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06:05:06 Barry Manilow Noise Warfare

The secret weapon down under


Time for some experimental public policy:

A new chapter in the history of noise warfare is being written in Sydney, Australia. Just like “These Boots Were Made for Walking” in the Panamanian Embassy in the 1980s, and the 24/7 bad music blasted at the Branch Davidian compound in the 1990s, the Sydney local government has now enacted a policy in which they will blare Barry Manilow out of loudspeakers in streets and car parks to battle loud music blasting from cars. Apparently this legislation follows on the heels of an experiment that employed Bing Crosby to chase teens loitering in an Australian shopping center.

Apparently they believe “Manilow is so uncool it might just work.” Whereas a phenomenon must be really passé when policy-makers label it “uncool,” they’re not keeping much of an eye on the inner-workings of consumerism these days. Once something becomes archaic to an extent that it’s obvious to even politicians, that means that it’s now ready for another go at youth culture. Look at the recent emergence of Neil Diamond as a subcultural icon – something that certainly never happened in his own time.

These Aussies are askin’ for it. Or maybe the joke’s on me and the Sydney government is on Manilow’s payroll…

P.S. Bing Crosby’s always been cool.


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