Conservatism, Music, Stories, Music and Film

Barry’s Boys


“Barry’s Boys” is not about Barack Obama.

I was working on an introductory reminiscence on Rush Limbaugh for a piece on “dark alley” strategies that will appear in coming days, and wanted to link his work to how it all began when in the earliest days of the Vietnam War, when I was 18 and Rush was about 14.

The dark days are upon us and this piece is a notice, or plea actually, for deep-pocket conservatives to up their game in thwarting the Left, who has clearly gone ’round the bend and medieval, and abandon the Karl Rove way of playing politics, for those days are gone….unless of course we want to join the charade that “up is down” and “light is dark”, or that a demented man can actually be elected president, or that several hundred thousand (more like millions) more actually voted for Joe Biden, himself facing corruption charges, than a sitting president who was on the path to transforming America back to when boys were boys and “men were men”…so we could “start the First World War all over again”. (from “Barry’s Boys”).

“Barry’s Boys” is about Barry Goldwater, and it was my Dad who first put me onto conservatism when I was in college. We had a folk group my senior year of high school, and we largely sang “liberal songs”, mostly about Civil Rights and touchy-feely things; Peter, Paul and Mary stuff like “All My Trials, Lord” and “Blowing in the Wind”, plus The Kingston Trio, Brothers Four and New Christy Minstrels. I didn’t know the Chad Mitchell Trio until college, but they were well-known for their satirical pieces, such as “Barry’s Boys”, recorded in 1964 and “John Birch Society” published earlier but which came out on an album I bought later.

“Barry’s Boys” were Barry Goldwater supporters and my Dad was one. He was an Arizona senator, (both my dad and I met him in the 70s, nice man) and he ran against Lyndon Johnson in ’64 and was totally trounced. But he officially stamped conservatism into the Republican Party. Ronald Reagan made his “Time for Choosing” speech at the ’64 Republican National Convention nominating Senator Goldwater. And along with William Buckley he planted conservatism’s first garden, when he wrote, The Conscience of a Conservative, which should be on every conservative’s shelf, especially today as it’s a checklist of everything a lot of conservatives-in-name aren’t. Dad even had an AuH20 bumper sticker on his Ford, which was akin to a MAGA hat today. Very risky behavior for a chief engineer.

Anyway, even at 75, are worth note, especially about what even the hip soft-left of the 60s thought about patriots at the very beginning of the Vietnam War. Incidentally, “Barry’s Boys” was written by a female, June Reizner, who really published very little else. Just disappeared. Maybe she went on to become one of Ayn Rand’s “haters”?


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