A liberal New York Times sports columnist begged Bruce Springsteen on Friday to make a political statement during his halftime Super Bowl concert. Harvey Araton suggested: "maybe we'll get lucky and there will be at least one bold moment Sunday night when Springsteen goes rogue and rails against -- oh, I don't know -- offensive Wall Street bonuses, $18.4 billion worth. Go ahead, Bruce, make those corporate fat cats squirm on their sofas."
Araton chipped in with his own financial expertise (and Bruce Springsteen fandom) in his Super Bowl column from Tampa, "At the Half, It's B-r-u-u-u-u-u-u-u-c-e." Araton, whose liberal huffing backfired in 2006 when he assumed the guilt of the Duke lacrosse players before the case against them collapsed, revealed himself to be a liberal fanboy for Springsteen rivaling leftist media critic Eric Alterman and urged the lefty rocker to make the fat cats squirm. After accusing the Super Bowl event of "crass commercialism occasionally mixed with patriotic pandering," the slobber commenced to run:
During a news conference that was billed as the band’s first since 1987 and was nothing short of hilarious, the Boss reminded the guitarist Nils Lofgren (I can admit to owning one of his distant solo albums, the vinyl kind) that he was not supposed to say that as a resident of Scottsdale, Ariz., he will be rooting for the Cardinals to beat the Steelers.
Not in the contract, Springsteen said with deft comic timing. But who knows, maybe we’ll get lucky and there will be at least one bold moment Sunday night when Springsteen goes rogue and rails against -- oh, I don’t know -- offensive Wall Street bonuses, $18.4 billion worth.
Go ahead, Bruce, make those corporate fat cats squirm on their sofas. It’s a one-time forum -- make a lasting impression....When the Boss got a reluctant Van Zandt to take the microphone, Silvio of "The Sopranos" said, "I think one of the things that we’re kind of proud of is that there’s a certain inspirational quality to what we do, and that’s because of when we grew up, we had the high standards of the ’60s."
Say what you will about the flaws of that decade, at least it generated longstanding ideals more resonant than ever as of two weeks ago. [I presume he's referring to Obama's inauguration.] And after a news conference in which normally skeptical reporters sat at the edge of their seats and took cellphone photos of Springsteen and the other seven members of the band, it occurred to me that this was a pretty good match after all.
There's more over at TimesWatch, MRC's one-stop shop for New York Times watchers.