Mouse rant blog vent mouse.

Friday, July 23, 2004

Hollywood elite

This article by Laurie Spivak is a fun look at the interplay between politics and the entertainment industry.  The whole Republican stance on Hollywood is pretty weird but extremely amusing to outsiders.  First of all, the legitimacy of having a stance at all on Hollywood as a political entity is simply ridiculous.  What next?  Having a stance on the publishing industry?  (Don't look now!)  Any two-bit moron can see that the product coming out of Hollywood does not have a steady political or moral stance--for every "daring" program like "Sex and the City", there are tons of hokey but well-loved programs like "Touched by an Angel" and "Seventh Heaven".  (I like "Sex and the City", but I am continually amazed by people who find it unbelievably daring.  For all the supposedly super-graphic dialogue, I have never heard anything that would shock anyone who has actually had sex.)

But the Hollywood that the Republicans talk about is a construct.  It's not the actual town of Hollywood or the entertainment industry at all.  It's a symbol, and not only that, but a deliberately ambiguous one so that each member of their audience can project their own resentments of the product that so dominates our everyday life, a perfect place to tie disparate conservative cultural critiques into one package.  It's my impression that each brand of conservatism means something different when they criticize "Hollywood".
  • To the Christian right, the problem is obvious.  The entertainment industry does not kow-tow to their beliefs or their values.  Women are having sex and enjoying it on TV.  Gay people are shown as happy, normal people and not depression-ridden perverts.  People's lives are not built around church.  You could go on forever.  The Christian right's criticisms are the most amusing, since the very things they have a problem with in entertainment are the only consistently realistic things in entertainment.  You know, since gays are pretty normal, women do have sex and like it, etc.
  • The hazy middle America that they pitch their pseudo-populism to hates the materialism of the entertainment industry--and as a standard-issue middle American, I agree completely.  It's completely fucking ridiculous that any character in a movie whose house is smaller than 3,000 square feet is a scraggle-toothed redneck.  When middle America hears about "elite" Hollywood, they are thinking about how out of touch Hollywood is with the financial scale they live on. 
  • The racist wing that the GOP has to cater to and deny at the same time hates that Hollywood is always pushing what they see as a P.C., wishy-washy view of race relations.  Also, they don't like those preachy movies about segregation in the South.  They think that allowing black people access to media outlets is the equivalent of promoting crime and immorality.  They are particularly open to anti-rap arguments.
  • The older crowd dislikes rap, too, but mostly because they feel like the fashions of music and whatnot have passed them by. 
  • The more educated conservatives are not only open to this silly argument, but I think they invented it.  Anyone who has gone to college knows the collegiate conservatives, piously making elaborate arguments that all boil down to the same general idea--that not too long ago, in the good old days when education belonged only to its rightful owners who just happened to be white and male, things were better.  Time was not wasted on talking about unimportant things like a feminist perspective or how race and class influenced history.  Hollywood is just another expression of the tedious and ridiculous belief that people who are not white men have something interesting to say.  If you have trouble spotting this type, it's the guy complaining that before that movie about Ya-Ya sisters came out, no one had to read this Jane Austen claptrap.

So, you can see that when they say that the Republican party is a big tent, they mean that they are open to all sorts of people who have no tolerance for art that does anything but reinforce their own viewpoint.  This is what they mean by "Hollywood elite".  (Middle America still has a point--the materialism is ridiculous.  However, it only bugs them because they are materialistic, and it makes them jealous.  Sorry--I get to call them out on it, because them is me and I know.)

A star gets target because their fame irritates as many of these groups as possible.  That's why being a hip hop artist will score a home run of right wing condemnation.  That's why female artists are more likely than male artists to get singled out for abuse--it's not just because they are female, but that they are brings in the loathing of the "intellectual" conservatives and the Christians, so it helps.  But no matter who the symbol is, the absolute most important thing is that Hollywood is powerful and elite so that the GOP can position itself as the rebels. 

