Whatever, The President’s Dead

Don’t arrest me. The president’s not dead nor do I wish him to be. Arrest Will Sheff, the lead singer of Okkervil River and the author of their new single, “The President’s Dead.”

The song seems overtly political, but it isn’t really. There’s no indication that the president who is dead is Bush—it could be any wealthy, white male—but he’s dead, and that kind of changes the day. If anything, the song is indictment of the media; Sheff calls them vultures who spin and slant the news.

But really the song is about the everyday. Sheff wakes up to his girlfriend, is about to have a breakfast of eggs and bacon and feels content with his life when news of the president’s death disrupts everything. The assignation is a nuisance in a way; he had planned to enjoy the morning, not react to a political assignation. If we get the culture deserve, then a political song that criticizes the media, endorses the Atkins diet and defends apathy is about right.