Christie/Springsteen Snoozegate Even Dumber than Obama Dog-Eating Story

If you want an example of how politics suck the life out of all worldly pleasures, you could hardly find a better one than the dustup over New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s alleged nap during an April 9 Bruce Springsteen concert at Madison Square Garden. 

At issue: During a performance of a plodding number off Springsteen’s new Wrecking Ball collection, the portly Garden State chief executive shut his peepers for an indeterminate period of time.

Observers claim Christie, who had already been lambasted by another concertgoer during one of Bruce’s signature shaggy dog stories, was catching a catnap.

Christie denies sleeping but does claim to have been in some kind of "spiritual" transport inspired by the E-Street Band’s performance of "Rocky Ground, " which I’m not sure is any less embarrassing. 

Here’s the governor’s description: 

It’s not clear whether Christie means Authorities Unit Director Deborah Gramiccioni was "in the hallway" during Christie’s press conference or during the concert, but if it’s the latter we’d have new proof of the old joke that no phrase empties a room faster than "Here’s a song from our new album."

As with most political disputes, this is one where I’d like to see both sides lose. Christie’s admirable efforts to control New Jersey’s pension crisis and rein in the growth of state spending have not prevented him from wasting hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars on corporate welfare

As for Springsteen, I have been a fan and feel some residual loyalty as a native of the Jersey Shore. And it’s reasonable to say that, regardless of the material, he puts on one of the great rock shows.

 But like killer bees and the Pittsburgh Steelers, Springsteen is one of those cultural forces that never went away and yet never really mattered once the seventies ended. His increasingly dire habit of offering prescriptive political advice to listeners and asking us to join in celebration of contemptible old commies like Pete Seeger makes one truth clear: For stadium-shaking anthem rock, you’re better off with Meat Loaf

There’s something off-balance, and a little bit creepy, in the expectation that an audience member is supposed to be deferring to the performer rather than the other way around. Christie almost certainly paid good money for his ticket: Seats for Springsteen’s upcoming Newark show start at $210. (The indifference of the actual working classes to Springsteen’s music has long been an open secret, as embarrassing as the overwhelming whiteness of jazz audiences.) 

No less a figure than Julie Andrews – that’s Dame Julie Andrews to you – got a heaping helping of post-concert vituperation from her fans a while back, even though she had made no secret of the loss of her legendary voice and by most accounts tried valiantly to put on a decent "and friends" performance. 

Why should fandom for a 62-year-old rock star be considered some badge of authenticity? Christie claims to have attended more than 100 Springsteen concerts. He’s got a right to sleep at a slow point in a show. Even given the eggshell care with which a New Jersey governor must handle local heroes, it would have been nice to see Christie bring out a little of his trademark indelicacy and declare, "Yeah, I think The Boss has really lost something since the untimely death of Clarence and/or Danny, and at one point I just got bored. But it’s cool. I won’t be demanding my money back."

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  • AlmightyJB||

    How is falling asleep during a Springsteen concert not more of an indictment of Springsteen than Christie?

  • ||

    Yeeeaaah. This.

    If you want to put me to sleep, play springsteen.

    The obama dog eating thing on the other hand is significant. Taking on the power of whatever you eat is an extremely primitive superstition and the basis for the practice of cannibalism. Barry was reared by a man who believed this nonsense. HIs grandfather was a mau mau sympathizer at best, and a mau mau at worst. mau maus practiced cannibalism.

    Barry, being one generation from wearing a bone in his nose, is significant.

  • Mike M.||

    The only reason anyone is making a big deal out of the stupid eating dog story is because the democrats decided to try to make a big deal out of the even more stupid dog on the roof of Romney's car story.

    Well, I always say that it's better to have the dog on the roof of your car than on the roof of your mouth.

  • sloopyinca||

    Cavanaugh, the Steelers have been to the playoffs 18 times since the 70's, have been to the Super Bowl 3 times and have won it twice. I demand a retraction of the "no longer matter" comment, or for you to at least attribute it to something else more apt, like maybe the New York Knicks or solar panels.

  • AlmightyJB||

    What he obviously meant was that he hasn't watched sports since the seventies.

  • ||

    Google "Pittsburgh Steelers dynasty" and you will find only references to the seventies. Anything after that is speculation about whether a "second dynasty" might happen. Killer bees never went away either. People just stopped giving a shit.

  • sloopyinca||

    Google "David Cameron Side Profile". See? Google can't always be trusted.

    OK, on the Cameron thing, they're probably right, but still...

  • AlmightyJB||

    Well if Google says so then....

