Saturday, 15 January 2011

Money For Nothing (Between The Ears)

Only a couple of days after my mentioning the complete lack of humour exhibited by those who perpetually seek out offence, comes this.

It was No. 1 in 1985, but it's unacceptable for Canadian eyes and ears today.

The Dire Straits song "Money for Nothing" was ruled by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council to be "extremely offensive" and thus inappropriate for airing on radio or television because it uses an anti-gay slur.
Hmm, it would seem that they have no concept of derogatory parody, either.

Listen guys, I am old enough to remember the lyrics being explained by Mark Knopfler in the music press at the time (when I was young enough to bother myself reading such things) and, thanks to Wikipedia, the relevant bit has been preserved.

The lead character in "Money for Nothing" is a guy who works in the hardware department in a television/custom kitchen/refrigerator/microwave appliance store. He's singing the song. I wrote the song when I was actually in the store. I borrowed a bit of paper and started to write the song down in the store. I wanted to use a lot of the language that the real guy actually used when I heard him, because it was more real....
Yes, and it is real. This is how rough and ready meagrely-paid working guys describe those they believe are undeserving of respect simply because of the wealth earned by being able to handle a guitar/keyboard/drum/TV talent contest and, especially in 1985, tousle their hair to appeal to groupies in their MTV videos.

Dire Straits used this clever device to poke fun not at gays, not at bands who play on MTV - after all, the band's video for this was lauded for its innovation, and MTV ensured it became a classic - but at those who use such dismissive language in an envious and pathetically spiteful way.

Obviously this is far too clever for dull-witted offence-seekers to comprehend.

It may well be too clever for the types who routinely fling the 'faggot' word around as they listen to music radio too, but the joke is fully on them, thereby making Money For Nothing so delicious in its approach.

Far from being considered offensive, the song should be admired for conveying more anti-homophobic teaching in five minutes than any public-funded guardian of public morality will do in his/her lifetime.

Anyone who would be offended by the 'gay slur' is not only a 'faggot', but also fucking stupid. And if they don't understand what stupid looks like, they would be well advised to pop along to their local anti-discrimination watchdog's office and look through the window.

Next up, the video gets banned everywhere for showing a cartoon character smoking a cigar. Think I'm joking?


9 comments:

Anonymous said...

I always felt deep down that the the PC bansturbator types do themselves far more harm than the the ones they percieve to be their congregation.
This is the big mistake...
Most people do not think in the same way that strange folks like them ,do.
They actually believe that their own distorted bubble is global.
Of course ,it is not.

junican said...

Has popeye been added to the list yet?

Come to think about it, I don't remember seeing any Popeye cartoons for ages.........

Pavlov's Cat said...

This is how rough and ready meagrely-paid working guys describe those they believe are undeserving of respect simply because of the wealth earned by being able to handle a guitar/keyboard/drum/TV talent contest

Do you know I always saw it the other way. As in the guy is envious and not comtemptuous and is wishing he had the talent or the luck or the drive to get the 'Money for nothing and the chicks for free'

JuliaM said...

Much easier to criticise a song from the Eighties than to start to wonder just what those rap stars and dance hall guys are singing about, isn't it?

Span Ows said...

Pavlov's Cat is right because the lyrics are "I wish I'd learned to play the guitar" etc.

And JuliaM makes a good point, I wonder how many mother*******, ho slapping, murdered for no respect rap lyrics have been banned.

Dick Puddlecote said...

Yes, I haven't written that bit too well, have I - the important part is the envy, and the lazy insult is born out of that.

Cazzy Jones said...

Hi - I've coincidentally written about the same issue here, tying in Tom and Jerry. Good job the censors didn't find the line about banging on the bongos like a chimpanzee, or they would have had kittens...

Anonymous said...

Several years ago, TOTP2 featured Oliver's Army by Elvis Costello. The phrase, "one more bullet, one less white nigger" had mysteriously disappeared. I complained to the BBC about this censorship and received quite a sympathetic reply.

Dick Puddlecote said...

Anon@17:49: Watch this space as I've got something lined up similar to your story. Glad you posted that as I'll reference it. :)