Saturday, October 30, 2004

Leftie Rockers and Their Money


Away from the markets for a moment here

As I'm doing things around the house today, I'm watching and listening to National Anthem on Sundance. It's a pretty cool 5-hour documentary of an Oct. 11, 2004 Vote for Change fundraiser that took place in Washington, D.C.. Great tunes from Bonnie Raitt, Bruce Springsteen, Dave Matthews Band, The Dixie Chicks, Jackson Browne, James Taylor, John Fogerty, John Mellencamp, Jurassic 5, Keb' Mo', Babyface, Pearl Jam and R.E.M. (Okay, not all great: I can't get with Dave Mathews, they're either all playing at once or not at all -- prefer the later).

Here's a nice news summary from CNN.com: Musicians rock for Kerry - Oct 13, 2004.

Line of the night, I think, was James Taylor "I hate it when they say 'Don't change horses in midstream' ... if your horse can't swim and he's way over his head," Taylor said. "Look at the two candidates," he told undecided voters, "And you choose the smart one."

Of course, the pollsters tell us it's more important who you'd like to share a brew with. Me? I'll side with the brains.

Before the concert, my colleague Eamon Javers interviewed Michael Stipe of R.E.M. for CNBC's Capitol Report. The most striking moment of the interview was when Stipe said something about the need for progressives to donate to Democratic campaigns. But when Eamon asked him if he had, Stipe bristled. "That's my business," he said.

Not really. It's public record:

According to Opensecrets.org in the 2004 election cycle:
Michael Stipe gave $6,000 to Democratic congressional candidtate John Barrow.

Some of the rest:

Bonnie Raitt gave a $12,100 to Howard Dean, Dennis Kucinich, and a bunch of others, including my Congresswoman Barbara Lee.

Jackson Browne dished out $2,000 to Congresswoman Lois Capps, and another $500 to Tony Knowles.

Dixie Chick Emily Robison gave John Kerry $2,000.

Dixie Chick Martie Maguire gave Kerry three times that $6,000.

(Lead Dixie Natalie Maines, who's clearly donated all sorts of time doing these benefits, doesn't show up as a cash donor on OpenSecrets.org).

Okay, maybe Bruce had the best line from National Anthem: "Economic justice, civil rights, protection of the environment, a living wage -- too many people are working two jobs and still can't make ends meet -- humility in using our power at home and around the world," Springsteen said before launching into Born to Run. "These core issues of America's identity are what's at stake when we vote on Nov. 2." Posted by Hello

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