The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy: The Reeducation of Tracy Morgan

June 11, 2011

That chill wind Hollywood liberal Tim Robbins warned about is indeed blowing and every stand-up comic and performance artist should be worried. However, it isn’t coming from some frustrated, prudish Christian right winger. It’s coming from the open minded, diversity embracing, tolerant other side of the aisle. Free speech is just a concept that was rejected at the pitch meeting. Artistic expression isn’t for the less enlightened. Tracy Morgan is now officially under reeducation by the Hollywood left.

In case you missed it, here is the back story: Tracy Morgan, stand-up comic and one of the stars of the NBC hit sit-com “30 Rock” was busted doing a stand-up routine at the Ryman Theater in Nashville. Unlike back when Saint Lenny was being busted the cops didn’t rush the stage and drag Mr. Morgan off. No, a single audience member got offended and reported Mr. Morgan to “the authorities” through Facebook.

The verboten topic was lack of empathy for homosexuality. The “authorities” are the liberal media. A gay man in the audience, Kevin Rogers took offence and wound up on CNN chatting about how horrible the show was.

I wasn’t there and I doubt there is a recording or transcript but from reports the “bit” was pretty raw. What I have read and seen on the internet is that Mr. Morgan was doing a rant where he imagined his son came home and announced he was gay. Mr. Morgan said if that happened he would stab him.

Yeah, I know, it’s not exactly knocking me of my chair either but that’s not the point.  

I have seen Mr. Morgan perform and found a lot of his act to be tasteless. I didn’t find a lot of his material to be funny. I don’t condone bullying or violence against anyone. However I also don’t condone drawing lines for performers or establishing sacred cows. Does anyone think that this was the first Mr. Morgan performed this routine? Doubt it! Now, under pressure from NBC, Tina Fey and uber -hypocrite Alec Baldwin, Mr. Morgan says his rant was “not funny in any context.”  Even though according to one person who attended the show, “No one was booing him. Everyone was laughing…”

Let’s step back and imagine for a minute that instead of the word “gay’ in his routine he had used the word “Republican” or “conservative.”  What if he had said, “… if my son came home and said he was joining the GOP I would stab him!” The audience and liberal media would still be praising his talent. Genius! Let’s further imagine the next day Reince Priebus issued a statement asking for an apology. More howls of laughter and perhaps a statement from Mr. Morgan telling the GOP leader he could plant one where the sun don’t shine. High fives all around!

So why isn’t the outspoken Mr. Morgan telling the GLAAD folks to kiss off? Simple, he’s worried about his job. He’s got plenty of reason to worry.  Isaiah Washington got canned from Grey’s Anatomy after using a gay slur and he did the entire apology tour. The movie “The Dilemma” was roundly criticized for using the dreaded “f’ word.  The “f” word, by the way, is not “fuck.” If you tried to stop comedians from using that word because you find it offensive Hollywood types would brand you a Nazi, fascist or worst some sort of Christian zealot. 

Meanwhile a congressman is sending pictures of his penis around the country and is being defended by Charlie Rangle who is saying “He wasn’t going out with little boys. He wasn’t going into men’s rooms with broad stances.”  That statement sounds offensive and more that a little homophobic to me. GLAAD, where are ya?


THe Vast Right Wing Conspiracy: A Word About “The N Word”

January 11, 2011

Thank God civility is returning to literature! Thanks to some faceless editor at New South Books and alleged Twain scholar Dr. Alan Gribben new sanitized versions of “Huckleberry Finn” and “Tom Sawyer” will be published! The “word so offensive that it can’t even be printed here” has been removed! All is safe! Dr. Gribben is afraid that the language in the book has stopped people from reading Twain. I am sure this brilliant move will encourage students everywhere to put down the video game controller and pick up a book! It will also save overworked teachers from actually having to teach the context of the use of the word. In order to do that they might have to do some research and, heaven forbid, read the books themselves! What teacher has time for that when there are condoms to be distributed and prayer circles to be broken up?

