More About Dylan and Liberal Hypocrisy

April 14, 2011

A few days ago I read Maureen Dowd’s article from the New York Times in which she criticized Bob Dylan for playing in China.

You know the story. China is a county that does a lot of bad shit. Secret prisons, the death penalty, occupation of Tibet, etc. So American artists with “liberal ideas” should boycott.

Bullshit on a lot of levels. Should he boycott the US also? Because last time I checked, there were more people in prison in the United States than in any other country! The death penalty hasn’t quite been abolished either. And Guantanamo hasn’t been closed quite as quickly as Mr Obama promised.

Anyway, this issue has another aspect: Dylan wrote Blowin in the Wind when he was 22. Now he’s 69.

It must be really irritating for him to be best known for something he did when he was barely finished with puberty.

Do you, dear reader, unequivocally stand by every statement you made in your early 20s? I know I don’t. And I’m only 28.

So the guy wrote some good poetry 47 years ago. Is he required to feel the same things today?

Imagine if the New York Times wrote about Mick Jagger, saying that they can’t stand his smarmy satisfied face.

“What happened to the rambunctious youngster who wrote (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction?” they would lament. “How dare he sell out his ideals and become a satisfied elderly gentleman! What happened to the 60s?”

Coincidentally, Jagger also wrote Satisfaction when he was 22.

Personally, I’m feeling quite a bit more satisfied with my life now than I was at 22. And I’m not even a multimillionaire rock star!

Liberal hypocrisy would have us all stay poor idealistic university students forever. Trying to learn and grow beyond your 19-year-old self? Some liberal will attack you for it.

Maureen Dowd may not have got the memo, but it’s not the 60s anymore, and most of us are not 19.

In the words of the Notorious BIG, who I never would have listened to as a teenager, “Shit done changed.”

Dearest Liberal Reader, I hope you enjoy the feeling of liberal guilt as you read this on your iPhone while wandering aimlessly in the aisles of WalMart.



P.S. Update 2023: I guess Dylan won a Nobel Prize at some point. Weird. Also, criticizing China is so 2011. Now they basically own us, and so we wouldn’t dare do that. Oh well.

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About the Author Daniel

How did I end up in Spain? Why am I still here almost 20 years later? Excellent questions. With no good answer... Anyway, at some point I became a blogger, bestselling author and contributor to Lonely Planet. So there's that. Drop me a line, I'm happy to hear from you.

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  1. Aside, criticism for using an iPhone when it’s almost impossible have mobile phone not made in China is nonsense… Then, wouldn’t be a burglar entitled to accuse a killer?

    Of course, nobody is perfect; but deter anyone, whose will is improve our unfair world denouncing facts, by saying he/she is childish, I think it’s not wise.

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