Cognitive Dissonance Blues lyrics

The Narcissist Cookbook

[Verse 1]
So I was in the supermarket the other day picking up
Stock cubes for this vegetable curry that I survived on for most of 2020
An' I - an' I - and I
Flipped them over to look at the ingredients on the back
No idea why
I should know what's in them by now
But as soon as I did
I remembered
Why I don't do that anymore
And I felt my mood just nosedive
Because I realized I had forgotten
About palm oil
And I don't intend to go on and on about it
But which is used in fifty percent of all packaged products on the market
It's leading to mass deforestation in Malaysia and Indonеsia
Destroying the environmеnts of endangered animals on a massive scale
Et cetera
Et cetera
Et cetera
You know the rest
We all do
I am tired of hearing about it to be honest

[Verse 2]
And I realized at that moment that I'd been actively putting that sh*t out of my head whenever I can
To be honest to do otherwise is to wander from aisle to aisle in a hollow daze
Remembering that in the nineties Coca-Cola was hiring far-right paramilitary forces to assassinate trade union leaders in Colombia to keep their manufacturing costs as low as possible
Remembering that Nestle's CEO believes access to drinking water shouldn't be a human right, as the drain and bottle billions of gallons of the world's freely available water for resale
It makes you tired, you know
It makes you wonder “what's the point”
And so f**k it
I pick up my Coke
I pick up my Oreos
I pick up my stock cubes
And I put the truth away again for awhile
Which every time I do it feels just a little bit more like a tacit nod of approval

[Verse 3]
Here's a short horror story for you:

It is conceivable at least that the distant stars that inspired Jules Verne and Gene Roddenberry are orbited by planets that are intellectually empty
No galaxy-spanning civilizations or glittering cities or Dyson Spheres
No one blinking back at us through alien telescopes wondering if they're alone out here

Just us
The smartest, wisest, kindest of all of the creatures in God's deep blue infinity

And personally I am still trying to reconcile that possibility with the the aforementioned list of crimes we commit against ourselves
Our political systems that incentivize corruption
Healthcare systems that punish anyone guilty of being both sick and poor at once
And all of those things underpinned by a rusted, groaning economic system that can only function when lubricated with blood

If there really is no one out there
No one smarter, or wiser, or kinder than us
If this
He says gesturing wildly at the entirely of existence
Really is as good as it gets
Maybe this is an opportunity for us
Ya know
To do the humane thing for once
As a novelty
Do it quickly
Do it cleanly and together
Our first and last act as a truly global society to surge forward and embrace autoerotic euthanasia
Fill our coat pockets with gold bullion and walk hand in hand into the ocean singing kumba-f**king-ya

[Verse 4]
I've been hearing more and more of this disingenuous eco-fascist bullsh*t over the last few years
And I understand it
I understand the despair when we Mighty look upon our works
But I am sick to the clogged gills of accepting fault for it

Because the fact is we do not all share responsibility for this
The vast majority of us are preoccupied with struggling to survive on a monthly if not weekly basis
On wages barely high enough to keep us alive
Sometimes not even that high
It is insulting to suggest that the average person has any influence
Over the corpo-political incestual f**kfest that determines how the people of this planet ultimately coexist
Or the direction of society is influenced significantly less by who the majority elected to govern it than it is by who can afford to underwrite the biggest brutal lobbyist
When the only crime the mega-rich consistently serve time for is f**king the money up
When in 2020 suddenly the empires of billionaires are expanding like wildfires
While hundreds of thousands of workers lost their homes, livelihoods
Sometimes even lives

[Verse 5]
And with this in mind
Here's an alternate short horror story for you:

The human race, I think, is fundamentally good
At its root
At its core
A species gifted with, to varying degrees, a seemingly infinite imagination that has filled our libraries over the centuries with thirty million unique works of fiction
An unprecedented capacity for tool use that took us from inventing the aeroplane to punting a person into space in less time than it takes a human being to reach retirement age
We are
Let us not forget
The Mother of the Welfare State
And penicillin
And mid-nineties era Green Day
This is us at our very very best
But this machine we are wired into without our consent
It stretches us thin
It wrings us dry
Anything good
Anything pure
Anything that cannot justify its existence by pointing to a rise in shareprice is deemed ultimately unfit to survive

Take the internet, for example
In 1969, data was sent from a terminal at UCLA to a terminal at Stanford hundreds of miles away
And lo
Fifty years later the internet has single-handedly changed the world more dramatically than perhaps any invention in human history
It should by all rights have been the Next Great Step on the path to a borderless society
A global neural network allowing us to share art and science and philosophy instantaneously

Allowing the ideas blooming in our collective consciousness to evolve at the speed of imagination rather than the speed of the postal service
Instead though it became a mean to force feed each of us our own personal advertising campaign
Targeted with the precision of a Raytheon Maverick

And if you think
They have run out of ways to shock blast that wilderness with sh*t from corner to corner then strap in
Because the internet as we have known it isn't even likely to exist for much longer
Because the governments of the world have been twitching uncomfortably for years now as they realize how hard it is to control a populace
Who have real time access to all the information about everything ever on a tiny computer that lives in their pocket
We built this brilliant beautiful thing out of plastic and wire and it was deliberately and maliciously lobotomized by people that thought it gave the pack mules too much freedom
Too much power
And this is just one example in a list that seems to stretch on and on into forever like a Star Wars title crawl
With new crimes against humanity being added so fast that no one could ever hope to read it all

[Verse 6]
And I am done sharing the blame for the state of this place with the f**king dragons
Who have the resources to feed everyone
Clothe everyone
House and educate and heal everyone
And who choose not to time and time again
Who actively and often violently push back against attempts to beg for more pebbles from their mountain of wealth

For example
Did you know that Amazon workers frequently earn so little that they rely on government top-ups and overtime just to tread water above the poverty line
While their CEO Jeff Bezos has so much f**king money that if you count it by one number every second, everyday, without sleep, it would take you over thirty years just to count up to the amount of money he has?
Oh no, wait a second, I misread that
He actually has one hundred and eighty-five times that amount
He has more money than the human mind is capable of imagining
More than anyone could ever spend in multiple lifetimes
And that's just the money we know about
Because remember in 2015
It was headline news across the world
A global conspiracy by the financial elite to hide trillions of dollars in unreachable, illegal bank accounts in Panama
And what happened there?
Oh yeah
The journalist who broke the story was assassinated in broad daylight with a f**king car bomb
And the story just disappeared

*clears throat*

And I am standing here
In the supermarket
Wondering whether I can forgive myself for buying a pack of stock cubes
That has f**king palm oil in it
f**king God dammit man

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