Blame It on Dick Cheney, Blame It on Obama: Pop Music Gets Political

06/28/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

My mom is from the Sixties. After seeing Hair on Broadway last week, she couldn't stop talking about the great protest music of her generation. Where is all the political music today, she asked? Things haven't changed all that much, I said. In fact, I would argue that some of today's biggest hits are very political--and in a more sophisticated, evenhanded way than ever before. Listen closely: pop music isn't just for liberals anymore.

  • "My President," Young Jeezy. What could be more political than this song? Young Jeezy usually raps about owning sports cars and dealing drugs but here he's rapping about owning sports cars and voting for Barack Obama.

  • "My President (Remix)," Jay-Z. See above, except this one is about voting for John McCain.

  • "Know Your Enemy," Green Day. A classic protest song. It's not clear what Green Day is protesting but they sound angry, which is important for protesting things.

  • "I Love College," Asher Roth. I would like to protest the existence of this song. Zing!

  • "My Life Would Suck Without You," Kelly Clarkson. Centrists love this song because Harry Reid used it to convince Arlen Specter to become a Democrat.

  • "Halo," Beyonce. This song is about one man, Tim Geithner ("my angel"), fixing the entire American economy ("Beyonce"). Either a genuine show of support or a brilliant use of sarcasm. By shrewdly pretending that this song is not political and that only a crazy person would think otherwise, Beyonce is allowing both sides of the bailout debate now raging in the pop music community to claim this hit single as their own.

  • "Whatever You Like," T.I. and "Live Your Life," T.I. featuring Rihanna. Hot summer singles or libertarian anthems? In the current politically-charged music scene, T.I. is the master of both.

  • "Just Dance," Lady Gaga. She is saying, "[America's policy towards Iran must include the military option], so just dance."

  • "Blame It," Jamie Foxx featuring T-Pain. Actually, this song may just be about Jamie Foxx and T-Pain getting drunk and having sex with some ladies.

  • "Day 'n' Nite," Kid Cudi. Make the Bush tax cuts permanent!

  • "Poker Face," Lady Gaga. Lady G cements her place as one of our country's most serious political voices with this hit record about AIG, Afghanistan, and a bunch of other important stuff going on in the world.

  • Any song featuring Akon. Make the Bush tax cuts permanent!

  • "Boom Boom Pow," Black Eyed Peas. I've never actually heard this song but I'm pretty sure it's about how George Bush won the War on Terror.