In defense of clowns

Italian comedian Beppe Grillo waves at people during a carnival.

This final note today. A moment of levity courtesy of the Italian elections last week, in which Silvio Berlusconi came back from the political dead and the comedian Beppe Grillo became a legitimate political power.

A couple of days after, the leader of the German opposition said, "I'm horrified those two clowns won the election."

That prompted this response from the director of Germany's Circus Roncalli: "Being a clown," he said, "is an honorable, very difficult, sensitive and artistic occupation."

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, the most widely heard program on business and the economy in the country.


I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...

Sustainability Coverage

  • The Kendeda Fund
  • Wealth & Poverty Coverage

  • The Ford Foundation