctors explain is in a critical condition because they don’t have the supplies to keep treating him. She flounders, awkwardly caught in the bleak reality of the room, mouthing platitudes over a dying boy. The filmmaker asks one of the doctors what they think the stunt will have achieved. He is suddenly angry, perhaps having just felt at first hand something he knew in the abstract. The indifference of the world.“ She will do nothing” he says to the filmmaker. Then he looks into the camera and says “ Neither will you”.
I cried at that and promised myself that I would do something. Other than write a few stupid jokes I have not done anything. Neither have you.

Frankie Boyle

Lilipip Rocks

September 8, 2009


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Entrepreneurs can change the world – watch this!

September 8, 2009

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Billions With Zero Knowledge

June 26, 2007

Here is a video that wasn’t done by us, but is a great example of showing the team and culture of a company. Michael Arrington (who I had a great time with at Mesh) picked this up and mentioned “…they should use this as one of their primary recruiting tools.”

Billions With Zero Knowledge

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Viktor Schauberger

May 12, 2007

Viktor Schauberger
(30 June 1885–25 September 1958)


Viktor Schauberger (30 June 1885–25 September 1958) was an Austrian forester/forest warden, naturalist, philosopher and inventor.The inventor of what he called “implosion technology”, Schauberger developed his own highly idiosyncratic theories based on fluidic vortices.
Very little of Schauberger’s work has received mainstream acceptance, and the bulk of his work would likely be classified as pseudo-science.Viktor Schauberger could be called the father of implosion technology. The implosion principle is, of course, diametrically opposite to what today’s explosion oriented technology utilizes. Implosion has to do with a self sustaining vortex flow of any liquid or gaseous medium, which has a concentrating, ordering effect and which decreases the temperature of the medium, in opposition to the dictates of “modern” thermodynamics.Viktor Schauberger constructed water sluices, which, with controlled water temperature and vortex flow, were able to transport logs of a higher specific weight than would normally allow their transport on water. He proposed a more effective means of utilizing hydroelectric power by his jet turbine. In the second world war he was forced to develop his concepts of vortex dynamics at the service of Hitler’s military goons, and, is said to have produced working prototypes of levitating disks using these principles.

At the end of the war, the remains of his work fell partly into Russian, and American, military hands. After the war, Schauberger worked on a concept of water-based power generation, through vortex action, in a closed cycle engine. In 1958 he was brought to the USA, by promises of a possibility he would get his technology further developed and applied. Afterwards, he was thoroughly debriefed, his writings and prototypes were kept, and, he apparently had to sign a legal document and ‘promise’ not to promote his technology further – all so that he would simply be able to return home to Austria. Five days after his return to Austria – on 25 September 1958 – he died. A book that details some of the life story of Schauberger was written by Olof Alexandersson.

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May 12, 2007

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March 9, 2007

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