Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

How Do You Know When the Left’s Finished?

When you get a right-wing rock band pounding out a metal tune called "Bush Was Right>

If the left starts to lose rick and roll, what’s next? Hollywood and Harvard.

Discussions - 23 Comments

God I wish I could type without typos. Or at least proofread.

Sorry, except for Johnny Ramone and the Nuge pretty much all the great rockers were lefties, or not terribly political. I don’t see these guys changing that...

The most important reason this won’t change anything is that it sounds like a bunch of wannabes remade "We Didn’t Start The Fire" and tried to throw in every silly by-the-book corporate music industry trick (dramatic tempo change, catchy "na-na-nah-na-na-na" lick) they could think of. The best songs, anyway, aren’t political (left or right bent).

I gotta disagree with part of your post, andrew. A lot of the best rock songs are political. It pains me to admit how few of the songs I can wholeheartedly agree with politically, but most of the Clash’s best material is political. London Calling, Spanish Bombs, White Riot, Know Your Rights, Straight to Hell, etc. This is true of most 70’s and 80’s punk rock - the Jam, Magazine, what have you. It is true of the "protopunk" stuff too - the MC5, etc.

If you widen the net to "social commentary," if you consider that material to be political, then that is pretty much all my favorite popular musicians’ best songs, from Neil Young and Jimi Hendrix to Pink Floyd to Radiohead. And, sadly, you are right. "Bush was Right" don’t make the cut.

I am glad I am not the only one who thought that sounded a lot like We Didn’t Start the Fire.

I agree...I was being a little hasty in my comment as it seemed pretty ridiculous to even assert that junk like "Bush Was Right" could ever dent the "leftist" music industry. I do love the Clash and London Calling is overall a great album. Punk in itself was a political statement, as you know.

I guess it was the unabashed, superficial attempt at a political message that set me off here. There has to be more to the music than politics. I would guess that’s why you like songs you disagree with ideologically: there are several layers to good music.

Steve S. - I’m glad too! I was mouthing the lyrics to "We didn’t" as I watched it. They fit pretty well.

andrew - I agree. Political songs can be one layer of good work. Political content certainly doesn’t guarantee a song will be good, though. If it did Joan Baez and Rage Against the Machine would be Elvis the Beatles, and Billy Bragg would be almost listenable. :)

The best songs address the eternal, the archetypical, and emotion. We all know that. It sounds silly but is expanding some musical boundaries. There’s a lot of crap there too. Sorry for swearing. As a musician I am kinda doing my part to put out a different voice as well. I still love punk rock and by default I used to assume the left was "right". I read and learned and finally decided the founding fathers got it as best as can be. Men are no angels but it sure is fun to watch and play with the devils. It’s fun to play the devil as well. Boo! Many people like me retain some of the punk ethic which roughly translates into "libertarian". There are plenty of mad guys out there. I guess I’d like to be viewed as an advocate for the ones who explore discrediting people who immediately accept Rush Limbaugh’s and Sean Hannity’s word word as final. It’s just too easy to discredit Air America and Jerry Springer. Read sumpin’. All of their caves kinda stink but the lighting is exquisite. It’s obscure for some of the pointy headed NLT types, but there are people like Billy Milano of S.O.D.,, and others who kind of favor the conservative view. The trolls on this site know that as well. Don’t immediately write off something that rocks unlike that lame RNC talking point video. There are plenty of people who are p-ed off at Bush, but voted for him in order to stop Kerry. A sort of peoples’ veto. Just wait... One day there will be a "punk" band that performs at some anarchist collective and shows them who the nonconformists are. Sometimes the RNC talking point crowd gets as touchy as the leftist pc crowd that’s all I want to say. Let’s all use the F-word once in a while. It’s good for your soul. God probably wouldn’t mind, but who am I to say? It may just help a couple of the knee-jerk types(love ya man). I also apologize for using naughty words almost a year ago on this site in defending American veterans. Now I’ll go repent before this gets edited.

How about country singer / Iraq War Veteran Luke Stricklin’s "American By God’s Amazing Grace" new psuedo-American Anthem detailing life as an American soldier over in Iraq??

It seems the Country Music genre and its religious roots in Country Gospel music and artists (with the exception of the Dixie "Dissin’ President Bush" Chicks)has always come up with overwhemingly big support for the Conservatives to provide a balance out to the ultra leftists like springsteen and belefonte.

Just my two cents worth

Luke Stricklin Official Home Page

Ugh, now that will be stuck with me for the rest of the day. Was the band even being serious? It seemed like a big joke.

The post was worth it simply to find out that wm is a punk fan though. the surprise of the day if I can say so without offending. I agree, it’s difficult to sing-along with Neil Young and Bob Dylan in the car with soul when you’re at odds with him.

Much more to music than its lyrics; Ralph Ellison has a bit to say about this in "Living With Music" and "As the Spirit Moves Mahalia" in his Collected Essays for those that are interested. Good stuff.

Wow, that REALLY sucks. I’m kinda disappointed that you guys don’t like it either. It’d be funnier if you were all raving about this awesome new "metal tune."

What a waste of breath. Then again, if a punk rock band says it, how could it not be true? Otherwise, why would they say it?

I doubt the video was ironic, unless there’s been some sort of grand joke going on here.




