Ted Nugent Visits Scarborough Country

Joe Scarborough was host to and radio host Lionel on his Scarborough Country show on Thursday night. The subject was Bruce Springsteen speaking out against the war and performing his song ’41 Shots’ in concert in New York, upsetting the New York City Police Department, and calling for the impeachment of Bush. They also spoke about the larger issue of anti-war musicians. Read on for a transcript.

Welcome back to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY. I’m Joe Scarborough.

       Strap the kids in. This next segment’s
going to be fun. Now, after 9/11, Bruce Springsteen personified the patriotic
blue-collar working man. But, lately, he’s been acting more like a Manhattan
blue blood. At a concert, he recently said this-quote-”It’s time to impeach
the president and put in somebody that knows what they’re doing.”

       Now, does the Boss think that
cops and firemen attending the shows want to hear him beat up our president
and police officers?

       Hear to talk about that is the
Motor City Madman and the host of “Surviving Nugent,” Ted Nugent; and Florida’s
one-name wonder, Lionel, who is joining us tonight in a live simulcast
with his nationally syndicated radio show.

       Ted Nugent, let me begin with
you. Should rock stars speak their minds on stage, or, in the words of
Frank Zappa, just shut up and play their guitars?

       TED NUGENT, MUSICIAN: Well, God
bless Bruce Springsteen. What an amazing rhythm and blues band that he
has. And he’s made some wonderful music. And god bless him for standing
up for what he believes in.

       Unfortunately, he believes in
a lie. I’m very fortunate. I get to communicate with the great men and
women of the U.S. Army, the Marines, the Air Force, the Navy, the Coast
Guard literally on a weekly basis, Joe. At TedNugent.com, we have a wonderful
talkback. And I’m an honorary member of the 101st Airborne. And I couldn’t
believe with more heart and soul that Iraq has a much improved, upgraded
quality of life since the American touch, the American dream found its
way into that land.

       And for anyone at this time to
be criticizing or condemning the president, especially in such a controlled
situation as a concert setting, I believe undermines the very premise of
us crushing evil. And God knows that evil needs to be crushed. Our men
and women are doing it.

       So I think that Bruce probably
should shut up and sing. I had a great tour this year and it was called
Shock and Awe. And I did everything I could to support our troops. We had
sandbags and machine guns and rocket launchers on stage. It was so beautiful,
I could hardly stand it. And we sang love songs like “Raw Dogs” and “War

       But Bruce wrote “Born in the USA.”
I happen to celebrate it.

       SCARBOROUGH: All right.

       Hey, Lionel, first of all, thank
you for being on our show tonight.

No, thank you.

       SCARBOROUGH: You have got a great
show. We may not agree on everything, but you’ve got a great show.


       LIONEL: Let me tell you something,
Joe. I love you. But you guys

       are missing the point. You’re
like Ted, who, by the way, I adore. I love

       ” speaking of political commentary,


       Ted, there’s only one thing about
your gun policies. They’re not radical enough. I make you look like Michael
Moore. You speak your mind. You don’t just shut up and sing.


       NUGENT: That’s not possible.

       LIONEL: And, first of all, you
guys are missing the point. It wasn’t

       ” the cops and the firemen didn’t
upset because Bruce Springsteen told 70,000 clapping people about the impeachment-and,
by the way, speaking of impeachment, Joe, it’s not fact that Bruce Springsteen
spoke up. He spoke up contrary to your belief.


       Now, let me give you a hypothetical.
Let’s assume, a couple of years ago, Bruce Springsteen yells, “Let’s impeach
the president,” and it was Bill Clinton. You, who ably served my native
state, you voted to impeach the president. Would you be on here saying,
who in the heck is this media elite? No. It’s the message, not who it is.


       SCARBOROUGH: Well, no. I’ve got
to tell you.


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on a second,
Ted, because I’m a huge Bruce Springsteen fan. But let me tell you about
the rock stars that I want. I don’t want to hear conservative rock stars.
I don’t want to hear liberal rock stars.

       LIONEL: Like Ted?

       SCARBOROUGH: I want to hear rock
stars playing their song. I want

       Bruce Springsteen to play “Thunder
Road.” I want Bruce Springsteen


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold a second, Lionel.
That’s why I go to his shows.

       LIONEL: Joe, you’re missing the
point. Have you read the lyrics to “Born in the USA”? It’s one of the most
depressing songs.


       SCARBOROUGH: Of course it is.
Oh, no, no. Listen, I’m not missing the point on “Born in the USA.” I remember
when Ronald Reagan accidentally adopted it.

       LIONEL: Ronald Reagan didn’t have
a clue.


       SCARBOROUGH: And he talked about
the boy from New Jersey that wrote “Born in the USA.” I know it’s negative.
But you are missing my point, which is, why don’t rock stars just shut
up and play their songs?

