Slow Rust

Part One: News and Comment
Scene One: A square near the European Parliament building in Brussels

Hold out the boom arm! Dangle the mic' in front of her face
    “You know she wants it - you know she needs it”
And jostle the press pack but keep on the right side just in case
    “Because we need her, because she's all we've got”
'Cos when the leaders head for their hotels
And the illuminatii have nothing more to say...
    “You're short on those column inches, you'll need more today”
You might need to fill in details that you missed
From those you didn't push away

Scene Two: Two Bars in Brussels

And out in the watering holes
By mutual agreement, never the same
    (The leaders have had their slot, now the editors tie the knot)
Both groups dissecting all of the angles in the game
    (Who said what and to who? And ultimately what it means to YOU)
But the game is on a different pitch,
The players exhausted by the antics of the rich,
    -the disinterested, the Media-Savvy - the Twitteratii

Scene Three:  A Satellite News Van on the coast of Lesbos within shouting distance of a luxurious hotel that is OFF SHOT

And out on the coastlines
Now they're writing the script for tomorrow's show
    “Get Johnny Diamond out there today!
    And book a chopper! Not gonna miss this! No Way!”
Checking the COMMs links and worrying the WIFI might be too slow
    “Got a Brussels link in with Katya
    And Laura's in London, the News at Nine's comin' atcha!”

But the boats still come with all the woe
The beaten faces we've come to know
    Like incidental characters in a weekend hospital show
THEIRS is the story! But that story isn't ours to even begin to know!
    Rusting, - Rusting Slowly! Trusting- Trusting nobody!
    Rusting, - Rusting Slowly! Trusting- Trusting nobody!
    This is not our story! But we'll soon fix that!   
    Add a few names or scenarios
    And the phones will be ringing!

Scene Four: A rather familiar looking room with a TV in it.
[A person is watching the TV]

By the time it reaches you the story's focus has changed
The camera's on YOU and ME
    But not the finger pointing blame
It's a World On The Edge
    So point it at the helpless
It's a World On The Edge
    So point it at the Strangers In Town

[The person picks up a Newspaper]

US : Schools, Hospitals, Resources, Terrorism!
   These are the things that make us tick

THE MEDIA : So wheel on the leaders now and change the focus really quick!

Become a writer and when you fail
They'll take you on at the Daily Mail
And use your talents to whip up hate
And get those migrants out of the gate to sell papers!
To sell papers! That's all we've gotta do!
    Rusting, - Rusting Slowly! Trusting- Trusting nobody!
Everyone has a limit
And Empathy is globally on the cool.

[Lighting dim is to focus on occupant of room]

So will you remember - The score at Old Trafford?
Or will it be - Brad, Angelina, or something worse?
Or Two million people under siege in Aleppo?
Or the story of the underpaid hospital nurses? All seen in 16 by 9.

Part Two: 2016 - The World Turns Sour
Scene 1 : [Confused person in the dark with an illuminated screen]

So while we are changing, amazing ourselves with our egos
The World Turns Sour, yes of the World Turns Sour
And when the helpless are a threat
What does that say about the rest of us
And as we start to build the wall we're getting ready for the fall!
So, hold out the boom arm! Dangle the mic' in front of her face
Give them a forum, give them a place where they can HATE

'Cos when you come to write your story and keep your paper's point of view
It's the end user that matters most or maybe it's just you.

Part Four - Three Binary Choices
[7 Billion confused people in the dark with one illuminated screen each. The illumination of the 7 billion screens casts NO light]

Sitting watching! Sitting taking this in!
All the stories going over my head
And I'm a consumer, just like all the other avatars
Mainlining stories that go straight to our heads
But if we STOP! and ask some questions
Well the right ones are hard to choose
Because the answers are based on VOLUME
And INTERRUPTION - we're bound to lose

This is 2016 and we can build an army
We can crowdfund it and take it where we want to go
We can lobby the courts, we can bring down the government
Put Coca Cola in the water pipes into our homes
And if you want WATER then you are a TRAITOR
Because the "MAJORITY"* voted for The Real ThingTm
So you become silent, suck down the sugar
There's nothing you can do about it, just as well you join in.
No way! They give us binary choices!
You can have this or that - but nothing in between!

"Binary" - now there's a buzzword - now in everyone's vocabulary like a different base in mathematics.
If the Daily Mail's a ONE perhaps the Independent's ZERO.
Like/Don't Like
Vote Up/Vote Down
Leave/Stay
Clinton/Trump
PC/Mac
Binary Choices. No Central Road. No Interesting Turn Off

This is 2016 and you can buy the White House
You can buy the Kremlin for a Trade Deal on top
We came Back From The Future and Biff was the President
And Johnny B Goode won't work this time
Got no choices on the timeline

No way! They’re all ready for your questions!
They’re all pre-prepared, they’ve got it all worked out!

“It’s like a jungle sometimes it makes me wonder how I keep from going under”
- Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five “The Message” 1982

Part Four: The ACTUAL story
Scene 1: Just off the North African coastline

[Around 50 people bob haplessly in an inflatable unpowered boat designed for about 5 people to mess about with on a park lake.]

The lights of Libya shine down on the water
And everyone I ever loved is here - adrift on this sea
They tell me that we will be rescued
They tell me that we'll be OK in the end....
... Somehow - I feel a nagging doubt.

Three generations of a family in flight
Cling to this flimsy rubber dinghy
In the Mediterranean night
And after this is over
Maybe we'll find that home
In the promised land they've spoken of,
So many miles from our own

And one day they'll tell their story
Of how they followed the railway lines
They crossed a sea so they could break free......
From the wars that WE set,
From the weapons WE sold
From the West WE came in search of gold...
... And WE found it.

Scene 2: The Hungarian Or Macedonian Or Greek Or Turkish or British BORDER

Out on the borders of some unwelcoming state
At the barbed wire fences that they put up in haste
Marshalled like cattle
Treated like dirt
Security measures to keep out
The ones who have already been hurt

[Press reaction]

"WE don't know who's coming in
But we do know they're here
And if we get the right photo
We can harness the fear"

Part Five : More News and Comment
Scene 1 : Great Britain. 2017

Who was it trained these writers?
Taught them grammar and writing prose?
Did they teach them decency
Reflecting humanity and its woes?
Did they give them “distinctions”
for whipping up a storm about
A Mosque they built in Nottingham?
Forearmed is forewarned
Did anybody ask them why their writing's full of hate?
Or isn't that in the remit of those who educate today?

Schools turning out corporate automotons
Ready to go all boxes ticked...
Accredited by Pearson
The TLC of the PLC is sick
Become a teacher then bow your head
To the passing fashions where you are led
Recite their mantras and say your prayers
Because when all's said the futures theirs
To sell textbooks - just textbooks, that's all they wanna do
Rusting! Rusting slowly! Trusting - Trusting nobody