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Borat Goes To Washington

Borat Goes To Washington, Sacha Baron Cohen's character Borat does his bit to promote Sacha's movie (trailer) He's not making friends Borat Not Amusing Kazakhstan Leaders, White House Secret Service but he is amusing his fans. Related video from CNN

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Countdown with Keith Olbermann


 

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Thanks for posting all these great Keith Olbermann clips. I've been living in Europe for 18+ years so appreciate at last hearing someone in America posing truthful questions to, and asking for apologies from, the Bush cabel. In fact, until I came across your site (now a daily visit) I had never heard of Keith! But boy does he have a way of stating things! I don't know all the ins and outs of US media these days, but is MSNBC sticking its neck out by allowing Keith to put forth his views? From France (can you believe it), Peace, Jerry

Okay, so Baron Cohen, a Jew, plays a Kazakh man. Fair enough. But...why does he begin and end his speech with "How are you" and "Thank you"-- in Polish?? That just baffles me. It sounds like yak-shay-mash phonetically (jak sie masz = how are you). I'm thoroughly confused by this.

Can someone explain to me why this guy is funny?

He lampoons an entire nation with a cheap stereotype and adds on a coat of "they're all sub-intelligent".

Put him in black face and get him to sing "Mamy" and we'd be running him out of town.

Fact is with Ali-G he came pretty close to doing a modern version of exactly that. The only saving grace of that act, were the faux-interviews that pricked a lot of pomposity in his guests.

This routine doesn't deserve house-room. Unless you somehow think that the people of Khazakstan are intrinsicilly funny or some how sub-human.

Rascist comedy is unacceptable in any century.

I like KO but I can't quite figure out why he, intentionally it would seem, mispronounces Borat as "Borot".

He does it over and over and over and over again using a very strange tone as he does so.

Anyone?

'we will comence bombardment with out catapults" LOL Bush should say that next time when he decides to invade a country.

I have to say, for me, he is drawing a fine line. I hope he keeps it fresh and intellegent (somewhat). If he goes too much into one area, then he is definitely inappropriate. But so far, ... I dunno. But THIS is fuckin hilarious. This'll earn him a good buck.

Ah, comedy...glad we dont have a Minster of Comedy Authorisations. Or maybe we do...I dunno

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Racist??? Whoa man lay off the propaganda. I think you missed the whole idea of satire and are reading much much too deeply into Sacha's characters. Hell i've never even heard of Khazakstan until i started watching The Ali G Show, i thought it was a made-up place.

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Who is the guy messing around with the flags in the background?

Racist comedy is hillarious. Just because you can laugh at something doesn't mean you condone it in reality.

I cannot believe you people are even thing about taking it seriously, you probably don't know what humor is... neither does Khazakstan as it seems. Borat is great, he is awkward and talks with a funny accent, and US people don't know whare Khazakstan is anyway, so why complain. F-U... N.

Also, the freedom of speech as far as I know (not being a US citizen) is in the US constitution... or is it!

Man, that was unbearable! I had never seen this 'character' before, but I thought it was lame, and turns out I was right.

He's hilarous. Eric Vigo, just watch this youtube clip and tell me you didn't even smile: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHIko8afU74

Joanna Lis - It's not so much that "he lampoons an entire nation with a cheap stereotype", but that the people he interacts with think it's real. I’m sure if the skits consisted of nothing more than Borat on a stage doing an impression of someone from Kazakhstan, I’d find it to be racist and inappropriate. But the fact that he meets real people so ignorant they believe that he’s real is hilarious. American’s can be so stupid.

Are you guys kidding? He is hilarious... Just download some Ali G episodes - the point is not to make fun on the Kazah people - it's to show how ignorant some of the so called western people are (as in "throw the jew down the well" clip where everybody joins in).

It's smart.

Borat's videos (search YouTube) are uncomfortably hilarious -- and scathing in their exposes of racism, homophobia, sexism, you name it.

If you don't get the joke, the joke is on you.

Borat rules ;-)

Hilarious clip :-D

Cheers

Flip

What certain people here are missing the point of is that Borat never started as a lampooning of Khazakstan per se, it was just a detail that Cohen added to make the character more believable while lampooning his interviewees. For those who have never seen his work, I think the average blog reader here would appreciate his prickling of pro-NRA nuts, Harvard twerps, and of course the infamous scene at a Texan rodeo where he almost started a riot amongst the redneck crowd. Of course, the emphasis has now been placed on the fact that he uses Khazakstan as a humorous springboard from which to launch his attack - after all, if his character is to be at all believable, he has to come from a real place. Its worth noting of course the the President of khazakstan's own daughter is an Ali G supporter who believes his satire is worthwhile.

And to the person who implied that the "Ali G" character is also a racist joke, you are in fact incorrect. In this character he makes satire of a stereotype you see in many countries, but particularly in the UK - faux "gangstas" dressing in a particular way and putting on a quite ludicrous act, often then people are white. Race has nothing to do with it.

simply fantastic! we love you borat! fermetented horse urine is quite a delicacy!

To Joanna (comment #2): You asked "It sounds like yak-shay-mash phonetically (jak sie masz = how are you). I'm thoroughly confused by this."

Borat has actually addressed this exact question in the past. His answer is simply that they are the same word in both languages (which is untrue, of course).

That was a bad clip if you've never seen borat before (or just in general). While i can see how you could mistake it for something like vaudville, the real genius of this comedy isn't the character, but the characters interaction with people (like the ali g interviews). In seeing how ridiculous of a stereotype he can act like without people realizing it's a joke, or in people becoming deeply offended because they don't have a sense of humor, or in whatever other psychological irregularities he can work out of the people he is interacting with.