Now I have to quarrel with Spivak's ideas.  That the GOP's actor-politicians are all B-listers isn't a weakness at all--it's the perfect way for them to straddle the hypocrisy she points out, that they both trash Hollywood while recruiting Hollywood types to run for them.  By using B-listers, they are both tapping star power while still positioning themselves as outsiders.  I have actually heard Limbaugh rant about how having conservative politics will get you on a mysterious Hollywood blacklist where you never get A projects again.  One could make an argument that Ah-nold is an A-lister, but let's be honest.  He was sliding into B-list territory, and he joined into politics before his fame disappeared but after he realized he was never going to get back on the A-list either.  Same with Charleton Heston.  And Tom Selleck.  And Dennis Miller.  Reagan was always on the B-list.  Hell, the Republican party will keep you in some kind of career long after you lose all your regular box office appeal, so everyone wins.

Does this mean that the Democrats should shun their heavy A-list Hollywood support?  Not at all.  In fact, the hipper and more prominent, the better.  The only people that the A-list drives away would never vote for the Democrats anyway, so catering to them is a waste of time.  But bright, cool, hip, lovable A-listers can do exactly what the Democratic party needs to get done--get non-voters to vote.  That's why it irritates me about people nit-pick when rock and hip hop stars and young movie stars lend their name and talents to the party--they nit-pick because they think it's fluffy and pointless.

Well, I strongly disagree.  Art and politics not only can but should influence each other.  The bored apolitical hipster stance sucked the very life out of indie rock--we need to fucking learn.  If Outkast's music means something to a lot of people, and Outkast volunteers to drum up support for Kerry by playing a fundraiser, I'm not going to say that it's stupid or shallow.  Right there, you are insulting the people who get something out of Outkast and that inspires them to vote.  Art is political by definition--don't dogpile on people who make that truth explicit.

I was always interested in politics, but punk rock radicalized me.  Punk puts forth a collectivist ethos that manages not to be drippy or overly serious.  You can be part of a collectivist political punk movement, and not have to hold hands and love everyone.  The simple fact that it's out there, that there's a gathering place where one's angst and anger has vent, energizes people and gets their asses, believe it or not, to the voting booth.  And with humor--whenever I make my "vote, you won't be sorry" case to someone, I always tell them how it's so fun to show up wearing an obscene T-shirt or something else offensive to vote, since the voting booth is the one place where people are totally obliged to treat you like an equal.  Hip hop is even better at this, since there are hip hop artists that garner a lot of respect who never waver or sway from their political goals.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

must have not been a busy day at work huh?


Blogger 7472 said...

Not what I was searching for, but none the less and interesting blog here. Thanks for putting it up. I've enjoyed reading alot of the text here. I got you bookmarked for the future, I'll be back.

My site is a bit different, some think it's odd. I guess it's a matter how you look at it. I have a mens male enhancement reviews related site. Most of the articles are on mens male enhancement reviews.


Blogger jon said...

We are trying to find good movie poster to take the kids this weekend. Good movie poster reviews are hard to find

I just stumbled onto your blog while looking. Seems to happen to me a lot since I am a knowledge mooch LOL



Blogger cash at home said...

I’m glad I came across this great blog. I really enjoyed the topic you chose to write about. I'm definitely going to bookmark you! I have a fast make money myth page site. It pretty much covers fast make money myth page related stuff. Come and check it out if you get time :-)


Blogger A Damn Shame said...

If your looking for sites about gay sex picture, then click here!


Blogger Admin said...

Wow, what a great site. I will bookmark this site and return often. It's nice to see sites like this.

Please visit my website and let me know what you think. Secret Confession


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Help me Dude, I'm lost.

I was searching for Elvis and somehow ended up in your blog, but you know I'm sure I saw Elvis in the supermarket yesterday.

No honest really, he was right there in front of me, next to the steaks singing "Love me Tender".

He said to me (his lip was only slightly curled) "Boy, you need to get yourself a shiny, new plasmatv to go with that blue suede sofa of yours.

But Elvis said I, In the Ghetto nobody has a plasma tv .

Dude I'm All Shook Up said Elvis. I think I'll have me another cheeseburger then I'm gonna go home and ask Michael Jackson to come round and watch that waaaay cool surfing scene in Apocalypse Now on my new plasma tv .

And then he just walked out of the supermarket singing. . .

"You give me love and consolation,
You give me strength to carry on "

Strange day or what? :-)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice Blog

Best Wishes

I have a site 80 million Down Loadable Movies If you have the time stop by.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


I am researching christian radio talk
in order to spread the word about a great new

I'm quite sure that many of the readers
of this blog are interested to read about

christian radio talk


Blogger Dominicans resources said...

