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PostPosted: Mon March 5th, 2018, 13:20 GMT 
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iamhere wrote:
How can you hate a line like
"He can ride down Niagara Falls in the barrels of your skull" anyways.

Yes an amazing Dylan line.
Says so much in so few words, as he does so well.


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PostPosted: Tue March 6th, 2018, 13:27 GMT 
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Untrodden Path wrote:
Mickvet wrote:
"A Christian song that ended up on Infidels...":

Read recently in A T Bradford's 'Yonder Comes Sin' that, since Dylan was prohibited by Columbia from recording any more Christian albums, he decided to record an album of songs about the devil instead.

I had always considered Infidels Dylan's awakening to evangelical America. This album may be a double entendre directed at Columbia as well.

I consider Infidels a Christian album... Hence, his "trilogy" is a quadrilogy... Shot of Love is moving in a different direction from Slow Train Comin' and Saved. The Christian experience has been tempered, whether by fans, personal experience, the record company... but it is certainly not the same.

Man of Peace is a fun song. I always viewed it as a reflection of Reagan... mainly "the Fuhrer" part but like so many of Dylan's songs, Man of Peace is likely a composite of people, ideas, and images.


Mickvet wrote:
I'm surprised that you would reduce a song that deals with such important themes as this one to your own partisan political views. I'm sure Dylan, at this point in his life, didn't give a damn for such things. More particularly, it is not likely that he would glibly attribute the title of one who attempted to wipe out his people to a legitimately, democratically-elected American president, particularly one who was heir to the legacy of the one he claimed in Chronicles to be the politician he most admired.

Infidels is an album that shows great disenchantment with evangelical Christianity in America, hence the title. Reagan, who never went to church and whose wife brought in spiritualists to hold seances in the White House and was deeply loved by evangelicals was elected over a self-described "born-again" Southern Baptist who led Bible studies in the White House and attended worship regularly. By the time Infidels was released homelessness in America was increasing four hundred percent, the Reagan administration was destroying labor unions, and the tax cuts that transferred considerable wealth from the poorest to the wealthiest in America had begun taking effect. Reagan's approach to homelessness and the A.I.D.S. epidemic in America is unconscionable. American citizens, many of whom had served their country, were dying in the streets by the thousands but his administration turned a blind eye and deaf ear to the situation because these people were typically not Republican and were deemed expendable. Reagan's initiative to peace was through an arms race and a "Star Wars" defense system that worked only in the imagination of his administration at the expense of its own citizens in need should be a cause for moral shame and outrage.

Dylan may not have intended any of that in the song... But it was what I thought of instantly when I heard it.


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PostPosted: Tue March 6th, 2018, 16:45 GMT 
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Untrodden Path wrote:
Infidels is an album that shows great disenchantment with evangelical Christianity in America, hence the title. Reagan, who never went to church and whose wife brought in spiritualists to hold seances in the White House and was deeply loved by evangelicals was elected over a self-described "born-again" Southern Baptist who led Bible studies in the White House and attended worship regularly. By the time Infidels was released homelessness in America was increasing four hundred percent, the Reagan administration was destroying labor unions, and the tax cuts that transferred considerable wealth from the poorest to the wealthiest in America had begun taking effect. Reagan's approach to homelessness and the A.I.D.S. epidemic in America is unconscionable. American citizens, many of whom had served their country, were dying in the streets by the thousands but his administration turned a blind eye and deaf ear to the situation because these people were typically not Republican and were deemed expendable. Reagan's initiative to peace was through an arms race and a "Star Wars" defense system that worked only in the imagination of his administration at the expense of its own citizens in need should be a cause for moral shame and outrage.

Dylan may not have intended any of that in the song... But it was what I thought of instantly when I heard it.


I can't say anything except: Well put!!


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PostPosted: Tue March 6th, 2018, 18:29 GMT 
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Untrodden Path wrote:
Reagan's initiative to peace was through an arms race and a "Star Wars" defense system that worked only in the imagination of his administration at the expense of its own citizens in need should be a cause for moral shame and outrage.


Yeah, was never a Reagan fan either..
Interesting to note how many people depend on GPS location data today.
GPS was, of course, a critical foundational component of Ronnie’s SDI.
Now it’s just another tool to take away the need to think for oneself.

“Y’know that sometimes Satan comes as a Man of Peace!”


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PostPosted: Tue March 6th, 2018, 19:43 GMT 

Joined: Fri January 5th, 2007, 23:38 GMT
Posts: 2159
Location: Ireland
Untrodden Path wrote:
Untrodden Path wrote:
I had always considered Infidels Dylan's awakening to evangelical America. This album may be a double entendre directed at Columbia as well.

I consider Infidels a Christian album... Hence, his "trilogy" is a quadrilogy... Shot of Love is moving in a different direction from Slow Train Comin' and Saved. The Christian experience has been tempered, whether by fans, personal experience, the record company... but it is certainly not the same.

Man of Peace is a fun song. I always viewed it as a reflection of Reagan... mainly "the Fuhrer" part but like so many of Dylan's songs, Man of Peace is likely a composite of people, ideas, and images.



Infidels is an album that shows great disenchantment with evangelical Christianity in America, hence the title. Reagan, who never went to church and whose wife brought in spiritualists to hold seances in the White House and was deeply loved by evangelicals was elected over a self-described "born-again" Southern Baptist who led Bible studies in the White House and attended worship regularly. By the time Infidels was released homelessness in America was increasing four hundred percent, the Reagan administration was destroying labor unions, and the tax cuts that transferred considerable wealth from the poorest to the wealthiest in America had begun taking effect. Reagan's approach to homelessness and the A.I.D.S. epidemic in America is unconscionable. American citizens, many of whom had served their country, were dying in the streets by the thousands but his administration turned a blind eye and deaf ear to the situation because these people were typically not Republican and were deemed expendable. Reagan's initiative to peace was through an arms race and a "Star Wars" defense system that worked only in the imagination of his administration at the expense of its own citizens in need should be a cause for moral shame and outrage.

Dylan may not have intended any of that in the song... But it was what I thought of instantly when I heard it.


I'm an Irishman looking in from outside, but all this tells me is that you are a Democrat. Maybe it's because your country is so young, but it seems to me that many Americans seem unable to distinguish issues from party partisanship. That's just politics. The dividing of the pie. These issues are as old as society. The issues addressed in Man of Peace dwarf this type of pettiness.


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PostPosted: Wed March 7th, 2018, 04:23 GMT 

Joined: Sat January 6th, 2018, 19:04 GMT
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I immediately interpreted this as a somewhat tongue in cheek song directed at fans about Dylan himself. The “gift of the gab”, the multiple references to bands and singers, the “blue eyed boy” line. It followed the rather sanctimonious gospel period during which he presented himself as a “man of peace”, going as far as giving sermons (“could be the local priest”)!

Essentially he’s telling the listener to question his motives and not to blindly trust him, to think for themselves in other words. I see this as a less subtle, major theme running through Empire Burlesque too - songs like “Trust Yourself” immediately spring to mind and I believe are questioning what the fan is looking for and what they see in him. I think it’s fair to say he seemed quite jaded with his career and the direction it was taking at the time.

I do like the song by the way, and I am quite confident Bob Dylan isn’t Satan. :wink:


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