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Saturday, September 29, 2007

Forgive me, Fonzi.

So I was listening to Toby Keith, which is a crime against hipness, and I thought that it was sad that such catchy music sucked in every other way. The lyrics particularly are just atrocious on many levels.

I'm not against the prepackaged sale of nostalgia to the lowest common denominator. Squares who would otherwise go to their graves as bricks in the wall can listen to Country music and feel like their lives served some sort of purpose.

"Courtesy of the Red, White, and Blue" bothers me for two reasons. First, the song features possibly the worst use of imagery outside of a 14 year old girl's poetry.

Second, most of the emotions evoked as part of the prefabricated nostalgia
are fit only for rabble in 15th century London. Threats of vengeance against an unspecified "you?" Oh, my, how enlightened. What a championing of the values of Western Civilization that is. "We'll put a boot in your ass." Uh huh. Listen, I'm not opposed to violence. I'm part of the Ender Wiggin school of self defense: Don't stop punching until they stop moving. Unfortunately, I'm sure many of the yokels that ate this song up after 9/11 supported the Iraq invasion and are now among those who want to withdraw. About 40% of the population of the country makes up that group.

It's one thing to oppose a war, particularly one like Iraq that was totally optional with unknown consequences. It's another thing to support it out of misguided emotion and then chicken out halfway through. In my experience, most battles, real and simulated, are won when one party loses their nerve and retreats.

Anyway, I'm not against violence if it's ethically justified. I am against crappy song lyrics. "Mother Freedom?" What is that supposed to be? "This big dog will fight if you rattle his cage?" Well that's not Freudian at all, is it. We're a big dog now. Don't we feel good about this bit of autofellatio.

This song is chock full o' the primal posturing that I've often see among maleducated teenagers and the less intelligent species of monkey.

The "light up your world like the Fourth of July" line was good, though.

My question is, am I part of an obsolete aristocratic class with my ideals of humility, actions speaking louder than words, death before dishonor, unyielding determination, and loyalty? Or has my culture simply been outbred by other European splinter groups?

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