Crowdsourcing an answer

Among the bets I made on the election (all favoring Biden to win), was this one, involving whether, if Biden wins, the election will be contested by Trump and ultimately decided by the Supreme Court. If Trump wins, however, the bet is off:

“Just as in the Gore election, the Supreme Court can decide the election along partisan lines. This will happen. I will bet $100 that if Biden wins, the election will be decided in the Supreme Court.”

I took that bet, guessing that the victory would be so substantial that the Court wouldn’t get involved. If the Biden wins and the Court doesn’t decide the outcome, I get $100. However, I just got an out from the bettor:

Recently you posted about the Chicago 7 and the famous Graham Nash song “Chicago” was mentioned. I thought of another popular song that references the trial, and it’s not listed in Wikipedia’s list of trial-themed songs. Can you think of it? If you can, I’ll let you off our bet (if I win the bet).

I asked if I could Google it, and the bettor says yes, I could do that, or even crowdsource the answer here. So that’s what I’m doing. Surely someone in this vast audience knows a song that references the Chicago 7 Trial but isn’t in this list.  Help me out if you know. Thanks!.


  1. Tom
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    How about John Prine’s song “Illegal Smile?” A stretch – but it at least mentions a judge Hoffman, a reference to Judge Julius Hoffman.

    • CR
      Posted October 27, 2020 at 9:51 am | Permalink

      Was planning to suggest that, but I’m on PDT and often late to the party.

    • Posted October 27, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

      That’s it! (I am the bettor.)

    • grasshopper
      Posted October 27, 2020 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

      “A bowl of oatmeal tried to stare me down, and won.”

      Wonderful imagery.

  2. Posted October 27, 2020 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    I don’t know the answer to the song, but in your position, even if I found out the answer, I wouldn’t back out of the bet. I think the bettor is having doubts and is trying to get out of it by giving you an easy out. Keep the pressure on!

    If Biden wins, I would be fairly confident that the Supreme Court will not overturn the result – not so confident that the bet is not interesting, but fairly confident.

    • Posted October 27, 2020 at 11:56 am | Permalink

      Note that Jerry gets out of it only if the bettor (me) wins. If I lose, I have to pay up, of course.

  3. gravelinspector-Aidan
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    I thought of another popular song

    Aye, there’s the rub. Do you (plural) have an agreed criterion for “popular”?
    I didn’t follow the thread(s) around the Chicaho 7 – some sideffect of the Vietnam War? They may have been alongside Buddy Holly on Ian Drury’s “Reasons to be Cheerful, Part 3”. There was a lot of obscure stuff in those lyrics.

  4. jedijan
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    I had not heard of the Chicago 7 before (from Australia) but have often wondered about the more obscure lyrics of “Get Up Stand Up” by Bob Marley.

  5. jedijan
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    While the song can be simply attributed to being one of anti-religion, anti-blind faith etc. I have always considered there was far more to it than just that. More anti-establishment in general, for individuals not to cede to those in authority, the struggle to retain basic rights etc. In the past it was known as a protest song.

  6. Trevor H
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Not relevant, but an interesting link 😛

  7. Posted October 27, 2020 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    What exactly would determine Biden’s “win” prior to the Supreme Court determining the election? Is it whoever the MSM says won? It seems doubtful the major networks would declare a Biden victory if the election was so close that SCOTUS got involved. The real winner, by definition, is whoever gets inaugurated on Jan 20, 2021.

    • Posted October 27, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      That part of our bet was unintentionally a bit ambiguous, but I think Jerry and I would both accept a simplified version: The election will be decided in the Supreme Court. If yes, I win and no money changes hands (since Jerry guessed the song correctly). If no, I lose and have to pay Jerry.

      • Posted October 27, 2020 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

        Makes sense. Do you have any side bets on whether Amy Coney Barrett recuses herself on any election issues? My guess is that she wouldn’t. Actually, her reason for potential recusal would be shared by the two other justices chosen by Trump.

        • Derek Freyberg
          Posted October 27, 2020 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

          We may find out whether Barrett recuses herself within a day or two, as the Pennsylvania case – where the PA Supreme Court, ruling on the basis of the PA constitution, held that votes postmarked by election day but arriving afterwards, were valid and must be counted. The US Supreme Court “upheld” that 4-4 last week or so, but it’s back.
          In my opinion, if Barrett fails to recuse and votes to overturn the PA Supreme Court decision, Biden can legitimately claim that the court is, as the English would say “no longer fit for purpose”.

          • Posted October 27, 2020 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

            Yes, but is it really expected that a justice will recuse based simply on the decision being favored by the president who nominated them? After all, the voting cases coming before the court before the election, including this PA one AFAIK, almost certainly don’t explicitly involve Trump.

        • Posted October 27, 2020 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

          No way will she recuse. I’ll bet $50 to the first taker.

  8. Adam M.
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    It could also, in theory, be decided in the House if neither candidate gets a majority in the electoral college. I don’t know the likelihood of that, though.

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