Time for Conservatives to Build Their Own Hollywood
Did anyone believe Will & Grace stars Debra Messing and Eric McCormack when they backtracked on their demand Hollywood supporters of Donald Trump attending the president's coming Beverly Hills fundraiser be outed and consequently blacklisted from The Industry?
Messing and McCormack claimed they were "misunderstood." How isn't clear. Actually, they were demonstrating some needed CYA, especially when such a "progressive" blue blood as Whoopi Goldberg criticized them for going overboard in a democratic country.
In truth, Whoopi was probably panicked the duo was letting the cat too far out of the proverbial bag about what most of Hollywood, including her, really thought. Trump Derangement Syndrome in Tinseltown is simply around the bend and back and around the bend again...and again.
But don't believe me. Believe Rob Reiner:
How witty! Kind of reminds you of Oscar Wilde, doesn't it? Or is it La Rochefoucauld? More likely, it makes you want to take a shower. But remember: Reiner is Hollywood royalty, second-generation, in fact. There is no reforming these people. They are what they are.
It's time for conservatives and what Kurt Schlicter calls the "Normals" to have an entertainment industry of their own. Hollywood has effectively divorced conservatives (and the Normals). And after a divorce, as they say, "living well is the best revenge."
The question is how. It's not easy and one of the big reasons is the conservative world itself. Conservative financiers abjure the arts — indeed they seem even to fear them — unless it's putting money in their local philharmonic to have their name on a plaque in the lobby. Problem is, we all love Beethoven but he doesn't need our help at this point.
Conservative fat cats also put a ton of money in think tanks that aren't particularly effective. I don't mean to unnecessarily diss those tanks. Some of my best friends are, etc., etc.... but the truth is, one good movie or television series is worth more than a hundred, or even a thousand, position papers when it comes to moving society. Andrew Breitbart couldn't have been more right when he said: "Politics is downstream of culture." (He could have added education, which is in a sense part of the culture, now more than ever working hand-in-hand with entertainment for bad ends.)
What is needed here by investors on the right is a little guts for a change. It shouldn't be so hard, but somehow it is — or has been. It's obviously true that film, theatre, and publishing are risky investments, but the center-to-right audience is huge. Plenty of "proof of concept" exists with films like The Blind Side, Lone Survivor, and American Sniper — just some examples of box office smashes that fit that profile.
Now, those movies have something in common other than their ideologies — they're good. (They also don't hammer you over the head with their views.) And that, of course, is the bottom line. If art isn't well made, it doesn't matter where its heart is. And if it isn't free to skewer both sides — like Dave Chappelle's hilarious new show that apparently has offended the left — it isn't worth much either.
It's also obvious that mistakes will be made in forming companies like this — plenty of them. The lack of financial help has created a dearth of center or right talent. But all this can be corrected with effort, time and a bit of luck. As the Zen Buddhists say, "You can't get there by trying. But you won't get there if you don't try."
Help stem the liberal monopoly of the arts and have fun in the process! PJ Media co-founder Roger L. Simon's new novel — The GOAT — is, as of September 1, now available for sale on Kindle and hardcover. Soon in paperback as well. Some rather good early reviews here, here, here and here.