We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Thursday, November 8. 2007
Still cannot find Abbott and Costello doing their immortal Susquehanna Hat Company routine on YouTube, but the Stooges originated the concept in the 1930s, called "Slowly I turned":
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 14:21 | Comments (17) | Trackbacks (0)
Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)
** ** **
How old are youand did you ever serve in the Armed Forces?
What's the problem with answering the question?
And when is a simple question like that fall into the catagory of a provocation?
You can answer using two numbers and a yes or no. Very simple.
Allow me to guess that the answer to any Armed Service experience by any of the writers is
NO, NO, EXPERIENCE
So now we're down to ages ...my guess their is that by the time our troops left Vietnam some of you weren't even in school, perhaps not even alive.
But to be fair to your readers why don't you just say something like..... 42,N ..which would be age and a NO answer on the military thing....*that's three keystrokes* ...it's not like I'm asking you for your credit card number.
In fact it's a darn thin bio if you ask me
habu, old blog friend, this isn't the form for the Third Degree, and no one is going to respond to it. You wouldn't either, if someone started demanding info from you. This is a blog--just a li'l hobby thing.
It's also 2007 and we have a shitload of trouble in front of us that the coping with--if we even can--is more and more contingent on closing like-minded ranks rather than keeping them in that 60s,70s,90s disarry.
oops, me again. Two-Comment Pete, one for the info, one for the sig.
All I will say his that his speculations are wrong, but we don't do personal info on this blog, as a general rule, and we aim to keep it that way for now. We want to be about interesting ideas - not about us.
And expect me to buy the "we don't do personal info" routine when weekly there are literally dozens of "I went hunting", I raised some geraniums" etc.."I had a ole tractor", "we picked berries" ...if that isn't about your life, exactly what is it?
An if my speculation is wrong then correct the record ..until then I say you never served.
habu, if the fate of the free world rests only on the tiny percentage of vets, we might as well all sing Pvt. Hudson's Lament and head for the bush.
well, i know habu gets physically sick over those names on the Wall.
i also know Maggies is doing good work for the good guys.
there's not much finer point that really needs be put on any connection between the two. those guys whose names are on the Wall ain't coming back except in memories, and that is and always will be not enough but all there is.
Dear friends....that was a very hard time for all of us. It is still resonating in our souls. Have we not learned to accept someone without having to know pedigree/"what did you do in the 60s" stuff? Let's go forward and remember that we all have something valuable to say....no matter what we did back then. We may have changed....learned....become someone totally different.
Who was it said, "if you are not a liberal when you are young you have no heart? And if you are not a conservative when you are older, no brain?" ...or something along those lines.....
We can, and do grow. Blogs help! :)
Habu ..read and learn some more stuff...it doesn't mean he didn't appear on stage with others but it says more that you need to know.
From the Weekly Standard
It's an interesting paradox. Looking at the record, Vietnam should have been the wedge that forced the left to reject Dylan as a matter of dogma, because he failed to give them anything that they demanded from him, and actually gave them the opposite of what they wanted.
Instead, the Vietnam war is the seemingly unbreakable link that ties Dylan to the left in the popular consciousness. Consider: Dylan wrote no songs about the Vietnam war during the 1960s. Zero. The songs Dylan wrote that antiwar protesters later seized upon (from Blowin' in the Wind on down) were written when the Vietnam war was little more than a twinkle in John F. Kennedy's eye. A close study of those songs would also reveal, as Dylan himself has stated in so many words, that they are not "antiwar" songs, as such. Just as with all his best work, they are based upon an almost unerring sense of human nature and a remarkable ability to ask questions that provoke revealing answers in the listener.
"How many times must the cannonballs fly?" An honest listener must admit: Cannonballs will always fly, in this world--and the song does not deny that. Less philosophical listeners demanded other, more specific, answers from the songs and from their singer.
