Borat: Puppets on a String
Simon Jones – November 21, 2006
There were only 2 scenes in Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan that were truly funny IMHO and only one of them even vaguely original.
1/ Borat Sagdiyev buys an icecream truck to cross the US in search of his true love Pamela Anderson, a Baywatch bimbo. He buys a bear to protect him and then going through a suburb can't turn the icecream music off. Children run to the truck, the back window opens by chance and the bear lunges at them, growling fiercely and terrifying the children.
2/ At what appears to be an unscripted autograph session for Pamela in a shopping mall, Borat proposes marriage, throws a sack over her head, is wrestled to the ground by security guards, magically frees himself and chases Pamela across the parking lot, shouting his eternal love.
But the first is merely clever, and the second was in fact scripted. Anderson and Cohen are old friends and have pulled pranks before. Last year, a 'commitment ceremony' between her golden retriever, Star, and Chihuahua, Luca, was crashed by Cohen in a Borat segment for his 'Da Ali G. Show.'
Others weren't so lucky. Feminist Linda Stein was told she was being interviewed about the plight of women, only to hear Borat call Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice a 'chocolate lady.' She and others were paid a few hundred dollars and made to sign waivers against claims for 'offensive behavior.' But some lawyers feel the waivers may be null and void because of the deception.
Borat in the movie is a native not of Kazakhstan, but of Glod (meaning 'mud'), Romania (the natives are suing him too). There is nothing remotely Kazakh about the people there who are Roma (Gypsy), as is the music throughout the movie, the geography and climate. Even the credits are not in Kazakh, but Russian - lazy editing. [Or maybe it doesn't really matter - we are his willing dupes in any case.] Apart from Pamela, Borat conned his many unwitting costars into signing these waivers which will likely do the trick in the face of 'impartial' US justice. He speaks with an amateurish Italian accent, constantly says thank you in Polish (dziękuję), and his sidekick seems to be speaking some east European language (as opposed to Borat's gibberish).
So the movie is really just about Sacha Cohen, i.e., traditional Ashkenazi Jewish humour, hiding behind a purportedly Muslim character, the last minority acceptable as a butt of jokes because it is our official enemy. I.e., it is deeply reactionary, not at all brave, despite its scenes of nudity and patina of risque 'stretching the limits'. Interestingly, the words 'Muslim' and 'Islam' are not even heard in the film, though 'Jew' figures prominently throughout. I.e., this is Ashkenazi humour claiming to speak on behalf of world Jewry.
I constantly marvelled while watching it: What torture to make such a film, continually provoking anger and disgust in simple, trusting people and making fools of them. How can he live with himself?
There are 2 cryptic political statements that indeed shocked me, but for the 'wrong' reasons:
1/ Borat's sidekick warns that Jews were responsible for 911, and the duo pretends to fear poisoning by their Jewish bed-and-breakfast hosts. (We are shown their art gallery of old-fashion Ashkenazi portraits, i.e., yet more J content.)
2/ A frat partyer argues that minorities, including Jews, have more rights than the majority in America.
These loaded claims are portrayed as ridiculous prejudices which we, the audience, of course dismiss.
Interestingly, despite being an orthodox Jew, Cohen managed to evoke criticism as being anti-semitic, i.e., anti-Jewish, presumably because of these statements and other scenes, such as the traditional 'running of the Jew' in his native Glod, where an ugly Jewish puppet lays a huge egg which children proceed to smash to Borat's urgings.
But our willing acceptance of this obsessive focus on Jews and supposed anti-Jewish prejudice merely shows how masterly we have been taken in, how deeply controlled we are by philo-Jewish prejudice. The crowd at the rodeo, where Borat sings the US national anthem to nonsense words praising Kazakhstan, first accept his rant about 'the war for terror' and finally boo him to drown out his insulting rendition of the anthem. He manages to show them as inferior at the same time as he tricks us (supposedly superior to these yokels) into buying his philo-Jewish reality. Jewish cultural hypnosis is sooo powerful that Borat can mouth truths which we trained seals automatically reject as shocking prejudices.
It's really a dare:
1/ 'We did mastermind 911 and got away with it. Ha, ha.'
2/ 'We really do control western discourse and get away with it. Just try to stop us.'
3/ 'Look at yourselves incarnate in Borat. Deep down, you're really just subhuman bigots like him. We Jews really are the master race and can do with you as we like.'
Remove the supposed Kazakh facade and you see the Ashken-nazi. It's eerie how often Borat is shown nude or semi-nude, his ugly, awkward body a metaphor for the ugly reality that Ashkenazi hegemony presents to the world, disguised as something else.
'Mr Jesus' comes in for special ridicule as Borat crashes a pentecostal revival meeting and grabs the microphone, asking if Jesus can secure him his beloved Pamela.
Despite Borat's reference to blacks as 'chocolates', they come off well in his attempts to mock them, maybe because they are just too far beyond ridicule for Borat/Cohen to trick. Maybe because they suffered (and still suffer) very real and far more vicious racism in America than Jews ever did, putting them out of his range of fire. Cohen even ends up marrying an (albeit fat, unattractive) black prostitute and brings her back to Glod or whatever nonsensical name Cohen gives the unfortunate Roma village he so mercilessly parodies.
Fascinating the variations on this cruel mockery, sense of racial superiority and talent for global manipulation for which Jews are rightly renowned. This film, which will be seen around the world to great applause despite its infantile, manipulative 'humour'. And of course the way Izzy (sorry, 'Israel') tortures and provokes hatred from its Palestinian neighbours and Muslims in general.
The zio (sorry, 'Zionist') project, with Borat as a fitting metaphor, aims to provoke and divide its enemies, keep them angry, irrational and divided. To play cruel and mocking games with them as it pushes for greater and greater hegemony over them - over us all, both physically and spiritually
Last updated 02/12/2006