God Save The Sex Pistols

God Save the Queen.

I absolutely despise our national anthem. I switched on TV today to catch about 70’000 morons holding their chests and singing it at some American Football event being held at Wembley.

It’s not just that it’s a fawning piece of outdated pageantry. It’s that people seem to revel in the fact that it’s a constant reminder that yes we have a class system and as long as there’s a Queen or King you will NEVER be at the top. No matter if you cure cancer, end famine and bring about world peace all on the same day. As the song says, “you will never be royal.”

For me the most important single 45 of all time is God Save the Queen by The Sex Pistols. For me God Save the Queen isn’t just a great song, it represents a unique moment in British history when 4 young kids from impoverished backgrounds had the establishment totally on the run. Via a song a bunch of juveniles reminded people for a fleeting moment what’s really important in their lives.  And I don’t think that’s ever been really achieved before or since in the poptastic pop charts..

The lyrics to God save the Queen weren’t just considered inflammatory, they were seen as treason. The song shook  up the system so much that when it reached number 1 in the charts it was decided there was to be no number 1 that week. Through one song these young kids managed to induce an Orwellian type of censorship. It’s not happening. You’re opinions are suspended. Truth is lies. The thought police are monitoring the charts.  Eventually in 2001 the BBC issued a statement announcing that the song had in fact reached number 1. Rumours abound that the person who released that statement is now locked in the Tower making trainers for ASDA.

Personally I feel the song and the LP that accompanied it has been one of the most influential pieces of art in my, and many other people’s lives. It informed me of the importance of having an opinion. Do I dislike the Royals as people. Many of them yes. these new younger ones seem a tad better.

But here’s a thought for all you lovers of Wills and Kate. If you really do love them then why didn’t you give them what they probably really wanted out of their wedding…i.e. their privacy.

In most countries, parents can tell their kids that if they work hard and do everything right, they could grow up to be the head of state and symbol of their nation. Not us. Our head of state is decided by one factor, and one factor alone: did he pass through the womb of one aristocratic Windsor woman living in a golden palace? The US head of state grew up with a mother on food stamps. The British head of state grew up with a mother on postage stamps. Is that a contrast that fills you with pride? Imagine letting you’re pride in a person being dictated by the fact they arrived via a certain vagina.

Because in this country that’s all you have to do to be in charge. and trust me the establishment love that fact and will hang onto this style of privilege until it’s prized from their guillotined corpses.

But John the royals do so much for our country? Really? Were told the Royals are great for tourism. Out of the top twenty tourist attractions in the UK only one of them is related to the monarchy, Windsor castle at number 17. Ten places ahead of that is Windsor Legoland. So working on this logic should we to build a lego man and make it head of state? it would probably make more sense than the idiot Charles.

And there’s another flaw in most royalists opinion of the old institution. Many royal lovers don’t actually like certain royals. Look at Prince Charles. The majority of Brits don’t even want to see Charles as King. They want to skip him and put up William. Ah, no sorry. You see that’s republicanism and that would require a vote. And thanks to the current system you can’t have it both ways.

It’s an unhealthy society that invests in people being given God given privileges of the highest order over that of an impoverished child.

A couple of years ago I was in Scotland for my nieces wedding. While there I popped into a supermarket to buy some batteries for my camera. In front of me at the checkout was an elderly woman who was possibly buying her weeks shopping, it all fitted into a hand basket. As her groceries were being rung through she enquired as to why she was being charged twice for the two for one ready meals. The girl on the desk pointed out that one of the meals she’d picked up wasn’t in the offer and so she would have to pay the £2.99 extra.

At this the woman became visibly upset, almost panicked looking, because this extra £2.99 was beyond her budget and she had to take the embarrassing choice of putting the other meal back.  On the same day we were spending an obscene amount of money celebrating another old woman. It was the golden Jubilee.

I don’t hate the Queen. I hate this outdated system we have where privilege comes through blood and nothing else. If you want to go out and celebrate royals fair enough. But spare a thought for the other old lady whose budget probably didn’t stretch to being able to buy a flag to join in the pageantry.

So I’ll finish with a little bit of my stand up…..

I don’t hate the royals. In fact I quite like the weddings and Jubilees because I collect royal souvenirs. I think I’m one of the few people that owns a Camilla Doll….it used to be a Diana Doll…but I left it by the fire.