FREE Wordpress Hosted Blogs With 10 Customised Templates To Choose From at

teen people magazine

Free unlimited number of blogs


Anonymous Anonymous said...

heh cool blog you have here!

I noticed you have a nice blog, read all of your links kept me interested for a good time! well done :)

Thanks for a good read instead of some of the other stuff people post here!


Blogger unixlinux said...

Nice blog. Check out my siamese cat blog.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey nice info you posted.
I just browsing through some blogs and came across yours!

Excellent blog, good to see someone actually uses em for quality posts.

Your site kept me on for a few minutes unlike the rest :)

Keep up the good work!



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, you really have a great Blog there I'm definately going to


Blogger Steve Westphal said...

You've got a cool blog. Check this out. free music to downloads


Anonymous Anonymous said...

200 or so Duluthians gathered at the historic Sacred Heart Music

Center after mowing lawns or walking dogs while enjoying the balmy,

sunny 55 degree day to see Keri Noble return to deliver an

intimate, polished evening of music.
The concert goers settled in to hear Keri Noble and her guitarist

/producer Jeff Arundel against a candle-lit backdrop amid the

exceptional acoustics of the resurrected church. Keri sang several

songs from her "Fearless"CD including Talk to Me and personal

favorite Piece fo My Heart, along with many songs from her upcoming

album. Her voice and performance showed more polish and maturity

after several months off live performances. It was a great night of

music with Jeff doing songs from his CD "Ghost Party". They wowwed

the audience with the final song, stepping forward on the stage and

singing without any amplification.


Blogger Brian said...

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a media advertising site/blog. It pretty much covers media advertising related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to visit again! Please feel free to visit my blog too at, RushPRnews Daily Gazette.
My site is ** RushPRnews press release services, distribution and free web posting** . Cordially, Anne Laszlo-Howard


Blogger Brian said...

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a advertising advertising business guaranteed internet mlm mlm mlm opportunity signups site/blog. It pretty much covers advertising advertising business guaranteed internet mlm mlm mlm opportunity signups related stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time :-)


Blogger æ€§çˆ± said...

I am totally nude come see me. Take a bit for all pics and movies to load.

Why do I do this I like to make men blow their jiz in their pants.

Visit me.激情


Blogger Plasma TV Center said...

I just came across your blog and wanted to drop you a note telling you how impressed I was with the information you have posted here.
I also have a web site & blog about Homes Theater
so I know what I'm talking about when I say your site is top-notch! Keep up the great work!


Anonymous Hindi Movie said...

Hi there, very unique blog you have! I was looking for Free Movie Download Site related information and came across your site. Very good info, I'm definitely going to bookmark you! I have a Free Movie Download Site site. In addition to movie downloads, you can find options for downloading various movie players. Please visit it. : )

If you have a site similar to mine and would like to exchange links, please contact me through my website.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shop online today. Forget driving to the mall when you can just click the mouse and order from your favorite store. No traffic to deal with


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have a great blog. Try this one movies free download


Anonymous scott edwards said...

Wow what a cool blog you have here! I am impressed. You really put a lot of time and effort into this. I wish I had your creative writing skills, progressive talent and self- discipline to produce a blog like you did. Your blog really does deserve an honest compliment. If you have some time, stop by my site. It deals with stuff like, click here: multi level marketing and then feel free to e-mail me with your words of wisdom.

P.S. I'll sure put the word out about your site and I would appreciate any business you may send my. way... Later, Scott.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

NOW, check this out for FREE...

There is a new, fully automated traffic-generation system that can send 1000's of targeted prospects to your website, for FREE! It only takes 5 minutes to set up to set your FREE account!

To find out more visit: mlm site. It successfully exposes FREE information covering Traffic and mlm related stuff.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello I am the traffic man, zip, zip, zip. make a new resolution to get a flood of traffic to your website this year. Let me show you how to get FREE traffic to your site. Yes I said FREE, FREE, FREE!!! Don't delay.

To find out more, visit my network marketing site. It successfully covers FREE information exposing FREE traffic and network marketing related stuff. Don't forget - FREE, FREE, FREE. You have nothing to lose!


Anonymous INTERNET MARKETING said...

