Russell Brand discusses Iggy Azalea and the appropriation of black culture (watch the full interview from October 2014 here)

  • “Hasn’t that always been the way with mainstream culture? Whether it’s the blues or rock n’ roll [or hip hop]. The re-appropriation of black culture into the mainstream? That’s always been the way. It becomes sanitized. It loses its original message without ever conceding any rights to non-white people. Take the best bits. Keep the fruit. And abandon the people.”
  • “The idea that black culture is constantly being ransacked is a powerful narrative, a powerful story that began with slavery, one of the great abominations of human history. That injury hasn’t been healed. The civil rights struggle is only 50 years ago and still racism is a prevalent issue in this country and all over the world.”
6

If we acknowledge that the Chapel Hill murders were a hate crime, then we have to examine our cultural climate. A cultural climate in which films like American Sniper, which at least simplify the situation in the Middle-East and America’s position over there, that these kinds of films and that kind of narrative are contributing to waves of anti-Muslim feeling. We have to accept that we have a responsibility in the way that we tell stories.

Russell Brand - Chapel Hill Vs Copenhagen - Which is Terrorism? (x)

HOLD THIS NEW GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABLE.

Yesterday I asked you to remember the past five years. I asked you to remember the devastation that the Tories have inflicted on Britain. I asked you to reject the Conservatives.

Alas, democracy has spoken: the Conservatives have a majority.

I’m bewildered, dismayed, disappointed but most of all I’M ANGRY.

I’M ANGRY THAT A GOVERNMENT THAT IS HELLBENT ON CUTTING THE DEFICIT AT ANY COST HAS BEEN RE-ELECTED.

I’M ANGRY THAT A GOVERNMENT WILLING TO CARVE UP AND SELL INSTITUTIONS THAT QUINTESSENTIALLY DEFINE BRITAIN HAS BEEN RE-ELECTED.

I’M ANGRY THAT A GOVERNMENT THAT HAS SOUGHT TO DEMONISE AND HAS CONSEQUENTLY ALIENATED A NATION’S POLITICS HAS BEEN RE-ELECTED.

I’M ANGRY THAT THE LIBERAL DEMOCRATS HAVE BEEN PUNISHED FOR THEIR CONTRIBUTION TO THE COALITION AND YET THE PARTY WHICH WAS AT THE HELM HAS BEEN RE-ELECTED.

I’M ANGRY THAT RUPERT MURDOCH HAS BEEN ABLE TO USE HIS MEDIA EMPIRE TO TARNISH A MAN’S CREDIBILITY AND DETERMINE THE ELECTION.

I’M ANGRY THAT THE GREEN PARTY MANAGED TO CARRY IN EXCESS OF A MILLION POPULAR VOTES AND YET THIS HAS ONLY TRANSLATED INTO ONE PARLIAMENTARY SEAT. 

I’M ANGRY THAT THE LABOUR PARTY WILL INEVITABLY TAKE THIS ELECTION AS A SIGN TO MOVE BACK TO NEW LABOUR POLITICS, THUS MAKING THE CHOICE BETWEEN LABOUR AND CONSERVATIVE EVEN MORE MINUTE ONCE AGAIN.

So today, I ask you to remember how you are feeling right now. I ask you to channel your anger, fears and disappointment and I ask you to make bloody damn sure that this new Conservative government is accountable to the people. 

DEMOCRACY SPOKE LAST NIGHT BUT IT NEEDS TO CARRY ON SPEAKING FOR THE NEXT FIVE YEARS AND BEYOND.

TAKE YOUR ANGER AND REMEMBER.

I don’t want to get too cosmic about it, but we are just this sort of “temporary blob of atoms”, you know, endowed with consciousness for the merest moments in infinite space.
—  Russell Brand
This is what 3 days of a Conservative majority looks like...

Now they have a majority why not bring back Fox Hunting after Labour banned it in 2004. It faced a lot of opposition from Tories back then because what else were they meant to do on the grounds of their sweeping country estates? Well, don’t worry boys, don those flat caps and get on the wellingtons - hunting season is coming. Sigh.

The Human Rights Act is heading for the chop. Instinctively Conservative plans to scrap them sounds awful - I mean they are HUMAN RIGHTS. Apparently it’s all to do with the European Convention have too large an influence over them. Bloody Europeans, at it once again! Coming to our country and telling us how to treat humans with dignity! The cheek of it!

The much talked about Referendum is now an inevitability and looming. With such a slim majority and Tory backbenchers renowned for being Eurosceptic, Cameron looks like he might have a fight on his hand. (Is anyone else starting to miss the Lib Dems just a bit?)

Michael Gove is back on the frontline. Our old Education Secretary was one of the most hated Tories going before prior to the election when he was wheeled into the shadows of the Commons as Party Whip. Now the election is over and he has been released. How unfortunate.

City bankers were elated by the Conservative victory. I mean who can blame them? Pesky Labour would have introduced the 50% Tax on their earnings over 150k and planned to tax their mansions. So if you’re feeling glum and unrepresented by democracy, take comfort in knowing that the bankers are happy. 

MASS UPRISING AGAINST AUSTERITY AND THE CONSERVATIVES! HURRAH! Now, I will never condone a War Memorial being vandalised, those women fought for the rights that we enjoy today. However, the way the Newspapers are focusing on ‘vandals’ instead of the overarching message of the protest is grating. To people asking, ‘why are they protesting against an elected majority government?’, well, 36% of the electorate simply is not a majority. We need electoral reform so everyone’s voices are heard.

Disclaimer: I hear this cut was planned earlier this year but the document had the misfortune of being released in the hours after the election. Still though, the document highlights once again that the Tories are ready to cut the benefits of the most vulnerable in society. I feel the need to hold up a big ‘WE TOLD YOU SO’ sign to the Tory voting electorate.

Alas, probably the saddest, no more ‘Ed Balls’ day. 

SO, ALL THAT IN THREE DAYS. HERE’S TO THE NEXT FIVE YEARS!

Anything that we’re describing through science, we’re describing through the prism of the 5 limited senses. Our eyes can only see between infared light and ultraviolet light. There’s light bouncing around everywhere! Our ears can only hear a tiny decibel range, can’t hear the noise of a dog whistle, can’t hear any high pitched frequency sounds! Isn’t it likely then that there are other vibrations, frequencies, energies, consciousness, moving through the Universe?
—  Russell Brand
youtube

Say what you want about Russell Brand, but he talks a hell of a lot of sense, a hell of a lot of the time. And he doesn’t patronise youth, he tries to empathise.

“I think he’s a terrific guy, and I like him very much. He’s immensely warm. Extraordinary ability to look people deep into the eyes, such as they melt like a chocolate put in front of a fire … I mean he really has, he’s quite — those brown eyes, just gaze, and he just sort of squats and goes … “Yeah?” and you gotta go, “Yeah…ahhhh” (dazed look) …Yeah, I didn’t realize it was an official position but if it is I would vote for him in a heartbeat. He’s a good man.” - Stephen Fry when asked if he’s been replaced as the nation’s forefront “pop intellectual” by Russell Brand