       LIONEL: And if a rock star stood
up and said, God bless America, you wouldn’t mind that. Look, here is the


       LIONEL: Wait a minute.

       The story is about the song, “41
Shots.” You guys are missing the point. The reason why the New York City
Police Department, the greatest police department in the world, by the

       NUGENT: Agreed.

       LIONEL: The reason why they are
upset is because of the song that he wrote about Amadou Diallo. Now, I
defy you, Joe, or Ted-whom I respect, both of you-to find anything in this
set of lyrics that in any way disparage or excoriate or any way blame the
police department. That’s the issue, not about the impeachment.


       SCARBOROUGH: Let’s go back, Ted.

       Obviously, we’re going to talk
about the New York City cops and their response to the song. But, Ted,
a bigger picture here. Lionel said it doesn’t matter if you’re a conservative
or a liberal. You should be able to speak your mind on stage. Do you think
conservatives are making a big deal about what Springsteen said because
they don’t like what he’s saying?

       NUGENT: Well, think of the context
of what he’s saying.

       For you, Lionel, to compare the
whore in the White House, Bill Clinton, with the man who is leading this
nation to crush evil around the world you’re talking apples and grenades.
Let’s get down to it. We have got a guy who broke the law.


       LIONEL: Listen, we’re not here
to talk about Bill Clinton. The point that I’m saying is simply this.


       NUGENT: Let’s talk about the Boss.


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on a second.
One at a time. Let Ted get equal time, Lionel. We’re going to take this
to another segment.

       But go ahead, Ted.

       LIONEL: Maybe.

       NUGENT: Well, bottom line is,
Lionel, God bless you, sir, but I think we have got to identify the context
which this is occurring in.

       What Bruce Springsteen is truly
doing is, he’s igniting a leftist view at his concerts, which he has the
right to do. But I think, ethically speaking, at a time when our men and
women are on the cutting edge of crushing evil and putting their lives
on the line and actually taking bullets for freedom, this is no time to
be creating this back home.


       LIONEL: Ted, take the playbook,
put it away for a moment.

       There was a period of time in
this country where we had songs like “Still in Saigon” by Charlie Daniels
and we had “Ohio” by Crosby, Stills & Nash, for what it’s worth, “Buffalo
Springfield,” that spoke negatively about a war in Vietnam, which, by the
way, they happened to be right.

       Just because somebody either doesn’t
like the president or doesn’t like the war doesn’t mean that, in any way,
we are disparaging the troops. This is a constant refrain. What I am telling
you is, as long as you’re-

       I brought a list, Arnold, Charlton
Heston, Dennis Miller, Bruce Willis, Pat Sajak, Bo Derek, who is a brain
trust of your group, whatever, John Wayne, Ronald Reagan, that’s OK.

       But if you’re the Dixie Chicks,
Tim Robbins.


       NUGENT: Those are all my friends
you’re talking about, Lionel.


       LIONEL: And Joe’s favorite, Janeane

       SCARBOROUGH: Janeane Garofalo,
who says that, if you’re a Republican, you’re stupid or mean.


       SCARBOROUGH: I’ll tell you what.
We’re going to carry this over to the next segment. We’ll be right back
with the Motor City Madman and Lionel, who is simulcasting live from the


       SCARBOROUGH: Coming up next: more
with the Motor City Madman, Ted Nugent, debating Lionel live on SCARBOROUGH
COUNTRY and on Lionel’s show, talking about a song Bruce Springsteen sung
that has New York City cops fighting mad.

       That’s next.


       SCARBOROUGH: Hey, welcome back
to SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY. I’m Joe Scarborough.

       We’re joined again with Ted Nugent
and also Lionel.

       And, Lionel, you’ve made the case
that Springsteen’s song “American Skin 41” is not anti-cop. Let’s look
at some of the lyrics.

       “Is it a gun, is it knife, is
it a wallet? This is your life. It ain’t no secret, no secret, my friend.
You can get killed just for living in your American skin”-”41 Shots.”


       LIONEL: Amadou Diallo was killed
because, for some reason, Amadou Diallo pulled out a wallet, OK, and the
police-and, by the way, everybody knows the police weren’t at fault for
this. They really weren’t. It was a tragic-tell me where the cops-where
you’re blasting cops.

       What? This happened. Were you
here, Joe? I was here.

       SCARBOROUGH: Well, certainly,
they were acquitted, first of all. But Springsteen appears to be accusing
these cops of killing Diallo just because he was a black man.

       LIONEL: Where did you get this
from? He’s a black…

       SCARBOROUGH: OK, well, where did
I get it from? Let me read. If we

       can, put up the letter that the
New York City police officer wrote to “The

       New York Post,” if we can get


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on a second.

       LIONEL: I love you.

       SCARBOROUGH: I love you, too.


