Saturday, February 25, 2006

The Internationale's latest transmutation

Where's my troll?
This one's for him!

From time to time I take a stroll down memory lane to my old days as co-chairman of a college chapter of YPSL (Young People's Socialist League). As fringe group we never amounted to much either in number or influence, but the impulse that kids have to reform the world still burned bright. We never actually sang The Internationale but we knew what it stood for. I don't think any of us really thought there would be a revolution, but in case one happened, we wanted to be ready. I remember getting a hand-made Christmas card one year (think of the irony) with a crimson half-circle glued to a white card with the message inside: "The East is Red, The West is Dead." But I digress...

Just to reassure all my buddies on the trembling Right who continue to look for Reds in every corner, I want you to know they are still there. It isn't paranoia, they say, if they really ARE out to get you.

Here is proof, should any be needed, that the next generation is still being indoctrinated. Drilling around the internets off to the edge, I found this delightful version of the Marxist Anthem as played and sung by a Japanese group with effervescent energy. Even after more than a year the link remains active.

Via Creek Running North's new site
Via Lindsay Beyerstein

Before you listen, you can read the words of several stanzas at the Wikipedia link. (Or open another window and read as you listen. I don't know how to instruct Blogger to open a link without losing the page.)

I can't help wondering how the heart of this music has anything to do with service-based economies in which the price of human labor is more valuable than the products being produced. Or how musicians figure into the equasion. But I am reminded of something James Baldwin wrote years ago: The most dangerous creation of any society is the man who has nothing to lose.

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