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Date: Mon, 1 Aug 1994 00:41:53 -0500
From: de l`abattoir <del>
Subject: Fishian Politics

BertieV[at] concerning "why vote for the lesser evil" on the t-shirt
> I'd STRONGLY like to voice an opinion AGAINST anything political on the shirt.
> in over ten years of listening to and loving his
> music, this is the only truly major complaint I've ever had about him.

John, i understand your concerns - i wouldn't want anything stupid
or personally offensive to end up on my sleeve, either.
could you help by giving some citations?

i will start by clarifying some things as i understand them..
off the top of my head, these tunes may be interpretted as being political:
* Jazz Butcher -v- Prime Minister
* it is taking a piss. implies that criminals could
* run the government. same era as Death Dentist and other
* sing-along tunes.
* Next Move Sideways
* he is bewildered with the changes due to governmental policies
* occuring around him and he is powerless to change them.
* no recommendation as to retribution, just observation.
* Hysteria
* he has a distaste for aspects of life on the West Coast.
* i interviwed pat in 1989, and remember confronting him with the
* visciousness of this song. he argued that, yes, there are
* bad things there, so he will tell them (book burnings, etc),
* but he also tells the good ("what for did we come here? i guess
* we came here to learn"). although Hysteria may be a place,
* it may also be his reaction: admittedly hysterical.
* New Invention
* thatcherite politics as a "bad cover version" of reganite
* politics. why import Axl Rose?
* Line Of Death
* this song came out BEFORE the gulf war, though just by months.
* Filth
* same vein. it is obvious there is loathing for the military.
* let's make generalizations about the dupe in the submarine.
* Kids In The Mall
* well, it reads line newspaper reports of changes to
* capitalism in the old red state. is it a good thing?

perhaps you can count Bubonic Plague and Daycare Nation as being somewhat
political, as they fall into the standard JBC "report aspects of what
we see". he's a vegetarian, and it slips out in tunes, too.

i would fault the guy if he were to write obvious statements
(vote Demo/Commie!). but it appears to me that he is just "reporting"
(filtered, sure) life around him.

"why vote for the lesser evil" (and "no more years") are actually taken
from a joke/radical Californian political party flyer from the previous
US election. i was led to believe that it was not his own view, and he
wondered how these people would react when they found their beloved slogan
had been lifted.

i think it would be good to hear pat's defense of these charges,
as others here have had issue with ambiguous lyrics (Re: President Chang).

"you're only as good as your last god damned mistake" - bark psychosis