Friday, February 14, 2014

After Odd Future, shall we ban the Rolling Stones?

After complaints from lawyer and anti-misogyny activist Denise Ritchie, New Zealand's Ministry of Immigration has agreed to ban the hip hop group Odd Future from New Zealand.* Odd Future had been scheduled to support Eminem at a concert in Auckland this weekend.

Ritchie charges Odd Future with celebrating sexual violence, and it isn't hard to find images of girlfriend-bashing, adbuction, rape, and even necrophilia in their work. A typical Odd Future song features minimal, erratic beats, distorted samples, and lyrics that are alternately sad, absurd, and sick:

Product of popped rubbers and pops who did not love us
So when I leave home keep my heart in the top cupboard...

I'm Dracula bitch
Don't got a problem snatching a bitch
Kidnapping, attacking, with axes and shit
'Til I grab them throats and start smacking the shits

But if Denise Ritchie and her supporters think that the Odd Future should be banned from New Zealand for promoting sexual violence, shouldn't they also be calling for the Rolling Stones to be turned around at Auckland airport?

The Stones are scheduled to play in Auckland in April, and their set is sure to include an old favourite called 'Brown Sugar', in which Sir Mick Jagger narrates, in a joyous voice, the torture and rape of a young black girl by an elderly slave master:

Gold coast slaveship bound for cotton fields,
Sold in a market down in New Orleans.
Scarred old slaver knows he's doin' alright.
Hear him whip the women just around midnight.

Ah brown sugar how come you taste so good.
A-ha brown sugar just like a young girl should...

I'm no schoolboy but I know what I like,
You should have heard me just around midnight.

'Brown Sugar' gleefully documents the sexual predation that was endemic in America's slave trade. The song's lyrics are as explicit and as apparently pitiless as anything by Tyler the Creator, the leader and main lyricist of Odd Future.

But neither Denise Ritchie nor anyone else will object to the upcoming Stones concert. The Stones will be welcomed almost as reverently as that other venerable British institution, the Windsors, and tens of thousands of Kiwis will sing along to 'Brown Sugar'.

If we do not treat 'Brown Sugar' as a defence of slavery and sexual violence, it is because assume that Sir Mick is wearing a persona when he performs the song. We recognise that he is giving his voice and mannerisms to a character, a monster who belongs to a monstrous period of history.

We show a similar ability to distinguish between the subject matter and message of a work of art when we read novels, or watch movies, or enjoy television. Last year huge numbers of Kiwis enjoyed the final series of Breaking Bad, Vince Gilligan's TV drama about a chemistry teacher who reacts to a cancer diagnosis and a financial crisis by becoming a methamphetamine manufacturer and a gangster. Like its predecessors, Breaking Bad's final series was full of drug making and taking, stabbing, shooting, and misogynistic language. Neither Denise Ritchie nor anyone else, though, has accused Vince Gilligan of inciting violence, or demanded that his programme be pulled from our screens.

But the tolerance that we give to a song like 'Brown Sugar' or a drama like Breaking Bad is not extended to the work of Odd Future. Unlike the fans of the Rolling Stones or Breaking Bad, the young, working class, mostly non-white audience of Odd Future and similar bands is apparently incapable of distinguishing between art and life, and of differentiating an artist's personae from his or her opinions. Denise Ritchie and the Ministry of Immigration consider the lyrics of Odd Future straightforward statements of the views of the band's members, and deem fans of the band to be too feeble-minded to resist its supposed message of hate and violence. If Tyler the Creator raps about being Dracula he isn't adopting a persona, but instead suggesting, in deadly earnest, that his fans follow his example by sleeping in a coffin and drinking blood from the throats of his victims.

Odd Future is only the latest hip hop act to be targeted by censors. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the outcry against the dominant cultural expression of African Americans is linked to the dehumanisation and criminalisation of that community by successive American governments.

As Eugene Jarecki showed memorably in his recent documentary film The House I Live In, the 'War on Drugs' that the Reagan administration began in the 1980s has seen generations of young black men branded as crazed, conscienceless animals by law enforcement agencies, the media, and politicians. The police siren that features so prominently in so many classic hip hop tracks has become a permanent accompaniment to life in cities like Lose Angeles, Detroit, and Baltimore, as the same police force that ignores white drug users locks down whole black neighbourhoods.

