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trust me ... I'm a musician.

A lot of people are talking about a YouTube and propaganda war about an energy bill currently before Congress that would affect our use, development, and disposal of waste from nuclear energy.

This is not a new debate. Little about the terms in which it's being conducted surprises me. Not surprisingly, I have opinions about which vote is best for us and our children, and I'd be happy to share them if I thought people would give a rodent's posterior about what I thought. But I'm a New Testament scholar, arguably something of an expert on 'emerging church' movements, perhaps an authority on preaching, and with stretching a thinker on what it means to be Church and in communion. I have no credentials at all beyond what a decent undergraduate university education provides, so I'd assume in general that nobody really cares what I think about the safety or intricacies of policy regarding nuclear power.

But wait a minute ... I am a musician! I actually made my living for some time from strumming, plucking, singing, and writing stuff for plucking, strumming, and singing. It wasn't all that grand a living, but it did (along with chefcraft -- a field in which I had far less training) fund my first seminary degree) fund my first seminary degree, and paying an overseas student's tuition, no less.

So maybe I should be pulling out my credentials as a singer/songwriter, a guitar shredder, a bass thumper, and/or an electronica messer-of-aroundage when I want to talk about politics, energy policy, and related matters.

Why do I say that? Well, there's someone named Elizabeth King who's presenting herself in this debate about nuclear policy as an authority on the issue because she's a "musician," despite that I can't for the life of me find anything at all out about her as a musician.

Hi. My name is Dylan, and I make a mean lamb stew. I also know a lot about the various branches of Judaism (including Christianity) during the Second Temple period. I make music using bass, guitar, and various MIDIness, as well as my voice, and I suspect that a lot more people (a couple of dozen or more!) know me as a musician than know Elizabeth King as a musician. And for that reason, I think you should support whatever I advocate with respect to nuclear energy. If you want to know what that is, drop me a line.

I suspect that nobody will drop me a line on this subject. But if you have any idea why any reasonable person trying to decide whether Elizabeth King is a solid advisor on energy policy would do so on the basis of her reputation as a musican, please DO let me know. Heck, if you know anything at all about Elizabeth King's musical chops, let me know; I'm dying of curiosity as to what they are and in what way they surpass Bonnie Raitt's, as well as why musical credentials should lend weight to claims made about energy policy.

Head-scratchingly yours,

Dylan (who is dying to get ahold of Guitar Rig 3 and a Reverend Jetstream humbucker beauty she's had her eye on, and feels, thanks to the Anglican blogosphere, very nearly within her grasp)

P.S. -- What does it say about me that I can't watch the disputed "What's Happening Here" video without thinking at least as much about the guitar Bonnie Raitt is playing as I do about anything nuclear? Lord, have mercy on me, a slave to the beat; really, I do care about Creation and its survival at least as much as I care about that Guild acoustic she's playing and how she's managed to care for a voice that delivers that much soul over so many years. Really.

October 24, 2007 in Current Affairs, Music | Permalink


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Celebrity is its own reward, which qualifies its owner to speak on ANY subject as an expert simply due to their fame.

Now having an actual talent, such as Bonnie's, helps. And having a track record of concern about an issue also helps. And as they would say, as an American citizen they have a perfect right to speak out on issues.

See? Someone did drop you a line.

Posted by: Norris McDonald | Oct 24, 2007 8:11:26 AM

Actually, Elizabeth is both a musician and a practicing economist, so she's perfectly positioned to comment on issues like loan guarantees for nuclear power plants.

I thought what Elizabeth was saying was pretty clear -- though she might be one too, they don't all think alike, and that includes issues like nuclear energy.

See, that's two comments now. You have more influence than you know.

Posted by: Eric McErlain | Oct 24, 2007 10:49:20 AM

Okay, I'll bite-what do you advocate regarding nuclear power?

Posted by: Connie Knapp | Nov 15, 2007 9:00:15 PM


I am a musician, albeit I have not played a lot commercially for a loooong time. ;-) Last time anything I played showed up in circulation, it was on a "record." (Look it up kids.) But, I do play some small gigs, my dulcimers and I do get around a little, and my undergrad degree was in business so I have some "qualification."

Trust me and take my advice on energy which is use it while you are young, you wont have it when you are old!


Posted by: jimB | Dec 4, 2007 3:32:11 PM

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