NYC-area friendo: “Not to encourage your obsession with cancel-culture safeties and the Khmer Rouge, but what would happen if Randy Newman‘s “Good Old Boys” was released today? A brilliant, scathing, blatantly anti-racist album, as relevant today as it was when it was released in 1974. But satire doesn’t play if you don’t have context. And I dare you to find the right context for any 20-year-old junior at Smith College. If people can be castigated for even alluding to ‘the n word’ in context as opposed to the actual word, it’s Orwell time.”

HE to friendo: Of course it’s Orwell time. And if Newman had been born in 1983 or ’93 instead of ’43 and cooked up “Good Old Boys” on his own, no record company would touch him with a 20 foot-pole. And if he self-published the Khmer Rouge would send out assassins.