In a 2011 article called 'Why You Should Listen to Odd Future, Even Though It's Hard' Frannie Kelley argues that the bloodthirsty, absurdist lyrics of the band are a sort of ironic response to white prejudices about young African Americans. Kelley thinks that the criticisms commonly made of Odd Future 'might say more about the people making them' than they do about what the band. The latest campaign against Odd Future underlines Kelley's words.

*In an interview with Radio New Zealand this morning, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Immigration argued very unconvincingly that the ban was motivated by Odd Future's history of 'inciting violence' in public, rather than on the content of its lyrics. I'll discuss this argument in another post.

Footnote: this very interesting report from Britain, which features interviews with fans of Odd Future, adds to my feeling that there is an irony to the band's music that has escaped many of those who decry it from a distance.

[Posted by Scott Hamilton]


23 Comments:

Anonymous weka said...

Just curious, what's the source for the idea that their visa was revoked because the lyrics?

4:19 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/blogs/rock-and-roll-mother/9723290/Odd-Future-ban-ironic-for-NZ

7:36 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gordon Campbell gets stuck in

So the Odd Future rap collective have had their visas revoked because – according to the Immigration Service – they pose a threat to public order in New Zealand. (Allegedly, their visas were not revoked because of their lyrics.) Yeah right. Leaving aside the traces of 1950s style moral panic in the term “threat to public order” the claim that public safety would be at risk if Odd Future performed in Auckland is patently ridiculous. Odd Future performed at the Powerstation in Auckland in 2012 without incident, and one of its key members (Earl Sweatshirt, who would not have been making this particular trip) performed in Auckland and Wellington only a fortnight ago. I saw his performance: we all had a genial good natured, good time. On the available evidence, rugby events like the Sevens tournament pose a far, far bigger threat to public order – and to the safety of women – than hip hop concerts.

There’s a pattern here. Every few years New Zealand has a spasm of moral outrage about what the kids are listening to – it’s all about the kids, right? – and tries to ban the music and the opinions that it doesn’t like. The modus operandi tends to be the same. Twenty years ago at the height of the controversy over the rapper Ice T’s “Cop Killer” song, the police trawled through the criminal record of every member of the group to see if they could find a reason to ban them from entering the country, and sought to prosecute a record shop owner (selected at random) caught selling Ice T’s album.
http://gordoncampbell.scoop.co.nz/2014/02/14/gordon-campbell-on-the-banning-of-odd-future/

11:47 pm  
Blogger Stephen Parkes said...

Scott, your blog post seems frustratingly disingenuous. Neither Vince Gilligan nor Mick Jagger publicly wished a woman’s children got STDs did they?

“At Tyler’s concert in Sydney the next day, he told his fans he hoped my children got STDs, and “dedicated” songs to me that included lyrics like “punch a bitch in her mouth just for talkin' shit.”

http://www.dailylife.com.au/news-and-views/dl-opinion/us-rapper-tyler-the-creator-unleashes-a-torrent-of-hate-on-sydney-activist-20130806-2rbbf.html

Were you really not aware of this?

If Jagger had behaved in a similar way to Tyler, then yes, I suspect Denise Ritchie et al may well have had a similar response.

“Frannie Kelley argues that the bloodthirsty, absurdist lyrics of the band are a sort of ironic response to white prejudices about young African Americans."

Maybe. But we don’t just have their lyrics to judge here. We have the actual, not-just-in-character statements of Tyler, directed at an actual person.

3:36 am  
Anonymous Scott said...

Hi Stephen,

Denise Ritchie lobbied for the banning of Odd Future on the grounds of their lyrics alone; so did activists in Australia, including Tabitha Stone, who was, as you note, verbally abused at an odd Future concert in Australia. So it's not at all disingenuous for me to address the argument that Odd Future's lyrics are ipso facto reasons for banning the group.

I note that Gordon Campbell, who seems to know a lot of the participants in this controversy, insists that the Ministry decided to ban Odd Future on the basis of its lyrics and then went looking for some way to disguise its reason.

I agree that Tyler's statements were idiotic and very nasty. I don't think they were made, though, directly at Tabitha Stone - he wasn't aware she was attending his concert.

