hmmmm… the shipped gold standard is about capitalism….
like i feel its about they ways people feel failed by the economy and leadership that doesnt care about the decisions they make because they arent affected by those decisions. even the name is a reference to the gold standard, which was the moment money became fully abstract. like, first we have the persona saying how they wanna just start over in a new career, but they cant, and besides, the timing isnt right. they ask for a completely unsustainable cosmetic alteration, because they want to have the illusion of change in their own home in their unchanged home (plant palm trees on lake michigan before it gets cold/i wanna feel the windchill again before i get old). they dont want to commit to the fundamental change that would allow palm trees to grow, they just want to have their cake and eat it to.
in the second verse, something has gone wrong enough that even hype men cant put a positive spin on it, but the persona still tried, and they got bad press for it. they think back to when they were a kid, and they misinterpreted a horseshoe crab as a possible sign of good luck. even then they knew something was wrong enough that they needed it.
the prechorus and chorus are interesting to me, because it feels like bootstraps mentality. like “you can only blame your problems on the world for so long/before it all becomes the same old song” is obviously that, but then its followed by the persona saying as soon as things get really dire (hits the hospital) theyre just going to up and leave, abandon everything, start over. theyre telling everyone else to deal with the consequences of their actions but theyre prepared to run away from theirs. i like to think of the muse in this song as the free market or something, and the persona is a conservative shmuck. so the prechorus is like “i want to say the quiet part loud, but im afraid people will hear me”. the bridge kinda supports that imo. like ‘im gonna stop being so dedicated to capitalism because capitalism is killing us’ (supra is latin/legalese for 'above’ as in 'whats mentioned above’ so “supra and the prophet are both in the business of souls” could mean 'those mentioned above (capitalism and its lackeys) are responsible for death)
anyway i feel like its saying capitalism bad