Ben Elton: [dis; spectrum; put down; traduce; heated; drop a brick; the sound of things; 56:32] Well, of course there is. There is a lot anywhere and I do believe that good satire has to have a point of view. I think, one of the problems with modern political comedy is it tends to be generally everybody just dissing all politicians. I think, actually, the real problem in our culture at the moment is this new concept that - they're all the same and they're all pointless, the idea what's the point of voting, everyone is the same. I don't think they're all the same. I don't think they're all bad or they're all good and I don't think all Liberals are bad and all Labor are good. There is clearly some highly principled politicians right across the political spectrum and yet we're now living in a satirical culture, a comic culture which tends to presume that they are all awful. Certainly, in Britain we've seen this very much with the birth of the sort of panel show where everyone is vying with each other to put down politicians and I actually think if we go very much further, we're going to get politicians we deserve if we constantly traduced them and I mean, we've had a, you know, a fairly nice heated but we've stuck to issues. We've talked about what people are actually saying. And one thing I don't agree with is that the democratic process is broken and that all politicians are the same. I think we need to listen, we need to have a debate, we need to take our choice. And I think satire can play a role in that, but the satirist has to state where they stand. I think satire without principle is a very toothless animal indeed. And I think that is something that has been growing in comedy with the general hating culture, the general sneering, you know, hate, hate, hate. And I think it's important to, you know, say what you think and if you can do a good joke about it, great. It seems these guys didn't. Clearly we have over-analysed one little - so I'm feeling really sorry for whoever it was. I mean they, you know, they have dropped a brick. there's no question but the sound of things. But my view is that satire, I agree, has a real place in the political debate. But it should be based on principle, whatever side. PJ O'Rourke he is a very funny man. He is a republican and he is very much right wing views, but he is a great writer, a very funny writer. He tells you what he is thinking and he makes a good joke about it. I like to think. I try and do that sometimes when I am trying and in the same game, but I believe you should speak from principle as we are all doing tonight.
to show a lack of respect for sb, especially by saying insulting things to them;
1. the whole range of ideas, qualities, situations, etc. that are possible