As we await the official results of the Electoral College vote later today, I nearly passed coffee through my nose this morning while listening to the usual, inept TV pundit squad discussing how improbable a “precedential” turnover would be. These are the same bright bulbs that had projected a HRC victory up until very late on election night. The media is as responsible for the decline of America as any politician.
America is about to get hard again!
Like many a blind squirrel (note – I have yet to meet a single blind squirrel in my life), the pundits have probably found a nut and they are probably correct this time. And speaking of nuts, we are in for a nutty first year with the Trump team taking over the White House. Give it up for eight years of goddamned bleeding heart liberal politics. Unemployment is at a record low and millions of people that had no access to quality healthcare are now able to receive treatment. When you consider the money saved by catching chronic disease as early as pre-disease and stemming costly treatment, hospital time, loss of employment income, medicine costs and half a dozen other benefit savings, the cost savings of the healthcare improvement alone are staggering and life changing.
These two important details will soon be mere memories.
Jobs and Healthcare – Keep the memories!
Now to be perfectly clear, I believe Obama came up dreadfully short on multiple promises and critical goals he set eight years ago. Some if not most of the challenge was related to the GOP cock block on important legislation in spite of Americans. Still, I am glad to see Obamaco checking out of Pennsylvania Avenue. I am also very happy that the Clinton Cabal will not be back in power in my lifetime.
Here’s the reality folks – America is about to get hard again.
The Trump regime is designing a cabinet that is set to destroy middle class and low income Americans while deregulating Wall Street faster than you can Sarbanes your Oxley and possibly launching us into a nuclear World War III. Racism and social divide will see an all time increase and corruption from the top down will undermine the very fabric of our alleged democracy. Not enough fear and loathing yet? I just read that Dick Cheney is now advising Trump.We are so very fucked as a nation right now and it will not sink in to most Trump supporters for at least a few more months. There is nothing else any of us “awake” folks can do except make necessary preparations in our own personal lives – job, home, finances, loved ones, an adequate store of food, tequila and cannabis (if you are so inclined) and a sense of humor. I believe that the hardship America is about to face will rival our very worst times and worst challenges as a nation since the very beginning of America.
But Wait, There Has Got To be Something We Can Do!
There is one more thing we could all do – every one of us with even the slightest musical interest or inclination. I remember writing some of my favorite and most meaningful lyrics from a position of pain or hard times. Hard times can break folks down and hard times can spark tremendous change. We must plan for that change.
America needs a Big Woody right now!
Picture a Woody in every town across our great land – “From California to the New York Island” – Today, I am calling for a Woody In Every Town!
Like most young songwriters trying to find a mentor and a musical style or niche, I followed the trails of my folk music heroes and peeled a few extra onions to learn about their musical influences. Through the works of Bob Dylan to Pete Seeger and half a dozen others, Woodrow Wilson “Woody” Guthrie kept popping up on my music radar. Simply put – Woody Guthrie changed the world with his guitar and his brilliant command of a lyric. He served in the US Army and he served America with his music which brought about changes that could never be achieved with a rifle or a tank. His catalog is out there to take in and I recommend anyone with an interest , especially aspiring writers, should visit his official website and bookmark it as an excellent reference. I encourage a visit to another Guthrie-influenced music website / band Folk Uke. Cathy Guthrie joins with Amy Nelson (yup, that Nelson – another great musical family). Their music is raw and lyrically brilliant. Among my favorite tracks – “Shit Makes The Flowers Grow”, is worth a spin. Here’s a little known fact – Famed son of a Guthrie, Arlo is or at least was a registered Republican despite his Father’s outspoken condition. Arlo’s talent is undeniable. The Motorcycle Song and When A Soldier Makes It Home are among my favorites.
In fact, Woody Guthrie is no stranger to the Trump family. Professor of American Literature and Culture, Will Kaufman, leveraged funding from my publishing company of record, BMI, to deliver an excellent story about the Trump v Guthrie Landlord /Tenant relationship. Here’s another clip. I recommend this history lesson!
America needs a Big Woody right now!
Write a song or just a lyric. Share your ideas with a friend , post your work to social media (while we still have access). Peaceful dissent is (at least for now) our right and our duty. The fucking Macarena has garnered six million views – so make it catchy!
So pick up that Guitar or Ukulele or Mandolin (caution- do not pick up your piano), sit at your Piano and bang your Drum. Whoa there – Put that fucking Banjo down! Nobody asked you to play that thing. Whatever you play on or at, start writing again, start singing again , start rising up through your music again just like Woody did. We can all be a Woody and we can all make a difference.
America is about to get hard again – The more Woodys, the better.
Realizing that songs are powerful weapons against tyranny , fascism and trumpism (but I repeat myself) , I am also a realist. Therefore, I will close this particular rant with a prophetic lyric from yet another brilliant musical American, Harry Nilsson.