Consider also: Dylan never spoke out against the Vietnam war in the 1960s. Not once. It was not for want of being asked. At a 1965 press conference in San Francisco he was asked if he would be participating in an
anti-war protest later that day. He replied, "No, I'll be busy tonight." The tape shows that he was all but laughing while he said it.
He wasn't laughing some years later when people rifled through his garbage, and protested outside the home he shared with his wife and children, because they were unhappy with the records their "leader" was making. With America's name at a low-water mark in the world and in the minds of the protesters at home, Dylan recorded Nashville Skyline, an album of sweet country music that can also be heard as love songs to a simpler America, and one that was certainly very far from Dylan's front door.
Despite the heat he took, he backed down not one bit. In an interview in Sing Out! magazine in 1968, Dylan was pressed on how any artist could be silent in the face of the war. Dylan talked about a painter friend of his who was in favor of the war, and said that he "could comprehend him." Pressed further on how he could possibly share any values with such a person, Dylan responded:
I've known him a long time, he's a gentleman and I admire him . . . Anyway, how do you know that I'm not, as you say, for the war?
The topic was dropped there.
While most left-wing Dylan fans have always quickly moved to forgive or forget Dylan's sins, there are always those who continue to upbraid him. Mike Marqusee, in The Politics of Bob Dylan's Art (2003), says, "If public life is an ongoing test for the artist, then when it came to Vietnam, Dylan failed." He also bemoans the "fatalism of the later Dylan"--as if songs that place their hope primarily in the next world's justice are somehow more "fatalistic" than 1963's "The Ballad of Hollis Brown." Earlier this year, in The Nation, Richard Goldstein took Dylan to task for his "sexism" and told us that "the rod of ages he clings to . . . is a phallus."
On the other hand, there is also a largely unheralded brand of listener who is perceiving a funny thing in Dylan's latter-day work: Many of his apparently secular songs of romantic love seem to resonate most strongly, and are arguably best understood, as songs of devotion to God. Is Dylan in some sense masking his (always controversial) faith in this (almost blasphemously) sly manner, where "you" often really means "You"?
It does appear clear that our view of Bob Dylan has been constricted by the "a-changin'" times during which he's worked. And while the music of peers like Young and Springsteen is probably destined for artifact status as the decades pass by, Dylan's seems likely to continue provoking consideration well into the future. It is also likely that that future belongs to those Dylan listeners who are not so much flummoxed by the enigma of an ever-shifting man of many faces--who supposedly swings back and forth between leftism, conservatism, faith, and nihilism--but instead to those who see a continuum in the precocious 22-year-old who wrote, "How many years can a mountain exist / before it is washed to the sea?" and the at-peace-in-his-own-skin 65-year-old who now sings:
In this earthly domain
Full of disappointment and pain
You'll never see me frown
I owe my heart to you
And that's sayin' it true
And I'll be with you when the deal goes down.
Posterity is likely to understand that the politics of Dylan's art has always been on another level entirely.
Sean Curnyn is writing a book on political and moral themes in the work of Bob Dylan.
Ok I read it. I am more informed and thus better off. Thanks Habu
No problem dude.
Thanks for that reference to Dylan. I've always thought he was an anti-war protester and idol of the left. Through this blog it seems he is much more than that or not that at all. Certainly bears more study.
Love the stooges too!
Grant, glad to do it. I found another piece on Thinkquest which contradicts the above article and confirms my impressions but funny thing is no matter where I attempt to post it on this site I get a "spam message"..there's other squirmy words in the red SPAM notice..I think they barred somehow any further comments about Bob Dylan from me.
I ran into this before and was assured they did not do that type of thing but I have serious doubts ..it's an easy way to cut out a critic, and ease seems to be their protective mode.
You're HARSHING MY MELLOW.
Jerome and Moses Horwitz and Lawrence Fineberg are on the table, and we get warmed over Chickenhawk tablescraps and requests to saw people on the bias and count the tree rings?
This aggression will not stand, man.
To paraphrase one of the jaunty fellows in the SUBJECT MATERIAL:
Quiet, numbskulls; they're broadcastin'.