It's something of a classic day for watching people struggling to cross the massive river flowing between things they understand and things they know. To be fair, hardly anyone would turn to Blackie Lawless for a cogent summary of world events, but his interview in Classic Rock magazine makes him look like a man who shouldn't be trusted to choose his own jello, either.
Classic Rock: You wrote the songs on Babylon while the world was experiencing a global financial meltdown.
Blackie Lawless: It's no secret that I wasn't Bush fan, neither Bush No. 1 nor Bush No. 2. In general, I don't trust politicians. But when this supposed global meltdown was happening a year ago and I saw all these world leaders calling for a one-world government, a one-world system and a one-world currency, I thought to myself: "They gotta be kidding." I mean, do these guys understand what they're talking about? I don't think that they do.
And, let's face it, if Lawless knows anything, it's what someone who doesn't know what he's talking about looks like. He owns mirrors.
Classic Rock: What sort of stuff makes you grit your teeth?
Blackie Lawless: The whole Lockerbie situation. Freeing that Libyan bomber was a despicable act.
Apart from being one of the few people left in the world who believes that "that Libyan bomber" (I'm sure he knows his name, it's not like Lawless would be talking about something he doesn't understand) was responsible for the bombing - at least beyond reasonable doubt - notice how the subtle interplay between realpolitik, trade deals, devolution, compassion, differing standards of justice and differing political approaches can be simply boiled down to "the whole Lockerbie situation".
Plus, as I say, you look at how it's been socialized. I was watching a TV program the other day. It was a British kid here in the U.S. The interviewer asked him: "What did you come here for?" The kid said: "I wanted to start a small business and I couldn't do that in the U.K." There's no help from the government. You can't get a bank loan. There's no incentive to get anything done. Those days are gone. I thought to myself: "Is this where America's going?" It really hurts me to watch your country go that way. The pride factor has gone.
I don't even understand what Lawless means by "how it's been socialised", or indeed where his anecdote starts and finishes. Is he saying its a good thing that the standards of approval for business loans are lower in the US than the UK? But doesn't that feed the sort of financial meltdown of which he disapproves? And isn't being able to hop from the UK to the US to open a business a manifestation of globalisation which a moment ago Lawless was railing against?
Classic Rock: You were a supporter of John McCain during the U.S. presidential election campaign.
Blackie Lawless: By default.
What default would make you support the McCain-Palin ticket? Because voting for that pairing from anything other than conviction seems a little unlikely. You could stay at home. You could have voted for the Libertarians.
Classic Rock: So, how are you finding life under Barack Obama?
Blackie Lawless: I was very, very critical of Obama during the campaign. I wrote a long letter and I sent it out to all the press the night before the election.
How strange that a last-minute letter from Lawless failed to swing the election.
I pulled no punches with this guy because I had really done quite a bit of research on him while the election was going on. He's one of these old-time 60s radicals from way back.
Excellent research work skills, Blackie. The eight year-old Barack was clearly going round spraypainting the streets of Paris in 1968.
He thinks he's going to change the world and he's hell-bent on doing that.
God, yeah - imagine that: someone going into politics hoping to make the world a better place. What a danger to us all.
When he stood there the night of the nomination and he said that he intended on "fundamentally changing" America — a chill ran down my back.
Yes, dammit - shouldn't we be marching to protect the status quo? To ensure that America remains a country where people are hungry, where black men are more likely to end up in prison, where troops are heading off to die overseas? Why would anyone want to mess with that?
If only John McCain had adopted the slogan "If it's broken, don't go trying to fix it, because that might upset the guy from WASP".
Lawless, however, has only just started to ease the lid off his pot of toss:
Thousands of people were just standing there, wildly applauding, and it reminded me of Hitler standing on the steps of the Reichstag.
Yes. People standing in front of a man applauding. It's exactly like Hitler. Unlike at the Republican convention when McCain was selected, and there were only six people and they all stood in solemn silence for five minutes before going "wee-eell... must dash" and leaving quietly by the nearest exit.
People applauding wildly doesn't make someone like Hitler, you chumphead. I imagine that people go wild and applaud at WASP gigs, or used to, when you were famous. That doesn't mean you somehow became one of the Mitford sisters.
I thought, "These people don't understand what this man is talking about, what his true intentions are, and how he is going to go about doing this."
Or perhaps they did and... you know, shared some of his aims and ideals?
This man, like I said, is straight out of the '60s school of radicalism where he thinks he's going to be Robin Hood and rob from the rich to give to the poor.
Robin Hood spent most of the sixties in digs near Nottingham Poly organising muggings of plutocrats. Fact.
I subscribe to the theory: if you work, you eat. And if you don't, you don't.
Yeah. Excuse me, I have to shove some orphans up a chimney... they'll earn that dry rusk, dammit. Now, where were we?
It's really no more complicated than that.
Yes, it's true your philosophy really couldn't be any more simple-minded.
Do we want to be compassionate? Yes. Do we want to help each other as best we can? Yes.
Right. So you have to work to eat, but you help each other out? Do you mean, in effect, that everyone needs to contribute what they can, and we'll all be alright? Perhaps you might like to use the phrase "from each, according to his abilities" there, Blackie. And the helping each other as best we can? That could be summed up as "to each, according to his needs."
But that doesn't mean that I bust my hump to create something and somebody comes along and decides that I can't keep that anymore. That's not what either one of our countries was really built on.
Well, to be fair, Blackie, your country was based entirely on someone coming along and stealing the entire nation from people who were already there. And, pretty much, all British history has seen redistribution in one form or another - not just income tax, but tithes and manorial rights.
But then it is quite confusing, isn't it, Blackie? Perhaps you should just stick to the simple "Obama is like Hitler with his Final Health plan solution" placard painting.