Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

“Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.”     George Washington

October 1, 2010

The most revolting political video I’ve ever seen

by Stephen Gordon

Here are the first two tenets (of ten) of the organization dubbed 10:10:

  1. 10:10 is a voluntary emissions reduction campaign for any person, organisation or business to commit to cutting 10% of their emissions in a 12 month period starting in 2010.
  2. 10:10 is an inclusive campaign. Every person, business and organisation is welcome to join.

The video below (the original has already been deleted from their website) depicts what they mean by the word voluntary.  Those who can’t handle graphical depictions of school children being blown apart shouldn’t watch this, and parents should be advised that this is the sort of material from which some of you may wish to shield your children.

Here’s their current explanation as to why they deleted their own video:

Sorry.

Today we put up a mini-movie about 10:10 and climate change called ‘No Pressure’.

With climate change becoming increasingly threatening, and decreasingly talked about in the media, we wanted to find a way to bring this critical issue back into the headlines whilst making people laugh. We were therefore delighted when Britain’s leading comedy writer, Richard Curtis – writer of Blackadder, Four Weddings, Notting Hill and many others – agreed to write a short film for the 10:10 campaign. Many people found the resulting film extremely funny, but unfortunately some didn’t and we sincerely apologise to anybody we have offended.

As a result of these concerns we’ve taken it off our website. We won’t be making any attempt to censor or remove other versions currently in circulation on the internet.

We’d like to thank the 50+ film professionals and 40+ actors and extras and who gave their time and equipment to the film for free. We greatly value your contributions and the tremendous enthusiasm and professionalism you brought to the project.

At 10:10 we’re all about trying new and creative ways of getting people to take action on climate change. Unfortunately in this instance we missed the mark. Oh well, we live and learn.

Onwards and upwards,

Franny, Lizzie, Eugenie and the whole 10:10 team

They may have deleted the video, but the Internet has a very long memory, indeed. I’m sure political opponents of the environmental movement will be using this footage for years to come.

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22 Comments

  1. The people who thought this movie was funny are depraved. Not because they are in the AGW cult, but because they lack the moral compass that tells them that murdering people who disagree with them is not funny.

    Unfortunately, on occasion whether through luck or through a reaction prompted by incentives, occasionally an organization will be dominated by such amoral people. The results are not good.

    Politics, which fundamentally is a struggle to control the most violent organization in society, attracts people that are amoral or whom otherwise lack consideration for their fellow men. The more expansive the state, the more attractive it is to these people. The more they dominate the state, the more expansive and activist it becomes.

    It’s a vicious feedback loop ending only when the state kills the civilization that is its host, or so shocks the host’s sensibilities that the people rebel.

    Giving a group like 10:10 access to tax-payer funds is like giving meth to a sociopath.

    Comment by tarran — October 1, 2010 @ 4:53 pm
  2. [...] commenter gets it right in revolting Politics, which fundamentally is a struggle to control the most violent organization in society, [...]

    Pingback by No Pressure 10:10 « Jim’s Blog — October 1, 2010 @ 6:35 pm
  3. Reactions like this are why people think libertarians have no sense of humor. *This* is the most revolting ad you’ve ever seen? Not all the blatant lies and fear-mongering that have become second nature in US election campaigns? Yikes.

    But if you believe (as the commentator above claims to) that this very silly, not terribly effective ad is actually amoral, then I can only assume you also believe every other fictional depiction of murder for comedic purposes is just as amoral. Monty Python blew people up who weren’t very good at hiding. Bill Hicks joked about assassinating HW Bush, as a way to teach a lesson to the terrorists who supposedly tried and failed to do the job themselves. Classic comedies like Arsenic and Old Lace have scandalous body counts. TV shows like Bones and Castle kill somebody every single week. God forbid you ever stumble across a messy little series like the League of Gentlemen – your head would explode.

    Oops, now I’ve done it too. Guess I’m just another depraved, amoral monster roaming the countryside, fictionally killing people. The horror! The horror!

    Comment by Anton Sirius — October 1, 2010 @ 9:38 pm
  4. This is the first time in my life, I think, that I’ve been accused of not having a sense of humor.

    There are some societal taboos that are very deeply embedded in most minds — and blowing up children is one of them. Southpark manages to push the edge (Kenny gets killed all the time), but it’s not so realistic because it’s animated.

    Comment by Stephen Gordon — October 1, 2010 @ 10:16 pm
  5. TV shows like Bones and Castle kill somebody every single week. God forbid you ever stumble across a messy little series like the League of Gentlemen – your head would explode.

    Yes, because blowing up children for not agreeing with their teachers’ political views is no more upsetting than a murder mystery where the murderer is hunted and eventually caught.

    I actually find myself getting quite impatient with two factions of people who have distinct reactions to this video:

    The first are the people who say all {environmentalists,liberals,commies} think like this. Obviously this is false, while a scarily large number of their leadership do have a desire to hurt or liquidate their opponents, I would say its still a minority. Most environmentalists seriously believe that their political positions are a benefit to humanity and would balk at using violence to enforce their will – they just are blind to the fact that the state uses violence that they abhor.

