In the latest edition of Rolling Stone (RS 1155, April, 26, 2012), a letter from a reader in regard to the Jon Stewart interview with Bruce Springsteen (RS 1154), states that Bruce Springsteen “…would make a great president.” This is an interesting statement in more ways than one.
Over the decades, Bruce’s anger has slithered from a very personal one towards a more widespread, public one, all expressed within the framework of his albums. The personal anger stemmed from the youthful anguish of direction, and from family issues to marital issues. When those were worked out (if they ever were), Bruce began to see humanity from a different angle, like we understand in his underrated “Human Touch”. His outrage over horrifically abused authority was spoken about in “American Skin”, and his empathy was heard in “Streets of Philadelphia”.
When 9/11 happened, Bruce spoke his piece with The Rising. Over time, his views on humanity scraped the broken side. On his most recent album, (Wrecking Ball), we hear Bruce with his thoughts directed toward the American trial as its inhabitants face ritual and crippling losses of their once proud faces.
In short, it’s safe to say that Bruce has had more than a casual interest in the well-being of his birth country. And while it appears that America’s well-monied institutions, along with America’s toothless government (on all sides) are headed toward uncompromising disregard to the people who live within its borders, there is also a hope that the country can recover from its current funk.
Which brings us to this intended point of the conversation. Might Bruce Springsteen make a good – even great – president of the US?
We know that transitions such as this have occurred. Ronald Reagan was an entertainer who held the office for two terms. But do you think that Springsteen has sufficient empathy and anger to govern the US back to a vision that he dreams of? Or are his visions a bleak opinion of what Americans, perhaps even, the entire world can come to expect for the rest of our lives?
To be fair, there are artists who have no faith in governments at all. Roger Waters is one of those. The roster of the ’70s were largely distrustful of governments. Should they be any different these days? (My opinion? I have no faith at all. None!)
What do you think?