Ted Nugent Says, "Fuck You"
"I can't wait to hear how you translate this in the Village Voice, cause them motherfuckers need this."
Over the course of a 40 minute phone conversation rock legend and conservative firebrand Ted Nugent discussed his new book, Ted, White and Blue: The Nugent Manifesto, his charity work, the state of the presidential race, gun control and even Mayor Bloomberg's attempt to change the term limit laws. Nugent is planning two new books, including a tell-all on his rock lifestyle slated for 2010.
"I'm a pretty exciting young man, at the tender age of 60," said Nugent, adding that the perfect response to almost any situation is a big "fuck you." Here are some highlights.
VV: Since I know you're such a big fan of Mike Bloomberg's, you might be interested to know that he's currently leading an effort to have our term limit laws, which were passed by voter referendum, overturned through legislation so that he can run for a third term.
TN: Well, you know what they always say, John, "Fuck those voters!" Good one there, Mikey. By all means, fuck the voters! What the fuck! Welcome to Planet of the Fucking Apes. Hey Mikey, eat me. That guy's a punk.
VV: So tell me a little about why you put the book together?
TN: Well, I woke up one morning, as I do every morning, for the last 60 years. My middle finger was on fire. I roasted adequate amounts of marshmallows upon said flames and I thought I would share it with my fellow civilians. I'm a live motherfucker, man. I actually participate in this experiment in self-government. I think guitar players qualify as "we the fucking people." Quality of life is my demand, quality of life is certainly my modus operandi. I just had the greatest tour of my life. I have saluted way too many flag-draped coffins to take this lightly, to take anything for granted. I am privileged, honored and humbled to share campfires, both literally and figuratively, with the most courageous warriors in the history of humankind of the U.S. military who have willingly and voluntarily sacrificed their limbs and their eyes and their skin, many of them their lives, to chase down terror and to chase down evil and confront it and neutralize it at great cost.
And when you spend time with this level of humanity, this supreme dynamic of humanity, you are hopelessly humbled to give back. The "Ted, White and Blue" Nugent manifesto was not a project, my music is not a project, I don't promote current projects. I have no current projects, my projects began on December 13, 1948. And this precious gift of life that I lovingly refer to as the "runaway freight train," demands on an intellectual and spiritual level that I fight hard for the things I believe in as voiced and corroborated by people vastly superior to me, who fortify my conviction to do so. This is merely my written manifesto of how I live my daily life. I put my heart and soul into being the best that I can be, I am irrefutably and conclusively in the asset column at the end of every day of my life. I'm not for myself, I'm for my family, and my neighborhood and this country and mankind and the good mother earth. Those that would argue with that are either stoned or so recently stoned their logic is all but gone.
And this is a documentation of not just the Nugent family lifestyle, but of people I have had tons of communication with. Seventy-one concerts in 71 cities in 82 days this summer, and I'm a gregarious chap, so I hang out and bullshit. You've got people from every imaginable walk of life, and they all live like I live, in variations thereof. But it all includes an alarm clock, it all includes an insatiable craving and drive to be the best that they can be, to earn the playing card with massive amounts of working hard, and to just do the right damn thing. And don't ask for anyone to give ‘em shit, but rather demand of themselves to produce to their maximum capability and give and give and give and give and give. I thought it was time to shine the spotlight on the outrageously wonderful, positive good in America while also spotlighting the cockroaches and the bad and the ugly, so that those that care about eliminating the bad and the ugly can join me in my stomping as the cockroaches run for cover and we squish them between the cleats of our hunting boots.
VV: The book does have a very "take care of yourself," libertarian feel to it.
TN: That has to be qualified. I would literally alter my pursuit of happiness if I saw that it compromised yours. And I mean that. Let's say I just love to shit in the river. That's my pursuit of happiness. I've got a less than desirable pursuit of happiness. I would make sure that I didn't shit upstream of you. You know what I mean. I can't pursue that pursuit of happiness because it would fuck up yours if you're downstream. It's about cause and effect. It's about being cognizant of your cause and effect and altering it so that, not only don't we want anyone to tread on us, we review our treading to make sure we're not treading on anyone else. So, yeah, libertarian, but with a sense of consciousness. I don't want my pursuit of happiness to fuck yours.
I think that's even beyond libertarian. Like Ron Paul, for Gods sake. So, you don't think that we have to go after terror? You think we just need to secure the Pacific Ocean, Canadian, Mexican and Atlantic borders, that's it? You don't think we have to go chase down assholes? I think you're wrong, Ron. Next.
VV: What do you think if the different bailout packages that we've had in the last few weeks?
