Image: Associated Press

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Once, musicians only proselytized from the stage or gave benefit concerts to raise money for good causes. But U2’s singer pals around with prime ministers and tycoons…. Will other rock stars follow his lead? — Time Magazine, March 4, 2002, ‘Can Bono Save the World?

Puerto Rican singing sensation Ricky Martin met Donald Rumsfeld in San Juan last Tuesday to urge the secretary of defense to halt Navy bombing on the island of Vieques. Martin greeted Rumsfeld with a stiff salute; Rumsfeld parried with a stiffer macarena. Several daiquiris later, Ricky was overheard to tell Rummy, “Shake your bombas someplace else.” — Teen People, October 30, 2002

In a closed-door session at the Department of Justice, Snoop Dogg engaged the attorney general in a spirited debate about medical marijuana. “The Doggfather and I have our differences,” an unusually expansive John Ashcroft told reporters afterward, “but we are both committed to relieving chronic pain.” “Or at a mutherf–kin’ minimum,” rejoined Dogg, “relievin’ pain with the Chronic.” —, June 3, 2003

Bringing her Bad Girl sneer to Brussels, Pink arrived at the G-8 summit to lobby for the nations of the Second World. Wearing a baby T emblazoned with the words “Costa Rica Rocks!” the puckish superstar asked the presidents of the world’s richest nations “not to forget hella’tight countries like Belize, Estonia, and Uruguay.” Pink then goosed German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and whooped, “Let’s get this summit started!”

Wall Street Journal, December 17, 2003

Flanked by former members of New Kids on the Block, Kris Kross, and Menudo, the Back Street Boys joined House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt on the steps of the Capitol to promote expanded unemployment bene’ts for faded teen idols. “The Boys to Men With Dignity Act seeks to celebrate the cultural contributions of our nation’s most popular teenage recording artists,” said Gephardt, “while recognizing that fame can be cruelly ephemeral.” — U.S. News and World Report, February 9, 2005

Hip hop bad boy Eminem pressed the flesh with Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace last weekend, seeking support for his “God Save Us From the Queens” initiative. “I appreciate Mr. Mathers’ concern that homosexuals are misappropriating my royal title,” the monarch read from a prepared statement, “but I informed him that under no circumstances would I consider revoking the knighthood of Sir Elton.” — Entertainment Weekly, May 15, 2005

Miami: The long-standing blood feud between Florida rivals Jeb Bush and Janet Reno deepened Friday as each candidate extended an open invitation to Britney Spears to help promote the cause of her choosing. “Really. Anything at all,” Bush invited in a seven-page, handwritten memo. “Do you like baby seals?” Speaking in front of television cameras in West Palm Beach, Reno reached out to Spears: “I share your concern for ‘Generation Next.’ Call me. Please!” — Associated Press, July 23, 2005

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