Hollywood Hypocrites: The Devastating Truth About Obama's Backers
By Jason Mattera
(Simon & Schuster/Threshold Editions, 272 pages, $25)
Barack Obama refuses to return Bill Maher's "c-nt" money.
The HBO host, who has called Sarah Palin a "c-nt" and a "dumb twat," donated a million dollars to an Obama super PAC. The president, after telephonically checking on the well-being of a Georgetown law student who had been the subject of unchivalrous remarks from Rush Limbaugh, artfully dodged questions at a press conference last week about misogynist speech directed by his supporters toward conservative women. "I'm going to try to lead by example in this situation, as opposed to commenting on every single comment that's made by either politicians or pundits," the president explained. "I would be very busy. I would not have time to do my job."
And without Maher's million, the president reasons, he might be out of a job.
One could fill a book with such double standards, and indeed Jason Mattera has done just that in Hollywood Hypocrites: The Devastating Truth About Obama's Backers, a catalog of the Left-Coast Left's do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do modus operandi.
Bruce Springsteen has the number one album in America. But even the Boss Obama-backer who crusades against the top 1 percent dodging their fair share doesn't like paying taxes. By reclassifying hundreds of acres on his residence as farmland, the liberal rocker avoids hundreds of thousands of dollars in annual payments to his local government. "By being a fake farmer," Mattera explains, "the working-class zero Springsteen is making a mint by robbing New Jersey of the antipoverty program funds he says they desperately need."
An Inconvenient Truth producer Laurie David's "Martha's Vineyard mansion has been cited as a serial violator of Massachusetts's Wetlands Protections Act," Hollywood Hypocrites shows. Mattera explains how David valued the construction of tennis courts, a barbeque pit, and swimming pools over protecting the environment on her property. If she can't keep her own environmental house in order, why does she dub SUV drivers "terrorist enablers" and lecture ordinary Americans about the evils of sipping from styrofoam cups?
David's musings on the eco-unfriendly habits of the American people are found at the Huffington Post, a revolution in media in that its profits derive in large part from not paying its writers. The Robespierre of this revolt of the media haves against the media have-nots is Arianna Huffington. After rolling husband Michael Huffington for millions in a divorce settlement, the California cultist rolled progressives into providing free content to a site that pads her pockets -- even as she derides capitalism in books and articles. "She pretended to be a conservative who supported capitalism, then pretended to be a progressive who hated capitalism, then proved to be a master of capitalism who laughed all the way to the bank," reads Hollywood Hypocrites. The slave-labor suckers who built her media empire didn't share in the profits of the $315 million sale of the Huffington Post. Socialism is for Huffington's books, not her business.
The author sees Hollywood as a major reason for the success of the Democratic Party. He suggests that "introducing wedge issues that pit Democratic voters against their Hollywood hypocrite heroes on the one hand, and the progressive values they claim to champion on the other, explodes leftist lies and flips the celebrity's star power on its head; what was once a positive quickly becomes a negative."
This appears to be what Friend of Arianna Bill Maher is experiencing over the blowback concerning his Tourette's-like reaction to conservative women. While Obama grasps his "c-nt" money tightly, his strategist David Axelrod canceled an appearance on Real Time with Bill Maher and the Alabama Democratic Party scrubbed its website of any reference to its "Evening with Bill Maher" fundraiser. Maher derides Republicans as "the kings of false equivalencies" and finds the comparison of his comments with the talk radio king's "ridiculous." But condemning Limbaugh while caressing Maher just smacks of bad faith.
In Mattera's view such ambidextrous principles make Cameron Diaz a "liberal idiot," Bruce Springsteen a "total fraud," and Sting a "mega-wealthy nitwit." La Rochefoucauld saw it differently. "Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays virtue," the French aphorist thought.
From this perspective, Bono sheltering his money from taxation, Rosie seeking bodyguards to protect her family with firearms, and Madonna leaving Godzilla's carbon footprint serve as welcome reinforcement of conservatism from some of its most high-profile critics. Celebrities privately reject the liberal rhetoric that they publicly espouse. When your life can't possibly match your principles, keep your life and question your principles.
It pays to appear liberal in Hollywood. But in Hollywood, like everywhere else, it doesn't really pay to practice liberalism.