Whilst Half Man Half Biscuit's christmas song would clearly be a subtler rebuff to this man and his stranglehood over the 'xmas market', that is obviously not going to happen.* However, the rage of so many is understandable; particularly in the context of the self-important BBC interview Cowell made - pushing his future political prospects - and this: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2009/dec/15/david-cameron-simon-cowell
The prospect is raised of a Cameron-Cowell Britain; unsurprising, terrifying, ideologically wedded in their non-ideology. Would it really surprise anyone if a potential PM Cameron asked Cowell to be a sort of minister without portfolio (or indeed democratic mandate beyond his TV audience)? A ghastly scenario, but clearly in keeping with Cameron's Carlton Man status.
* RATM as choice for this campaign; a bandwagon misguided in its 'real music' rhetoric, its lack of interest in positively reclaiming pop from Cowell and the carefully overlooked fact that 'Killing in the Name' shares its record label with the X Factor release. A 17-year-old RATM song will not change anything, however radical some of the sentiments. If it makes #1 it will be a fingers-up at Cowell (not a bad thing in itself of course) and the X Factor audience but it will not fundamentally change things. It has even enabled Cowell to - with some gall - call it a cynical stunt. Better rallying points? If it has to be something old, let us embrace something like Kevin Ayers's 'Hymn'; or indeed something from 2009, Hawley's 'Open Up Your Door', for instance (or - blasphemously! - something of non-US/UK origin!).
Morley is just talking on Newsnight Review about people collectively waking up in the last two years. This has been reflected in an initially strong year for pop, with Dizzee Rascal, David Guetta, even Michael Gove-favourite Lily Allen, making music that undeniably connects with these times and with people's lives. I just wish this early blaze of great pop could have gone further (and hope the likes of Little Boots will develop in the Abba/PSB tradition in time). I quite agree with the frustration of Robin Carmody as to the contradictory impulses; pop artists have seen the problem all too clearly - 'Dirtee Cash', all-crushing consumerism - but will not, cannot make a clean break from this and propose a new way of being.
Things = the fact that 19 million watched, and presumably a percentage of them share Cowell's vision of 'music' / 'entertainment' / 'democracy'.