  • John||

    Don't listen to Sloopy Tim. Pittsburgh fans are generally retarded.

    No dipshit, you had a dynasty (to a degree) in the 70s. You were the worst team in professional sports before that. And you sucked every year until about the mid 2000s after that.

  • sloopyinca||

    We might be retarded, John, but that doesn't mean we're stupid. The Steelers won their division 8 times from 1990 to 2005. That's over 50%. Not bad for a team that "sucked." Any other teams win their division more than half the time in that time frame?

  • John||

    You played in the same division as the Browns and Bengals. Pittsburgh didn't suck. But they certainly were not particularly noteworthy before the refs decided to give old man Rooney one more Super Bowl against the Seahawks.

  • sloopyinca||

    So I guess those 49ers teams from the 90's also sucked since the rest of their division was worse than the rest of Pittsburgh's.

  • Anacreon||

    True.

  • Xenocles||

    Awful big talk for a fan who had his team eliminated from the playoffs by Tim Tebow.

  • sloopyinca||

    Maybe, but this is the internet, so big talk is more than acceptable.

  • ||

    And so apropos in a post that features The Corpulent Jesus. Apparently, The Portly Politico is still larger than life.

  • ||

    I mean no disrespect to the Steelers. I used the phrase "cultural force," meaning Terry Bradshaw and Lynn Swann and Mean Joe Greene and Rocky Bleier and Franco Harris were major, inescapable celebrities of the seventies, and subsequent Steelers teams have not colonized the public imagination in the same way. In fact, there are more killer bees in the U.S.A. now than there were in 1979, and Tunnel of Love sold as many copies as Born to Run. "Cultural force" =/= raw numbers.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Too late, Cavanaugh. You've angered yinzers everywhere. Stiller fans who have forgotten the Kordell Stewart years.

  • ||

    I'm sure I have worse enemies.

  • sloopyinca||

    Of course, I'm merely being a contrarian asshole. But I'm sure that's no surprise to anybody on here.

    And I'd rather be a Steelers fan than a Patriots or Giants fan. Fuck those two teams.*

    *And fuck Peyton Manning too.

  • Bardas Phocas||

    And I'm sure the reference to the Killer Bees and the Steelers has to be about their uniforms next year.
    http://uniformsleuth.com/wp-co.....eelers.png

  • sloopyinca||

    I am ashamed to be a Steelers fan after seeing that picture. Flame away, Tim. Flame away...

  • AlmightyJB||

    Not a huge Boss fan but gotta love Red Headed Woman Live.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bfPZQBWa5k

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    I slept through a Springsteen concert after eating a dog and making fun of stay-at-home moms.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I think you got the second two activities mixed around.

  • NAR||

    What's amazing about this one is that the story was dead until the Governor brought it up again.

    Either he is incredibly thin skinned, or he would rather this was the story than the 8,000 New Jerseyans who lost their jobs in March.

    Myself, I vote for both.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I wouldn't vote for Christy, but I do love the way he slams critics and Occutards who ask him stoopid questions.

  • sloopyinca||

    I wouldn't vote for Christy (sic)

    Any word on Romneybot putting the Fat Man on the ballot if/when he gets the GOP nod? I've heard he is on the short list with Rubio, McDonnell and Portman.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Shit... ChristIE. I am misspell today.

    I don't keep up with any R unless it's a Paul. But Romney needs to find someone who's a fiscal-con, not a so-con, to be his First Officer.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Too bad Mitch Daniels isn't the Republican nominee -- would have been great to hear at least one Little Boy/Fat Man 2012 joke on the campaign trail.

  • Anacreon||

    I've heard he is on the short list with Rubio, McDonnell and Portman.

    Natalie? Wouldn't her Israeli citizenship disqualify her?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    JOOOS!!!1!ONE!!!

  • John||

    What is dumb about the Obama dog eating story? It is funny as hell. It has spawned any number of funny joke photographs and of course a classic Hitler rant. Since when does Reason find laughing at politicians "dumb"?

  • John||

    Is Reason racist? Do they consider a black President to be unworthy of the normal ridicule that goes with the office?

  • John||

    Any story that produces this is not stupid.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?f.....EBN8wOKjMo

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    As indicated by this surprisingly-comprehensive article in Wikipedia, Hitler's dog was named Blondi, not Fluffy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blondi

    Not only is Blondi a more accurate name, it's also funnier on several levels.

  • AlmightyJB||

    That was awesome:)

  • Suki||

    Love that one!

