You don’t expect a folk-song of protest to be fair or balanced, which is just as well, because John McCutcheon’s attack on the TIPS program, “Ashcroft’s Army,” certainly isn’t. It’s available on his website as a free MP3 download. Both as a songwriter and a performer, McCutcheon reminds me of Tom Paxton: pointedly funny lyrics, hummable tunes, nice instrumental style, and a pleasant voice whose owner knows its limits.
Here’s a sample stanza. (“I wanna be a spy” is the chorus.)
I wanna be in Ashcroft’s Army
I wanna be a G-man.
He used to be a Senator
but now he is a free man.
He’s Attorney General instead
’cause the people of Missouri said,
We’d sooner vote for a guy that’s dead!
I wanna be a spy!