Want top search engine ranking? try my software Free INTERNET MARKETING check it out.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi! I came across your site while searching for sexy models. Wow, this is quite a nice site you have! I'm glad I stumbled on it. Keep up the good work!


Blogger Silver Fox said...

Our network has been looking for a MLM business like yours to list in our World Directory & our forum.

Hey, there is no cost and it will only take a few minutes for you to register!

Your Silver Fox Business Building Team helping build your MLM business!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a special token of my appreciation for all your kind help and the wonderful business you have sent my way---I want to give you a free gift.
It is called the "$25000.00 Idea". It will help you in all your endeavors.
Click here: FREE GIFT


Anonymous find dog trainer said...

Wow, your blog is fascinating. I will have to add this to my blogs to visit link.

Thank You,

find dog trainer


Anonymous teen dog lover said...

Many thanks for creating your blog. It's facinating how people are so different in their interests.

Thank You again,

teen dog lover


Blogger oakleyses said...

michael kors outlet, oakley vault, ray ban outlet, kate spade handbags, ray ban sunglasses, christian louboutin shoes, michael kors outlet online, michael kors outlet online, prada handbags, longchamp handbags, tiffany jewelry, louis vuitton outlet online, coach outlet, christian louboutin, polo ralph lauren outlet, nike air max, burberry outlet online, jordan shoes, louis vuitton outlet, louis vuitton handbags, tiffany and co jewelry, red bottom shoes, gucci handbags, michael kors outlet online, true religion outlet, michael kors outlet online, nike shoes, kate spade outlet online, longchamp outlet online, prada outlet, coach outlet, louis vuitton outlet, coach purses, longchamp outlet, true religion, louis vuitton, cheap oakley sunglasses, tory burch outlet, chanel handbags, coach outlet store online, polo ralph lauren, burberry outlet online, nike free, christian louboutin outlet, oakley sunglasses, nike air max, michael kors outlet store


Blogger oakleyses said...

nike roshe, hollister, nike air force, sac michael kors, true religion outlet, barbour, north face, nike free pas cher, vans pas cher, guess pas cher, hermes pas cher, nike air max, abercrombie and fitch, air jordan, ray ban uk, burberry pas cher, tn pas cher, michael kors uk, lululemon, longchamp, louis vuitton pas cher, north face pas cher, air max pas cher, chaussure louboutin, timberland, scarpe hogan, ralph lauren pas cher, nike free, air max, sac louis vuitton, mulberry, louis vuitton uk, oakley pas cher, nike air max, true religion jeans, sac vanessa bruno, nike blazer pas cher, new balance pas cher, hollister, converse pas cher, ralph lauren, ray ban pas cher, michael kors canada, lacoste pas cher, louis vuitton, nike roshe run, longchamp pas cher


Blogger oakleyses said...

uggs outlet, uggs on sale, beats headphones, lululemon outlet, vans outlet, nfl jerseys, soccer jerseys, nike trainers, wedding dresses, jimmy choo shoes, ferragamo shoes, mac cosmetics, chi flat iron, rolex watches, longchamp, new balance outlet, abercrombie and fitch, p90x workout, bottega veneta, reebok shoes, canada goose outlet, ghd, roshe run, mcm handbags, soccer shoes, instyler ionic styler, valentino shoes, canada goose outlet, ugg outlet, north face outlet, celine handbags, north face jackets, ugg soldes, herve leger, giuseppe zanotti, mont blanc pens, nike huarache, ugg, asics shoes, insanity workout, canada goose outlet, hollister, canada goose, marc jacobs outlet, ugg boots, birkin bag, babyliss pro


Blogger oakleyses said...

swarovski jewelry, converse shoes, ugg, canada goose pas cher, hollister, oakley, canada goose, juicy couture outlet, pandora uk, hollister canada, converse, moncler, louboutin, replica watches, timberland shoes, pandora charms, pandora jewelry, iphone 6 case, ray ban, swarovski uk, uggs canada, moncler, gucci, moncler, vans, montre femme, juicy couture outlet, moncler, ralph lauren, coach outlet, moncler, moncler, moncler outlet, links of london uk, thomas sabo uk, louis vuitton canada, supra shoes, baseball bats, wedding dress, hollister clothing, karen millen, canada goose uk, toms outlet, parajumpers outlet, air max, lancel, canada goose, nike air max



Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home