    Also: Christie/Springsteen Snoozegate Even Dumber than nowhere near as funny as Obama Dog-Eating Story

  • ||

    It's dumb because it isn't news. It was in an autobiography that came out 17 years ago. If there's anything of interest, it's that in that section of the book, Obama or Bill Ayers conceals what a garden variety leftist he is, by playing up the political incorrectness of his interests, the excitement of violence to a child, and the fact that he "could hardly believe" his good fortune at having a male role model who slaughtered animals in front of him. You could read that part and think Obama is an interesting person -- a fantastic literary bait and switch.

    It's also a political loser that will have as much effect as investigating George W. Bush's Air National Guard career had in 2004. Once a president's elected, nobody cares about ancient history.

  • Jim Treacher||

    Well, if you're going to miss the point, you might as well go all-out.

  • Suki||

    by playing up the political incorrectness of his interests

    You really did miss the street cred angle. For Lefties, eating dog and such is a way of getting down with the masses. Almost like a biblical story of a prophet going through austerity before being crowned king to save us all. No, it is not up there with blowing up the Pentagon, but it is pretty darn close to having a prison record.

  • JeremyR||

    Of course it's not news. That's the point.

    Neither is the "story" that triggered it, Romney putting his dog in a crate on the top of his car on a trip.

    The Obama eating dog story is just push back.

  • JeremyR||

    To spell it out plainer:

    Liberals: Romney is evil because he mistreated his dog by putting him in a crate on the top of his car.

    Conservatives: Then what does that make Obama then, who used to eat dogs? Mistreatment doesn't get much worse than that...

  • ||

    Oh, well if it's Obamney he said/she said, then it's totally not dumb at all.

  • Jim Treacher||

    You really wanted to keep hearing about Romney's dog run up until election day? Well then, sorry to ruin it.

  • Jim Treacher||

    RIGHT up until election day. Anyway, thanks for trying, Jeremy.

  • Suki||

    I hear that is a great method to make dog tender.

  • Xenocles||

    Indeed, the muckrakers may well have hit on a "scandal" that the President would rather talk about than the issues - by a long shot.

  • sloopyinca||

    I still don't understand why nobody has googled David Cameron Side Profile.

  • Anacreon||

    caution: digital

  • Franklin Harris||

    Springsteen sucks.

    Too many notes.

  • Suki||

    Rock me Amadeus.

  • Trespassers W||

    No, he sucks because his music sucks and his voice sucks and he's a sucky person and his butt stinks.

  • JeremyR||

    That's actually part of his problem. His music is too busy, it comes off as muddled, at least to me. As does his singing, which is even less coherent than Bob Dylan.

  • juris imprudent||

    You can beat Christie wouldn't snooze through a Ted Nugent show.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Ted was my first concert. Totally rocked.

  • Voros McCracken||

    That's a good way to get a crossbow bolt through the chest.

  • Swamp Think||

    *no phrase empties a room faster than "Here's a song from our new album."*

    There's always the exception... http://youtu.be/BCuEOgmjfww

    Phil wasn't fat, but he did have a magnificently unhealthy lifestyle.

  • Jocon307||

    Oy, when did this registration thing start? It took so long I almost forgot what I wanted to say.

    No such luck, I remember!

    Pete Seeger is a stinking commie, he is and he admits it. But he is a gosh darn great singer.

  • Zombie Jimbo||

    A pity that Bruce Cantsingsteen isn't.

  • Killazontherun||

    'Spiritual' and 'Springsteen' don't belong in the same universe. Not like we are talking about Blue Oyster Cult here.

    Your comment contains a word that is too long (50 characters).

    No it doesn't retardo squirrel.

  • Suki||

    Wasn't one of those old gangsters from The Soprano's in an ancient version of Springsteen's band?

  • sloopyinca||

    You may just be a little confused. What I heard was that the rest of the E Street Band always said Patti Scialfa had a Big Pussy. No word on whether or not this man had a music career

  • Suki||

    That must have been it.

  • Sevo||

    Without comment on the Guv, it seems "Glory Days" defines Springsteen in ways other than he intended.
    I've met entirely too many people who presume their high-school, college or military careers are the apotheosis of their lives. They can't seem to accept that the sun comes up *every* morning with all the inherent possibilities.
    If you want to sit on your butt and presume the best is past, help yourself. I'm tired of listening to the stories.

  • SweatingGin||

    I took the Springsteen station off my sat radio in the car -- too many times flipping through and it wasn't playing something from born to run or born in the USA.