Do the comments Tyler made count as incitement to violence, and do they mean he and his band shouldn't be allowed to enter and perform in NZ? I think if we were to ban him for verbally abusing one of his critics from the stage, then we'd have to ban a lot of other musicians, including Eminem, who used to brandish a chainsaw and rant about various enemies, Oasis, who like to abuse rivals from their bully pulpit, and Axl Rose, who would recite an enemies' list and perform a song called 'Get in the Ring', which demanded that they meet him in combat.

Of course, all those performers were white.

If Tyler had said something like 'Someone should get Tabitha Stone' or 'You should bash anyone who tries to ban me' from the stage in Australia, then of course he'd be guilty of inciting violence. But the verbal abuse of an individual before an excited and sympathetic audience shouldn't be conflated with incitement to violence. If it were, then most political protests, and indeed many parliamentary debates, would end in arrests.

Banning is an extreme act, with unavoidably authoritarian overtones. It shouldn't be done casually, or on the basis of hysteria. And Denise Ritchie's argument that song lyrics alone are enough to justify the banning of Odd Future should be opposed especially vigorously, because it is based ultimately on racist hysteria.

7:22 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Immigration NZ Border Operation Manager Karen Urwin says despite public perception, the decision to block them had nothing to do with the lyrical content of their songs.

Ms Irwin says Immigration NZ made the decision around 2pm yesterday after receiving information from another Government agency.

The information related to incidents Odd Future had been involved with in the past – notably one in 2011 where a police officer was assaulted by a fan during a public appearance, and another last year where Tyler verbally blasted an activist who had tried to get a concert shut down.

“Because the lead singer has got 1.7 million followers on Twitter and because of the comments he made about her and the things he tweeted about her that poor woman was effectively harassed and threatened and we consider that kind of behaviour pretty serious,” she says.

Under Immigration legislation, people who are believed to be a threat to public order can be refused entry to the country – though Ms Urwin says this is the first time she can recall it being applied to a musical act.

“Generally it’s aimed at organisations like white supremacists and neo-Nazis, people who have come in here to be public speakers, holocaust deniers – those kinds of people.”

But whether the ban is because of Odd Future as a whole is unclear – the group has already played three New Zealand shows, including two earlier this month in Auckland and Wellington.

“I think the key thing is that Tyler the Creator wasn’t there. I think he seems to be, from what I can see, one of the main instigators,” says Ms Urwin.

“I’d say that they probably would [be allowed in without him] since he seems to be the person who creates most of the trouble, but that’s a matter for them – and if that’s what they would like to do in the future, make an application to that effect, then we’d happily consider it.”

So, you’ve voided the visas of five people based on guilt by association with someone who is almost certainly a heinous dick, but still hasn’t actually been convicted of any offending that would constitute a clear and present public order threat.

12:48 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Odd futures audience is exclusively white middle class hipsters, racist NZers too provincial to know what they're panicking about.

6:52 pm  
Anonymous Keir said...

I think --- and I kinda want to expand this properly, but this will do for the time being --- that the comparison of, say, the Stones and Odd Future is pretty ungenerous to Odd Future.

In general there's quite an unpleasant (and racist) narrative where Odd Future get conflated with Chris Brown and R Kelly --- Elle Hunt's piece for RNZ is a particularly bad example --- as being simply "problematic intersections" where maybe you like the music but the performer is morally bad. But I don't think you can simple pigeon-hole Odd Future as "bad homophobes/misogynists", and certainly not in the same sense as people who actually committed violent assaults on women. They have a very prominent out gay male member, and the DJ's an out lesbian. If you didn't know what their music sounded like, that looks like being leading figures of acceptance in urban music.

The accusations against OF's artistic production all seem to rely on a very uncharitable reading of the group, and in a particularly naive and racist way.

I will also be super blunt and say that I think Talitha Stone is basically a rather nasty racist (and ageist for that matter). She also conflates the nasty personal abuse, which Tyler certainly engages in, and which is very horrible but also both legal and perhaps an understandable if not justifiable response to an attempt to whip up a racist moral panic, and explicit threats of violence from OFWGKTA fans, which are of course absolutely wrong.

10:23 am  
Anonymous Scott said...

Those are very interesting arguments Keir. But here's my experience of listening to Odd Future, after learning of their existence the other day. I enjoyed the minimalist beats of their songs, which actually reminded me of the some of the minimalist classical composers, as well as some of the classic music of the early electronic era, and could appreciate the skill of the rapping, but the constant use of derogatory languages - the use of 'faggot' as a refrain, for example - ultimately made the songs unpleasant for me.

