Saturday, July 15, 2006

There's Nothin' Wrong With Capitalism...


A few months back over at Lem's place, Hillbilly White Trash, he wrote about the top rock songs that convey or reflect conservative values. At the time my feeble suggestion was the Destroyers song "Get a Haircut (and Get a Real Job)" For some reason my mind just went into a complete state of 'Duh-ness'. It happens.
I cannot believe I totally forgot what was, and still is, one of my all time favorites.
"Capitalism", by the eclectic L.A. band Oingo Boingo, which was fronted by Danny Elfman, who later went on to score the music for tons of blockbuster movies. All of which you'd recognize if I was to list them. He has a distinctive sound and you can hear it in the Oingo albums from the early 80's. Oh and here's a fun fact- Elfman never learned to read music...he scored his first big movie, Batman, by humming into a tape recorder! He had a friend who could transcribe music translate it into notes! I'm sure he has since rectified this lack of knowledge.

As a fatigue wearing, T-shirted punk in the 80's, I adored these guys. Their songs were fun and just a wee bit naughty and most of the lyrics were very satiric and made social commentary on a level that went beyond the usual "down with authority" tone that most alternative bands from that day did. Besides, the cover art was always a hoot, too...I especially loved the "Only a Lad" cover.

Anyway, I was reading one of Born Again Rednecks recent posts about socialism and suddenly a line from that aforementioned song blasted into my head: "...you're just a middle class socialist brat, from a suburban family and you never really had to work..." So, just to get the thing outta my head, I'm gonna post the whole deal. Even after over 25 years...the song still holds up and is just as true now as then. Elfman sings it with cynical emotion, almost as if one who has been there, done that and is disillusionally vengeful.
I never was curious about the guy's politics then, I just let the music speak for itself. Besides, I did have a T-shirt back then that read: "Screw the Geopolitical Struggle-Let's Dance!"
So, Patrick-cuz I know you just love to see these sniveling little weenies get their just desserts-this one's for you:


Capitalism

There's nothing wrong with capitalism,
There's nothing wrong with free enterprise.
Don't try to make me feel guilty.
I'm so tired of hearing you cry.

There's nothing wrong with making some profit,
If you ask me I'll say it's just fine
There's nothing wrong with wanting to live nice
I'm so tired of hearing you whine
About the revolution-
Bringin' down the rich-
When was the last time you dug a ditch, baby?!

If it ain't one thing
Then it's the other
Any cause that crosses your path
Your heart bleeds for anyone's brother
I've got to tell you, you're a pain in the ass!

You criticize with plenty of vigor
You rationalize everything that you do
With catchy phrases and heavy quotations
And everybody is crazy but you

You're just a middle class, socialist brat
From a suburban family and you never really had to work
And you tell me that we've got to get back
To the struggling masses-(whoever they are!)

You talk, talk, talk about suffering and pain
Your mouth is bigger than your entire brain
What the hell do you know about suffering and pain?

(Repeat first verse)

(Repeat chorus)

There's nothing wrong with Capitalism,
There's nothing wrong with Capitalism,
There's nothing wrong with Capitalism,
There's nothing wrong with Capitalism!


Oh, and the title cut of this album (Only a Lad) is a great slam at "compassionate" liberal attitudes about law and order and the death penalty. It's a fun tune, too.
Hmmm, maybe that's why they never really caught on in the mainstream...they were hitting too many buttons of the record biz elites.
Naw...probably it was just because they were a rather strange bunch.

(I just noticed that the cover art that I gypped appears to be altered-as I recall, the Boy Scout had a lizard tail on his backside. It's not visible in this pic! That's what made the pic funny, to me anyway. Jeez, were there 2 versions?)

3 Comments:

Blogger Lemuel Calhoon said...

Kind of reminds me of the Dead Kennedys song, "Holiday In Cambodia". I don't remember all of it but some of the lines were:

"In your dad's car thinkin' you'll go far back east your type don't crawl." and "Braggin' that you know how the niggers feel cold and the slums got so much soul".

7/15/2006 9:09 PM  
Blogger white trash republican said...

Ouch. I almost didn't let this comment thru, Lem. I absolutely abhor the N word, it makes me cringe. But after considering the context of the lyric and the POV, I'm letting it go. 'Sides, it ain't you saying it, it's them.
The Dead Kennedys were never known for their social graces! ; )
Funny, I can see the album cover clearly in my head, but I'm lost about the song.
Brain holes...keeps gettin' worse with age!

7/15/2006 10:17 PM  
Blogger Patrick Joubert Conlon said...

You were right - I loved it (and I'm keeping it.)

I've just been playing catch up reading your last few posts and having a chuckle but I don't know how you did that 9 hour trip. Whew! I used to drive from SF to LA (about the same mileage) a couple of times a year when I was younger but no way nowadays.

7/18/2006 10:47 AM  

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