Madonna Bashed by Staunch Conservatives

Madonna took off with her “Sticky & Sweet” tour in Cardiff, England on August 25 with a roaring crowd and a roaring Right. A roaring extreme Right, that is.

I know. I know. I just blogged about Mama Madge having just turned 50 two weeks ago but I couldn’t let this one pass.

During an interlude in the concert (AKA, costume change), a pre-fab video is shown, juxtaposing images of Hitler and others of his like to images of The World As We Know It (Global Warming, Global War, Famine, Intensified animal brutality for the gain of faster food consumption and other human malaise). Included in the Hitler-like ilk is a photo of John McCain, apparently suggesting (by the Conservative Right) that he is as bad as Hitler.  

What I see when I watch this is that there are two choices that can be made: continue running with Dictatorships and we’re fucked. Run with people who really want to make a change for the betterment of humanity, and we have a chance. What do you think?

All-in-all, she’s the artist. She can say what she wants.

Here’s a clip:


10 Responses

  1. Gotta object here, Jake: She wasn’t just attacked by conservatives. Most liberals rolled their eyes at this, and thought that in this highly charged political climate this ill informed and ill educated singer is making some crude hollow gesture that does no good but could do ill. Her message has all the knowledge and nuance of a “political” statement written on a World Famous Canvas bag. Frankly, what we need now is to cultivate nuance critical thinking and avoid this kind of cartoonish, churlish representations of complex situations

    As is often the case, she’s just mouthing off for attention and is making absurd comparisons for the sake of publicity/ego.

    This is not a woman who has even the crudest understanding of the challenges we face and this doesn’t lend anything to the conversation, doesn’t offer anything but inane gloss.

    Beyond that, I actually find her use of images of suffering as self serving spectacle pretty disgusting and disrespectful.

    End of rant here.

  2. oh, you gays and madge! what is it? I didn’t quite agree with bell hooks’ assessment of her back in the day but she smelled some stuff right in Black Looks, remember that? Very CUSA era.

  3. i appreciate your objections.
    i understand that there is a lot of eye rolling on both sides. but it started- and it has been more- from the uber conservative right.
    i don’t agree with you that she doesn’t contribute in some way. and that it’s done with just gloss. [but sometimes that’s what it takes to make people get wassup.] i won’t stand down from that.
    i do agree with you that she is self-serving. that she has an ego that needs to be fed. no doubt.
    [on a side: I hated the image of oprah in the “peace keeper” side of it all. as you may know, I think oprah- although she has has been part of opening up dialogue in the eyes of many- has basically turned into a self-appointed god.]
    yes. this IS part of Madge’s ego.
    that’s all.

    yes! us gays and our love for the Madge. I will never understand it either-
    i love her. and i hate her.


    Oh, CUSA-

  4. i’ll keep arguing and ask, how does this contribute? What real thinking is present in this video and how is it anything other inchoate and binary?

  5. I have mixed feelings about stars and their causes. On one hand, you get some sort of ___-Aid concert, which funnels millions to worthwhile projects, and great documentaries like the one the Clooney’s did on Darfur. They call attention to situations which otherwise might be ignored and underfunded. Certainly breast cancer research is better off since the Baldwins got involved.

    On the other hand, the mix of politics and entertainment is, for me, uncomfortable. Unless it’s comedy, because who doesn’t love making fun of politicians? However, I don’t want to go to a musical concert or other program and be told to vote, or free Tibet, or contribute to Peta. I find something disingenuous about celebrities using their star power to force feed an agenda to fans.

    So — in my humble opinion — documentaries and fund raising are great, political agenda-making and tub-thumping not so much.

    😉 Of course, if I were a celebrity, I’d be the biggest hypocrite in the world, because I’d have railed on GWB and war for the last decade.

  6. I think a lot of celebs have their own agendas when it comes to promoting peace and human dignity. I think others are sincere. In the long run – when Madge continues to piss people off at least people are still talking. There are a many disturbing images in that footage. Stomach turning images that are current on earth; if this encourages a few people to do something or VOTE that is worth far more than the hype.

    I don’t know Madonna, I expect I never will – however when I think of the mother of three children and not the rock star I believe she is sincere in her disgust with the leaders who are fucking up the planet her children will be left with. Regardless of how rich they are, they still have to face much of what we all face in the way of terrorism and pollution.

    I’m not saying Madonna is a saint but I am giving her two thumbs up on this one!

  7. I find her entire dialogue thought provoking. That is what it is all about, with a twist of her own opinions mixed in. I really find it all fascinating, and shows how screwed up the world has been in the past and present. I just think people take something she presents and runs with it to prove an opposing viewpoint. Which is okay in my book. Its all about ideas….

