So much for all those Hollywood liberals

By Sue Castner of Portland, Oregon. Sue has been a political activist and campaign staffer, most recently with Wes Clark for President 2004 and says she's "trying to stay retired."

I’ll admit it. My guilty pleasure is Hollywood smut. I have been known to glance at a 3 year old People Magazine while waiting in my dentist’s office. Entertainment Tonight or Extra just may be on in my kitchen. I need to know if Britney has come to her senses and embraced the constraints of undergarments or if Justin really has the wherewithal to bring sexy back.

As part of my daily smut fix, I hunkered down Monday night in front of the fireplace to watch the Golden Globes. With a final run time of just over 3 hours, it was the very definition of so many beautiful people, so little meaningful substance.

I understand that an “entertainment” awards show may not be the appropriate platform for political discussion or dissent. In fact, the only acceptance speech that even came remotely close to touching upon the touchy subject was unceremoniously shut down.

Hugh Laurie, House’s drug-addicted main character, prattled on about what Yanks might say and Prada’s Meryl Streep glibly thanked her minions. Both seemed to go over their time limit unchallenged. Warren Beatty gave a rambling missive berating Clint Eastwood and Jack Nicholson for not retiring. Beatty came close to opening the door of political incorrectness when he mentioned working to get to the point when you can say something…and then he said nothing. This from the creator of Bulworth.

The same glimmer of hope almost came through when Ugly Betty won for both show and actress. The gentleman holding the award motioned to the crew and cast and said it was an “immigrant” show and that the American dream was alive and well. And then…the inference hung in the air and dissipated after Babel’s Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu joked to Governor Schwartznegger that his papers were in order. The American dream and the immigration nightmare were reduced to a punch line. And why was Ah-nold chosen to bestow the award for best film anyway? His stellar acting career?

The individual who came closest to the forbidden fruit was Peter Morgan who wrote the screenplay for The Queen. He simply asked “What will it take…?” for our leaders to hear us. He mentioned the fact that the city of London was shut down completely because the usually reserved Brits had taken to the streets following Princess Diana’s death. I held my breath thinking “Here it comes. Here…” Peter Morgan was told to wrap it up because of the threat of those four little words: what will it take? And he politely wrapped.

Sacha Baron Cohen and Tom Hanks both droned on endlessly about men’s balls. That made it past the censors. But a hint of questioning our leaders gave poor Mr. Morgan the hook.

Gina Davis, Alec Baldwin, Brangelina, and even George Clooney behaved beautifully. Were they afraid that if they said anything off color, they’d be banned from being a presenter ever again? Do they really need to worry about their next job that much? Can you imagine the Academy Awards with just Jennifer Lopez and Ah-nold? Where’s Sean Penn when you need him?

Missed opportunity of the evening? Forrest Whitaker and his speech after winning for his portrayal of Idi Amin. Had I scripted it: “This demonstrates what a truly evil, arrogant leader can do to a country and its people…”

Never fear. Perhaps last night’s parade of pablum will do away with those “Hollywood Liberals” rants.

Or maybe it’s just an indicator that McCarthyism is alive and well.

Comments

  • YoungOregonVoter (unverified)
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    I don't think it is McCarthyism per se. I think it is wanting to respect the accomplishments of others and allowing them to shine instead of delivering a firebrand, political speech that stirs up media controversy and takes away from the accomplishments of others.

    I thought we would have learned after Reagan that Hollywood stars really have no authority when it comes to politics?! I will say that the latest Hollywood star turned politician, Ahnuld, is entertaining to watch because his accent and the way he pronounces Kali-forniaa makes me ROFL everytime I see him on tv. What I would want more than anything from Ahnuld is an audio album of him pronouncing the names of all of the 50 states. That would be a hoot!

  • YoungOregonVoter (unverified)
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    Awards shows aside. This has my attention and many of my generation:

    http://money.cnn.com/2007/01/18/news/economy/bernanke.reut/index.htm?cnn=yes and http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2007/01/baby_boomers_are_selfishly_sil.html

    I am surprised that with all the columnists BlueOregon has, that one has not addressed this issue. Please correct me if I am wrong.

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    YOV - you know where the guest columns link is. Use it.

  • YoungOregonVoter (unverified)
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    Kari,

    Kari said:One more note - there was a reference to you "progressive" youngsters. According to the 2006 reader survey, BlueOregon's readership breaks down as follows: 24% under thirty, 41% between 31-55, 35% over 56. Hardly youngsters.

    I am not masochistic. With that demographic breakdown and potentially a 3rd to half of that 31-55 age range aged 45 and up, I may be looking at 50% of BlueOregon readers in that Babyboomer age range. I will not find constructive responses to a column on changing Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid so that they are solvent for Generation X and Y. It would most likely degenerate into Baby Boomers screaming, "We worked for it, we deserve it! You guys need to stop screwing off and fix the problem!" Younger people would respond, "You had many opportunities from Reagan to Bush Jr. to solve it and you did not rise to the challenge!" It would make for interesting discussion, but I would not want to be the fountainhead for it.

  • James Vincent (unverified)
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    It's not McCarthyism! People don't want to hear the stars advocate their ignorant views! You want to see real McCarthyism just look at the lefts assault on free speech and their attempt to silence all opposition to their views by labeling their comments as hate speech! Jane Fonda's recent comments about the media are just an example of how far the United States has moved toward a Marxist Socialist Country. “Socialism is Communism in Drag” And all should know that once the US is officially a Socialist Country the freedom of all speech will be dictated by the state. “Those who forget the past are bound to repeat it”

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    Hah! It would appear you have just attempted to silence opposition to your views by labelling Jane Fonda's comments as hate speech.

    Thank you, nice try, come again!

  • Idler (unverified)
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    torridjoe,

    Where do you get a charge of "hate speech" against Fonda, or any approval of the concept of hate speech? Merely criticizing someone's views equates to attempting to silence them?

  • gOOGLYeYED (unverified)
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    bUSH IS AS BAD AS iDI aMIN nOW? tAKE yOUR mEDS!

  • Susan B. (unverified)
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    I'd say Bush is worse than Idi Amin. Bush does what he does because he is delusional enough to think he's been chosen by god. And before this mess is over, Iraqi casualities will rival Amin's. Stats released last October estimate over 600,000 Iraqis dead. That already beat's Amin's 500,000. With stats like these, who doesn't need meds?

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