TN: I don't think anything, but I know that it's criminal and abysmal and phenomenally counterproductive. The very concept of a bailout, as a rule, is to encourage irresponsible behavior because someone might be there to bail you out. I'm no economist, I mean I write about this in my book and I talk about it whenever I can, I'm a pretty simple guy. I'm cognizant of my income, and I'm cognizant of my expenses, and when I was selling night crawlers for a living I didn't spend outside of my means, I didn't live outside my means. When I was selling a couple thousand albums a year I didn't live beyond my means. I've never, and never will, live beyond my means. I only purchase a home and a vehicle with credit. I can't imagine using a credit card to the degree that I can't pay it off the minute it became due. I can't even conceive of that mindset.
Yet Uncle Sam is like a stoned, dirty, stinkin' hippie with a credit card. It's gluttonous, it's slovenly, it's indulgent. For anybody to bail anybody out is wrong. It's counterproductive and disgusting. When Fedzilla is going to bail people out with my fuckin' money, you might think he would have consulted with me first. It's just bizarre. It's beyond Planet of the Apes.
VV: You talk in the book about raising kids, and say that kids today are not being raised in a real world atmosphere…
TN: Yeah, it's abysmal. It's the abandonment of self-evident truth, common sense based parenting. Just the blubber factor alone is beyond the pail I puke in. At what point do you dry Johnny off from the bathtub, where you actually have to insert the towel between slabs? And then allow Johnny to continue on Tuesday the system by which the slabs were created on Monday? What the fuck is going on here? That pandemic of obesity and rotund, sperm whale-like children, is really a manifestation of an overall culture of depravation. If you can't monitor, in a responsible and disciplined fashion, the nutritional diet of your children, I contend you can't manage anything. Not only about your children, but about your life. Who, and at what time, determined that blubber on a human being was OK?
And I need to clarify this. You're on the phone with a guy who lives to eat. I could eat the whole fucking moose. I love to eat. It would be nothing to eat a mountain of fucking food the way I cook everyday. But I'm a disciplined man. I'm 60 years old, and I've gained about 20 pounds since I graduated from high school, mostly muscle, by the way. But I want to remain reasonable svelte and athletic. So that's an incredible discipline on my part. Cause I could eat ten times what I feed myself.
Who could be in the same house with some of these children and look at their faces, that resemble the asses of hippos, and not intervene. I am stunned at the disconnect. And the way they slouch. There's no posture. It's not universal, but it's way out of control.
It all points to an increasing abandonment of discipline and awareness. There's still mass quantities of good in my travels and in my relationships and my connections. There's incredible amounts of heartwarming, optimistic good. But there's a painful increase in the bad and the ugly. And it's all self-inflicted. Poverty doesn't have anything to do with hygiene. Poverty doesn't have anything to do, well maybe it does have something to do with your bad breath. If you're poor, how the fuck do you rationalize buying cigarettes? You know what I mean? I just come from a different planet where you think, and you know the stuff on the bad list. I bet you got the same bad list I do. I bet drinking and driving is on your bad list. I bet eating massive quantities of Pop-Tarts is probably on the bad list. I don't occasionally visit the bad list. I avoid it like the fucking plague.
So when I see the Obamas of the world literally rewarding irresponsible and deadly behavior, and blowtorching more of our tax dollars. If you really study what Obama and Biden claim are the poverty level, how about this… fuck you. How about double fuck you. I do federal raids with federal marshals and the Texas rangers, and we kick down the doors of these fuckin' mongrels. And they're under the poverty level. But they've all got meth, they've all got crack, they all got whiskey, they all got a Monte Carlo with new fuckin' wheels on it. And there's the kid, living in the shit of their Rottweiler. How dare they buy a Rottweiler if you can't buy pajamas for your fuckin' kid? But they're at the poverty level. They need help. Fuck you.
VV: How do you think the presidential race is shaping up?
TN: It's pretty ugly. I can't wait to hear how you translate this in the Village Voice, cause them motherfuckers need this. By the way, I am the fuckin' village voice. Fuck you! Here's the village voice, (screams) fuck you! That's the voice of the village I come from, motherfucker.
Is that what that is, the presidential race? I thought it was the fuckin' gong show. If it wasn't for Sarah Palin, I'd move to fuckin' Sweden. It's pretty pathetic. I don't think you can be "pretty pathetic." It's mighty pathetic. Barack Obama, I guess if you want to be Mao Tse Tung I suppose you can be. I just don't think you should be the president of America. Call me weird. If you really study the Communist Party of America, if you go to their website and check out their bullet points, it is the Democrat Party bullet points. It is Barack Obama. And if I'm not mistaken…didn't the wall come down? My family thought that communism had proven wrongheaded. Am I out of line here? Did I miss the reintroduction of communism and how it benefitted society? Maybe that chapter evaded me. Remember a minute ago, when I said "fuck you?" You might want to play that over the loudspeaker system wherever you go.
