Without a wink, Mr Bean is asking for the right to insult. At Westminster, the King of Caustic Put-Downs and (sometimes, like at the Olympics) the Grand Duke of Fart Jokes, launched a campaign to object to a section of the Public Order Act that, he says, has fostered intolerance and advanced "the creeping culture of censoriousness" by outlawing insults. Startling - for Mr Bean operates in England, the fertile hotbed of sardonic wit, televised mockery and creative foul-mouthedness. Try Southeast Asia, my Duke, my Blackadder, my Johnny English - and you'll choke and churn, roil and run riot. Do less than what you've been doing, and here you'd meet a fate much worse than an Elizabethan dungeon in the Tower of London.
A few updates on the home front, for most got drowned out by our black deliriums over the tycoon-vs-starlet romance (with or without the bureaucracy of love a la wedding registration). First, the Constitution Court has finally ruled the provision in the Film Act 2008 sanctioning the banning of movies is not unconstitutional, meaning movies deemed disruptive to national security or public morals can be banned - busted, blindfolded and booted to the crematorium. "Even though [this clause] is a limitation of freedom of expression to an extent," reads the Oct 26 verdict, "it follows the stipulation in Section 45 and does not upset the essence of freedom of expression."
Lawspeak is always fascinating. But anyway, the case was filed to the Constitution Court by the filmmaker of Insects in the Backyard, a film that was banned in 2010 on grounds of being against public morals - which scene or scenes exactly, the censor committee never made clear. The director, Tanwarin Sukkhapisit, is also fighting the case in the Administrative Court. Walking down the same dingy alley is another movie declared by seven inquisitors as heresy, a destroyer of calm and peace: Shakespeare Must Die, murdered like poor Duncan earlier this year. The filmmakers have also filed charges at the Constitution and Administrative courts. It all proceeds in typical fashion.
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