Musician James Taylor may not be at the peak of his career anymore, but he's still doing quite well for himself. Taylor's estimated net worth is around $60 million. Nevertheless, as a featured speaker at a National Press Club luncheon on Friday, the liberal musician used the platform to bash George W. Bush, who's been out of office for nearly four years now.
While the subject was supposed to be on election reform, the veteran singer-songwriter held forth on how he amped up his political activism because he was "really suffering" during the "Cheney/Bush" years, Liz Harrington of our sister site CNSNews.com reported on Friday.
When NBC announced Thursday it was doing a "Coming Together" telethon to raise money for Hurricane Sandy victims, many people including myself worried that given the list of scheduled performers, it would turn into a one-hour Obama campaign ad.
Much to my surprise and delight, Matt Lauer and guests did a classy, somber, respectful, and at times tear-jerking presentation totally absent politics or the mention of either presidential candidate's name.
The Left and the establishment press (but I repeat myself) are taking heart in the fact that Bruce Springsteen has agreed to campaign for Barack Obama in Ohio and Iowa later this week.
The campaign of Mitt Romney, and Republicans in general, are the ones who should be cheered by this development for two reasons. One of them, which is being reported, is that Springsteen said earlier this year that he wouldn't be campaigning; the fact that he has changed his mind proves that Team Obama is genuinely worried about their boss's reelection prospects. The second isn't as well-known, but should be. "The Boss" (i.e., Springsteen) went all-in with the Occupy movement earlier this year, essentially ratifying our incumbent president's endorsement. Springsteen's stance was described in several places in February, including at the Gothamist:
You know it’s election season when Republican candidates get angry phone calls from liberal musicians telling them not to use their old music (like Survivor whacking Newt Gingrich for using “Eye of the Tiger” from 1982). Meanwhile, Democrats are handed new anthems on a silver platter written with their re-elections in mind.
Bruce Springsteen’s new album has been hailed as a soundtrack for Obama’s re-election, especially the song “We Take Care of Our Own” (“wherever this flag’s flown”). Springsteen is lauded for going on “a tear to raze Wall Street and raise Main Street.” This is where author Jason Mattera comes in to laugh and point with the facts in his new book “Hollywood Hypocrites.”
In Friday’s USA Today, music critic Edna Gundersen became the latest liberal journalist to hail the new Springsteen album as a 2012 soundtrack for Barack Obama as the Boss goes on “a tear to raze Wall Street and raise Main Street.” (Earth to Edna: Springsteen earns tens of millions a year. Would you dare to check his stock portfolio?)
Gundersen gushed that the new album’s “populist anthems are unlikely to be misinterpreted and appropriated by Republican candidates. President Obama, however, has a ready-made campaign playlist.” She called it his “most politically pointed” work yet."
In the wake of liberal rock star Tom Petty telling GOP presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) to stop playing his music at campaign rallies, CBS reported past spats between liberal musicians and Republican candidates on Tuesday's Early Show.
As Politico's Martin Kady put it during the segment, the dismayed artist sending the Cease and Desist letter to a presidential candidate is almost always liberal, and the candidate is almost always Republican. The Early Show made sure to emphasize that during a segment where no Republican candidate provided his side of the story.
AARP the Magazine boasts a circulation that's seven times greater than that of Time. For the first half of this year, AARP the Magazine's circulation averaged more than 24 million copies.
AARP claims it's a "nonpartisan organization," an assertion increasingly challenged by senior citizens. The magazine's September-October issue may give members more evidence for that conclusion. It carries a cover story on rocker Bruce Springsteen, prominent in the presidential campaigns of both Barack Obama and John Kerry. The piece is adulatory, noting that Springsteen at his upcoming concerts "will play several roles - hero, leader, preacher, rebel - the performances unfolding like a novel."
The magazine devotes several pages to observations from his friends. One is liberal activist Bonnie Raitt:
It was an incredible boost when Bruce committed to joining the No Nukes concerts. From the groundbreaking Amnesty International tour, to helping stop Contra aid in the '80s, to a steady stream of benefits, I don't know if any American artist has made as profound a difference.