Barack, fuck you. Joe, fuck you. John McCain, God bless you for discovering a Republican with massive amounts of balls. The good governor, Sarah Palin, is the bureaucrat-crushing, status quo-punching conservative that I've been looking for. I knew of her before John did, I had worked with Gov. Palin on numerous issues up in Alaska, where she proved she was a "we the people" person and not a bureaucrat monger. We are voting Republican this year, not because of John McCain as much as for Sarah Palin.
Though, I feel embarrassed to even say this, I have seen minor indicators of late, maybe starting 30 days ago, that John McCain is starting to come back to the basics, at least acknowledging the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and maybe even the Golden Rule and the Ten Commandments, dare I say. We are voting Republican, because we see that Barack Obama's voting record, not what he has been so cleverly scripted to say, but his voting record. If the guy likes France so much, why won't he just go there? Why would you want to turn America into France? There's already a France. That's the way I see it. It's a clusterfuck, and it's heartbreaking, really.
Especially when I spend time with men and women who have given so much. Their legs, guys with no arms, no skin, to fight for the America way. Self-evident truth, God-given individual rights and freedoms and liberty is clearly the last best place. And then to have someone like Obama and Biden just shit on them is very discouraging.
VV: Have you ever thought about running for office yourself?
TN: Oh, I've been prodded and I've threatened to do so. My campaign manager, Mrs. Nugent, is in charge of that. At the tender age of 60 I believe I'm doing God's work as a participating ‘we the people" guy. I'm raising as much hell as I can. The biggest curse isn't Obama or Biden or the left or communism. That's not the biggest curse. The biggest curse is Americans who know better and do nothing about it. It's the apathy that is strangling this great country. It's really abysmal. People, if they've got a six pack and some sports event on the TV, you could probably rape their wife in the next room, and they'll get at it soon. It's not pretty.
I, being the eternal optimist, I think McCain and Palin still have a chance, contrary to the world of public opinion. I believe they've got a chance. I believe that the productive, "ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country" Americans outnumber the alternative. I hope so. If Obama and Mao win, I'll just turn up my activism. I'll raise more hell… and spend the next years shortstopping the destructo derby of the American dream. I know we can. I'd rather get McCain and Palin in, but we'd still have to turn up the activism to make sure McCain doesn't fall back into McCain/Feingold and amnesty for invaders of America. I'm not giving up. And I'm a force to reckon with. Just ask this deer hanging in front of me right now. She didn't have a fuckin' prayer. But we will dine on her gift of protein this evening.
VV: You mentioned illegal immigration there…
TN: The Nugent family has no invaders. We don't have any welfare, we don't have any crime, we don't need anymore money thrown at our education. We don't need a prosecuting attorney or a punk in a black robe to make any judgments for our lives. We're ruggedly individual and declared independent. And we certainly don't have any invaders, because the message is loud and clear: invade the Nugent property and die. I'm not gonna say "hey you," I'm gonna shoot you in the fuckin' head. Just like all my fellow Texans. Be nice, I'll by you a fuckin' brisket. Steal from my neighbor, I'll kill ya.
Come on. Illegal invaders, especially during the war on terror, should die. Illegal invaders, war on terror, don't invade or we'll kill ya. That's the message we should send. And it works.
VV: Why is New York so different from Texas? Why is New York filled with so many liberals?
TN: First of all, let's identify the most egregious example of the difference, the line drawn in the sand, between New York and Texas. I just gave you my preferred scenario: thieves, ransacking your neighbors home, kill ‘em. New York City, a hero of the United States Navy, recently transferred to Manhattan, wakes up in the middle of the night where a multiple paroled felon is in his little boy's room. The hero of the U.S. Navy, who had never been arrested for anything in his life, grabs his U.S.-issued Beretta .92 and shoots the motherfucker. Who goes to jail, John? The fuckin' hero of the Navy! For defending his child from a recidivistic monster that the Bloomberg's and all these other assholes decided it was OK for him to run around the streets and go into this guys fuckin' apartment. You tell me where you'd rather live.
The system is bizarre. The guy should have got a new gun, a lifetime supply of improved ammo and $100,000. And a message should be sent. Number one, you cocksuckers in the black robes, quit paroling monsters. Put ‘em in a cage, leave ‘em in a cage, let them eat each other. And citizens of America, if you catch a paroled monster in your kid's room, you get a lifetime supply of quality ammo, a new gun and $100,000 if you shoot the fucker dead.
VV: Maybe you should run for mayor here.
TN: God help us all. It's a phenomena. Bernie Goetz should have been given the key to the city. Except that he used inferior ammo. He should have probably been disciplined for using inferior ammo. A fuckin' .38, I use bigger guns than that on rabbits.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Village Voice's biggest stories.