Of course elitists who have jumped up to abhor this censorship! Movie reviewer and social gadfly Roger Ebert made the mistake of using “the word that shall not be spoken or written” in a tweet opposing the new edition. He thought because of his lifetime of liberalism and marriage to an African-American woman he was on the “white guys allowed to use the word which shall not be spoken or written,” list but alas he was not and was roundly “critweeted.”  (This is a new word I have invented to describe the criticism of a tweet by tweeting.)

Now that the looming “Huck Finn” controversy is finally behind us we can get to the business of creating jobs! Think of all of the unemployed and underemployed English majors we can busy doing the task of politically “correcting” the rest of the great and not so great works of literature. We could hire half a Bryn Mawr class just to edit the works of Toni Morrison!

Just by editing “the word which may not be spoken or written” out of  “To Kill a Mockingbird,” The Heart of Darkness,” “Go Tell it On The Mountain,” “Lord of the Flies,” and a thousand other works of literature we could drop the unemployment rate a point or two. Then we could start on other ethnic insults which are more subtle. I see full employment on the horizon!

The real problem is when we get to books like Dick Gregory’s autobiography.  Its title is “The word that shall not be spoken or written: An Autobiography.” Maybe we should ask him? He has said that “the word that shall not be spoken or written,” should not be censored nor should euphemisms be used. He finds it intellectually dishonest. The same sentiment has been expressed by Professor Randall Kennedy, a Harvard Law School instructor and writer of books and essays on the use of “the word which may not be spoken or written.”  Ahhh, what do they know?  Vive la censorship! Vive la revisionism!


The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy WWSD : What Would Sam Do?

November 24, 2010

 

Following my recent article on the dust up over the use of the word “gay” in a joke in the movie “The Dilemma” I engaged in an e mail discussion with  Big Hollywood editor John Nolte. The question that John posed to me was in the new era “everything is deeply offensive to someone” could guys like Sam Kinison, George Carlin and even Saint Lenny make it today?  Could three of the greatest comic voices ever survive in today’s comic environment?

My first impulse was to say a quick yes, give John a virtual eye roll, and get back to making funny Facebook status updates about the TSA. Then I considered his question a little more deeply. I was too young to have known or seen Lenny Bruce and only got to meet Carlin three times so I didn’t know him well. Sam, that was different. I got to know him pretty well back in the late seventies in Texas. We stayed friends and even worked together a few times through the years. I’ll get back to Sam in a minute.

Lenny Bruce got arrested a number of time for his language. Back in the sixties few people objected to making jokes about ethnic jokes. The word “gay” still meant filled with joy and to most Americans a “fag” was a Lucky Strike. Lenny got in trouble for his scatological references. “Cocksucker” was a big one. Most of the stuff Lenny suffered for seems mild in comparison to today’s cable fodder. However, one of Lenny’s greatest bits, which heavily features the notorious “N” word, couldn’t be broadcast today even on cable. Today it couldn’t even be written in a transcript without serious repercussions. It is however one of the most brilliant bits of comic social commentary ever performed. Dustin Hoffman does it justice in the movie, “Lenny.” Lenny also foreshadowed today’s political correctness in another bit featured in the movie when he substituted the word “blahblah” for “cocksucker.” Quoting Hoffman as Lenny in the movie, “It’s the dirtiest bit I have ever done and they can’t touch me!”

Carlin had his transformation for the slick ex-adman comic the hipster we all know in the late sixties and early seventies. His most famous piece featured the “seven words you can never say on television.” Ironically, all seven are now heard with regularity on television, in movies, on Broadway and in teen conversations. Later in his career the seven words became about seven hundred. I heard him do an extended version of the original which took at least fifteen minutes on stage. If he did the bit today he would have to change the bit to , “ There are only five words you can’t say on TV , “N” word, “F” word, “R” word, “G” word, “  and Islamic Extremists!”

Sam was different. He seemed to invite harassment. Reviews of his show that called him obscene and offensive he wore as a badge of honor. He sometimes sent them out with his press kit! He defied authority at every chance. Once, at The Annex, a small club where we started he smashed a wooden stool on stage during a bit. The club manager told Sam he had to pay for the stool and warned him that he would be charged for future damages!  The next time Sam went up he took the new stool and smashed it against the wall and flipped some money down on the stage. He told the manager to get a few stools because he would need them! As I remember it that event which led to Sam being banned from the club for awhile and the infamous “crucifixion for comedy” incident.