A liberal New York Times sports columnist begged Bruce Springsteen on Friday to make a political statement during his halftime Super Bowl concert. Harvey Araton suggested: "maybe we'll get lucky and there will be at least one bold moment Sunday night when Springsteen goes rogue and rails against -- oh, I don't know -- offensive Wall Street bonuses, $18.4 billion worth. Go ahead, Bruce, make those corporate fat cats squirm on their sofas."
Araton chipped in with his own financial expertise (and Bruce Springsteen fandom) in his Super Bowl column from Tampa, "At the Half, It's B-r-u-u-u-u-u-u-u-c-e." Araton, whose liberal huffing backfired in 2006 when he assumed the guilt of the Duke lacrosse players before the case against them collapsed, revealed himself to be a liberal fanboy for Springsteen rivaling leftist media critic Eric Alterman and urged the lefty rocker to make the fat cats squirm. After accusing the Super Bowl event of "crass commercialism occasionally mixed with patriotic pandering," the slobber commenced to run:
For years -- especially, it seems, the past eight years -- the "news" media have made a habit of asking liberal celebrities about their political views -- in essence, handing the microphone over to a small, unrepresentative group of left-wing Bush-bashers, blame-America-firsters and enviro-wackos. Thus, actors and singers and comics are elevated in our national discourse above the military, businessmen and scientists.
Appearing on Wednesday's "Good Morning America," media critic Howard Kurtz and co-host Chris Cuomo marveled at the media's ability to turn Americans against the war in Iraq. Kurtz, who has a new book on the subject, claimed that the top three network anchors kept "framing the story in such a way" that the bad news finally had an impact. While Cuomo and Kurtz discussed the declining ratings of the network newscasts, somehow, media bias never came up as a reason. Over on FNC's "O'Reilly Factor," however, anchor Bill O'Reilly did broach the subject with Kurtz. Asked to name a conservative at either CBS or NBC, the media critic came up with the name of that well known right-winger, Brian Williams.
Who would be the best candidate to help conservative Republican primary voters pick their nominee? That answer is, of course, obvious: Chris Matthews. The liberal anchor presided over a Republican debate this week and asked such insightful questions as whether the U.S. would "have gone to war in Iraq if we weren't so dependent on Middle East oil?" Chris, why not just chant, "No blood for oil"?
On Sunday’s 60 Minutes, Anchor Scott Pelley interviewed left-wing rocker Bruce Springsteen and said of the aging musician that he "sees himself following a long American tradition that reaches back through Vietnam and on to the Great Depression, from Dylan to Guthrie."
Pelley opens the segment exclaiming that "He’s returned to full-throated rock and roll, and a message that is sharper than ever, damning the war in Iraq, and questioning whether America has lost its way at home." Pelley then helps to further frame Springsteen’s political activism and wonders what the message is:
Much of the new music is a protest. Some of it blunt, as in the song that asks "Who will be the last to die for a mistake," but most of it subtle, like the story of a man who returns to his all-American small town but doesn’t recognize it any more, "It's gonna be a long walk home." What's on your mind? What are you writing about?"
It should not be that difficult to read the Boss’s mind on that one Scott.
"In 2000, Americans were reminded that electoral votes select presidents. In 2004, Democrats were reminded that Bruce Springsteen does not."
I guess the Boss doesn't read George Will.
His concert at the Hartford (Conn.) Civic Center last night wasn't just an evening of classic tunes mixed with an introduction to his new album. He must have memorized some kind of script, because the following (from the Hartford Courant's review) was similar to the screed he gave when he performed live for the "Today" show last week:
Giving a live concert on the Friday, "Today" show Bruce Springsteen didn't just sing but railed against the past six years of George W. Bush's administration. Although he didn't mention Bush by name, the outspoken liberal rocker, didn't need to connect the dots as he hit just about every complaint leftists have charged against the current administration. During his talk-up before his performance of "Living In The Future," Springsteen yelled about "rendition," "illegal wiretapping," "voter suppression," "an attack on the Constitution," "the neglect" of New Orleans and "the loss of our best young men and women in a tragic war."