How do you, as a fan of the band, get around this sort of barrier? Or is it not a barrier that exists for members of the band's community, but something I have created for myself, by not hearing them with sufficient irony?

I don't mean to give any weight to the argument for the banning of Odd Future by asking these questions. I think 'Brown Sugar' is a lousy, tasteless song, but I don't want to ban the Stones.

10:32 am  
Blogger katy said...

Remember this? i.stuff.co.nz/national/9055435/Radical-musician-barred-on-way-to-Nelson-gig

11:04 am  
Blogger katy said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

11:05 am  
Anonymous Scott said...

I thought of that earlier ban when I heard about the barring of Odd Future, Katy. I've just added a clip from British telly to the bottom of the post - I think it is important, because it features interviews with fans of the bands, including female fans.

My impression is that, just like every text, the lyrics of an Odd Future song underdetermine their meaning, and don't have to be taken at face value. That doesn't mean I think it's worthwhile for them to be throwing a lot of derogatory language and imagery around in their songs.

As an aside, the DIY genius of Odd Future, which is discussed in the British clip, reminds me a lot of the extraordinary grassroots arts movement that have emerged in Tonga in recent years: http://readingthemaps.blogspot.co.nz/2013/12/why-tevita-latu-is-new-lou-reed.html

11:11 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://thedoggstar.com/end-times/tylers-satanic-odd-future-ofwgkta/

11:32 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Spit on a bitch, punch on a bitch
After I eat some steak, have her tug on my dick
Nigga filthy rich, two car notes
No house nigga, that’s how I roll
Yeah nigga I do this fuckin’ shit
Count money, get my hair braided by your bitch
She drivin’ me around town, nigga
Where I’m at nigga? Dog pound nigga
Oh shit nigga, what’s good ho?
Your bitch givin’ me head, countin’ money though
2 chainz, three dames
Rollin’ with my niggas cause we gang bang
I roll big, we roll deep
Only skate in the streets, what’s good nigga?
I’m hood nigga, with my hood niggas
We ratchet, we coon in the hood section

5:25 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Meredith Curly Hunter, Jr. (October 24, 1951 – December 6, 1969) was an 18-year-old African-American who was killed at the 1969 Altamont Free Concert. During the performance by The Rolling Stones, Hunter attempted to climb on stage, and was driven off by members of the Hells Angels motorcycle club who had been contracted to serve as ushers and security guards. He subsequently returned to the stage, drew a revolver, and was stabbed to death by Hells Angel Alan Passaro. His motivations—whether an intent to shoot a member of the Hell's Angels, or as self-defense against the Hells Angels—have been widely speculated on since the event.
The incident was caught on camera and became a central scene in the documentary Gimme Shelter. Passaro was charged with murder. After an eight-man, four-woman jury deliberated for 12 and a half hours, following 17 days of testimony, Passaro was acquitted on grounds of self defense.

Fueled by LSD and amphetamines, and given the limited amount of space in front of the stage, the crowd became restless and unpredictable, and the Hells Angels began hurling full cans of beer from their stockpile and striking concert-goers with sawed-off, weighted pool cues and motorcycle chains to drive the crowd back from the stage. By the time the Rolling Stones took stage in the early evening, the mood had taken a decidedly ugly turn, as numerous fights began to erupt between Angels and crowd members. Denise Jewkes of local San Francisco rock band the Ace of Cups, six months pregnant, was hit in the head by an empty beer bottle thrown from the crowd during their set and suffered a skull fracture.
Witnesses also reported Hunter was stomped on by several Hells Angels while he was on the ground. The gun was recovered and turned over to police.

5:31 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

“If you believe in freedom of speech, you believe in freedom of speech for views you don’t like. Goebbels was in favor of freedom of speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you’re in favor of freedom of speech, that means you’re in favor of freedom of speech precisely for views you despise.” (Chomsky 1992)

8:22 pm  
Blogger Stephen Parkes said...

“Denise Ritchie lobbied for the banning of Odd Future on the grounds of their lyrics alone; so did activists in Australia, including [Talitha] Stone, who was, as you note, verbally abused at an odd Future concert in Australia. So it's not at all disingenuous for me to address the argument that Odd Future's lyrics are ipso facto reasons for banning the group.”

