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03 April 2015

Ted Cruz

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I wrote a song about Ted Cruz, and posted a video of it to YouTube on the day he announced his candidacy for President of the United States. The song is not really about his politics, though I reference them in the second verse. Really, it’s about his approach to politics: the “how” rather than the “what.” Doesn’t it go without saying that he comes across as abrasive and inflexible? I mean, he almost single-handedly shut down the government over Obamacare funding, holding the Senate floor for 21 hours in an old-school filibuster. Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo polled Cruz’s undergraduate and law school classmates, who offered example after example of over-the-top shenanigans such as restricting membership of his study group to students with top GPAs from the top Ivies.

So, anyway, I came up with this song – whose premise is that Ted Cruz seems like a total dick – and started trying to drum up some energy around it, as songwriters will do when they have something topical and timely. Among other things, I partnered with a Facebook employee, using free ad credits to serve the song to non-Friends who might actually want to hear it. For example, we targeted people whose interests include the Democratic Party, and/or left-leaning publications such as the aforementioned Talking Points Memo. Well, as it turns out, Facebook targeting isn’t perfect. We saw some views and some Likes, but also a significant amount of hate mail from the right. Here is an artistic rendering of the early “feedback,” courtesy of Sara Scanlan/Introduction Design:

But that’s not all! Here are some of the more recent nuggets, reproduced verbatim:

  • I not a big Ted Cruz fan, but your song was awful enough for me to vote for him if there was a promise you would never produce another song ever.
  • Who gives a shit if u like ted cru or not. You’re nobody.
  • Wow! Mr. Cruz is living rent free in your empty head! Haha!
  • This is what you get when someone with no talent thinks they have talent.

I must admit, I dislike being attacked by extremists. But, “haters gonna hate,” and I pretty much asked for it. In the final analysis, I still think I have more than zero talent. Perhaps you’d like to judge for yourself?

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