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PORTSIDE Home

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PORTSIDE  October 2012, Week 2

PORTSIDE October 2012, Week 2

Subject:

Bruce Springsteen Changes Mind--Will Play for Obama This Week

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Date:

Sat, 13 Oct 2012 16:27:08 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

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Parts/Attachments

text/plain (179 lines)

Bruce Springsteen Changes Mind--Will Play for
Obama This Week

By Greg Mitchell
The Nation
blog
October 13, 2012

http://www.thenation.com/blog/170549/bruce-springsteen-changes-mind-will-play-obama-week

If it makes you feel better, as President Obama's poll
numbers in key states continue to slip, ponder this
image:  David Brooks and Gov. Chris Christie
spitting out their morning coffee as they read that
their cultural hero, Bruce Springsteen, has changed
his mind, and will perform for Obama this coming
week in Ohio and Iowa.  Expressing some
disappointment in the man he campaigned for in
2008, Bruce had earlier suggested he would sit this
one out.

So I guess his view now is:  Yeah, I believe in the
promise, man.

When Bruce Springsteen became a political "boss"
about thirty years ago he could not have imagined
becoming a key player in three races for the White
House (his first move in the electoral arena was
backing Kerry in 2004).

And, when I first met him forty years ago, I could
not have imagined that he would ever turn "very
political" at all.

I have to say: I couldn't be more proud of Bruce.
When I met him in 1972, and helped create the first
magazine piece ever written about him at my old
magazine Crawdaddy--there's a new video about the
episode here--he seemed completely apolitical.
Hanging out with him for years after, I was always
waiting for the moment he would utter something
fairly conservative that would make me turn away. It
never happened, but I also never heard a leftist
sentiment, either.

He would later tell Rolling Stone, "I didn't grow up in
a very political household. The only politics I heard
was from my mother. I came home from grade
school, where someone asked me if I was
Republican or Democrat, and I asked my mom,
'Well, what are we?' She said, 'We're Democrats,
'cause Democrats are for the working people.' "

He kept this out of his words and deeds in the early
years, but Springsteen started his political
transformation in the "anti-nuke" days of the
late-1970s. He performed at the "No-Nukes" concert
in New York, which was co-organized by Orleans'
leader John Hall (now a Congressman from New
York). Then, when "Born in the USA" hit, he donated
a fortune to Vietnam veterans groups, and many
other causes, while refusing to endorse candidates.
But his "political"--in the broadest sense--focus
continued with public statements and many more
donations as he recorded his Tom Joad and Seeger
Sessions CDs. When he finally performed for a
candidate--John Kerry--he denounced tax cuts for
"well-to-do guitar players." Later, he came out
against the Iraq war, hit the media coverage of it,
and ripped Ann Coulter.  He even wrote the preface
for my book about the media and Iraq, "So Wrong for
So Long."

But backing Barack Obama in 2008 took him to the
next level--picking a candidate way back in a
primary race. Springsteen, of course, is a very rich
man now, but he retains credibility with the
"working-class" kids and adults that Obama was
trying so hard to reach.

Obama, he asserted, "has the depth, the
reflectiveness, and the resilience to be our next
President. He 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. After the terrible damage done over the past
eight years, a great American reclamation project
needs to be undertaken. I believe that Senator
Obama is the best candidate to lead that project and
to lead us into the 21st Century with a renewed
sense of moral purpose and of ourselves as
Americans."

Springsteen sang for Obama in the final key days of
the fall campaign, drawing massive crowds (aimed
at voter registration). He declared in conclusion in
Philadelphia: "So now is the time to stand with
Barack Obama and Joe Biden, roll up our sleeves,
and come on up for the rising." Even Fox broke
away from its Bill Ayers obsession to cover him.

And two months later: there was Bruce at the
Inaugural concert, hugging Pete Seeger--a torch
passed, and quite enough to make the David Brooks
and Chris Christies of the world slap their
foreheads, now and probably forever. Blinded by the
light.

[Note: You might also enjoy this item on Bruce
turning 63, a greeting from Joe Strummer, and a
special song.

http://gregmitchellwriter.blogspot.com/2012/09/springsteen-turns-63.html]]
____________


Springsteen, Clinton to hit the trail in Ohio

Lucy Madison
CBS News
October 13, 2012

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-250_162-57531861/springsteen-clinton-to-hit-the-trail-in-ohio/

Bruce Springsteen and former President Bill Clinton
will hit the trail together in Ohio next week, marking
the latest in the Obama campaign's efforts to shore
up a lead in what has become possibly the most
critical battleground state in the 2012 election.

The two will appear together in a free, public event
in Parma, Ohio, on October 18 where, according to
the campaign, "President Clinton will deliver
remarks and lay out a clear picture of the economic
choice the middle class faces in this election."

The campaign did not provide details about
Springsteen's role in the event.

Springsteen isn't the only celebrity stepping up for
the president in the face of what appears to be a
post-debate surge by Mitt Romney: The campaign is
also out with a new ad starring actor Morgan
Freeman highlighting the president's commitment to
the middle class.

"Every president inherits challenges," says Freeman,
who narrates the ad in his famous baritone. "Few
have faced so many. Four years later, our enemies
have been brought to justice. Our heroes are coming
home. Assembly lines are humming again."

As still images of the president, soldiers, firefighters
cheering at the news of Osama bin Laden's death,
and cars flash across the scene, Morgan continues:
"There are still challenges to meet, children to
educate, a middle-class to rebuild. But the last thing
we should do is turn back now."

___________________________________________

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