The first article I read about this issue was this one:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/music/9714206/Call-to-ban-Odd-Future

In that you can see Stop Demand specifically mention their concern extending beyond just the lyrics. I think Tyler’s behaviour in that regard was worth noting in an article on this subject. On the other hand, in other places Denise Ritchie does seem to indicate the lyrics alone would be enough. So I’ll withdraw ‘disingenuous’.

For the record, I’m not in favour of the ban. I just don’t think the comparison with the Stones is useful (even more so the comparison with Breaking Bad). I don’t much like the Stones – boring for the most – and I definitely don’t like Brown Sugar. But I suspect there are plenty of acts with a long career that have a misogynistic song or two in their oeuvre (or, if you prefer, a song with misogynistic content). I think a reasonable, non-racist person can have concerns about Tyler that they don’t have about, say, the Stones. I think Ritchie’s argument that OF should be banned is wrong, but she should be able to make that argument without it being assumed she’s racist.

10:53 pm  
Anonymous Keir said...

I should start by saying that I don't think I'm a fan as such of Odd Future. I listen to their stuff when it comes out, and I went through a phase of listening to their back catalog a couple of years back. But I don't listen to it regularly, or identify as a fan, or anything like that.

But I do think interpretive charity is a virtue when looking at art works, and I do think that ambiguity, difficulty, and even unpleasantness are virtues in art. And if I'm willing to go that length for Santiago Sierra -- or Nick Cave --- I can't very well turnaround and deny that to Odd Future.

So! Some close reading and some remarks.

Firstly, the misogyny. Certainly, if you take Odd Future's raps as literally suggesting that you go out and rape/kill women, or claims that the speaker has in fact performed such acts, then yes, that's clearly out of order. But no one thinks that's the claim being made. Because it's absurd. In fact, within contemporary rap music OF are clearly situated as (to use Pusha-T's words in Trouble On My Mind) "hipsters" in opposition to "felons and thugs". Where Pusha-T
claims to be a "legit drug-dealer", it's super clear that Odd Future are just running their mouths.)

So if it isn't working as an injunction to go out and rape, or as a claim about empirical reality, what is rape material doing in OF's work? Well, a recurrent set of themes in their work are therapy/psychiatry, aberrance, and trangression. The first track on Tyler's first album, Bastard, is a pretty key text here. It's framed as a conversation between Tyler himself and a therapist --- who is, of course, Tyler himself, only pitch-shifted. And as the first line of the first verse goes "this is what the devil plays before he goes to sleep". The therapist conceit is continued in the follow-up, Goblin, and even, in a typical shift, recurs in Trouble On My Mind as a reference to Dr Lipschitz from Rugrats. So maybe, instead of framing the rape material as being normative, we should understand it as being explicitly aberrant, as diseased, the product of a mental illness. It's also functioning as a way into an examination of guilt,
complicity, shame, --- you know, like Confessions of a Justified Sinner, or perhaps Dosteovsky, if we want to legitimise by reference
to 'high' art.

11:41 am  
Anonymous Keir said...

I think there's a racialised aspect which gets skated over in a lot of the codemnatory responses. The typical scenario posits
a black (male) body attacking a white (female) body. There's something happening there that simply glossing as a rape fantasy
isn't enough. The Internet (Syd tha Kyd's side project) track Cocaine maybe gives one angle into it.

The homophobic stuff is more complex, and certainly takes more work than I'm willing to put in here. But without resorting to facile "there's a lesbian and a gay so it's ok" it does have to be said there's a lesbian and a gay man in the group, and that references to homosexuality and slurs are more complex than is generally admitted --- in Yonkers, the possiblity of Syd going with a man is posed as an example of an impossibility, and there's no sense of judgement or criticism, but arguably just acceptance.

There's also two standards here. The first is a low standard: are Odd Future morally wrong for using such material? The second is quite high: does Odd Future's use of that material pose such a risk to the safety of others as to rise to being a matter for immigration?

Reasonable people can clearly disagree about the first question. I'm not entirely sure what I think about the first, and that is part of what I think is powerful about OF's work. But I think it is very hard to claim the second without also, for instance, being pushed to view Cave's Murder Ballads as a threat to public order.

