Sunday, June 01, 2014
Mark Thomas Cover Gallery
The current show is about Thomas performing 100 acts of minor dissent within a year. To motivate his efforts, if he fails to perform them before May 12 next year, he'll donate £1,000 to UKIP.
than they might otherwise do. "According to Panorama, UK companies in the GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) pharmaceuticals group and the Northern & Shell media group paid interest on substantial loans from Luxembourg subsidiaries. That interest was effectively taxed at less than 1% in Luxembourg, while a deduction for the payments reduced the profits chargeable to UK corporation tax at 28%." Richard Brooks was quoted as saying: ‘The company puts its money into Luxembourg and borrows it back. It just sends money round in a circle and picks up a tax break on the way.’" This isn't the first time Richard Desmond's companies have been investigated by the media.
So you need someone like Mark Thomas who, as he says, has reached 50 and now doesn't care about what people think of his stunts. And they are stunts ... but stunts with a purpose and stunts that often turn the law in on itself. The show at the moment is a little bitty because events are still unfolding, but Thomas has already been pretty active, working with feminist artist Tracey Moberly to make porn magazines more acceptable to feminists and surprising for their readers, helping organise a GBLT party outside the Russian Embassy in Edinburgh and involving himself with the controversial move by Royal Parks to appoint a company to start collecting payment from people playing organised sports in Hyde Park.
Thomas and others responded by organising a What's the Time Mr. Wolf? championship and, whilst they didn't get charged by the company who collects the fees it highlighted the problem and being forced to pay fees to play in Royal Parks has now been dropped. A win for all of us, not just Thomas, although we can't all take the credit.
These are little things, but little acts of dissent swell over time into movements and eventually into policies from governments. Maybe not everything, but more than you'd imagine. And Mark Thomas makes it look like fun, so go and see the show and think about maybe getting involved.
(* The above was written back in September last year when we went to see Mark Thomas live during his 100 Acts of Minor Dissent tour. The tour has now finished, as has an accompanying art show held at the Millennium Gallery, Sheffield. There was a review in The Guardian recently noting that Thomas completed his task ahead of the deadline.)
Ebury Press 978-0091-90921-5, 2006, vii+339pp.
Ebury Press 978-0091-90922-2, 2007, vii+339pp, £7.99. Cover designed by Two Associates
Ebury Press 978-0091-92293-1, 2008, xviii+364pp, £11.99. Cover design by Two Associates
Ebury Press 978-0091-92704-2, 2009, xviii+364pp.
Ebury Press 978-0091-93796-6, 2010, n/p, £4.99. Cover design by Two Associates
Ebury Press 978-0091-92780-6, 2011, 346pp.
Ebury Press 978-0091-92781-3, 2012, 346pp.