One of the best borat clips ever is him in a southern american bar singing to a very redneck audience. He starts off talking about the problems in his country and that they should be "thrown down the well". Finally he moves on to the problem of the "greedy jew" and gets to the main chorus line "throw the jew down the well." By the end of it he has hick in the bar chanting "throw the jew down the well." The ultimate irony being that the actor who plays borat is jewish.

Similarly there are many scenes where he talks about how his wife died while powing his feild for him but it's ok he has a new wife now, or about incest with his sister or whatever else. It's hilarious to see the people's reaction. Some are shocked, some try to be diplomatic, but it's always a great experiment in psychology.

Finally the character himself is kinda funny (not so much in that clip). Go grow a sense of humor. (or as i am fond of saying, "anyone who puts any subject above a good joke has commited a cardinal sin.")

I agree with Joanne. Well said. This is racist.

More clever and ironic than most but cultural chauvinism to a racist extreme.

Oh, also, no MSNBC isn't really sticking it's neck out. We do still have free speech here and a large enough liberal population (not sure if you followed the last 2 presidential elections but bush only won by a fraction of a percent) to ensure decent ratings.

Might Warlord President Bush

You should have a listen to the NPR interview with Sasha Baron Cohen:

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=3613548

He explains Ali G and Borat (not his third character Bruno) and gives a bit of a background on himself.

Borat's Kazakhstan "heritage," the polish words he uses, and the hebrew he writes his notes all are alien to the people he interviews. He's not really a Kazakhi, he's just a "foreigner."

However, just like Ali G in England before him, Borat has become too big. He can't do interviews and fool people, everyone knows who he is now. That's why you see him doing ridiculous stuff like the above. After the movie, surely we won't be seeing much more of him at all.

Honestly, I don't understand why there has to be someone harmed in everything with you people. So what, Borat pokes fun at khazakstan, big deal. He never lynched a black man, or shot at border crossers. I think you just need to shut up and relax, cause it's pretty fucking funny. There is great humor in the political and social prejudices he exposes in even the most gentle people.

he's kinda like kaufman.

Frued said that laughing is the release of anxiety. If this offends you then you take yourself and life too serious. People make fun of americans all the time. I laugh.

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I've been a fan of the Ali G show for years now and Borat has always been my favorite character. I can't wait for this movie to come out. I haven't been this pumped up for a movie in years.

"Throw the American down the well... So my country can be free... You must grab him by his horns... Then we have a big parteeeee..."

Cohen never makes fun of Jews, only of Others whom he parodies as hating Jews.

I can't imagine him creating a fascist war criminal Israeli character in pursuit of his humor.

He reveals an obvious bias by flippantly condemning all types of people (in this case, the people of an entire nation) as backwards, and identifies this backwardsness with so-called anti-semitism (read Professor Norman Finkelstein for more on this).

It is this very type of thinking that leads to justifications like the current babykilling "War on Terror."

Who was Frued? Also, Jerry, our media in America is probably not as you envision it. In fact, with the possible exception of Fox News, the media is stridently anti-Bush. Most commentators, even those who don't criticize Bush, are free to express their views and do so regularly. I am sick of people from Europe and elsewhere thinking they know about American culture when in reality they know very little, aside from a few episodes of Baywatch and Saved by the Bell. Also it's spelled cabal, not cabel.

Ian wrote: "In fact, with the possible exception of Fox News, the media is stridently anti-Bush."

Yes! Thank goodness they did all that hardcore investigative reporting that prevented Bush from conducting that illegal war in Iraq that he seemed so Heaven-bent on conducting. And we can also thank the US media establishment for the fact that Bush is currently on trial in the Hague for violations of so many different international rules and agreements. Thank goodness we have such a free and independent mainstream media in the good old blessed U S of A. Where would we be without it?

Thanks for posting the KO video. I have become obsessed with Borat and the whole freedom of expression issue. Sacha Boran Cohen's brand of satire is in a league of its own. Aren't you tired of so many thin-skinned, tight-assed people? I am.

oh my lord - how sad for people who don't understand the Borat joke. I guess the slow-witted can't think past ideology whether it's left or right wing. Oh well.

But really, it's simple: Sascha B-C uses his subject's steriotypes against them: those he takes the piss out of are the people who think Kahzakstan is really filled with racist, biggoted cretins, and so he slyly tricks them into revealing their own bigotry/racism. Watch some other Borat clips and you'll get it, rather than jsut hearing half the story and thinking you know everything about it, FFS.

Cohen is Jewish himself, that's part of the humor.

Borat drew a lot of comments here!!

Cohen is a genius satirist. I'm glad most people here get it. True, he is taking his act to the extreme, now that his film has been released. I agree with RACIALIST, who said:

"...just like Ali G in England before him, Borat has become too big. He can't do interviews and fool people, everyone knows who he is now. That's why you see him doing ridiculous stuff like the above. After the movie, surely we won't be seeing much more of him at all."

It's an insightful comment, and probably true. Borat is an amzing character. Cohen has a ton of courage to do what he's doing now. And this is all in the name of comedy and satire. We need to look at ourselves and not be so damn serious all of the time.

Some of the old Borat clips literally hurt to watch, but it's brilliant stuff.

Too bad Khazakstan doesn't like the joke, but I guess I can understand! Borat could have come from anywhere, but Khazakstan was chosen, for better or for worse.

yakshemash

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