Why the some sing Fairytale of New York with such ferocious gusto


Radio 1 to air censored version of Pogues’ Fairytale of New York

Offensive words in the Christmas song to be removed or altered for Radio 1, but remain unchanged on Radio 2

For many Christmas is a Season of Good Will, family, friends, whanau. A time to sit in each others company and celebrate the shared harvest of the year. It is joyful, it is welcoming, it is us at our best as a species.

For some however, it is a season of estrangement, a bitter cold loneliness whose each passing hour gnaws relentlessly into bone marrow that never heals. A 24 hour carnival of wounds made mockingly humiliating by the the cheer of the vast majority.

For those some, Christmas is a struggle of bruises with gift wrapped injury. For them, the bitter sweet working class lament ‘Fairytale of New York‘ sums up all the wasted hope of Christmas and allows pain to sit at the table in an exhausted detente with our more damaged angels.

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Micro aggression policing Millennials decry this song for its hate speech language of ‘Slut’ and ‘Faggot’ and demand with all the nuance of Mao’s cultural revolution that this relic of pre-woke be burned at the virtual signalling stake.

When those some sing the insults with such ferocious gusto, it’s not aimed at homosexuals or women, those are insults being screamed at themselves once the distance between what was hoped and what was delivered is measured from heaven to the gutter.

Those some will not stop singing this pain, because this pain is the only guest at the table.

Merry Christmas.



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  1. It is vaguely interesting that in 1987 it was “arse” that was so objectionable, while “haggard” has replaced “faggot” since 1992.
    I don’t much care what gets played on UK radio. Buy the album and listen to the original.

  2. Maybe if millennials were just nicer to people it would help – that’s John Cleese’s recommendation anyway, and the guy survived lock down with a bunch of squirrels.

    I wake every morning thanking the goddess that the Viennese didn’t scream, “Cultural appropriation “ when their wonderful waltzes spread all over Europe, nor did the Deep South of America when jazz started singing soul, nor the Italians when Germans copied their operas and did them better, nor the Paris Can-Can dancers when crappy pop singers aped them pole dancing like estate agents, nor the Greeks for everybody from the Romans on swiping their philosophy and institutionalising it, nor the Romans for much of Europe appropriating their lingo – but draw the line at people who cut down other people’s trees, or blame someone else’s grandad whenever the bus doesn’t stop at the bus stop. Sigh. Deeply.

    Ok. Some folk are sluts, always been. The world doesn’t stop – just like Wellington’s buses don’t.

    • Nicely put, Snow White. The ‘Cultural Appropriation’ cries do occasionally get tendentious, let alone some of the Colonisation claims. We are isolated from reality in some ways in our distant islands, and some of our inhabitants seem to claim some kind of indigenous idealism that protects them from facing what has been harsh but normal human behaviour world-wide since the beginning of time.

      The Chinese must have complained bitterly when their wonderful invention of gunpowder was culturally misappropriated by Europeans who misused it to make muskets and cannons with which to defeat them in the Opium Wars. They really needed an independent tribunal to which they could make a complaint and claims..

      We are all living in the same world.

      • In vino – Yep, we’re living in a quagmire. War dances have been an integral part of man’s ( or is it person’s ?) evolution since the first great ape picked up a bone to clobber another, and now every time outside people elsewhere perform a haka, Maori get the headlines wailing “cultural appropriation”, when they likely appropriated it themselves in the first place. It’s purpose pre sporting fixtures is to ritually intimidate the opposition, whereas relying on skill might be a better tactic. I doubt the All Blacks would be psychologically capable of playing the game without the haka, it’s part of their psyche. Pre-schoolers are now taught the haka, and I’m pretty sure it’s a Dept of Education requirement. It’s not necessarily a happifying activity.

        Non- indigenous culture is experienced by five year old children having school discos, and learning precocious sexualisation, no doubt also a requirement of Her Majesty’s Dept of Education fiddling with kiddie’s psyches and parents not daring to be different by demurring. Suggest a free clothes swap though, and govt dept regulations swing into action building brick walls to keep cold kids cold.

        At my long past white convent school, we made our own poi’s, and we enjoyed twirling them in carefree song and action, but if we did it down the mall today, we’d be guilty of cultural appropriation and likely subject to ill-mannered words. I love flax flowers, but I took mine to the Sallies after NZ govt minister Marama Davidson told the world what shits white New Zealanders are, after an Australian imbecile committed a terrible crime down in ChCh. Davidson then tried to appropriate from the despised English by proselytising for making cunt a linguistic norm. Pre- schoolers are being taught to say, labia – the speech police may come up with something different.

        Yesterday I had to explain what “incels” were to somebody, now that it is being spouted
        that powerful white males may all be living lives as involuntary celibates – patent poppycock. There could be something in our dirty water supply, but millennials do need to clean up their act – get out into the village square and do some Greek dancing – stop whinging – laugh and be merry – as in Merry Christmas.

      • @ Snow White

        neXt time , we can go to a mall , decorate with flax flowers and twirl some poi , Marama Davidson and anyone that doesn’t like it will have to eff off .

  3. ho ho ho .

    will gladly receive any paid holiday otherwise am neither here nor there over Xmas .

    i do not feel like green jelly and xmas ham , sam i am
    i will not eat them in a box i will not eat them with a fox –
    ummm , i prefer scrambled eggs on toast ( true story )

  4. Is this the “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” manufactured outrage for 2020? Again, go and review some hip hop lyrics and compare.

