I try not to comment on everything that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says. It’s low-hanging fruit, and besides, I have some sympathy for today’s young people who have been taught more leftwing propaganda and self-esteem than knowledge. But her new claim that her warning that we’ll all be dead in 12 years if we don’t pass the “Green New Year” was only a joke sort of brings her into my wheelhouse.
I’ve been using humor to make political points for longer than she’s been on this poor, dying planet, and I feel that I must share with her the #1 rule of that tricky business:
"If nobody recognizes that your joke was even a joke, then the audience isn’t stupid. You told a bad joke."
She made the common mistake of the bombing comedian by insulting the audience for not “getting” her “dry humor” (say, doesn’t dry humor contribute to global warming?) rather than blaming her bad material. She snarked that Republicans who took her dire (but humorous) prediction that we’ll all be dead in 12 years (LOL!) seriously are like “Dwight from ‘The Office’” and “have the social intelligence of a sea sponge.” (Kudos on choosing “sea sponge;” at least that’s a funny-sounding name.)
But it’s hard to believe she was only joking when, as the linked article notes, on at least two separate occasions, she made equally disparaging remarks about anyone who treated her existential threat as a joke. I suspect that this latest claim is like the scene in “Young Frankenstein” where Gene Wilder locks himself in with the monster and says that no matter what terrible sounds anyone hears, they must not unlock the door. When he starts screaming in terror, they won’t open the door, and he yells, “I was JOKING!!! Don’t you people know a JOKE when you hear one?!!”
Poor AOC found herself trapped with her own Green New Deal Frankenstein monster and is trying the Gene Wilder defense to escape from it. I can understand that. I’d just offer her a little friendly advice: if you’re going to claim to be injecting humor into politics, try to offer proposals that people can tell apart from jokes. And try to tell jokes that people can recognize are meant to be funny. For help, I’d suggest watching “Young Frankenstein” a few dozen times.
Or better yet, AOC should check out this hilarious kid and see how comedy is done right: