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Sunday, June 25, 2006

Neil Young, from Nixon to Bush

From The Observer's interview by Sean O'Hagan titled "Neil Young, from Nixon to Bush" on "Living With War":
"Well I just went with my instincts as always. I was trying for a sound that really resonates so that's why the choir's on there. I wanted something so utterly simple and unarranged that people could sing along with it and play along with it, just like those old stirring folk songs. So when we play them live, anyone can get on board. There's no arrangements to learn, no fancy harmonies. It's stripped-down folk really, but I wanted it to sound angry and agitated and raw, too. My voice, and what I think as an individual, is much less important on this project. It's the project itself that's the important thing. It's about making yourself heard.'

Living With War is indeed an angry record but one that manages to sound somehow patriotic, too. Young says he waited a long time to make it because he was hoping that 'maybe a younger artist would stand up and write these kinds of songs'. That never happened, or at least not in the high-profile way he thought it would. 'For a while, you know, I didn't feel it was my place. Being 60 years old, and being who I am, it just didn't feel appropriate,' he continues, getting into his stride. 'Plus, after 9/11, we were told by the government that expressing dissent was not patriotic. I mean, I trusted the government back then. I was one of those guys who thought the Patriot Act was an OK idea when it first came out. I got behind it.' He shakes his head at his own folly. What, I ask, changed his mind? 'Bush did. The government did. We need a leader who's more cautious, not so reckless with things they don't understand. Other cultures need to be respected. Culture itself needs to be respected. I mean, I feel Saddam was bad and had to be overthrown, but are we smart or are we stupid? At this point in our evolution, with all the technology that we have, there has to be a better way of doing this than bombing a country into oblivion."


At 6/26/2006 04:48:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hate anything that's not like me. I am scared of people I don't understand. I label all different people my enemies. I do not distinguish between terrorists and arab people or muslims. I have been hiding in my trailer since 9/11 watching Fox News and flying my flags (confederate and the winner) in support of my beloved President Bush. I have no mind of my own, I only know that anyone who is as unedjumicated as me and spells and says terrist, like me, can't be all bad. Since the fall of communism, a paranoid delusional like me has been waiting for the next threat to my way of life and I dare anybody to come down my muddy driveway, to my double-wide and try to take either of my flags.
PS: Praise Jesus

At 6/26/2006 07:51:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jesus is my gardiner's name. He cut's my yard. I love to eat his wifes taco. He is doin work I aint willing to do and I don't need to do cuz I'm on the govt dole cuz the guilty LIBS luvs to pay me!

At 6/28/2006 05:20:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

CB of C

I've seen you in church waitin' for lil'old ladies to drop a buck in the box and light their candle of hope.
You wait till they're outasight
Then snuff out the candle flame
Alas, fools can never-never steal one's hope
Be The Rain

At 6/29/2006 01:33:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We had a chance to change our minds and if Bush knew then what he knows he knows now then he knows what he knew he would have done.
In other words you F'n moron from the south, he doesn't know what he doesn't know and he don't know squat because he's an idiot. And you're (that's right YOU ARE) an idiot. Anyone who doesn't think going to war in Iraq was a HUGE mistake by now, is just not living in reality and is in total denial. If all the reasons that Colin Powell cited to the UN are now untrue, whether known by the administration or not, then the reasons we went to war with Iraq are not valid and therefore it was a MISTAKE. Say it Chili ADMIT IT.
Admit it that it was a mistake!
You chicken shit bastard say it...!

At 6/30/2006 10:28:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The WAR was PERFECT MO-RON. It so nice of you Libs NOT to want to spread Democracy!

You'd rather people ROT under Dictatorships.

YOUR the Idiot you MO-RON!

At 6/30/2006 01:54:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have finally been caught along with GWB and his cronies. This is not a "War on Terror" it IS a way to spread democracy by force. You have finally said what it is all along. You've admitted that WMD's were a lie, WOT was a lie, it was and is about trying to install (by force) democracy in the Middle East. Thank you for your honesty finally! Now we can have a true debate on whether democracy can be forced or if it has to be "homegrown" from within, or if it is a type of government that people that are very religiously influenced and poorly educated can accept given one of the cornerstones of separation of Church and State.
We shall see.
I don't think it can work, but you obviously do.
I just don't think it's right to experiment by force.
In the long run, more harm is done.
We won the cold war after all by utilizing a combination of patience, example, religion, strength (arms buildup), solidarity (Poland), radio (free American). We never "fought" the communists to try and change their minds, it happened over time by using partial containment and show of force (buildup).
War was not the answer then and it is not now.
I pity you Chili that you are blinded by your leaders.

At 6/30/2006 06:48:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok Chile...worthy of a response this time...Very good questions you pose. You are absolutely correct in your assesment of Hussein and his cronies and I won't give you the standard liberal BS of we propped him up against the Iranians, after we propped up the Shah with the CIA (mentioned only for another point) I don't have all the answers and none of them are easy, but I don't think we can nation build by force. I don't think it serves us well and I think it should be an absolute last resort. We will be facing the ramifications of this war for years to come and we will look back and history will determine. Does anyone think NOW that it was a good idea to have the CIA install the Shah of Iran as the dictator back in the 50's. At the time it may have seemed to make sense, but usually bad things happen when people do them on the sly.
Let me ask you this, would it have made sense for the USA to intervene in China when students were trying to invoke their right to public protest thus excercising one of the hallmarks of democracy?
Democracy doesn't come easy, in fact it's one of the hardest, bloodiest forms of government to take root. Look at our own revolution. But it took hold, because the people wanted it too, not because the French were against the British. We can support democracy in varying forms without conflict. We are doing it in China and it will take hold someday, but the timing has to be right and most importantly it will come from within.

At 7/03/2006 10:18:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone said the best indicator of the future is history and I point to some good lessons as well. Russia, China....patience.
Good old college try is great, but not if react, don't think, make stuff up, war.... WE HAD A CHANCE TO CHANGE OUR MINDS.
Mr. Bush I think is an alcoholic that's gone untreated (dry drunk) I think his "cronies" Cheney and Rumsfield and formerly Ashcroft have a philosophy of premption and that Freedom will ring with everyone that's got a half a brain. But with freedom comes, some of the problems we have here. Hell even the terrorists were living here, seeing our culture, sleeping with American whores, all that freedom didn't turn any of them, they saw the ugliness in our system and there is ugliness. The Mullahs see it, SEX, DRUGS and Rock and Roll are only some of the bad we get with our society. And the midEast doesn't like it all.
Mr. Bush wanted to do good and he's basically a good man, but his alcoholism doesn't allow himself to consider all opinions, invite contrary opinions and he's surrounded by sanctimonious hawks that have a philosophy that he's putting into action.
Unfortunately I think it's the wrong one.

At 7/15/2006 05:09:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a very interesting column on Neil Young's website:

The Cost Of Freedom Paid In Fallujah's Blood
by Elwood Redding, Canadian Free Press
Just east of Winnipeg.
It's about 1400 miles from Toronto to Winnipeg and once you get out there on the Trans Canada Highway north of Lake Superior, it's a helluva pretty ride. Makes you happy to be alive and free in a country where a person can drive 1400 miles without worrying about getting pulled over to the side of the road and strip searched - if you're lucky - by heavily armed and fully charged US soldiers.
Makes you wonder how many Iraqi families actually drive anywhere anymore. Or how many have been torn apart in this ham-handed Bush government effort to give the Iraqis and the Afghanis, and everyone else in an oil-producing zone their freedom. After all it is about freedom isn't it? Used to be about weapons of mass destruction, remember? Then it was about deposing Saddam the nine-headed, worse thing since Hitler, monster, correct? And now it's about the precious gift of Bushian democracy and freedom for all Iraqi and Afghani people - you'll thank us for shooting your father later - right?
Who's kidding whom here? Life in Iraq sucks now! But how would we possibly know? We're mostly watching news stories that come from embedded journalists - this week's oxymoron - those hardworking women and men of the media who do the stories that the military brass allows. You've seen it over and over again - the one about our brave men and women out there risking their lives to bring Iraqis and Afghanis the precious gift of freedom. And it's all bullshit!
The War in Viet Nam turned around when ordinary Americans grew sick of the pictures and photos of bodies and horror and heartbreak. Remember the little girl running up the road from the napalm– her clothes burnt away, her flesh burning. Remember the South Vietnamese General shooting a suspected enemy in the head at extremely close range? Remember the victims (some 500 in all) of the Mai Lai massacre piled up like rubble or Lt. William, Bill to his friends, Calley who took the fall for an out-of-control war machine called the American military? Remember the last troops off the roof at the US Embassy in Saigon?
What image do we remember from Iraq? None so dramatic as those mentioned. Thanks to our embedded journalist we ride around in aromoured vehicles seeing the grave danger our brave troops face everyday in Iraq. Oblivious to the fact that everything that happened in Viet Nam is happening in Iraq only 100 times over.
Where was the evening news in April of '04 when a huge US military force attacked the city of Fallujah, population 300,000, just west of Baghdad. They bombed Fallujah from the air for 8 weeks before unleashing the final horrible barrage - an onslaught that included artillery and mortar shells employing white phosphorous, "Willy Pete" to our brave troops. White phosphorous burns the flesh off of anyone unfortunate enough to be within 150 yards of the detonation point. It's way worse than napalm, which became an internationally prohibited strike weapon along with other similar chemicals after the horrors of Viet Nam sunk in. But I guess those lessons are long forgotten now. White phosphorous, the military argues, is used to illuminate the target and thusly falls outside the ban. What kind of man looks for loopholes in a weapons ban?
7,000 Iraqis were killed at Fallujah - most of them civilians. Wounded men in the street were executed at close range by American troops. Women and children were incinerated in their beds by "Willie Pete". 74% of the city's homes were leveled along with 6o schools and 65 mosques and holy shrines. Hospitals were also hit and destroyed. Snipers, ordered to shoot anything moving, pinned the citizenry down preventing escape. There was a slaughter at the center of the inferno. Now the dogs of Fallujah are infected from eating decomposing human flesh. The children who survived can't be left alone outside. All of this in the name of freedom.
At Falcon Lake, just east of Winnipeg, I saw a timber wolf. He trotted to the side of the Trans Canada Highway, waited for my old Oldsmobile to pass, then crossed the road and left my rearview.
I wish I could give someone from Fallujah a backstage pass to the CSNY Freedom Of Speech concert. Just so someone from there would know that we're not all the same.
To learn more about the Massacre At Fallujah go to this website:
It features documentary footage shot by an Italian crew in the aftermath of the Massacre at Fallujah. It's not always easy to look at. The truth can be funny that way.

To Chili - an ethnic slur is racist, get an education. I have no time for yoyr racism, your mindless bigotry and your brain-washed sloganeering. MartinLav - I don't like your sanctimonious tone. For me, you can't quantify tyranny. Saddam Hussein was a tyrant, and in Saudi Arabia they cut off women's heads if their husbands accuse them of adultery. One was an ally turned enemy, the other is STILL an ally. I don't dig that kind of hypocrisy. In Burma, another American economic ally, the military dictatorship massacred scores of pro-democracy protestors in 1988 and have been holding Aun Sun Suu Kyi prisoner ever since. Yet I don't see the US rushing to intall democracy in Burma. Could it be because Burma sell us rubber and diamonds at cut-rate prices? There is no quantifying possible when it comes to tyranny. A human rights abuse is a human rights abuse whether against 4 or 40 people.

At 7/17/2006 04:46:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe you state that you don't like my sanctimonious tone after you cut and paste and entire diatribe on how bad the US Soldier is. At least I only hate war and not the warrior. And I was simply pointing out that there's other ways to project our interests other than war, or nation building. You may think supporting tyrants is giving them permission as opposed to acceptance, but I do not. You can't just ignore and abhor a particular culture because it's all the same to you. Talk about sanctimonious, you are no different than Chili and is ilk if you are unwilling to compromise your "ideals" in order to actually get something accomplished. Your way or Chili's way or the highway, will always be the highway. Why don't you head for the ditch?

At 7/18/2006 03:24:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MartinLav, what are you talking about? This article may be a diatribe, but it cannot be reduced to troop-bashing, as you claim. It's a criticism of how the military institution caused a massacre. It states that US troops shot civilians. Well, they did, and we've got to stop shying away from that fact. The trend in the US is "never, ever, condemn the troops, no matter what they do". I'm sorry, if a soldier is guilty of shooting an unarmed civilian through the head, or of torturing prisoners, then they are just that - GUILTY. But they mustn't be demonized or used as scapegoats. The real evil is the military establishment wwhich is condoning and even ordering things like the massacre at Fallujah.

And MartinLav, where do you get "You can't just ignore and abhor a particular culture because it's all the same to you" from? I don't ignore or abhor any particular culture. Like I say, I have been to Iraq, and met the civilians there. What I don't like is people using the evil of Saddam as a means of calling George Bush and his cronies saints. We know that they are not fighting this war for the Iraqi population. If you really think that then you are a fool. Because the Iraqi population is dying in droves and the US army can't even be bothered to count the number of dead or apologize for such things as the Abu Ghraib scandal or the massacres I've mentioned in previous posts. And if GWB WAS the saint Chili and other morons want us to believe him to be, he'd do something about these dictator and tyrants he's currently buying oil or diamonds from or selling guns to. People have got to stop thinkng US foreign policy is based on righteousness. The neo-cons would have you believe that, with their pantomime christianity, but it's all a load of bull. Chile, Burma, Honduras, Cambodia, Iraq. These countries all stand as testimony to what the US foreign policy does, and the chaos it leaves behind. THAT was my point. It's not about taking the moral high ground (although it would be nice if our administration would do that just once), it's about opening your eyes to reality.

At 7/18/2006 03:39:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are basically on the same side of this issue, you and I. However, I was only responding to you point of a tyrant is a tyrant and we can't support a tyrant. Again, in China they are sometimes tyranical, don't support the same human rights as us, but we don't go attacking them and try and install democracy. I don't believe in this war and didn't from the start and marched on Washington before it even started.

At 7/20/2006 04:39:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're right, we do agree on these issues. I also am totally opposed to this war, and don't think it's a solution, even when dealing with evil dictators. I just feel that people like Chili need to stop swallowing this propaganda and believing that if we're in Iraq, it's because George Bush wanted to bring democracy to the Iraqi people. The notion is ludicrous, because the US has so long shown utter contempt for matters of democracy when it comes to foreign policy. It just depends on how economically cooperative a country is. Iraq wasn't, they got a war. Saudi Arabia and China are, they get contracts. I think a rethink of the US foreign policy is needed, and that first and foremost, we need to STOP supporting these dictators. Then maybe we might find that less people will go on hating us. If we're hated in Iran, it's because of initial support of the Shah, and evil, evil man. Then the whole situation snowballed, but that's the start. The Shah was killing his own people, and we were supporting him, just like we supported Saddam and Saudi Arabia. So their oppressed populations start to hate us. And then it's easy for bastards like Bin Laden to turn them to their insane causes. Maybe if we tried to think less about profit and more about people, we could avoid some of this hatred.

At 7/20/2006 06:22:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's all part of the Western culture of superiority and manifest destiny of sorts. I know, I lived in Iran for 3 years when the Shah was in power. You have 2 classes of people, the haves and the have not's. The rich and poor. The poor see the rich in their western clothes and western cars, drinking, dancing, etc....and it's easy for the preacher man to tell his flock that those people are thumbing their nose at you and your religion. The Ayatollah can come riding in on a white camel. It's not easy, but we have to find a way to work honestly along side these people if possible, respect their culture, their religion and not support dictators that only follow our political agenda. A start would be to get out of the oil business.

At 7/25/2006 03:50:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MartinLav - you've hit the nail on the head. I just want to send a message to all the Chili's out there: how can you rate a President who said this:

"They (the terrorists) are well-organized and resourceful. And so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm the American people. And neither do we."

I guess he's more honest than I thought, he finally admits that all he wants is to harm America. And he's doing a fucking good job.

At 7/28/2006 04:50:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Chili. What, are you going to explain to me what Bush means when he says he "can't stop thinking of way to harm the American people"? Is there some hidden intelligent message there? Or could it just be that he's a moron with no grasp of the English language? This is the guy of course who, in the middle of commenting the Northern Irish peace process (so, a very serious issue concerning terrorism and civil strife), said, "Now I gotta go get a burger". Nice, George, very poetic and it really looks like you're dead concerned about peace in Northern Ireland. Or are you going to find a way of justifying Bush's many 5-week vacations he takes every year when he should be governing the country? Does the poor guy need to rest a lot 'cos of all the big words he has to read in confusing intelligence reports from the CIA saying there were no WMDs in Iraq? Even if you believe his policies are just (and that's your right, Chili), you have to admit there's something worrying about a man who doesn't realise he's just said he wants to harm the American people. Or what about Rumsfeld and his "Unkown unknowns - things we don't know that we don't know". Erm, what was that Donald, could you speak English please?

At 9/16/2006 09:15:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

C,mon, Canada, get a clue. As a proponent of liberalism, defined as the free and open exchange of ideas without fear of government oppression, I find it ironic that conservative Americans are fighting for liberalism in the most brain-dead area of the world, the middle east. Conservative Islam opposes free and creative thinking. Like communism, conservative Islam detracts from human freedom. Isn't it better to use the brains God gave us than to recite mind-numbing verses from the religious ramblings of religious fascist (Mohammed)? Before Mohammed, Iran was a cradle of democracy and religious freedom (ruled by Zhorastrians).

What Bin Laden and Ahmandinebejad want is for the entire world to become islamic so the Islamic version of the Apocalypse can take place. That is why they slammed an airplanes into the WTC and murdered 3000 innocents, to initiate the economic collapse of the west. This is why they want to eliminate Israel.

Jews have a historical right to a home in the Palestine. Most Jews agree that Palestinians have a right to live peacefully in Palestine. Why not dust off your Bob Dylan LPs and listen to "Neighborhood Bully?" Perhaps Lebanon would never have been invaded had the U.N. done its job and Hezbollah had not been allowed to amass 12,000 rockets on the southern border.

Personally, I, an agnostic, am disturbed by the anti-semitic tone of the radical left.

Instead of reacting to George Bush simply because he has a cowboy sounding accent (we think Canadians sound a little goofy, too), why not exercise your allegedly open-minded brains and see what the battle is about, listen to what he has to say about human liberty. Women in Afghanistan no longer are required to wear a veil, are being educated and are allowed to work. Kurds in the north of Iraq are now thriving and are grateful to Americans for freeing them from the gases of Saddam. Do we thank the radical left for this?

Saddam created ecological genocide by draining swamps in the south and setting fire to the oil fields of Kuwait. I thought the left was for the ecology and women's rights.

Eventually democracy will break out in Iraq. The current bloodshed is created by long-simmering religious feuds dating back centuries, not by the presence of American troops. Most experts believe the violence in Iraq would be far worse but for the presence of American troops. Would the world really be better off if Saddam Hussein were still in power?

I believe Left Wing narrow minded fascists such as Elwood Redding are a danger to the free world, and though I am a huge fan of Neil Young, I think his politics are simplistic, naive and knee-jerk reactionary. Stick to music, Neil, unless you are willing to read both sides of an argument before you state and opinion.


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