    The second group that irritates me are the people defending this video as not being a big deal. People are being murdered (and yes, when you press a button that explodes people who are not harming or threatening you, you are committing an act of murder) for having unpopular political views. If Tea Party Republicans had made a movie blowing up children who liked government health care, I doubt they’d be writing a “Hycuk, hyuck, boys will be boys” defense.

    In claiming that she doesn’t support killing people who question AGW, but merely supports amputation, the head of 10:10 demonstrates herself to be a truly depraved individual. Fortunately, I think this is probably the high-water mark of her influence. She got a little overconfident in how big of a mob supported her.

    Comment by tarran — October 2, 2010 @ 4:05 am
  6. Excellent response tarran (as usual).

    Comment by Akston — October 2, 2010 @ 7:28 am
  7. No, tarran, people are not being murdered in that video. I can assure you that Gillian Anderson is still alive and well, and has not been exploded.

    And I notice you’ve now backed off from ‘amoral’ and ‘depraved’ to merely ‘upsetting’.

    If someone associated with the Tea Party made a similar video, I’d judge it by the same standards I judged this one: is it funny, or isn’t it? This one was mildly amusing. Curtis has certainly done better.

    The bottom line, for me, is that when you fling around words like ‘depraved’, you’re saying that you believe the people behind the video are *advocating* blowing up children. And that’s a patently absurd position.

    Comment by Anton Sirius — October 2, 2010 @ 9:59 am
  8. Anton, I assume that since you can type gramatical sentences, you are not acutally as stupid as your comments imply, but are rather choosing to be insultingly disingenous.

    The movie depicts a fantasy of people being murdered. And yes, the 10 10 people who made it are pretty depraved. Not because they find violence amusing, but rather because this was made as an attempt to persuade the people who haven’t taken the pledge to reduce their carbon emissions to join the movement.

    So we have some people that believe that
    a) the way to persuade people who aren’t part of their group to join it by depicting non joiners being murdered,
    b) claim that killing non-believers are OK, since hundreds of thousands of people are dying every year due to global climate change
    c) then when facing criticism claim that they merely support amputation of non-joiners.

    That’s pretty depraved. These people literally lack the capacity for understanding why people are upset. It is that lack of capacity that makes them dangerous. Should they be in a position where they control the police, these people will cheerfully go about breaking eggs to make their omelets. It’s been this way throughout history.

    Now, certainly this movie is about as gory as the highlights of the Watchmen. The gore itself is nothing really groundbreaking.

    It’s the pure violence of the message, a message that contains no attempt to persuade but is composed 100% of threats, that disgusts me. And feeling that way is not an indication of lacking a sense of humor as you initially asserted.

    Comment by tarran — October 2, 2010 @ 6:51 pm
  9. This is really, really disturbing stuff. Gives the enviro movement of a creepy air of the eugenics movement that should make us all question our association.

    Comment by Michael O. Powell — October 3, 2010 @ 12:24 pm
  10. Come and See the Violence Inherent in the System!…

    Per Stephen Gordon (unfortunately in full PC overreaction mode like, it seems, everyone else), the author of the video is Richard Curtis of Black Adder fame….

    Trackback by KN@PPSTER — October 3, 2010 @ 2:14 pm
  11. What’s really worth noting about the 10:10 video is that this is the sort of thing that seems like a satire of a movement. That a political movement is making a video like this of themselves, apparently in an attempt to sell themselves, is truly bizarre and makes me wonder.

    Comment by Michael O. Powell — October 3, 2010 @ 7:41 pm
  12. tarran, they are not claiming that killing non-believers is OK. You are seriously lost up your own arse, if not an outright sociopath, if you genuinely believe that.

    Comment by Anton Sirius — October 4, 2010 @ 11:06 am
  13. I’m a huge fan of British humor and much of Richard Curtis’ other work, but this ad rings hits a sour note for me. Of course, I know of no writer whose work is universally without a miss.

    The problem I have with it is a combination of mean spiritedness and the fact that it does not lampoon the abusive teacher, but the “misguided” children. In Curtis’ other work he lampoons pompous or abusive authority figures, or laughs to compensate for the frustration of a futile struggle against oppression. Here, he blows up children for not agreeing with what he must consider a universal and moral world view. When one disagrees with that world view, it fall flat.

    Comment by Akston — October 4, 2010 @ 2:29 pm
  14. I’m just amused at how Anton rhetorically put a large caliber handgun in his mouth and pulled the trigger.

    It’s funny to read an opponent accusing me of getting overly outraged at a depiction of violence, and then completely kill their credibility by immediately accusing me of being sociapathic.

    I guess clicking on the definition in Wikipedia was too hard.

    Comment by tarran — October 4, 2010 @ 7:48 pm
  15. tarran,

    I, for one, will not accuse you of being a sociopath.

    Hell, I won’t even accuse you of being a humorless prig.

    I will, however, accuse you, Gordon and quite a few others of reading waaaaaaaaay to much into the fact that you didn’t find the video funny.