  8. I understand that y’all want those who speak truth to power but I don’t see her video as that.

    What argument or real insight is presented here? And it’s not like she’s showing anything that anyone isn’t aware of so she’s not actually enlightening anyone.

    I fear that what it DOES do is perpetuate the same kind of binary, simplistic politics that have ruined our neighbours to the south.

    And I have never really bought “still talking” argument. Lots of people talk – and say nothing of note. Ideas and actions matter – montages of images don’t substitute for critical dialogue.

    Now, y’all know my politics and know I’m well left of Madonna – so the old “It’s just conservatives,” doesn’t cover my objections, nor those of all liberal thinkers who have weighed in on the matter.

    Check this staunch liberal quote decrying her:

    Madonna’s allusion to John McCain alongside Adolf Hitler in a video accompanying her new concert tour is “stupid,” Barack Obama confidant and Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine said Tuesday. or this one: “These comparisons are outrageous and offensive and have no place in the political process,” Obama campaign spokesman Tommy Vietor said.

    And don’t forget what the Jewish community and Shoah survivors think about juxtaposing McCain and Hitler. And yes, I mean Jewish democrats and Barack supporters, also.

    My objection is not to her proselytizing – it’s the quality of it all and what that represents. i truly wish she had a real argument to make and the critical tools to do it. This is not Bono talking the economics of the developing world with Paul O’Neill here (Bono missteps but truly tries to understand and have substantial discussion on these topics.) Hers is FOX level reactionary rhetoric. We hate it when they do it – why not when she does?

    Americans at this point need to start thinking more critically and less in these polarized and cartoonish ways – regardless of party.

    Beyond that, any world/eco/social justice commentary coming from the consummate consumer seems specious at best, disingenuous at worst.

    To wit: a brief look at things she could address, and where she could lead by example:

    A group that publishes the web site,, is criticizing Madonna’s world tour for its huge carbon footprint. The group maintains that Madonna could have done a lot more to make her tour “eco-friendly.” Even for a celebrity , this is large. Carbon footprint says on its web site that Madonna’s 49-date sojourn will be manned by 250 staff members, including nine wardrobe assistants, 12 seamstresses, a personal trainer and a masseuse. And she isn’t’ traveling light. She’ll be packing 30 wardrobe trunks and the tour’s massive stage set will follow her around the world. The group estimates that Madonna and her entourage will generate more than 1,500 tons of carbon emissions. John Buckley, a spokesman for the group, says Madonna’s management could have done a lot more to safeguard the environment.

    Or this nugget on Brittany that really “makes people think” about the inequities in the world: “It’s very painful (seeing pictures of Spears). When you think about the way people treat each other in Africa, about witchcraft and people inflicting cruelty and pain on each other, then come back here and, you know, people taking pictures of people when they’re in their homes, being taken to hospitals, or suffering, and selling them, getting energy from them, that’s a terrible infliction of cruelty. ‘So who’s worse off? You know what I mean?'”

    Yeah, that’s what Africa is about. Bloody savages. And witchcraft. Why not speak of the foreign interests that swooped in to undermine fledgling nations just as colonialism withered. What of the remains of colonialism that underpin genocides such as Rwanda? But Brittany has it worse. Really? Thanks for that geopolitical lesson.

    She promotes the hair care line Sunsilk – which tests on animals and is owned by Unilever which uses child labour in India and – due to its unrelenting use of palm oil and crusades to develop more land for such crops, plays a large role in the forest destruction in Indonesia and all of Asia. Indonesia is losing its forest faster than any other nation, chasing imperiled species like orangutans toward extinction. Due to the destruction of rainforests aand the like, Indonesia is the 3rd biggest greenhouse gas polluter in the world, tagging just behind USA and China. Palm oil plantations are causing plenty of this deforestation -thanks to people like Unilever. And Madge is a spokesperson for them?

    She and Guy have had canned hunts on the grounds in the UK. That’s not cruel to animals at all. Perhaps she wears her furs when watching. I am sure she gets cold when she leaves her SUV.

    Maybe she just opts to cover up in her H and M clothing line. Products made in sweatshops in Asia, I’ve even seen one, trust me, these are not nice places. Reckon her tour gack gets made in the same subhuman environment.

    Not a pretty portrait. Perhaps she can be in her own video. Again, there is much this powerful woman can do and say to help the planet and create substantive dialogue. This video does neither. It’s almost literally the least she can do and she cheapens the legit arguments against McCain by offering only crude and hyperbolic parallels.

  9. fuck I didn’t realize that was that long. Oops.

  10. I don’t know. I never got past staring at that amazingly beautiful (hot) picture of Madonna playing the guitar. After that my brain turned to mush.

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