by Robert Wynne
Music: “Opening Ceremonies (The Arbiter)” from the musical Chess
We’ve a duty as the media
On the six-o-clock news
To bring you stories full of horror
Do you care?
‘Course you do
We don’t care if you are sensitive
to the horrors of man
We have pictures of the victims
and you know we’ll
ask how they feel
Because we can
We’re on the scene, the feed is live
We’ll interview the ones who survive
Oh we’re the media and we know best
Here’s the bad news, don’t bother with all the rest
We’ve got the verdicts straight from the courts
We’ve got a car crash, hold on for sports
We’re the media, and we have proof
All this carnage makes ratings go through the roof
If you wanted a slight change of pace
from all this gloom and doom
We have lying politicians, business fraud, lies, a
And weather too!
We proclaim the public’s right to know
But that’s just an excuse
To be quite honest, we’re all in a race
To win first place, sell ad space,
Now the news…
The immediate inspiration for this song was a thread on rec.music.filk about how the media propagates urban legends around Halloween time. I wrote at the time: “We have lost our innocence. Easy distribution of information (and misinformation) has made it not only easy to know what is going on all over the world, but damn near impossible to avoid knowing. And as we all know, ‘there’s no news like bad news'”.
On a related note, if you aren’t familiar with Tim Rice’s musical CHESS, check it out. It’s good, good stuff.