Paranoia, Hollywood Style
by L. Brent Bozell III
Once upon a time political conspiracy theories were the
province of extremist conservatives. No more. From the Christic Institute's
flaky Secret Team lawsuit in the mid-'80s to the hysterical San Jose Mercury
News CIA/crack series last year, cockeyed hypotheses involving shadowy,
nefarious, ultrapowerful, right-wing figures are consistently afforded a
hearing on the left - though, to be sure, not always acceptance. Even the
Clinton administration, with its "Communication Stream of Conspiracy
Commerce" report that alleges an international right-wing media plot, is
in they're-out-to-get-us mode.
The most common ideology in Hollywood is the Barbra
Streisand/Warren Beatty/Norman Lear variety of liberalism, but a more extreme
leftist strain that's more virulent and just plain wacky is found there as
well. It is represented by the likes of Tim Robbins, Ed Asner, Richard Belzer,
and Oliver Stone. The wisdom of the latter two men claims our attention today.
Belzer is a longtime standup comic who for the past few
years has played the sardonic Det. John Munch in the excellent NBC dramatic
series "Homicide: Life on the Street." He's not a household name, so
you may not be aware that in 1990, he blamed the popularity of crass comedian
Andrew Dice Clay on the Reagan administration's "contempt" for
blacks, "derision" towards women, and "total hostility"
toward gays. Speaking of hostility, in 1992 he called George Bush "a
murderer" for sending our troops to fight in the Gulf War.
Late last month, Belzer gave an interview to the Washington
Post pummeling Bill Clinton for moving toward the center. According to Belzer,
Clinton has "sold out the liberal movement and he's sold out the
progressive movement. He's a contemptible piece of [expletive]." Clinton
may be contemptible, and he has sold out his allies on the left from time to
time, but most understand these moves to be tactical adjustments meant for
short-term political gain, and not definitive sea changes in id not attempt to
invent a story. Stone did, under the auspices of truth. And when exposed,
Stone denies it all.
After receiving numerous well-deserved skewerings for
straying from the facts, Stone is now whining about being criticized for
something of which he's been blatantly, repeatedly guilty. "It's very
tough for me to do another contemporary political movie," he said to
Andersen. "Whatever I do is held up to ridicule going in... That's a form
of censorship, isn't it?"
Well, no, it isn't, Mr. Stone. It's something you know
painfully little about. It's called accountability. You got away with your
mendacity for a long time, but your truth-bending finally caught up with you,
and you're a laughingstock even to some of your fellow leftists. It's a story
Richard Belzer should ponder, even if he never writes and directs a movie
about the conspiracy that rules the world.
Voice Your Opinion!
Write to Brent Bozell
Home | News Division
| Bozell Columns | CyberAlerts
Media Reality Check | Notable Quotables | Contact
the MRC | Subscribe