       SCARBOROUGH: But some of New York’s
finest aren’t happy with him.

       And here’s what one of them wrote
to “The New York Post” about this song: “As a New York City police officer,
I’m truly outraged that Bruce Springsteen sang ’41 Shots’ at Shea Stadium
Wednesday night. He’s been milking his ‘Rising’ C.D. for the past year
and a half, stressing how it is 9/11-inspired. He should take it somewhere
else, not here in New York; 23 police officers were lost on 9/11. It would
be appropriate for him to give them that respect while performing in this


       SCARBOROUGH: Now, Lionel, it’s
not me. I haven’t had guys die next to me in the line of…

       LIONEL: Joe, you and Ted must
agree, souls of the departed paying tribute to American troops in Iraq,
remember that one?

       And, by the way, I want to ask
Ted this, because, by the way, Ted,

       “Cat Scratch Fever,” man, that
was high school for me. I can’t tell you

       the stuff I did


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on a second,
though, Lionel. The bottom line is


       SCARBOROUGH: OK, Ted, I’ll throw
it to you. It’s your turn.

       It looks like New York City police
officers are offended by this song. They’ve been repeatedly-they have stated
it repeatedly for several years, since he wrote “41.”

       LIONEL: You can be offended by


       SCARBOROUGH: Let Ted respond.


       LIONEL: I’m sorry, Ted.

       SCARBOROUGH: Hey, Lionel, I appreciate
you acknowledging that it was an acquittal in the 41 bullets in New York

       LIONEL: Absolutely.

       NUGENT: But I studied both the
in-house investigation and independent investigations. And the police officers
were acquitted, because, when they reproduced the scenario where he was
shot, that everyone of sanity and reason agreed that, in those shadows,
when he pulled out the unknown object, that the conditions that the police
were working in were absolutely justified.


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on.

       Ted Nugent, though, isn’t it true
that you have offended many people for what you’ve said from the shows?

       LIONEL: Joe, you’ve offended


       SCARBOROUGH: Of course, but that’s
a given.

       Do you think we should give the
Boss a free right for this because he’s a rock star? Do you think you should
get a free ride when you say things on stage, Ted, that offends people?

       NUGENT: No. You know how I feel,

       And, Lionel, I appreciate your
support for this, because we the people

       should always have an unbridled
opportunity and freedom to state whatever

       we think, regardless of how stupid
or how


       LIONEL: That’s what he did.


       NUGENT: That is what he did. But
what we’re saying is, we’re protesting with the same First Amendment rights
that he’s out of line. We think that he’s out of line, Lionel.

       LIONEL: Good. You know what? Then
you say: Hi, I’m Ted Nugent.

       Here’s my Web site. You’re out
of line.

       Let me ask you a question. If
you speak against-by the way, Joe, you’re good. You are good. When you

       SCARBOROUGH: No, I’m not.


       LIONEL: No, no, you’re good.

       NUGENT: Lionel, no, you’re good,


       LIONEL: When you said: You know
what? They came out and spoke against our commander in chief. Oh, I like
that. It’s the military, not the president, which you did against Bill
Clinton: I know he’s a rapist and a pederast.

       But if people who speak against
the president are bad, let me throw in another name for you. Remember when
Lyndon Johnson said, if I lost Cronkite, I’ve lost the country? Well, guess
who Mr. Bush has lost? Merle Haggard. That’s right, “Okie from Muskogee,”
“Fightin’ Side Of Me.” Richard Nixon loved him. Ronald Reagan pardoned
him. Bush 41 calls him every year for his birthday.

       He does not like what’s going
on in Iraq. And you tell me that the

       Hag is either leftist, unpatriotic


       SCARBOROUGH: You know, Lionel,
Americans have-musicians have a right to speak out. Again, the bottom line-and
this is the question here, though.

       LIONEL: So why are we here, then?

       SCARBOROUGH: We’re here because,
let them speak out when they’re not on the stage in front of 70,000 people
who paid their tickets…

       LIONEL: Why? You’re on a TV show.


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on a second,
Lionel. People tune in to this TV show, and they know what they’re going
to get when they come here. When people go to Bruce Springsteen’s concert,
like I said, they want to hear “Thunder Road.” They want to hear “Born
to Run.” They want to hear “Badlands.” They want to hear “Adam Raised A


       SCARBOROUGH: They don’t want to
hear Bruce Springsteen preaching.

       LIONEL: What about the 70,000
people who loved it?


       SCARBOROUGH: Oh, did you talk
to all 70,000? No, you didn’t talk to all 70,000.


       SCARBOROUGH: The thing is, do
what you’re paid to do.


       SCARBOROUGH: Hold on, Lionel,
because one other thing. You talked about Buffalo Springfield. Obviously,
they had a great song in the ’60s called “For What It’s Worth.” It was
a protest song.


       LIONEL: Anti-cop?

