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Dominique 'Michael Scofield' Strauss-Kahn

Can we laugh at the DSK's case ?

By M B

The French media have been much criticized for having concealed during many years Dominique Strauss-Kahn's 'pressing' manners towards women. Indeed, if it was well known among politicians and journalists that DSK was more than the 'compulsive seducer', why had nobody dared to mention it in public ? In the merciless world of politics, why were Dominique Strauss-Kahn's friends and opponents so indulgent ?

The debate on the case continues (NYPD is still investigating - see video below), no verdict has yet been fully reached, and amidst all this, our inboxes are filled daily with the latest DSK joke. But is it too soon to laugh, and should we?


Comedians to replace journalists ?


Bad taste : the Daily News headlines
Bad taste : the Daily News headlines


DSK's behaviour had actually been evoked many comedians. These stand-up comedian, commentator, writers or even simple public figures are very keen on making what is left unsaid public. Indeed, their job is to provoke, to upset, to disturb : to go 'a step too far' to draw sb's attention to something special. Sometimes they even anticipate issues.




For example, in 2009, in his show on radio France Inter, abrupt French comedian Stéphane Guillon publicly mocked DSK for his attitude towards women. He declared that high heels, leather and chic underwear were banned during Dominique Strauss-Kahn's visit to avoid temptation. The radio presenter jokingly told recounted that sirens were prepared to go off to the noise of "all female employees must evacuate'. He was the first public figure who dared to mention this 'open secret'. His arguably tough words  shocked people. Needless to say the former head of the IMF was not exactly pleased with this spot either.



An original point of view about a sordid case


Comedians remarks about DSK also contrast with the politicians' sympathetic declarations. For example, former Minister of Culture Jack Lang claimed about the case : "So what? No one got killed!", while renowned journalist Jean-François Kahn claimed : 'I do not think there was any violent acts (….) actually it was a maid-humping (as if the Droit du seigneur was still in use). Almost comical, really, if it wasn't so shocking.
The New York Post headlines
The New York Post headlines
Since the beginning of the Strauss-Kahn case, comedians have been the only 'opinion leaders' who tackle this issue with originality. In this case, the amount of details – each more sordid than the other – which have flooded the media has been a sort of godsend for them. This is why the accusations of sexual assault against Dominique Strauss-Kahn have stirred up so many jokes, even though it is obviously a serious issue.



Impersonator Nicolas Canteloup, who performs every morning on French radio Europe 1, even had to ask his colleagues in the studio to 'relax and stay calm' as he saw them very nervous when he started to make fun of Dominique Strauss-Kahn's problems. But his daily spots are definitely the funniest ones. Some of his best quotes as he impersonates DSK : 'As you may understand, I asked the judge not to wear a dress....". Another one : "DSK was released with an electronic tag...he should have been given electronic flies !".


DSK 'the judge is hot'. The lawyer 'Shut up, Dominique !'
DSK 'the judge is hot'. The lawyer 'Shut up, Dominique !'

Dominique Strauss-Kahn to replace Charlie Sheen ?


But on the other side of the Atlantic, American jounalists and comedians also make fun of this sordid case. While one sees in the case a metaphor of the IMF's actions over Africa, and other one suggests DSK should replace Charlie Sheen !



Last, but not least, the truth about what happened in the Sofitel suite



The Strauss-Kahn soap opera
The Strauss-Kahn soap opera


DSK The Comeback King: But will people forget so easily?


Post your own jokes !



27/05/2011 - leslieright said :

really funny - and a good moment to consider the theme of why journalists lag behind - and sort of vaguely politicaslly correct humorists in USA who feel patriotically under attacked by french outrage at their fierceness in treating DSK in this way. this is a terrific page, many thanks, Leslie

27/05/2011 - frenchinparis said :

Under normal circumstances I believe it is alright to laugh at mostly everything, but this case has gone beyond that point.

The gutter press has been treating this case with such hatred for the man and (in the US) the French in general, that I find it indecent to join in, like our so-called "serious press". The French media is behaving as badly as their American colleagues.

Whatever the outcome of this affair, I strongly believe that as the declaration of human rights proclaims, everyone is innocent until proven guilty. DSK has been declared guilty by the American media and the American public opinion. Can we even hope that he will have a fair trial?

Déclaration universelle des droits de l’homme Article IX
«Tout homme étant présumé innocent jusqu’à ce qu’il ait été déclaré coupable, s’il est jugé indispensable de l’arrêter, toute rigueur qui ne serait pas nécessaire pour s’assurer de sa personne, doit être sévèrement réprimée par la Loi.»

27/05/2011 - dimigaidatzi said :

interesting. but I d like to ask you: was he just a ''seducer'', big flirt or was he more than that? cause if he were more than a seducer, wouldn't the french journalists have done a story on that? i mean a journalist is a journalist everywhere. I can't see media being so complacent to a case like this.


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