In The Gulag Of Trent Reznor’s Mind…

…only Artistic Celebrity Millionaires have the right to voice their opinions. Apparently.


Anytime I hear someone, famous or not, use the term ‘sheep’ to describe individual human beings whose freewill has led them to make choices the Self-Proclaimed Deemer Of Sheep finds disagreeable, the words “What an a**hole” immediately spring to mind.

I don’t have an opinion on the bulk of contemporary Pop music, because I don’t listen to it. It doesn’t appeal to me. I don’t believe it’s intended to, frankly, which is fine.

Now, as far as the ‘tastemakers’ telling ‘the sheep what to like’, I can say that, as far as the alleged tastemakers’ track record in motion pictures goes, I first noticed, during my Idiot Teenaged Years Of The 1980s, several otherwise decent actors fobbed off on the public as headliners/movie stars, who, for one reason or another, failed to find much of an audience with ‘the sheep’.

I remember back then when then-younger actors (who I rather liked) such as James Spader, Eric Roberts, Mickey Rourke and Sean Penn, to name but a few, were positioned as leading men in the press– Rolling Stone loved these guys– and given movies to headline without much evidence of their box-office reliability as leads…only to, finally, step down, albeit gracefully, over time, into more suitable character roles, where they ultimately found their nich√©.

Because, regardless of how talented they were, they were not movie stars, no matter how often or how aggressively the ‘tastemakers’ may have promoted them as such.

Movie audiences, and, I would argue, music consumers, regardless of age, are not sheep, easily led by Rasputin-like ‘tastemakers’. They like what they like…and, y’know, don’t what they don’t…and may not even put that much thought into why.

But I’m not really taking issue with Reznor’s view of contemporary music or why it sucks. As I said, I seldom pay attention to it.

What I took issue with were his comments on people expressing their opinions online, how he seems appalled that such Non-Achievers believe they have the ‘right’ to ‘talk shit about stuff they have no right to talk about’.

Says who, I say.

Wake up and smell the freedom of speech, ya whiny, thin-skinned, pompous snob.

You’d almost think that, for the first time in his professional career, due to the Internet and social media, Reznor’s encountered opinions contrary to his own.

News flash for Trent Reznor: People ‘talked shit’ about you and your music, i.e. trashed it, even back in the early Nineties. I was there. Believe it or not, you were not universally adored. No one ever is.

Only back then, see, there wasn’t this thing called the Internet to help make insecure multi-millionaire creative types like yourself…


…aware that Non-Achievers were judging your commercial artistic output in less than flattering terms for the entire online world to see, whether it be on Twitter, Facebook, an Amazon review, etc.

Damn the Internet and social media for popping your bubble. You know, the one that kept you better insulated, until recently, apparently, from criticism, informed or otherwise, offered unsolicited by all those dreadfully gauche Non-Achievers on social media.

A quick online search reminded me that, just a few years ago, Reznor won an Oscar for scoring (irony of ironies) The Social Network.


I’d forgotten about that, mainly because I flatly refused to watch that movie, ever, so, for me, it doesn’t really exist. A feature-length motion picture about the creation of Facebook? Zzzzzzz. Didn’t interest me then. Doesn’t interest me now.

Anyway, welcome to reality, Trent Reznor. Bleak as that may seem to you, all is not lost.

Even though Non-Achieving Nobodies like me found fault with what you said about us, we still believe you have the right to say it…because you do, in fact, have that right…just as we have that very same right to criticize you, if we so desire.

Just because someone’s a celebrity multi-millionaire doesn’t give them more of a right to voice their opinion than those of us, most of us, who haven’t achieved the same level of fame, success and wealth.

Just because the Internet and social media can serve as a megaphone for ignorance doesn’t mean that everyone who criticizes art and commerce on the Internet has an invalid opinion. Or because a thin-skinned Artist finds those opinions disagreeable.

I never realized commercial success as a musical artist was a prerequisite for voicing one’s opinion. Where is this written, outside of Trent Reznor’s imagination?

Has he criticized his adoring fans for heaping praise and posting flattering, yet perhaps shallow, opinions of his work online? If so, then perhaps some of us might be inclined to take more seriously his complaints about Non-Achievers posting their opinions on the Internet.

But probably not.

For the moment, though, Reznor just sounds like a pretentious, whiny elitist– and, frankly, a humorless curmudgeon– who’s shocked and horrified that lesser mortals are allowed to voice their opinions in a public forum. And that they actually think they have the right to do so.¬†

“You Non-Achievers get your opinions off my lawn, dammit! Nobody gives a fuck! Ya hear me?!”

Nobody, Trent Reznor?

Methinks thou doth protest too much.


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