Song Of The Week: Hounds That Wait Outside Your Door by Spirit Of The West

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This week’s Song Of The Week was an obvious choice for me from the moment I heard the UK Election result: The Hounds That Wait Outside Your Door by Spirit Of The West. We are posting one day early, as tomorrow is the first day of Mental Health Awareness Week. If you still want to submit to that call, you have until Midnight tonight.

This band were introduced to me by my husband, they’ve not really had any success in the UK, but I love them regardless. For their harmonies, the raw energy of their performances and the bite and satisfying political edge to many of their lyrics. This song comes from my favourite of their albums – ironically titled ‘Labour Day’.

So. The Tories are in, and this time they don’t gave the Liberal Democrats hanging off their coat tails.

The best summing up of this state of affairs was covered by this tweet:

As A GoT fan, I howled with laughter, and later kicked myself for not getting there first when my good friend Jo made the obvious joke: Winter Is Coming. It’s possibly the only joke in the whole situation I have been able to find this weekend.

I met a young man this week who thought that things were bad enough under the Labour Government. Oh my sweet summer child, you have no idea what is coming for you. The Tories have one God, and it is money. And while that God favours them, they will show no compassion or understanding to those weaker or less fortunate, and will extend no hand of friendship to those who are in need. They will, given free reign, systematically dismantle the UK’s welfare state and remove us from the influence of the higher powers of the European Court, in much the same way that a dictatorship will kick the press out before going to work on its subjects. If you are not a rich and powerful person who has inherited both your wealth and power, hold tight to your seats my friends. We are in for a bumpy ride.

For the next five years, should any of us hit hard times, we cannot depend on our government to look after us. In much the same way as a goldfish doesn’t think twice about breathing under water, they will look at us with confusion and disgust when we start drowning. The only way forward in this matter is to stick together as communities. To be kind to each other, to take care of each other, to watch out for our weak and extend our help to those who need it. Nobody else is coming to pick us up when we fall. We have, as a country, elected a government with a mandate for self interest. Not our interests, let alone our best interests. We were warned, and we did not listen.

There’s a siren ringing loud
A call of distress
And it’s winding through these streets
Making all you people deaf
But I think you’re hearing fine
Just choosing to ignore
The hounds that wait outside your door
I think you’re keeping sane
By not keeping score
Of the hounds that wait outside your door

We are going to have to take care of each other. Because winter is indeed coming, and we may need to huddle together for warmth. It is up to us to focus on each other, to see each other’s common humanity and see past the labels that our government will be so keen to foist upon us. Watch out for the divide and conquer. It’s how they keep their influence – they will try to make us afraid of each other. We must not let this happen.

This is a fragile situation
An island made of glass
This is an unstable structure
A structure built on class
And I think you know full well
Just choosing to ignore
the hounds that wait outside your door
And I don’t want a stock
In what the future has in store
It’s the hounds that wait outside your door

This song was written and recorded after Margaret Thatcher’s Tory party won their third consecutive election in 1987. Her victory was a shock then, just as Cameron’s is a shock now. But it was the vote that put her there, just as the vote has put Cameron there. We are sitting at the entrance to a hell of our collective making.

Well, she’s back in the chair again
I don’t know who put her there
It seems a silent majority spoke
To sway the Tory vote
The walls are tumbling down
And Madam has the floor
And the hounds that wait outside your door
The apple of your eye
Has gone rotten to the core
Like the hounds that wait outside your door

The one thing we cannot afford to be, or to become, over the next five years is complacent. Please, please people, do not bury your heads in the sand and ignore what’s about to go down. Keep speaking out, speaking up, making your voice heard. We may have handed these monsters the keys to our government, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t put them on a leash. Keep writing to your MPs, remind them who they work for. We put them where they are, yes, but we can take all of that away too.

Ah but you have the answer
For Brittania’s sinking ship
You need a nice cup of tea
And a stiff upper lip
Oooh, Blighty’s goin’ down
And still you’re asking for more
Of the hounds that wait outside your door
God save the Queen
And let the home fires roar
Above the hounds that wait outside your door

We have hounds outside the door, make no mistake about it. And they are howling. But Dire Wolves can be tamed, if we put our hearts and minds and backbones into it.

Be good to each other. Be excellent to each other. Right now, and for the next five years, we are all we have.

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