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November 08, 1996 - Image 18

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-11-08

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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[Sound and Fury

The election may
be over, but the
excitement is just
beginning. To com-
pensate for a less
than climactic Nov.
5 Election Day, Bob
Dole's future legal
problems will most
r likely prove to be

more interesting than the fuddy-duddy
Republican's vision for a crusty: old
Throughout his presidential campaign,
Dole used popular songs at campaign
stops to help enhance his standing with
the younguns. Not just the Gen X-ers, but
the other youngsters, like the baby
boomers (to him, at least). Problem is,
Dole never got permission to use the

songs for his campaign.
Not only did he not get permission to
use the various songs, but Dole couldn't
even find a musician who was willing to
let him use their music. Now, he is being
threatened or sued by rockers who want
nothing to do with the Republican party
or its conservative, tight-assed politics.
While Bill Clinton's 1992 election
theme song, Fleetwood Mac's "Don't

Stop," gave supporters inspiration (and a
Fleetwood Mac reunion at his inaugura-
tion), Dole's use of Sam & Dave's "Soul
Man" and Bruce Springsteen's "Born in
the U.A." have given him attention for
being a copyright thief.
Dole ripped off the 1967 hit "Soul
Man;' mutating it into his own rather
ludicrous campaign theme "Dole Man.'
Rondor Music, the owner of the copy-
righted tune, disagreed with the presiden-
tial nominee's selection of its song.
Rondor went as far as to send the Dole
campaign a cease-and-desist letter and
said his use of the song was "tantamount
to theft,"seeking up to $100,000 in dam-
ages for each use of the tune.
All legalities aside, soul isn't the first
thing that comes to mind when I think of
Bob Dole. I couldn't think of any less a
soulful person than Bob Dole, other than
maybe Ted Nugent. The Nuge's "Wang
Dang Sweet Poontang" would have been
a better selection
to have all those
boogytng insong fos
their hunting SO fl f
boots anyway.,
Then there's
Dole's use of Guns N'
"Born in the "One ina
U.S.A.' That had
The Boss in an
uproar. After a Republican rally in Red
Bank, N.J., where the Dole bus blasted
the tune, Springsteen sent a fax to a New
Jersey newspaper saying, "Just for the
record, I'd like to make it clear that (the
song) was used without my permission
and I am not a supporter of the
Republican ticket" Springsteen officials
were reported saying that The Boss
wouldn't sue, but wanted Dole to stop
using the song.
At a rally last Friday in Brighton,
Dole's traveling band treated the crowd
and the candidate to Average White
Band's "Play that Funky Music" with its
repeating chorus, "Play that funky
music, white boy." You go, white boy
Being a music junkie, I can only won-
der whether the election would have gone
differently if Dole had chosen a better
theme song. Soul man he isn't, so a bet-
ter song couldn't have really made his
campaign any weaker than it already was.
Dole tried so hard to be cool, it's
almost a shame he lost so miserably. He
should get points for trying, at least. I'm


sure '80s music and Springsteen was a
stretch for him. But just imagine what
could have happened if he had stretched
his campaign repertoire just one more
decade and used some '90s material. He
could have used a gangsta rap anthem
like "Nuthin' But A Dole Thang" or
"Dole Doggy Dogg." That would have
gotten him some votes, and maybe even
some street cred. Maybe it would have
even turned the tables on Billy and his
outdated Fleetwood Mac tune. The world
will never know.
A more fitting song for good old Bob
would have been something like Guns
N' Roses' "One in a Million.' That
would have accurately portrayed his
chances of winning the election, and it
would have been more in line with his
party'sbeliefs. "One in a Million" is the
song in which Axl Rose expresses his
feelings for blacks, immigrants and
homosexuals. A real tasteful one, if you
know what I
KingOther possibili-
%Q DOte ties could have
been Gloria
Gaynor's disco
anthem "I Will
0ses' Survive," empha-
.sizng that Dole
MiI/ in": could, despite
what many people
thought, survive
four years in office if elected. Warrant's
"Heaven" ("Heaven isn't too far away /
closer to it every day") and Led
Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" would
have been good crowd pleasers, while
Metallica's "Creeping Death" might have
been a bit harsh.
But regardless of the candidates'
musical mishaps, the presidential race
came down to one thing - not the cam-
paign soundtrack, not the scandals, not
the mud slinging, not the foreign policy,
domestic policy or any other issue. It
came down to the fact that when
Clinton was in Ypsilanti last week, he
ate chicken gyros at Abe's Coney Island
.. and lived.
Any president who can survive a
meal at Abe's has proved himself a man
of steel. You try eating at Abe's, Bob
Dole - then we'll see how long you go
around bragging about being in better
health. We'll see how long you can keep
on going at all. Long live Bill Clinton,
gyros and french fries]
- Brian A. Gnatt can be reached by e-
mail at bgnatt@umich.edu.


