President Joe Biden departs the White House on Aug. 17, 2023. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Oliver Anthony, the country music artist who went viral after his working-class lament “Rich Men North of Richmond” sailed to the top of the charts, has set the record straight that he’s no fan of President Joe Biden, while accusing “corporate news” of trying to “twist me into being a Biden supporter.”
Mr. Anthony took to Facebook on Saturday to share what he promised to be his “last post about politics” on social media, accusing corporate media outlets of misrepresenting his earlier remarks in a video that his hit song “has nothing to do with Joe Biden.”
On Friday, Mr. Anthony posted a video on YouTube that was critical of Republicans using “Rich Men North of Richmond” during Wednesday’s GOP presidential debate.
To kick off the debate, candidates were asked to lay out their economic arguments by way of explaining why Mr. Anthony’s viral song decrying high taxes and debasement of the dollar had resonated with so many Americans.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis used his response to the popularity of Mr. Anthony’s “Rich Men North of Richmond” to blame President Biden for what he characterized as “American decline.”
Mr. Anthony said in Friday’s video that he found it “funny” to see politicians using his song to criticize other politicians.
“It was funny seeing my song at that presidential debate because I wrote that song about those people, you know, so for them to have to sit there and listen to that, that cracks me up,” Mr. Anthony said in Friday’s video.
‘Reverse American Decline’
During Wednesday’s debate, the moderator said that the song’s “lyrics speak of alienation, of deep frustration with the state of government and of this country.” Washington D.C. is about 100 miles north of Richmond.
“Gov. DeSantis, why is this song striking such a nerve in this country right now?” the moderator, Fox News host Martha MacCallum asked.
Mr. DeSantis replied, “Our country is in decline. This decline is not inevitable. It’s a choice. We need to send Joe Biden back to his basement and reverse American decline.”
In the video, Mr. Anthony objected to the message of his song being used in partisan political fights, saying his song “has nothing to do with Joe Biden. It’s a lot bigger than Joe Biden.”
He added that he’s “disappointed” to see people “wrap politics up in this.”
A number of right-leaning politicians and media personalities have referred to the song and its lyrics in public remarks criticizing the political status quo in the nation.
“I hate to see that being weaponized. I see the right trying to characterize me as one of their own, and I see the left trying to discredit me, I guess, in retaliation,” Mr. Anthony said in the video, adding that it’s “gotta stop.”
And in a post on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, he clarified that he sees himself above partisan politics and instead seeks to be the voice of the common man.
“I. Don’t. Support. Either. Side. Politically. Not the left, not the right. Im about supporting people and restoring local communities. Now, go breath some fresh air and relax. Please? 🙂 I’m not worth obsessing over, I promise. Go spend time with your loved ones,” he said in the post.
‘Biden’s Most Certainly a Problem’
In his Saturday remarks on Facebook, Mr. Anthony elaborated on his remarks in the video, apparently seeking to set the record straight.
“I apologize for beating a dead horse, but I just need to address this quote in my video earlier, since it’s been misquoted / misinterpreted this evening,” he said. “Corporate news (big surprise) is now trying to twist me into being a Biden supporter.”
Mr. Anthony then clarified that his remarks about the song having “nothing to do with Joe Biden” from the video was in reference to Mr. DeSantis’ responses to his song.
“He talks about needing to get Joe Biden out, as if that would automatically solve all the problems. Biden is a big part of the issue, bit it runs much deeper,” Mr. Anthony said.
He then said that his hit song is about corporate capture of politics and should be seen as a criticism of the entire political class—not any particular side.
“Rich Men North of Richmond is about corporate-owned D.C. politicians on both sides,” Mr. Anthony said.
“Though Biden’s most certainly a problem, the lyrics aren’t exclusively knocking Biden, it’s bigger and broader than that,” he continued. “It’s knocking the system collectively, including the corporate-owned conservative politicians that were on stage that night.”
The song “Rich Men North of Richmond” has notched over 42 million views on YouTube and recently made No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
In the lyrics of the song, Mr. Anthony identifies trends buffeting the lives of many Americans, such as the rise of the surveillance state, debasement of the dollar, high taxes, and cancel culture.
From The Epoch Times
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