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Higher Resolution

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This video starts off with a quote about Moore's Law, which holds that processing power doubles every two years, and then a quote from Marx, claiming that technology ("machinery"), while a victory over the forces of nature, makes man the slave of those forces when in the hands of capital. Freedom is a meaningless term without some indication of context: in this song, I use the term to describe a fundamental condition of capitalism — that one is free to use one's own property and to exclude others from it — a condition enforced by state power.

So, higher resolution (Moore's Law) is contrasted with the reality of technological advances under capitalist freedom. The advances are real and significant, as is the damage they inflict on both human and natural "factors" of production. The rich get richer and the poor stay poor: the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Higher Resolution
Words and music © 2013 J. Ochshorn

verse 1. i used to take these photographs - twelve small prints per roll
every one felt special to me just like they were made of gold
no one uses film these days - images are cheap
i threw out my old camera - just one less piece of junk to keep

[chorus] higher resolution greater speed
wonder why you don't get what you need
freedom's just a siren's song
the poor get played while the rich get strong
not so strange when you figure out its aim
the more things change the more they stay the same

verse 2. everyone can read the signs - nothing is dependable
leaps in productivity just make us more expendable
while talking heads on hi-def screens check out all their tv dimples
primped with cargo blu-ray powder for their pores and pimples [chorus]

[bridge] sycophants cry "human nature" when we fight against each other
as if, forced to act that way, we really could refuse
this is what your freedom's good for: to compete against your brother
with every social interaction just a game of win or lose

[instrumental break] [bridge]

verse 3. billions struggle to survive while the rich revel in their vanity
businessmen compete within this organized insanity
there is no new paradigm - not even a change in mood
no revolution no revelation - everyone's still getting screwed [chorus]

[chorus 2] higher resolution greater speed
no one's ever getting what they need
freedom's just the rich man's tool
profit is the golden rule
rearrange the purpose of this game
or the more things change the more they'll stay the same

Production notes:
Music arranged and produced by J. Ochshorn
Recorded with Logic Pro software
Vocals: J. Ochshorn
Real instruments: J. Ochshorn
Software instruments played live on midi keyboard: J. Ochshorn
Thanks to brother Kurt for help with the mix, and to Susan for advice on the video, which I shot with my low-resolution Flip camcorder.
Recorded at home in Ithaca, NY, November, 2013.