    Comment by Thomas L. Knapp — October 4, 2010 @ 7:54 pm
  16. Thomas,

    And that’s kind of an off base accusation:

    It’s not that we said “They made a gory political movie that wasn’t funny; get a rope! ”

    What I’m arguing is that someone who would make that movie, a movie whose only attempt to persuade was to show people who didn’t go along with the program voluntarily getting blown up by authority figures, and then argue that people shouldn’t be upset by the movie because it was funny are pretty fucked in the head.

    The movie itself is tripe. The entire message is a threat. It’s clumsy, off-putting, and so persuasive that the group that made it has lost most of their corporate sponsors in the last 48 hours. Frankly, it’s one of the more pathetic bits of propaganda I’ve seen in recent years, and I live in an area where Comcast is running their “Don’t fall for FIOS” campaign.

    Even if the movie was funny, I would be calling the makers out on its depravity. On the other hand, if they had made a non-funny movie that attempted to persuade people without depictions of violent gory death at the hands of authority figures, I doubt I’d be calling them depraved.

    Unless, of course, this unfunny attempt at persuasion was directed by Michael Bay; that would be a crime worthy of death – and not death by snu-snu either but rather the unpleasant kind.

    Comment by tarran — October 4, 2010 @ 10:12 pm
  17. OK, rereading what I wrote in my first comment, I see that I screwed up and said something incorrectly.

    My first sentence “the people who think this is funny are depraved” is not correct. When I wrote that I was trying to make the point that I made in the post above:

    What I’m arguing is that someone who would make that movie, a movie whose only attempt to persuade was to show people who didn’t go along with the program voluntarily getting blown up by authority figures, and then argue that people shouldn’t be upset by the movie because it was funny are pretty fucked in the head.

    To Thomas and Anton did have a point: I typed an argument that implied that only immoral people would be amused by the movie. However that was not the argument I was trying to make. The bit I quoted above is what I should have said at the outset.

    Comment by tarran — October 4, 2010 @ 10:38 pm
  18. tarran,

    Thanks for clarifying your argument.

    Your argument doesn’t make much sense to me.

    First of all, it fails on factual accuracy.

    Showing people who didn’t go along with the program getting blown up was not only not the only attempt to persuade, it wasn’t even one of the attempts to persuade.

    The attempts to persuade went something like this:

    “The idea is everyone starts cutting their carbon emissions by 10%, thus keeping the planet safe for everyone eventually,” and indications of easy things to do in order to accomplish that.

    The blowing up stuff was 100% comedic emphasis.

    Obviously some people didn’t find it funny, which is completely understandable (what people find funny varies considerably).

    Obviously some people either partially or wholly disagree with the agenda, too, which is also completely understandable (I’m one of them — when it mentions “governments” committing to the 10% cut, I get the funny feeling that that “commitment” will be expressed in the form of more regulations, not fewer emissions).

    What’s not understandable — to me, at any rate — is the mirror image of ninny PC outrage that I’m seeing from a bunch of people, yourself and Gordon included. Frankly, I’m embarrassed for you.

    Comment by Thomas L. Knapp — October 5, 2010 @ 1:11 am
  19. Tom,

    You personally know me well enough to know that I do have a sense of humor, and know enough from my online rants over the years that violence, even in political messaging, doesn’t bother me so much. I can’t count the number of times I’ve quoted or alluded to some violent Southpark scene to score some point or another.

    There is a difference between Southpark, which is trying to get ratings and sell advertising on a comedy channel, and a political organization trying to persuade people to some action or another.

    That the 10:10 folks have 1) immediately retracted 2) lost sponsors and 3) have taken a lot of political heat indicates that there is a real political consequence for their video.

    I’d be the last to ever suggest that they shouldn’t be allowed to produce or air such a video. However, in the free market world of presenting ideas, they have to take the responsibility for their failures as much as they have a right to the benefits of their successes.

    Call it Marketing 101.

    Comment by Stephen Gordon — October 5, 2010 @ 7:15 am
  20. Stephen,

    I don’t disagree with anything you say above.

    None of that is relevant to my point which is that calling the thing “the most revolting political video I’ve ever seen” is so far over the top as to fall well beyond belief — more over the top than the video itself.

    Comment by Thomas L. Knapp — October 5, 2010 @ 8:12 am
  21. I don’t get the reaction either. I think the AGW faction can’t get past their dislike of the movement.

    I personally think global warming is likely a natural cycle, but the commercial has gone viral and is ergo a success.

    If the Three Stooges were global warming advocates would they be amoral too?

    Comment by rather — October 5, 2010 @ 3:00 pm
  22. Sorry to counter all those standing behind the “it’s-just-a-joke” rationale, but this looks like the Unibomber’s wet dream played out on video.

    This as an unguarded moment revealing the true nature of environmental extremists (who have a track record for violence), and I cannot shake the creepy irony of the use of the phrases “no pressure” and “your choice” just prior to what seems an updated version of the Inquisition going after the “heretics.”

    That one of the leaders of this bunch was given a chance to walk it back a bit but maintained that amputations rather than outright death would be sufficient is indicative of these people’s real mindset, which goes beyond human population control into outright slaughter of any doubters.

    Comment by Bill — October 6, 2010 @ 7:59 pm

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