Talkin' John Birch Paranoid Blues

Album: Bootleg Series (1991)
  • Well, I was feelin' lowdown and blue,
    I didn't know what in the world I was gonna do,
    Them Communists they wus comin' around,
    They wus in the air,
    They wus on the ground.
    They wouldn't gimme no peace...

    So I run down most hurriedly
    And joined up with the John Birch Society,
    I got me a secret membership card
    And started off a-walkin' down the road.
    Woah boy, I'm a real John Bircher now!
    Look out you Commies!

    Now we all agree with Hitlers' views,
    Although he killed six million Jews.
    It don't matter too much that he was a Fascist,
    At least you can't say he was a Communist!
    That's to say like if you got a cold take a shot of malaria.

    I got up in the mornin' 'n' looked under my bed,
    Well, I wus lookin' everywhere for them gol-darned Reds.
    Looked in the stove, behind the door,
    Looked in the glove compartment of my car.
    Couldn't find 'em...

    I wus lookin' for them Reds everywhere,
    I wus lookin' in the sink an' underneath the chair.
    I looked way up my chimney hole,
    I even looked deep inside my toilet bowl.
    They got away...

    Well, I wus sittin' home an' started to sweat,
    Figured they wus in my T.V. set.
    Peeked behind the picture frame,
    Got a shock from my feet, right up in the brain.
    Them Reds caused it!
    I know they did...them hard-core ones.

    Well, I quit my job so I could work alone,
    Then I changed my name to Sherlock Holmes.
    Followed some clues from my detective bag
    And discovered they wus red stripes on the American flag!
    Ol' Betty Ross...

    Well, I investigated all the books in the library,
    Ninety percent of 'em gotta be thrown away.
    I investigated all the people that I knowed,
    Ninety-eight percent of them gotta go.
    The other two percent are fellow Birchers...just like me.

    Now Eisenhower, he's a Russian spy,
    Roosevelt, Lincoln, and that Jefferson guy.
    To my knowledge there's just one man
    That's really a true American: George Lincoln Rockwell.
    I know for a fact he hates Commies cus he picketed the movie Exodus.

    Well, I finally started thinkin' straight
    When I run outa things to investigate.
    Couldn't imagine doin' anything else,
    So now I'm sittin' home investigatin' myself!
    Hope I don't find out nothing...good God! Writer/s: BOB DYLAN
    Publisher: BOB DYLAN MUSIC CO
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 10

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyHere's some obscure trivia; other musical guests on the CBS-TV network variety program 'The Ed Sullivan Show' on May 12th, 1963 were Brenda Lee, Guela Gill, and Al Hirt...
    And to Ed Sullivan's credit, he had no problem with Dylan performing the song, it was the CBS brass, who upon hearing Dylan rehearsing it, who said no.
  • Mike from Louisville, Ky"the john birch society is the neo cons that love power and love to abuse power."

    The following comment tries to link Neoconservatives with the John Birch Society. Anyone who knows anything about the American conservativism knows this is simply NOT true. The John Birch Society is a group of radical Paleoconservatives. Neoconservativism arose out of the writings of ex liberal, mostly Jewish intellectuals in the 1960s, and has consistently been opposed by Paleoconservatives.

    Back to the song, it is just plan funny.
  • Jonathan from Armorel, Ar"People who are truly to the left support free speech in all forms."

    Trust me, I was once a newspaperman--the most leftist profession perhaps known to man--and I know this isn't so. I was unceremoniously forced to leave the college paper over a scandal--which, long story short, boils down to me and my archconservative views ruffling too many feathers. If they don't like what you say, write, or draw, or if you dare to criticise the Great and Mighty Party, liberals label it "racist", "sexist" and "hate speech", brand you "crazy", "neocon", or "dangerous", and seek to silence you. I've written and spoken of my journalism experience many times: the bitter rivalries, the power grabs, the rumormongering and backbiting. I set one story at a junior high school rag because I felt it best exemplified the childish atmosphere of it all, by people who are ostensibly educated mature adults. Incidentally, do you know what A.C.L.U stands for? All Criminals Love Us.... ;)
  • Rick from Tuscola, United Statesfantastic dylan. he always sang the truth. if people didn't like he didn't care. the john birch society is the neo cons that love power and love to abuse power.
  • Petter from Ã?ngelholm, Swedenhow ironic that a song which criticizes a anti-democratic organization (which was against free speech) was buried by censorship for almost 30 years...
  • Chad from Reading, PaThis isn't even a protest song. In the true definition of one Dylan never did write one. This is just making fun of the society. Hes not trying to say its bad or wrong. In none of his songs doesn he want to change something he just is providing his view on certain subjects (Listen to Master's of War a bit closer next time). And don't mention the ACLU again. They accuse someone of hate speech and then give them a lawyer they hired to direct there case. And if they lost they'd accuse the jury of racism...
  • John Dylan from Blah, MsPeople who are truley to the left support free speach in all forms. The ACLU even provides lawyers to Klan memders accused of hate speach.
  • Wes from Springfield, Va"...which Dylan thought was a threat to free speech because they accused anyone they didn't like of being a communist." So nowadays we have left-wingers attempting to use PC speech codes to shut down people they claim are using "hate speech."
  • Craig from Madison, WiGood job Songfacts with the choice of having a piece on this Dylan obscurity. It's a great protest song, and it reminds or teaches people that early on Dylan was a pretty funny guy.
  • Blind Boy Grunt from Anywhere, LaThe Bootleg Series Vol. 6 Live 1964 contains a kick ass version of this song. The entire album is amazing. If you like Dylan, you'll really dig this album.
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