Or not. Recently a friend complained about the “drama” surrounding every little movie release, and every time an actor/actress (sorry, the stupidest thing in the world is using only the male name for a profession where performance is definitely gendered) flaps jaws and says something stupid and leftist.
He’s not wrong. I’ve read conflicting reports of how “Woke” Captain Marvel is. The upside of the movie seems to be that “it’s good popcorn fodder.”
But he’s also not right.
I understand the principle of saying that you shouldn’t attach too much importance (one way or another) to the pronouncements of creatures that are there for their physical attributes, and whose lines are written by someone else. The left, after all, idolizes them as geniuses (snort, giggle) and the right, disgusted, apostrophizes them as monsters. All of which is giving way too much credit to ego-inflated speakers-of-lines.
And I understand being upset that a movie one considers popcorn fodder is viewed as as evil as the Communist Manifesto. That too is giving it too much importance as well as, potentially, not enjoying it for what it is, despite whatever clumsy messages Woke Hollywood thinks it snuck in.
I understand him. I even sympathize. You see, he’s much younger than I.
But I remember what he doesn’t. I remember a time when we gritted our teeth and read the books/watched the movies of people who hated us, because they were the only game in town. If you liked to read, or if you liked movies, or even if you “just” liked to stay in touch with what people were seeing and talking about, you had to. And of course, you had no idea anyone else was reading the messages of contempt and hatred for your nation/the west that came through loud and clear to you. You wondered if it was all in your head. And you didn’t talk about it. You never talked about it.
Why not? Because the blogs didn’t exist as an alternative opinion-maker. The internet didn’t exist as a place to communicate to like-minded people. The entirety of public opinion was formed by what the inimitable Sabrina Chase named the “News-entertainment industrial complex.” And they were uniformly left. In fact, the idea much of the left has of us, as stupid, credulous, uneducated and hateful is a remnant from those days when every conservative on shows/the media were portrayed that way.
But they were the only game in town, so of course people thought they were just reporting what happened. What would YOU think?
Thing is, they still have a lot of power. Sure, not as much as they used to. They didn’t get to elect Hillary! By the force of propaganda. They did manage to choose who’d run against her, but then the slip intervened between cup and lip, because a lot of the American people went mule, hooves stuck in the dirt and said “No. And also, gaze upon my middle fingers.” (These mules have hooves and fingers. Deal.)
BUT as I was reminded recently reading a story of a friend who isn’t even really leftist, just fairly apolitical but grew up in the same times I did, the stereotypes the years of monolithic information and entertainment, uniformly leftist, built a fund of stereotypes upon which our culture coasts. Ie. For instance, if you grew up in that time, you’re likely to believe a Southern Preacher is ignorant and superstitious.
Are there Southern Preachers who are ignorant and superstitious. Sure there are. But there are also a good number of them who are educated, well-read men of genuine faith. The possibility of this is much higher if you’re talking about one of the better known denominations, but possibly the best-read preacher I ever encountered came from a tiny sect. And religion is not superstition or lack of understanding of science. Or at least, my religious, scientist friends are not superstitious. Nor stupid.
And of course, my friend knows that if he stops to think. But when you need a minor character, you often reach for central casting, which was entirely staffed by the stereotypes the Media Industrial complex disseminated when you were too young to think.
It’s still there. And worse than finding it in print, you find it in the way people are evaluated, and it affects how promotions work, or – in the arts – how you’re viewed.
I’ve gone the many many rounds on this, and you’re likely to get more out of the posts Dave Freer has done on Mad Genius club. (Search for statistics. He’s done a bunch.)
But let’s just say it wasn’t – and isn’t – a coincidence that all the acclaimed writers and artists of the post-war 20th and early 21st centuries are almost uniformly to the left of Lenin. And no, it’s not because the left is more creative. (I dare you to look at Hollywood’s more recent offerings and say that without laughing.)
If anything the left, in this 4th generation of cultural dominance, is less creative. They’re coasting on the subconscious image built by their cohorts in the media for decades. The image that artists and “smart people” are leftist, if not outright communist.
No? Go look at the portrayal of communists in entertainment. They’re daring, and perhaps troubled, but so smart. Even in Agatha Christie.
And when the Soviet Union imploded and exposed the sewer of lies at the heart of this bullshit, the media ignored it. If there’s a communist or extreme left character in a movie or acclaimed book today, their biggest defect is that they care too much.
On such lies are personalities and would-be dictators like Occasional Cortex built. And Obama. Who almost destroyed us.
And if you’re an artist or writer, or even peripherally involved in the arts and seeing things up close and personal you see how the sausage is made: the easiest ride to the top is given by liberal privilege.
For at least thirty years now, I look at the “darlings” in my field and roll my eyes and know they’re only where they are because they give good Marxism. (A darling is not just a bestseller. It’s a fawned upon bestseller, the sort trotted out for all the cushy speaking engagements and “acclaimed” academic pieces. The right has some bestsellers. They got there with more work than should be possible. And a little luck. But mostly work. And there are a lot fewer of them, because it needs everything hitting just right.)
I can’t evaluate myself – can anyone? – but I know some of these “oh, so smart” “great writers” are less competent than my fledglings who have a couple of indie books under their belts. It’s not hard to tell. They often fail at basic craft points.
Note I’m not saying there are no talented people on the left. Dave Freer says that the distribution of raw talent should be about the same on both sides, judging by other historical eras. I never argue with him on this stuff, because I’m not that crazy.
I’m saying that due to liberal privilege they get the acclaim and fawning before they even develop their craft. Which, humans being humans, often means they never develop it, because they don’t realize they’re not great yet.
And each of them and the acclaim they get contributes to the image that art is a leftist thing and that leftists are “so smart.”
And this is where I disagree with my young friend. Sure. The right bellyaches a lot about some actress running her mouth, and they make too much of “hidden messages” in books.
But it’s not only natural, it’s needed.
It’s natural, because – as with an immunity to a disease – the more you’re exposed to Marxism, the more you come to want to fight even miniscule amounts of it. And the amounts aren’t and weren’t so miniscule. If you suffered through not being able to find a book/movie/song without a political message that offended you, you will forever detect and be driven mad by such messages in your entertainment.
I know my husband doesn’t even see things that have me sputtering and leaving the room before putting a shoe through the screen.
It’s needed because every one of those movies and books, unchallenged, builds onto the stereotypes they’ve been lovingly polishing for a century. And those stereotypes, in turn, convey the impression that liberalism is not just smart and true, but the only view anyone else has.
With education, it’s the pillar holding the left’s cultural power, now they don’t have a monopoly of the means of communication.
And it’s a bad thing.
So, should you see a movie whose actress has been promoting it as “so woke” and in which a lot of people on the right see despicable messages.
I don’t know. I shouldn’t. You get in even more trouble for putting a shoe through a movie screen. But I wouldn’t be upset if my husband saw it. (He probably will, in the fullness of time, because he sees a lot of stuff.)
I would, however, insist on telling him what the actress has been saying and what SHE THINKS the movie she starred in means. After he watches it.
Because I won’t interfere with his entertainment, but neither will I let the stereotypes and straw men the left builds go unchallenged.
I can’t. I remember when they were. And I know where they’re leading us.
I don’t want to go there. And if you think for a moment, neither do you.
Sure, drama is unsightly. But not complaining of the stupid messages in – even – popcorn entertainment?
All in all it’s just another, another brick in the wall.