  • Sevo||

    OT, but worth tossing out: David Holloway's "Stalin and the Bomb".
    Background: Ioffe's thin-film dielectric doesn't work after the Soviets tossed millions into it (think Solyndra). So in 1936 the Soviets hold a 'criticism meeting' to 'fix' the problem (think congressional investigation).
    Another scientist makes this comment:
    "In the end, the capitalist looks after his own pocket very well, and knows perfectly well how to buy [?] scientists and make them work for him [...]
    Meanwhile, it should be insisted that socialism needs such an apparatus"
    Well, you can't have that in socialism.
    His name is Rozhdestvenskii and I don't recall reading about him later. He probably got shot.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Oh, come ON... Stalin wasn't THAT bad...

    /libtard

  • Sevo||

    Tell that to Rozhdestvenskii's widow.

  • Sevo||

    Assuming they didn't shoot her, too.

  • ||

    A better answer: "I had a long day at the office, and Springsteen was playing one of his less interesting songs. One of us needs to step up his game, and that one isn't me."

  • fried wylie||

    And it's reasonable to say that, regardless of the material, he puts on one of the great rock shows.

    I'm sorry, but I just can't accept that statement for any artist past age 40. Which is why Bob Marley had to die when he did.

    ("Your comment contains a word that is too long (50 characters)", and the offending apostraphe was in the excerpt from your post that I pasted...at least it doesn't wipe one's post when that issue crops up.)

  • mike.d.moon@gmail.com||

    ha! First Opie and Anthony get Weiner's dick picture released and now this (picture was taken and tweeted by a member of their staff). They are non-partisan shock jocks!

  • XM||

    Um, why does Cavanaugh want "both sides" of the "political dispute" to lose, even as he acknowledges that a consumer who paid a premium price for concert event has a right to snooze, thusly vindicating Christie from any wrongdoing and exposing this controversy as a non event?

    You know, sometimes, I mean sometimes, one side actually more to blame than the other. The Republicans deserve blame for the country's mess, although Obama is closing the gap. The phony "war on women", rush to judgment on the T-mart case, and outrage over "social darwinism" is coming almost exclusively from the far left.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Hopey McChange had a heapin' helpin' of Lassie a la carte?

    Gives a whole new meaning to the term "doggie bag"!

    Someone must have dug this up in response to the charge that Mittens drove around with the family pooch strapped to the roof of his car...

    On such issues, our next president will be chosen? Isn't it terrible how far political discourse has sunk in this country...

    Actually, I hear Alexander Hamilton initiated a whisper campaign about Aaron Burr having an inappropriate relationship with his own daughter.

    Meh. What's amazing is that in the end, the election will be about where the price of gasoline is over the summer--or some such nonsense.

  • Mike M.||

    Ridiculous crap like this is exactly what the democrats want this entire campaign to be about; that was the reason behind them ginning up this phony, non-existent "war on women".

    They aren't stupid; they know they can't run on Obama's dismal, horrible record in office, so get ready for distraction after distraction after distraction, with plenty of help from all his lickspittles in the so-called mainstream media.

  • Ken Shultz||

    But it's always like that.

    It's been like that since before Alexander Hamilton started smearing Aaron Burr.

    I remember when it was the Republicans popping off about the "Culture of Death"...as if Terri Schiavo were somehow more important than the Patriot Act, the Iraq War, or the budget/economy.

    Yeah, the masses should be really ticked off. The solution used to be bread and circuses. Now it's cheap gasoline and trying to spin whatever's in the headlines that's fascinating distracting people at the moment...

    To a lot of Democrats at the moment--talking about ObamaCare is a distraction!

    It's always been this way. We libertarians should take advantage of it. That's one reason I support Reason. They do a better job of fighting for the attention of the easily distracted than any other libertarian organization--by far.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Ridiculous crap like this is exactly what the democrats want this entire campaign to be about; that was the reason behind them ginning up this phony, non-existent "war on women".

    They aren't stupid;

    Uh, yeah they are.

    The war on women blew up in their face when they attacked motherhood.

    The Romney the dog abuser meme blew up on them and is making Obama a laughing stock with pictures like this one.

    http://s3-ak.buzzfed.com/stati.....453-10.jpg

    And their next big distraction is the Zimmerman affair. In which they are trumping up racial violence between blacks and hispanics - two of their core constituencies.

    Dems please keep it up, at this rate Obama will be lucky to crack 25% by November.

  • Ken Shultz||

    If there isn't a war on women, then there's no reason to pick a side.

  • Ted S.||

    I have a bigger problem with Mr. Cavana Ugh's use of the [expletive deleted] -gate suffix.

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