Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Charlie Hebdo gives master class in how to profit from tragedy

What a difference a week makes!

A week ago Charlie Hebdo was a failing novelty comic with a print run of 50,000 or less.

This week, the print run is for 3,000,000!

In the interim, Charlie Hebdo managed to become a centrepiece, indeed the central focus, in a global debate about "free expression" and "freedom of speech."

A whole bunch of leaders from a whole bunch of places that normally give short shrift to freedom of speech were happy to drop everything to make a Paris photo-op!

Every single one of them was angling for the perfect photo-op to sell themselves to their domestic audience. Netanyahu gave the master class at that break-out session.

Charlie Hebdo is France's answer to the National Lampoon, forty years late and without the redeeming humour.

But it is now a title that will forever be a "freedom of expression" icon, a fact that is undeserved and unfortunate.

Relentlessly mocking the religion of France's underclass may indeed be an exercise in freedom of speech, but to what end?

I think a lot of those "I am Charlie" folks never actually thought it through.

Charlie Hebdo was a racist anti-Islamic propaganda tool, which is why 40 world leaders were able to drop everything and find their way to Paris at a moment's notice.

And the cover of this latest print run of 3,000,000 is specifically designed to stir up more controversy.

With a bit of luck, there will be a print run of fifty millions next week!

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