  5. Just wait till Jesuscinda passes her precious “hate speech” laws. Welcome to sanitised Aotearoa, land of the long white censorship.

  6. My fave Christmas song too, Martyn, and to hell with any fools who pretentiously try to meddle with words that were the artist’s valid choice.

      • And in the words of the Irish painter decorator gang I worked with:

        ” The Kiwi is great at sinking piss, but they cant go the distance like the Irish. The Kiwi will be totaled by 1am, the Irish will go to 7am,- by drinking as much, – but far less quickly.”

        Don’t even try to compare the piss drinking ability’s of the Europeans against the Australians or Kiwis,- the UK and the Euros will win every time. They didn’t have the 6 o’clock swill, and neither did they have the immature attitudes to alcohol as a reward for a hard days work that the colonials had.

  7. Mark Twain, William Faulkner, Harper Lee all used the racist language contemporary at the time of writing.
    ( the dreaded n.. word).
    All of them analysed the society they lived in and the reasons for racism and therefore the reasons it should not exist. The use of everyday racist language is a means to that end.
    (of course you actually have to read the books to find out just as you have to listen to the lyrics of ‘Fairytale of New York’).
    Incidentally how they gettin’ on with that big book the Bible? i seem to recall it full of stuff about Lot’s father – daughter incest ‘whores’ harlots’ abominations’ ‘adulterers’ fellers with ‘ seed from members like those of asses’ and instruction that if my daughter is not a virgin on her wedding night I and my male neighbours are to stone her( with rocks that is – not weed) Has it been banned yet?

  8. The world operates in cycles. In this juncture a ‘control’ philosophy has invaded our public and government psyche. We have been there before such as the prohibition days, post WW2, Puritans in North America etc.

    It’s nothing new if indeed the vehicle (minority rights, the environment, health, covid etc) is new. The epicenter of this new wave of control is education, so long maligned they have found a perfect vessel in regards to millennials and after millennials. Text book theory sounds great for those that want a quick solution to the world’s ills – it’s just when faced with real world examples the philosophy falls apart and becomes difficult when factoring in humanity which is everything but textbook.

    There will be a gradual squeezing until to balloon ‘pops’ and then we will be in a cycle of ‘relaxation’ again. In the interim people with a critical mind, both left and right will have to suck it up and continually teach our children to not accept what is told to them but to rigorously question it when it just doesn’t feel right.

  9. Awesome one, Mr Bradbury!

    As a long time fan of the Pogues, the woke can go screw themselves. The Pogues were, an Irish punk band who often used traditional arrangements,- and many of those arrangements speak about the Diaspora of the Irish to the New World during the 19th century famine in Ireland. And the thousands who never made it to their destinations aboard the ‘coffin ships’. Many could only speak Gaelic , and struggled to assimilate into American culture amongst its racism against the Irish. As such , they rose to become Irish Americans – of which JFK owed his heritage to.

    These woke gits almost certainly don’t know their history and certainly couldn’t give a tuss about it either. I suppose next they are going to be demanding Gilbert and Sullivan to be banned because it alludes to 19th century British Imperialism.

    What a pack of arseholes,- it time they acquainted themselves with a shovel and learned what the Pogues were really singing about, – the plight of the working class Irish and by association, – working people all over the world. Something their lily white paws would never have experienced before.

    The Pogues – Thousands Are Sailing

    The Pogues – The band played waltzing matilda

    The Sick Bed of Cuchulainn by The Pogues

    • And the starving Scots of the Highland Clearances, transported bodily down to the ships and dumped on board often with no more than the rags on their backs- first to Canada, then elsewhere, and sometimes damaged for generations.

      Others have spoken of the discrimination against the Irish in New Zealand, well into the 20thC, notably in the medical and teaching professions. Deceased surgeon Jim Ardagh’s parents received a dispensation from the Catholic Bishop for him to attend Christ’s College, knowing he’d not get on the specialist staff at ChCh Hospital as a St Bede’s old boy. In Canterbury, state school headmasterships, and possibly promotions, depended on being a Freemason, with membership of secret societies being then forbidden to practising Catholics, I don’t know if it still is. Back then, it was an International Catholic Conspiracy which fed the dumb.

      JFK’s presidency, and a liberal pope ringing winds of change through the Vatican, brought a social acceptance for Catholics in the western world, but still not entirely. Family histories of all these peoples, are more wretched
      than the shallow woke would want to plumb.

  10. Spot on Martyn.
    Absolutely love the Pogues’ Fairytale of New York. It’s one of the best and most relevant Christmas songs ever and long may it continue to be. So I give the one finger salute to the pitiful, sad woke folk and anyone else who wish to change the lyrics of the song to suit their woeful beliefs.
    RIP Kirsty MacColl.

  11. “Slut” originally meant a scruffy woman who didn’t care about her appearance. This meaning would still have been current in the 1950s when the song is presumably set. In the context “faggot” is more a general term of abuse designed to get a rise out the man. As Shane McGowan said, “she’s not supposed to be a nice person”.

  12. if there’s any song banning to be doing “Snoopy’s Christmas” must be top of that list. It’s a story of two airborne psychopaths that force each other to go on a bender together before vowing to kill each other later. Really wierd shit. It’s also a crime against music.

  13. Mr President, the illusion of greed!s fairy tale is over. Time your home golfing, is needed for you to get better par, no need care, we shall ensure your seat shall be vacated with appropriate pomp and American care.

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