Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Generally, I don't think celebrity endorsements mean that much, especially in a presidential race. However, today's endorsement of Barack Obama by Bruce Springsteen could not have been better timed. Springsteen, more than any anyone since Woody Guthrie, is the troubadour for the common man, particularly the common man living in a rusted out NE industrial town. You know, the kind of common man that Hillary is still portraying -to the point of self parody- as heartlessly dissed by an elitist Obama. (Check out this video of Clinton getting booed -by Steelworkers- after raising the subject, yet again).

As a teenager, I was a huge fan of Springsteen's and, really, still am. I saw him in concert with the E Street Band just a couple weeks ago. I had not seen him perform since 1988, and he and the band still put on a surprisingly exhilarating show. The biggest difference from the numerous shows I saw him perform in the 80s was how much Bruce talked about politics and the dire state Bush has put this country in over the last eight years. I kept waiting for Springsteen to follow on his description of the problem with an endorsement of Obama as the best shot we have at a solution. He didn't that night, but he used much of Obama's language of hope in talking about where we must go next as a nation. The endorsement did not come until today, but the foreshadowing was certainly there at the Seattle show.

Anyway, the endorsement letter is more substantive than most and worth a read. Here's my favorite passage:
...[Obama] speaks to the America I've envisioned in my music for the past 35 years, a generous nation with a citizenry willing to tackle nuanced and complex problems, a country that's interested in its collective destiny and in the potential of its gathered spirit. A place where "...nobody crowds you, and nobody goes it alone."

...critics have tried to diminish Senator Obama through the exaggeration of certain of his comments and relationships. While these matters are worthy of some discussion, they have been ripped out of the context and fabric of the man's life and vision, so well described in his excellent book, Dreams From My Father, often in order to distract us from discussing the real issues: war and peace, the fight for economic and racial justice, reaffirming our Constitution, and the protection and enhancement of our environment.
PS. I'm in Boston this week for work. So, I'm looking for a bar that will actually have the TV tuned in to tonight's debate instead of the Red Sox. Any suggestions?

1 comment:

Lynn said...

OK, I got to see Obama, but I'm still jealous you got to see The Boss and we didn't. I've agreed with pretty much everything on your blog so far. I have mixed feelings about watching the debate tonight, though. Unfortunately I'm kind of tired of seeing/hearing Hillary. Does that make me a bad person?