Russell Brand Speaks on Truth and Change

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Filed under: Creative Activism

Russell Brand on revolution: \”We no longer have the luxury of tradition\”
by Russell Brand
NewStatesman
October 24, 2013

But before we change the world, we need to change the way we think.

[Article follows the video]


Russell Brand on BBC’s Newsnight with Jeremy Paxman, October 24, 2013


Russell Brand, guest editor of the NewStatesman:

russellbrandnewstatesman-200When I was asked to edit an issue of the New Statesman I said yes because it was a beautiful woman asking me. I chose the subject of revolution because the New Statesman is a political magazine and imagining the overthrow of the current political system is the only way I can be enthused about politics.

When people talk about politics within the existing Westminster framework I feel a dull thud in my stomach and my eyes involuntarily glaze. Like when I\”™m conversing and the subject changes from me and moves on to another topic. I try to remain engaged but behind my eyes I am adrift in immediate nostalgia; \”How happy I was earlier in this chat,\” I instantly think.

I have never voted. Like most people I am utterly disenchanted by politics. Like most people I regard politicians as frauds and liars and the current political system as nothing more than a bureaucratic means for furthering the augmentation and advantages of economic elites. Billy Connolly said: \”Don\”™t vote, it encourages them,\” and, \”The desire to be a politician should bar you for life from ever being one.\”

I don\”™t vote because to me it seems like a tacit act of compliance; I know, I know my grandparents fought in two world wars (and one World Cup) so that I\”™d have the right to vote. Well, they were conned. As far as I\”™m concerned there is nothing to vote for. I feel it is a far more potent political act to completely renounce the current paradigm than to participate in even the most trivial and tokenistic manner, by obediently X-ing a little box.

Total revolution of consciousness and our entire social, political and economic system is what interests me, but that\”™s not on the ballot. Is utopian revolution possible? The freethinking social architect Buckminster Fuller said humanity now faces a choice: oblivion or utopia. We\”™re inertly ambling towards oblivion, is utopia really an option?

I heard recently Oliver Cromwell\”™s address to the rump parliament in 1653 (online, I\”™m not a Time Lord) where he bawls out the whole of the House of Commons as \”whores, virtueless horses and money-grabbing dicklickers\”. I added the last one but, honestly, that is the vibe. I was getting close to admiring old Oliver for his \”calls it as he sees it, balls-out\” rhetoric till I read about him on Wikipedia and learned that beyond this brilliant 8 Mile-style takedown of corrupt politicians he was a right arsehole; starving and murdering the Irish and generally (and surprisingly for a Roundhead) being a total square. The fact remains that if you were to recite his speech in parliament today you\”™d be hard pushed to find someone who could be legitimately offended.

Read the rest of this article here.

Related:

  • Russell Brand May Have Started a Revolution Last Night, Gawker.com
  • Russell Brand: Radical Prophet, Mystical Force of Nature, David DeGraw