Pop Playground
Sugar Shock #012: Downgrade U

By: David Moore

Posted 08/15/2007 - 02:50:38 PM by GavinM:
 Scaled-down bling is a way to make capitalist realism more credible/desirable in a society with escalating income stratification. Country and hip hop rely on working class audiences facing increased economic difficulties that are potentially hostile to rich people shoving it in their faces. And why take anything Fergie says at face-value? They're letting corporations step in to write her rhymes just like they write legislation now. Should we be surprised when her message comes out terminally schizo?
Posted 08/15/2007 - 04:52:43 PM by dmoore:
 I agree with you for the most part. But because her rhymes are terminally schizo, it's hard for me to believe they were written by committee -- or, if they were, it's a pretty shitty committee. (If the puppeteer isn't doing something harmful, is in fact just plain nuts, what's so bad about puppeteering?) Anyway, I doubt that corporate interests have much control over what she's saying (at this point, anyway: the rumor that a company was paying her to insert a lyric for their product was false, and as someone else said in another conversation, if I were, say, True Religion, I wouldn't necessarily want to be in "My Humps").

Forget if I said this here already, but your first comment reminds me of Barthes idea of the inoculation -- the culture (or "The Man") uses an extreme outlier to focus unformed outrage at a false target, then can more easily rationalize the smaller everyday "evils" (though I wouldn't call consumerism an evil, hence some problems with this particular critique as I'm using it). So Paris might be the inoculation to Katharine McPhee (except neither of 'em sold, so now we're back to square one).