       SCARBOROUGH: Exactly, anti-cop,
anti-war. But you know what? They put it in their songs. They put it on
their albums. And when people went to their concert, they knew what they
were going to hear.


       SCARBOROUGH: This time, it seems
like Springsteen is preaching from a stage that he hasn’t been given.

       LIONEL: You know why I love you?
I love you for a variety-first of all, you got the best show in TV. Hysterical,


       SCARBOROUGH: God bless you.

       LIONEL: No. 2 you and some people
are living in a world that doesn’t understand that, despite the psychologically
and intellectually erroneous aspect of this, there are some people who
don’t like the president, don’t like the war.

       SCARBOROUGH: Oh, you’re kidding
me, Lionel.

       NUGENT: And you know what? And
they’re not tearing up their stubs, saying, oh, Bruce Springsteen? Everything
was great. He was singing this depressing “Born in the USA.” And he had
to ruin it by mentioning something about the president.

       Joe, who are these people?


       NUGENT: Well, I’ll tell you what
we’ve got going here, Joe and Lionel.


       SCARBOROUGH: Ted, respond.

       NUGENT: I have got a wonderful
song called “Kiss My Ass.” And between the Dixie Chicks and Bruce Springsteen
and now Merle Haggard, I have a target-rich environment for a love song
like that.


       SCARBOROUGH: Let me go to you
here, Ted, and ask you about, again, you get up on stage. You say things
that offend people. And yet it hasn’t seemed to have affected you. It certainly
affected the Dixie Chicks. I talked to the Dixie Chicks, some people that
work with them. They say it’s certainly affected them greatly.


       SCARBOROUGH: Do you think a guy
like Bruce Springsteen is too big, too powerful to be affected by something
like this?

       NUGENT: Well, you’ve got to admit
there’s a phenomenon with Bruce. Some of the artists like Bruce, who can
sell out multiple nights at a stadium, he really does have a mystical influence
on those people. Let’s admit that right now. There’s something really…

       LIONEL: As do you, Ted.

       NUGENT: No, not like that.

       I believe that he has got a grave
responsibility. Most of my stuff is absolutely tongue in cheek. I’m having
a fun, free-or-all get-down.

       I just had the greatest tour of
my life with ZZ Top.

       LIONEL: Yes, I want to party with
you guys.

       NUGENT: But that’s a party.

       I think Bruce Springsteen weaves
it in. And it’s highly influential. And I believe that it actually sways,
I believe that it actually conditions people. And I think it supports a
very negative and a very dangerous mind-set that is undermining the United
States of America and our leader and what we’re trying to do to the rest
of the world. We’re trying to bring peace. We’re trying to bring sanity
to the rest of the world. And Bruce Springsteen is not helping.


       SCARBOROUGH: Lionel, let me give
you the last word.

       LIONEL: OK.

       I don’t know what planet you’re
in. I don’t know where SCARBOROUGH COUNTRY-by the way, this is Lionel Galaxy.
So my galaxy beats your country.

       SCARBOROUGH: Go ahead.


       LIONEL: The Dixie Chicks are bigger
and huger than ever. I don’t know what country you’re in, certainly not
country music.

       And, No. 2, Bruce Springsteen
is enormous. Now, the only thing that would ruin my opinion of Bruce is
if he ever took the stage and said anything derogatory about you or SCARBOROUGH



       SCARBOROUGH: All right, there
you. Well, thanks for being with us, Lionel. And thank you so much for
simulcasting your radio show.

       LIONEL: That’s the real deal.

       NUGENT: Joe, Lionel, god bless
you. Happy hunting season.

       LIONEL: Support our troops.

       SCARBOROUGH: And, Ted, of course,
you have got a new reality show on VH-1 where the contestant that is able
to survive the longest in your world gets $50,000. it sounds like fun.


       SCARBOROUGH: And when does that
air, Ted?

       NUGENT: We just aired that this
week. And I just was told tonight that it’s the No. 1 show on VH-1.

       Basically, we had a bunch of city
people come in and try to live the American dream of rugged individuals
and self-sufficiency and hands-on conservation, hunting and fishing and
trapping and planting trees and harvesting our own fuel and our own food
and our own shelter and our own clothing. And they had to man up. We had
six losers and we had one winner, won a great big Dodge pick-em-up truck
and a big bag of cash.

       And we had so much fun, because
I put these people where Lewis and Clark wouldn’t go.

       SCARBOROUGH: All right, well,
thank you so much, Ted. We certainly appreciate you coming on this show.

       NUGENT: Thank you, Joe. Thank
you, Lionel.

       SCARBOROUGH: And just for the
record, I got to say it. I am a very big Bruce Springsteen fan. I’ve always
been a Springsteen fan. He’s great in concert. It’s just, when I go to
Bruce Springsteen’s concert, I want to hear him sing.

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