I think that is part of why I'm enjoying it more than I initially thought I was going to. It's been making me grin.
Regarding the guns etc - why can't this just be a provocative stance? Get the authorities worried, shake some folk out of their apathy, get people stirred into peaceful action (this is assuming anybody outside HH notices the album - there's usually a review or two by now of a new JC album).
Assuming similar ideas were worked into a novel or a film and the cover of both had someone wielding a gun would that create such a storm?
Why can't it just be provocative? That's the Death in June argument. The idea that one is contemptibly bourgeois if you challenge the uncritical use of certain imagery.
Personally I have a deep problem with anything that could be taken to be a literal celebration of those activists for whom the death of civilians was an acceptable and necessary part of the collatoral damage incurred in the "struggle". That made them no better than Hitler and his indiscriminate bombing of the Thames U bend. Or Guernica.
There are some fences you can't play both sides of even with the application of any number of layers of irony. Especially from the comfort of a Safe European Home. "I'd stay an' be a tourist but i can't take the gunplay". Indeed.
I confess my wording 'just provocative' didn't sound good there - my point really was the following sentence about stirring people into some kind of action/debate/a wake up call or whatever. My understanding of Cope's trip is he is standing out on an extreme and trying to challenge people, which is what I like about him (as well as the music itself) even if I don't like the gun imagery. I totally understand your points above. But the album did get me thinking (as a pacifist who never even had a school fight) would there have been any situation in the past when I would have picked up a gun myself e.g would I have gone to Spain with George Orwell et al.? 2nd World War?; A more challenging question - what situation could arise in the future? None I hope but obviously it's our duty to prevent such situations from arising and keep our safe european home. It's probably my innate pessimism but I do worry about where we are headed - I think as I said to you in the pub over Xmas it's a bit worrying when the government can force massive change in the higher education system (that nobody has voted for if you read the Tory manifesto) and get away with it - surely in universities there must be enough intellect to see that these changes are undemocratic, but we've failed to stop the them. There were big demonstrations but no real media coverage unless something violent happened (note the early copies of the Evening Standard before Millbank, a small para page 10 or so for the largest student demo in a generation). More worrying is the corporate hijacking of democracy - read Shaxson's - Treasure Islands: Tax Havens and the Men Who Stole the World for a history of that and the negative impact they have had on the world, despite the BBC Today Programme, Richard Branson and U2 et al. thinking they're ok. The City of London Corporation clearly controls our political parties (John Smith sowed the seeds for Labour's election win by cosying up to them). In fact the CLC even seems to be above the Queen in a hierarchy of British institutions. Corporations in the City of London even get votes, mutliple votes depending on their size!!. Shaxson argues we need to change that soon, or unaccountable corporations will be controlling our lives more and more in the future. I think I've digressed... though bringing the post back to Psychedelic Revolution, I can confirm that the Shaxson book is a far better way of focusing people's energies to the cause - you can recommend it to friends and family for a start!