Do you know what I found most ominous about the royal wedding, is that they gave her Diana’s ring. That’s a bit ominous. it was like they were saying, “Let that be a warning to you.”

Will she live? Will she die? To tell the truth I don’t really care. As long as she outlives Elton John. No really if I have to listen Candle in The Wind again for another three months…I’ll probably drive myself into a wall…..So there you go. Bang goes the Royal variety show.

But we do like Prince Harry though. He seems down wiv da kids. he was on telly this week and it was pointed out that while he was at posh military academy Sand Hurst they had a nick name for him…they called him Harry Potter…that’s a bit rubbish isn’t?

I bet even Harry was going, “What? Is that the best you can manage? For Christ sake I’m ginger…And that’s not even my dad.”

No future , no future, no future….repeat until dead.

Favourite Jokes. no. 1.

As a full time comic one question I’m often asked is where do jokes come from. Well, in truth it all comes from a variety of places. Yes I do sit at a keyboard putting blood sweat and jeers into developing material. But, sometimes inspiration comes from different sources. so what I’ve decided to do in this series of occasional blogs on the subject is post some jokes and routines up here with a bit background as to where they came from…

no.1. They say X-Factor has destroyed the spirit of rock and roll. But I think that’s rubbish. Because every time it comes on I’m ready to throw the telly right out the window.

I prefer the real rock and rollers. Live hard die young. I went to see the Manic Street Preachers. The next day Richey Manic disappeared, never to be seen again, presumed dead.  A month later I went to see Big Country. just a month after that the lead singer committed suicide…. I’m trying really hard to get tickets for One Direction.

So as you can see we have two jokes here. the X-Factor is one I just came up with during my writing sessions. I thought I’d said goodbye to this gag a while back but then the second joke came by very recently so I decided to resurrect it. I actually sold this gag to BBC Radio 4 show Newsjack. Technically that means I shouldn’t use it any more. so far no ones complained.

The second gag is brand new in the past couple of weeks. It came from a conversation I was having with an actor while playing a very small part in the TV show Vera. the punch line just sprung up in the air. So there you have it….

no. 2. I don’t know the underground system in London very well. One time I was going around asking people for the Euston Line. Of course there isn’t a Euston Line so doing that really annoyed the locals. Eventually I met this salt of the earth east end cockney…he was French. I said, “Excuse me mate. Do you know the Euston line? He said, “Oui. Ah know thee Euston Line…it goes Allo  Euston we ‘ave a problem!”

This came from when I was sitting on a tube in London. I over heard a French chap mixing up the words Euston and Huston in his conversation. It brought to my attention that the French often drop the H when speaking English. So with a mix of where I was and hearing a French accent the joke crystallised almost immediately in my head. It’s a nice clean one so it comes in handy at corporate events.

no. 3.  I see that one of the donors to UKIP (* UKIP are  a right wing UK political party) took out an Advert in the news saying there was no such thing as homophobia because the words not in the dictionary! So I got my dictionary out….And yes homophobia is in the dictionary. It’s actually sandwiched in-between homoerotic and homosexual…..which is probably the last place that homophobia wants to be sandwiched…but that should teach it a lesson.

no. 4. I was never any good at sports. at school they used to call me names…like goalkeeper.

A short and very old one this. I do a lot of political comedy now but I haven’t always. When I started out I was more like a character comedian. I even had a different name (John Littlejohn for anybody interested) My whole shtick was based around being a camp weakling from a tough mining town. This joke fits that persona. I’ve changed a bit since then…but yes I am still shit at sports.

no. 5. It’s nice to be here tonight…in fact it’s nice to be anywhere when you look like a homeless Bee-Gee. Mind you if you think about it Scottish people are quite like the Bee-Gees…We’re hairy, we like to sing…and two thirds of us die prematurely.


Laughing at the establishment Pt.1

As well as the blogs I will post here I was hoping to take a moment of your time to draw attention to another wee project of mine. On the last Monday of every month I host a militant topical comedy panel show called Sod the Tories (And Have A Nice Week)

We have a Facebook page which if you Like and follow you’ll be able to hear our monthly podcast of the show and see a host of other political comedy funnies going up on the page.

I’ve provided a link to the podcast BELOW 


And beneath are a list of some our favourite memes. We’ve just started doing these but they will be getting regularly added over the week.



