Spoken from the stage last night in Madison, in the middle of his encore song "Blowin' in the Wind."
Which squarely contradicts my late-night post about Bob Dylan's concert: "And not a word... not a word... about politics. No imploring us to vote for Obama. Or even to vote."
I loved the absence of politics, and I believe/have believed that Bob Dylan has almost entirely avoided politics since the early 1960s. I can see a way to say his quote about Obama is enigmatic, sardonic, and in some real way nonpolitical: Don't believe what they're telling you in the newspapers. A sound and distanced observation. Etc.
But no subtle interpretation can undo my over-strong "not a word." So I have to confess that Meade and I have been to a lot of Bob Dylan concerts. We know he will do one encore. We even knew it would be "Blowin' in the Wind." Halfway through it, we slipped out into the night. We zipped right out of there.
Far between sundown’s finish an’ midnight’s broken toll
We ducked outside the doorway, snowflakes drifting...
It was as if they saw us leave. Good! Althouse and Meade are gone. Now we can talk about politics.
IN THE COMMENTS: Many of you say that "I think it’s going to be a landslide" is ambiguous. Especially after "Don't believe the media." And the idea of trying to "play good" because the President was in town is kind of comical — playing at being deferential to authority. He never says Obama's name, and that landslide might go toward the other guy. This reminds me of an old law school anecdote: The famous old professor says: "It's obvious how this case will be decided." And the young lawprof says: "Yes, but which way is it obvious?"
Chip Ahoy said it best:
Uh, excuse me, how do you extract "I think Obama will win in a landslide" from "I think there will be a landslide."And I defend our walking out:
I know what you're going to say.
There is a sentence before that and another sentence after following and those three sentences together add up to an Obama endorsement and I say they do not. I am interpreting them as I go and those are three separate things. Not that I care, it's that sometimes everyone around me is wrong and I'm the only one around who thinks otherwise and as much as I'd like to stay a quiet little church mouse I am compelled to be a pillar of strength momentarily, stand up and say so.
Actually, the way Dylan uses "Blowin' in the Wind" suggests he means it as a closing-credits/filing-out-of-the-theater song. The show was over at "Watchtower" and you're supposed to go home, you're not leaving, and he comes back to say: okay, here's that famous oldie, now get outta here.