These guys are even making more tracks. Amazing. I understand what you’re saying, Tim, about artists with conservative views creating a "separating wall" between themselves and the rest of the scene, but I think it just obscures their worth. This has happened completely to the Christian contemporary scene as people see the music only as preaching and not praising. I know many Christians who object to this music, not for it’s message but for it’s one dimensional nature. I think the Right Boys are similarly one dimensional. Liberal punk bands like the Clash didn’t spend their entire catalog talking about underground revolutions and the Spanish Civil war. That’s why they were relevant and not just another forgettable act.

Sorry for the repeat comment-post - a funky internet connection made me think it didn’t work the first time.

Anyway, Andrew, when I was talking about the "separating wall," I was talking about listeners of the music. Fans, spectators, not the musical artists themselves. But the separating wall that you’re talking about is quite real, too. It just wasn’t what I was talking about.

I think Christian rock & metal is largely worthless mostly because they far too often put 99% of their efforts into their message and not the music, and the music understandably suffers. (The same applies to political bands left and right when the music simply becomes a vessel, not a valuable end in and of itself - of course this didn’t apply to the Clash, since, as you said, they were far more than their politics) Also, rebellion is pretty much a necessary ingredient in rock and its various branches. Telling people to submit and obey to an authority figure can only be rebellious when seen only within the historical rock context. Similarly, that’s another reason why The Right Bros. are a bust (except as maybe a 5-minute joke) - it’s not rebellious or against-the-grain to tell us something (Bush was right) that we can hear in any White House Press Conference or on any of the Sunday talk shows, or at our local church, or at a host of right-wing blog sites. I’m sure The Right Bros. have the whole media-bias, world-is-against-them attitude thing locked up, but still, their message is not only absurd and increasingly bull-shi--y, but has all the appeal of "Corporal punishment in schools is rad!"

On the other hand, do you see The Right Bros. putting up some similar kind of wall? I think they’re aspiring to total mainstream success, be they genuinely rightist or simply a satire act. So, what’s their excuse for being so lame? Do The Right Bros. have any "worth" to "obscure"?

Yes, whiny rock...conservatives have made it big time. Bush might have been right, but that song sure isn’t.

Just couple more country names to add to the right wing singers. Daryl Worely--"Have you Forgotten" which was an awesome song, and Hank Jr’s cheesey remake "America Will Survive"

John Jeremiah Sullivan, who is a genius, wrote a wonderful article in Vanity Fair which chronicles the Cornerstone Festival quite sympathetically while explaining why Christian rock is pretty much artistically bankrupt.

you can find it here:

here is an excerpt: I didn’t think I heard a single interesting bar of music from the forty or so acts I caught or overheard at Creation shouldn’t be read as a knock on the acts themselves, much less as contempt for the underlying notion of Christians playing rock. These were not Christian bands, you see; these were Christian-rock bands. The key to digging this scene lies in that one-syllable distinction. Christian rock is a genre that exists to edify and make money off of evangelical Christians. It’s message music for listeners who know the message cold, and, what’s more, it operates under a perceived responsibility—one the artists embrace—to "reach people." As such, it rewards both obviousness and maximum palatability (the artists would say clarity), which in turn means parasitism. Remember those perfume dispensers they used to have in pharmacies—"If you like Drakkar Noir, you’ll love Sexy Musk"? Well, Christian rock works like that. Every successful crappy secular group has its Christian off-brand, and that’s proper, because culturally speaking, it’s supposed to serve as a stand-in for, not an alternative to or an improvement on, those very groups. In this it succeeds wonderfully. If you think it profoundly sucks, that’s because your priorities are not its priorities; you want to hear something cool and new, it needs to play something proven to please...while praising Jesus Christ. That’s Christian rock. A Christian band, on the other hand, is just a band that has more than one Christian in it. U2 is the exemplar, held aloft by believers and nonbelievers alike

... and yes, Fred, wm likes the punk rock. Lived and breathed it for a long time, I’m afraid... but now I am old and horrid.

Thanks for the excerpt. I never thought to look past Christian Rock as being simply terrible. Sullivan seems to hit it on the head.

I’m sure your punk rock days were better than mine, but a couple of years ago I was at a Bouncing Souls concert and a band called Anti-Flag was opening. Their music is awful but they are relatively popular on the punk scene. I think the reasons are expressly tied to the reasons bad Christian rock bands stealing a theme from a bad but popular secular rock band are popular on their scene (Jar of Clay during the end of the grunge era, for example), they are expressly unpunk in their marketing of a theme punk fans adore for the purpose of making up for their lack of talent (whether conciously aware of this or not).

I saw anti-flag’s first outdoor show in Pittsburgh before they were out of high school. They were horrible then, too.

I must’ve seen that same show as you, Fred, or at least the same tour. Anti-Flag is awful.

It was at the Agora in Cleveland. Come to think of it, it was three years ago. The Bouncing Souls have the most soul in punk (no pun intended).

Just be careful who’s listening to what YOU are listening to, especially if it’s anything other than a right-wing song by a right-wing musician.

That is so sad for me. Metal is supposed to be cigar smokin, Harley riding, tree choppin, red meat eatin, 4 wheel drivin, America lovin People.
Now all of these left wing loones have takin it over. Anyone remeber Pantera?

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