At times I think he wanted people to hate him, it was good for business! He would antagonize those who protested his antics and language. He demeaned women onstage because he knew how it enraged NOW and other feminist groups. They would scream about it and the tickets to Sam’s shows became the hottest around. Some of his most famous bits sent howls of through the gay community even back then. His famous “Rock Hudson” bit where he imitated Mr. Hudson performing numerous acts of filatio and then regretting the last one which Sam imagined gave him AIDS was universally panned by the politically correct even back then. 

If Sam were starting today would he have a chance? You know it! Genius is a hard thing to stifle and Sam was a comic genius. Sam also would have succeeded today because back in the eighties he was already aware that those who presumed to speak for “the masses” were usually out of touch. He never worried about what people thought of him. He spoke his mind and used words he knew his audience would understand. As I am traveling today I am imagining what Sam would have to say about the TSA and enhanced pat downs. I would give just about anything to watch him go through an airport today and “engage” the security. That would be national news.


The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy;The Academy Awards

March 6, 2010

 As we move towards the Sunday night granddaddy of all awards shows I am starting to wonder several things. First, after seeing an editorial in the New York Times and a very drab and unhappy looking professor of woman’s studies on Fox News call for just one best actor and best supporting actor award to end sex discrimination in Hollywood I am starting to think lots of people are reading my blogs. Over a year ago I poked a little fun at the politically correct Screen Actors Guild for not using the word “actress” but still give and award for a “female actor.” The left has now jumped on my bandwagon so maybe there is hope for America and Hollywood!

The second thing that has been on my mind is which brand of political correctness will prevail this year’s Oscars. Will the “I’m voting for ‘Avatar’ because it ridicules the America and its military, be stronger than the “It’s time a woman won best director,” faction.

There are other political considerations in this year’s voting but his got me to thinking about past years and were the nominations and awards really all about the art. It seems that all sorts of considerations, political, social, personalities and career get mixed in and often the storytelling gets left on the cutting room floor. In the interest of brevity I will limit my comments to the years I can actually remember which, if I am honest, would rule out several years in the early seventies and mid-eighties.

Back in 1967 we all rushed to see “The Graduate” with anti-hero Benjamin played by Dustin Hoffman. A good movie but not a great movie. Bonnie and Clyde, Dr. Doolittle, and winner, “In the Heat of the Night” were also nominated. So was the entirely forgettable “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” nominated for its subject matter and the casting of Hollywood legends Tracy and Hepburn.

In 1970 the double question mark of “Airport” and “Love Story” were nominated. Has anybody under the age of 75 gone back and given “Airport,” the forefather of the disaster film genre, another look? What do you get when you take an unbelievably banal book and make a very predictable movie? In 1970 you got a best picture nomination for the chick-iest chick flick of all time. The beautiful and irascible young woman in the picture getting cancer and dying may have done the trick in getting the nomination, a lesson not lost on the makers of 1983 winner “Terms of Endearment.”

I have this other theory about the Oscar’s; if you want to get a nomination for an acting award play someone with a physical or mental problem. There are tons of examples, “Rain Man,”Forrest Gump,” Scent of a Woman,” All About Eve,”  “A Beautiful Mind,” “As Good as it Gets,” I could go on and on but you get my point.

Of course the all time champ of getting a best picture nomination that it didn’t deserve is “The Godfather: Part III.”  The result of all this was that now I believe that Marlon Brando and George C. Scott were right; leave the trophy and take the cannoli.


The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy: The Art Cowards

January 16, 2010

 

The left has a long tradition of bowing down to dictators and others they fear. No, I am not talking about President Obama stooping to kings and other foreign leaders. That is just another example of a long tradition of silliness that is often seen from liberals. What I am talking about is how many on the left live in fear. They try to mask it as respect or cultural reverence but it is fear.

The latest example comes from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.  It seems that these liberal defenders of the freedom of artistic expression, who would never listen to a conservative complaint about a display, have removed a number of depictions of Mohammad from the collection formerly known as the Islamic Galleries. The name “Islamic Galleries” has been changed “Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran Central Asia and Later South Asia.” Man, that is a mouthful!