So to answer the question about slurs, I guess part of it is that you aren't exactly meant to enjoy listening to Odd Future. It's meant to be complex problematic and unpleasant.

11:42 am  
Anonymous Frank E Foxton said...

I hope no bad people come -
Beastie Boys

Those people celebrating the non-appearance of Odd Future at last weekend’s Rapture event and the decision of Immigration New Zealand to deny the group entry into the country may be forgiven for overlooking, in their delirium, a subsequent decision by the same department to deport Tongan nationals to areas devastated by a recent cyclone.

While much of the focus of online discussion on this topic has revolved around the supposed rights of touring artists and musicians – including the ranking of just who is the biggest misogynist on today’s circuit, and there are many contenders – less attention has been paid to the dubious track record of Immigration NZ. Indeed, the department is widely viewed as doing its best to act in the country’s interests, be it protecting women from violence, or safeguarding us from terror, bogus asylum seekers, people smugglers, human traffickers, and assorted external threats and other unspecified evil.

But this view obscures the blatant hypocrisy of a government department that is riven with racial prejudice and one that has operated with increasing impunity over recent years. If you thought dawn raids were something consigned to the twentieth century, guess again. If you want to find examples of actual violence against women (incited by a different set of lyrics), then look no further than Immigration NZ itself. From forcibly detaining a ten-year-old Samoan girl, to shaking down Thai women who hold NZ passports at airports, humiliating and deporting vulnerable Sri Lankan and Indonesian women, and buzzing with helicopters (!) fruit pickers in the Bay of Plenty who are working on expired visas, the Immigration Service knows no bounds when it comes to acting out its own version of Judge Dredd.

Staff at Immigration NZ’s intelligence unit – the same division that relied on contrived ‘intelligence’ to try to thwart Ahmed Zaoui’s application for asylum –were as recently as December 2013 found to have been offered brownie points by bosses if they passes on information to the US Federal Bureau of Investigation. Such is the intensity of successive New Zealand governments’ war on asylum seekers that the facility and concept of asylum are becoming things of the past. For this we can thank the likes of David Cunliffe, who, as minister of immigration, sponsored a law change to place near-insurmountable obstacles in the way of those seeking entry in to New Zealand while trying to flee persecution. If you’re not a UNHCR-designated refugee in a long queue for the 700 or so places Fortress New Zealand makes available under its annual quota system, then good riddance.

Meanwhile, the red carpet is regularly vacuumed for visiting heads of state and dignitaries, regardless of their criminality or bloodthirstiness: note the ovations provided to (former) US secretary of state Hillary Clinton, welcomed to New Zealand by pro-ANZUS bluebloods and anti-war Greens alike. Not content with overseeing destruction and devastation in Iraq and Afghanistan (where New Zealand is seen as standing shoulder to shoulder in SAS-supported joy-riding kill trips to wipe out civilians), diplomatic support for the soon to be unleashed NATO-led rape of Libya was guaranteed by the New Zealand government.

Far from applauding Immigration New Zealand for its stance on Odd Future, ostensibly on the grounds of preventing incitement of hatred towards women, anti-violence and equality advocates might pause before giving undiluted adulation to an out of control government department, an agency that arbitrarily and selectively deems entry visa applicants as threats, and one that might one day view you as a problem to be dealt with outside public scrutiny and in the absence of due process. Going to a hot spot? Your passport could be revoked in the twinkling of an eye.

Black Faggot, an award-winning play that details the response to New Zealand’s civil union legislation, opens in Auckland next month. Might see you there.

1:07 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it is well documented that pure common Tongans fear the Kaiviti Tongan Monarch who still enslave Tongans and regard them as dirt eaters in their own land hi,hi,hi..also it is well documented that the Tongan soldiers fear the Taliban attack and hide under their bunks resulting in the destruction of 200 million NATO millitary equipment and the death of 2 U.S marines who fought the Taliban insurgents while the Tongan soldiers were holding each other shaking and terrified..no place for entertainers my Tongan sons

9:58 am  
Anonymous Scott said...

Thanks for those very interesting comments Keir. I was reading about Syd Tha Kid, and was quite struck by the way the video for her first single 'Cociane' had been mistaken for a celebration of misogyny, when it had been intended by Syd as a warning about drugs. The old underdetermination principle strikes again!

8:37 pm  
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