Tuesday night, I was ready to gloat.
As the polls foreshadowed, President
Clinton defeated Republican challenger
Bob Dole in this presidential election.
That's what I wanted, and when I sat
down to write this week's column, I want-
ed to gloat. Some good old-fashioned
GOP bashing, ha-ha-I-told-you-so gloat-
ing, a payback for the numerous licks
I've taken in the past couple of months:
the angry lettersto the Daily, the two hun-
dred irate c-mails flooding my inbox, the
parody of my column in another campus
publication. All of that stuff. Yes, I was
prepared to do some serious gloating.
But just as I was limbering up my fin-
gers and sitting down at the keyboard,
the networks switched to live coverage
of Dole's concession speech. When
Dole mentioned Clinton's name, the
Republican audience hurled forth a cho-
rus of boos. I abandoned my computer
and went to the TV There I watched
Dole raise his hand and quiet the crowd.
He reiterated his belief that Clinton is
"an opponent, not an enemy;' and then
pledged his support to help his country
and president in any way possible.
My fist reaction was to scoff, to dis-
miss the old man asa loser and go back to
writing this column. But I couldn't. Dole
was talking about the fact that for the first
morning in more than 45 years, he would
wake up and have nothing to do.
I pictured ol' Dole on Wednesday
morning, sleeping in late, getting up,,
reading the paper, sipping coffee,
watching CNN.
But that's beside the point. During last
night's concession speech what struck me
the most was the fact that for the first
time in months we saw the real Bob Dole.

And, although I'd never vote for him, nor
do I agree with most of his ideas, it was
good to see that real Bob Dole.
GOP spin doctors and strategists,
during the past few months, had turned
Dole into something he is not.
They had made him talk about a dras-
tic and risky tax cut which is out of char-
acter for Dole. He never supported these
improbable ideas, and he never made
campaign promises in the past that
seemed too tough to keep. They had
made him launch a series of negative
attacks against the president and his col-
leagues, making hyperbolic accusations
regarding drug use, medical histories
and personal character. Dole seemed to
become more of a stodgy authority fig-
ure, scolding everyone from the presi-
dent to the American people themselves.
This is not the Dole the nation has
known for the past 30 years. Dole was
the elder statesman of the Senate, often
refusing to be a negative critic of his
opponents, as well as refusing to support
and tout plans he was unsure of. But his
campaign advisers made him abandon
the calm, collected, rational Bob Dole.
And that is the Dole we saw Tuesday
night as he conceded, a Dole that quiet-
ed the chorus of boos, and spoke with
optimism and positivity. Like I said, I
don't think he would have been a good
president for this country at this time;
however, Dole loves his country and
served it well. For this we can be grate-
ful. The shame is how Dole became a
puppet of the powers-that-be in the GOP,
and temporarily tarnished his image.
One has to wonder how Dole may
have fared if they had allowed him to be
himself this year.

Now, when Dole was finishedwith his something that was good about the Now then, let's gloat:
speech, I began to think of the College College Republicans: They are With Clinton's victory Tuesday,
Republicans, whose antics and positions involved. I loathe their message and I Americans did a service to their coun-
this election year have earned them shrink away from their politics, but they try. Americans can be sure thattheir
heaps of enemies across the campus. If I were more mobilized and organized and president is fighting for educational
could have some positive feelings toward vocal than most student groups this opportunity, health care reform, racial
Dole, maybe I could find it in my heart, year. Apathy is a shame on a campus as and gender equality and the renewal of
with the election being over, to find a diverse and vibrant as Michigan's, and the American family. Without the loom-
favorable light to shed on the CRs. so it was ironically refreshing to see the ing quest for reelection, it will be inter-
True, some members of the CRs sent CRs vehemently defending their candi- esting to see how bold Clinton will be in
me mean, vile, sometimes threatening e- dates and positions around campus. I implementing his vision for a better
mail this year. True, CR chalkings were can't believe I'm saying this, but some America
all over campus, a mix of obnoxious non people could learn from the CRs. Now if only he had a Democratic
sequiturs and offensive insults. Did I really just compliment both Congress to help him do all that neattuff.
But, as I lingered in the afterglow of Dole and the College Republicans in -Dean Bakopoulos can be rached
a Clinton victory, I managed to think of the same column? Oh dear, excuse me. over e-mail at deanc@umich.edu

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