1. Not so much a funny as a pertinent point. This one went viral with 7000 shares. It’s a representation of the closing speech I did at The Edinburgh Festival this year from a pro Scottish independence show called Anything’s Better Than These C**ts….(And yes that title did help sell tickets.)


2. Next is one by one of our regular show contributors Mr John Gibson.


3. We’re having a feminist special this month with three female comedians on the bill.


4. And we like to cover Global issues as well as UK news.


5. We also really hate the way mainstream politics has ended up.

MEME 14.

6. Admittedly some of our humour is quite hard hitting. But hey if you’re going to make an omelette…


7. but we also like to look at the light hearted…


8. Sometimes we can even be quite subtle….




9. This is one of my favourite jokes.


10. And here’s another wee beauty from the aforementioned John Gibson…

MEME 10.

So why not follow us on Facebook. I’ve posted plenty links.



When bigotry goes mainstream.

“Migrants with HIV should be banned from entering the UK” So sayeth the grand pooba of lowest common denominator politics Nigel Farage upon his latest victory in a by-election. No matter how you dress it up this is bigotry.

I did a gig recently for a bunch of trade unionists where I did a routine about UKIP. Afterwards an activist said I shouldn’t portray UKIP as fascists because “if I cry wolf then the wolf may just show up.” I pointed out that as a comedian it’s my job to exaggerate and demonise and if you take jokes literally they lose their impact. But it really brought home to me how mainstream and accepted UKIP have become to both left and right. Let’s not forget it’s only been about 20 odd months since David Cameron described them as a bunch of racist fruit cakes.

Here’s how the routine goes.

“So have we any UKIP supporters in tonight? OK no need to shout out just raise your hands” (I THEN THROW UP A NAZI SALUTE)

“So Nigel Farage actually made a racist comment in the European elections. When asked he said, he wouldn’t want Romanians living next door to him. now, no matter how you dress it up that’s a racist remark. However, next day he got away with it in the press because he said he was tired. And that was that!”

“Really? Is that how you become a racist? look I’ve never driven 6 hours back from Wales, knackered at the end of the day. You know how you’re just sitting there in your chair drifting off?”

(I THEN ACT AS IF IM DOSING OFF) “Oh man I’m so tired…I wish I could just…just go…just go and…round up the darkies!”

“SHIT! What happened there? I’m sorry I was tired! I had no idea what I was saying.” (THEN START TO FEIGN FALLING ASLEEP AGAIN) “I’m just so tired…I just want to…just want to get off…get off…and…and burn the poofters !”

“OH SHIT!I did again. Oh this is dreadful. every time I nod off I become some kind of xenophobe. My God don’t let me go to bed I might turn the sheets into an outfit.”

“What’s happening here? Are we sleepwalking into fascism? Maybe that’s why it’s called YOU-KIP.” 

Now in my defence I don’t really think I said they were fascists. What I hope I implied though is that parties like UKIP may be the perfect breeding ground for much less palatable policies than many of their already fairly dubious standings.

Just in yesterdays Sunday Independent there’s an article on the way Farage dresses. Admittedly the writer of the article fashion editor Alexander Fury points out that Farages  adoption of dressing like a country gent is to reassure us of an old Englishness from days of yore and that what lies beneath is a more mercenary idealist.

The article didn’t cause me any real concern. It was the front page ad for the article that caught my attention. Here’s what it said.

HOW TO WEAR CAMOFARAGE. Nigel seems to be the one to watch, so should the other party leaders follow suit?

Doesn’t this strike you as tonally quite pro Farage? And this is the Independent a proposed liberal broadsheet. We now seem to be on first name terms with the man. the more formal full naming or calling him by his surname is gone. It also could suggest at a glanced reading his policies are out in front and the rest of Westminster needs to catch up.

I’m sure there is many an article written on media manipulation. What’s going on with the Kippers at the moment though is of serious concern. From “racists” to dapper dandies in 20 odd months is quite a leap. Now we’re being told they are to get a debating platform in the lead to the election. All fine and well by me in the name of democracy, but where is the Greens and SNPs platform? Surely they’re also experiencing a political surge as people turn to alternative votes from the Westminster three? Yeah but it’s just not as…err…British?

This is a dangerous game the media are playing. Personally I think UKIP are dangerous and a breeding ground for future nasties. I also think anyone who votes UKIP is a fucking moron. Sorry if I sound a bit bigoted there…but I’m tired.

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