Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Requiem for the News--Part Two

If Desmond Tutu pointed out the subversive strength of newspapers (see yesterday's post), singer Joe Jackson much earlier pointed out the insidious weakness of the same. I've not been to Great Britain and so have no direct experience with their news periodicals, but his new-wave/punk era satire "Sunday Papers" doesn't speak highly for the medium. The newspaper industry has had its moments over the centuries, but it's also proven itself capable of making us dumber when it wants.

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Mother doesn’t go out anymore
Just sits at home and rolls her spastic eyes
But every weekend through the door
Come words of wisdom from the world outside

If you want to know about the bishop and the actress
If you want to know how to be a star
If you want to know about the stains on the mattress
You can read it in the Sunday papers

Mother’s wheelchair stays out in the hall
Why should she go out when the tv’s on?
Whatever moves beyond these walls
She’ll know the facts when Sunday comes along

If you want to know about the man gone bonkers
If you want to know how to play guitar
If you want to know about the other suckers
You can read it in the Sunday papers

Sunday papers don’t ask no questions
Sunday papers don’t get no lies
Sunday papers don’t raise objection
Sunday papers don’t got no eyes

Brother’s heading that way now I guess
He just read something made his face turn blue
Well I got nothing against the press
They wouldn’t print it if it wasn’t true

If you want to know about the gay politician
If you want to know how to drive your car
If you want to know about the new sex position
You can read it in the Sunday papers

Read all about it in the Sunday papers

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