Springsteen’s "Wrecking Ball": Previews of the Reviews

Let’s just get this out of the way right now.

Bruce Springsteen’s 17th album, “Wrecking Ball,” is set to be released on March 5th. The record’s first single, “We Take Care of Our Own” emerged two days ago, and quickly stirred up a tumult of confusion, anger and political/cultural analysis. And given the content of the album  it’s safe to say that the debate about this album is only getting started.

And given the content of the discussion so far — is “WTCOOO” a stirring affirmation of American values or a bitter denunciation of them? 

Whose politics does it support, and whose does it denounce? What gives him the right to say any of this, or not say something else entirely?

I predict we’ll be reading and hearing about this stuff for months. And just to save you the time and angst you’d otherwise spend listening to the sturm and also possibly the drang, here’s a preview of who’s going to say what, where and why.

(hit the jump for more)

Conservative op-ed columnists: “Wrecking Ball” is actually a denunciation of the Obama’s inability to cure the economy, and a testament to the up-by-the-bootstraps career Springsteen built for himself — without the help of food stamps, by the way. Either that, or  a pathetic attempt to blame George W Bush and the Republicans for ongoing problems that nobody cares about anymore, anyway. Springsteen’s airing out the typical whining from the Blame America First crowd.

Far Left bloggers: Springsteen is pathetic, but that’s because he supports a president who has been selling out the left since the day he took office. Also, his use of loops, electronic rhythms and other hip-hop-esque techniques is precisely the cultural pillaging that rich white entertainers have done ever since Elvis Presley ripped off Arthur ‘Big Boy’ Crudup, and on and on.

Bill O’Reilly: Springsteen is a limousine liberal who has no business speaking for — or even about — the sort of right-thinking working folks that he, Bill O’Reilly, grew up  with in good old Levittown. And if Springsteen feels so bad about poor people, why doesn’t he give them all his money? Huh? What a hypocrite.

Some mainstream political blogger based in Washington, DC: You can sum up the point of the album in one word: Michigan. Because if Obama doesn’t carry that state in November it’s lights out for the Democrats. And if you don’t think “Death to My Hometown” wasn’t written specifically to appeal to voters in the industrial midwest — particularly those with two working parents and incomes in the $42k-to-$52k range with socially conservative values and some college education, then you’re obviously not paying attention.

Glenn Beck: If you add up the number of songs, which is 11, then add the two bonus tracks from the expanded edition, which makes 13, then all you need to do is multiply that number by 17, which is the number of albums he’s released, extend it out to ten decimal places and do you see that number? That is the actual home address of George Soros. Do you see where this is heading?

Friday Foto Funnies

Is the "Daily Show" Just the anti-Fox? And is that a bad thing?

Three weeks without “The Daily Show,” particularly in the midst of so much feverish/weird/out of control debate seemed way too long. So how cool to have them back. And so here’s one of the central pieces from Monday night’s return show. And as well-observed as it is, as well-researched and clearly correct, it still made me wonder: In the age of Obama, has the “DS” devolved into being a left-leaning comedy watchdog of Fox News?

Which network certainly deserves close, and withering, scrutiny. Just consider the absurd bloviations of O’Reilly, Beck, and on and on. Particularly now that these self-described super-patriots spend so much time ripping the current POTUS, national policy, and etc. So yes, hypocrisy, rage and subtle (or not so subtle) racism deserve to be called out, dragged into the light, ridiculed and spanked silly.

But FNC doesn’t have the franchise for media absurdity.

Consider the seething commentaries from Keith Olbermann. Or the gooey, know-nothing populism/enviro-grooviness that comes from your Leo DiCaptrios, your Ben Afflecks, and on and on. If they fought to the death with right-wing blowhard Jon Voight the public discourse would be a much better place.

Which isn’t to say that the left is more ridiculous than the right, or to make any particular point about policy. It’s just that media-borne political stupidity adheres to no philosophical boundaries. And neither should “The Daily Show.”