Tin Foil Girl Essay 23 September 2019
This song was originally written in the mid 80s, or the origins of it at least. I vaguely remember the Replacements LET IT BE changing my life. One thing I shared with my Minneapolis heroes was alcoholism. The line from the original writing that sticks out to me 35 years later is "drink up to the times/drink up to yourself/live your life that's what you gotta do/but how can you live with nothing to give/I'll be unknown before I'm through." I'll leave that there.
I came up with the character of Tin Foil Girl in my basement at some point. A writer writes, right? I finished up the lyrics a few years back in anticipation of recording it with Brian and Andy. My entire life I always wondered what it would be like if someone ran for president of the USA who didn't give a shit about anything. I imagined a soulless creature who said and did anything because this individual didn't actually care about the nation and the inherent promise of a Republic built on ideals. Well fuck me if that didn't happen before mine very eyes. It's what "Tin Foul Girl" does in the song. Having it actually happen was as jarring an incident as 9/11. If anything this guy's hatred of compassion has made the GOP into a bunch of sychophantic pussies. I have to hand it to Trump for remaking one of the two (TWO) American political parties into his own image. It functions as Nixon's southern strategy blooming in full. Guys like Lindsey Graham and Mitt Romney are caught up in an inversion of Bob Dylan's "A Hard Rains Gonna Fall" namely the line "you better start swimming or you'll sink like a stone."
Shit. I guess this is now a political essay. I remember Robert Mueller's hearing. He had a look on his face that said "for fuck sake, Democrats, it's all here spelled out for you - high crimes and misdemeanors - do your fucking job." This Trump guy's a destructive whirlwind. The political stuff can be reversed. This is why I hate this motherfucker. He provides cover for bigotry plain and simple. This nation's bonkers. Presidentialy the pendulum swings wildly. The Obama Reaction was going to happen.
Look. I'm a sociopath. I generally don't care about the human race. Our biggest accomplishment has been to poison the earth. Yay. I do, however, believe that, even though collectively we may deserve annihilation, individually we deserve dignity. The world is a grim place. 99.9% of human existence has been overt suffering and death. It's how nature works. It's benign. I understand why people fearfully flock to religion. It's a comforting message to know that one day your suffering will end. That's also one of my main beefs with monotheism. Everything's about "suffering" with these motherfuckers. There's so much we need to figure out. Having to deal with a majority of a genus and species that believes in Santa Claus is counterproductive. This is how Trump got elected. Facts mean nothing. Truth is now a construct, apparently. Porky the drummer can't understand Trump supporters because they have an endless appetite for eating shit, getting ripped off, and dying young. It's exactly the same with monotheism. It brings individual existential comfort and is devoid of reason and an affront to reality. That's why hysterical liberals and never trumpers call it a cult, because it is.
Blind acceptance is mostly how civilization has functioned since settled societies emerged. This country was the first that attempted to be NOT built on blind acceptance. There was always a chance that a demagogue would ascend and feed into the worst impulses of the populace. Trump is the anti-Lincoln. Whereas Lincoln pled for a reliance on "the better angels of our nature" this motherfucker is burning it down and lining his pockets in the process. Actually, I'm into a lot of what he does. I like how he blatantly tells the working man that he's going to take their money, healthcare, and clean air. It's brilliant. When his supporters say "he doesn't lie" they're referring to how he's honest about how he doesn't like people of color. He's honest about the crimes he commits to line his pockets. He's honest about the things that american voters have long suspected of politicians in general. They are relieved that FINALLY a politician has told them that he only cares about their vote. He hates the same people and that's good enough.
It's breathtaking, isn't it? The most startling thing is that people act surprised that an amoral charlatan won the election. He never pretended to be anything else.