November 25, 2010

Neil Young: The Restless Consumer


Neil Young - "The Restless Consumer"

Neil Young has been one of my musical favorites for a long time. He is a poet and a rebel, and I really enjoy his work which often highlights the plight of the common people and an embattled planet. He tirelessly speaks out against the war machine, the hypocrisy, and the lies. He is so right when he says, "We don't need no more lies."

In 2003 Young released Greendale which chronicles the life of a character named Sun Green. She isn't just an environmental and political activist - she discovers that she comes from a proud tradition of women that have chosen unconventional lifestyles in response to 'progress' founded on exploitation of people and the earth.

I saw Young backed by Crazy Horse perform this theatrical production/rock concert. The powerful performance was unlike any live show I had seen before, and its message was spot on.

Young only seems to be getting better, and since then has released the album Living With War. This guy is definitely not slowing down or going soft in his elder years. My favorite song from the 2006 album is:

The Restless Consumer
The people have heard the news
The people have spoken
You may not like what they said
But they weren't jokin'

Way out on the desert sands
Lies a desperate lover
They call her the "Queen of Oil"
So much to discover

Don't need no ad machine
Telling me what I need
Don't need no Madison Avenue War
Don't need no more boxes I can see

Covered in flags but I can't see them on TV

Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies

The restless consumer flies
Around the world each day
With such an appetite for taste and grace

People from around the world
Need someone to listen
We're starving and dying from our disease
We need your medicine
How do you pay for war
And leave us dyin' ?
When you could do so much more
You're not even tryin'

Don't need no TV ad
Tellin' me how sick I am
Don't want to know how many people are like me
Don't need no dizziness
Don't need no nausea
Don't need no side effects like diarrhea or sexual death

Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies

The restless consumer lies
Asleep in her hotel
With such an appetite
For anything that sells

A hundred voices from a hundred lands
Need someone to listen
People are dying here and there
They don't see the world the way you do
There's no mission accomplished here
Just death to thousands

A hundred voices from a hundred lands
Cry out in unison

Don't need no terror squad
Don't want no damned Jihad
Blowin' themselves away in my hood
But we don't talk to them
So we don't learn from them
Hate don't negotiate with Good

Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies
Don't need no more lies

The restless consumer flies
Around the world each day
With such an appetite for efficiency
And pace...

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