Why the changes at the Met? Simple, the people in charge know that Islamic Fundamentalists don’t fool around. If they ask you to remove a drawing of Mohammed because they find any depiction of the founder of their religion objectionable, you take it down or face a fatwa. Think I’m wrong? Ask your local Danish Cartoonist or Dutch filmmaker about artistic tolerance under Islam. The folks running the Met are attached to their heads and know how to take a hint. There will be no long court battle or Constitutional challenge raised.

This is not reverence for culture or religions. It is fear of reprisal by an Islamic Extremist. Imagine the Met gets to display some Mapplethorpe photos or perhaps the infamous Piss Christ. I, as a right wing conservative, ask them to consider my religious and cultural values and take the display down.  I get laughed out of the office. Why? Because the guy giving the sermon down at St. Patrick’s isn’t going to try to get one of his more fervent followers to walk up 5th Avenue and cut your head off.


The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy: Speaking Obama

March 28, 2009

croped-speech

I the past few days there have been several reports about officials, high and low, using new politically correct language to describe things which have been around for awhile. The best example is the new head of the Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, refusing to use the word “terrorist.”  She preferred describing terrorist actions as “Man Caused Disasters.” The problem with politically correct speech is that it hides the obvious. Even Big Freakin’ Hillbillies like me understand an illegal immigrant is someone who broke the law to get into this country. We of simple minds get confused when folks from the Ivy League start describing them as “migrants”. A migrant to us plain spoken folk is someone who waited in line, did the right thing and came here in accordance with our laws.

In order for us morons on the right to understand the new speak of the Obama administration I offer this glossary of terms before and after being “Obamized”. Feel free to add to my list while you are still able.

Old Bush/Cheney/ Halliburton Hate Speech             Obama Speak

 

Terrorist                                              Misunderstood Islamic Freedom Fighter

Terrorist Act                                                 Man Caused Disaster

Freedom Tower                            Chinese World Business Headquarters

Enemy Combatant                           Victim of Bush Chaney War Crimes 

Illegal Immigrant                                       Migrant/Democrat Voter

Global War on Terror                     Overseas Contingency Operation

Axis of Evil                                            Islamic Republic of Iran

Socialism                                         Government Friendly Capitalism

Welfare                                                        Tax Rebate

Wealth Redistribution Scam                    Global Warming

Global Warming                                      Climate Change

 

Businessman                                              Greed Monger

Entrepreneur                                   Government Revenue Enhancer

Middle Class                                                   Rich

Republican                                                   Tax Payer

Conservative                                              Klansman

Abortion                                             Reproductive Rights

Unfettered Abortion                      Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Windfall Profits Tax                                 Cap and Trade

Volunteer                                         Americorps Political Activist

On Time Mortgage Payer                               Chump

Marxist/Socialist Liberalism                          Historic Presidency    

Dollar                                                             Global Currency

Reeducation Camp                                         Job Training

Health Care                                              Socialized Medicine

Wall Street                                U.S. Department of Economic Control

Rehashed Clinton Administration               Change You Can Believe In

Conservative Supreme Court Justice                    Homophobe

Private Property                                  Future Government Acquisition

Bipartisanship                                                 Do It Our Way

Contract Provision                                     Government Oversight                                  

Seek input from across the aisle.               We won, sit down and shut up.

Private Enterprise                                 Future Federal Employment Project   

Unemployment                                          Idleness Compensation Program

National Security Issue                                Law Enforcement Problem

Defend and Protect the Constitution                      If It Fits My Agenda


The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy: Ashley Judd is Proving a Kentucky Education Still Lacking

February 5, 2009

 I grew up in a small town in Eastern Kentucky. There were two major industries there an oil company and a steel mill and yet I am still only the seventh most famous person from that town.

There was Henry Clay back in the pre-Civil War day who was a senator and known as “The Great Compromiser¨ which means he was the John McCain of his day with no core belief he wouldn’t drop for the sake of getting along.

Ashland Kentucky also produced that achy breaky king Billy Ray Cyrus, game show host Chuck Woolery and three Judds. Ashley Judd wasn’t born there but lived back in the land where coal meets iron off and on as she was growing up. Ashley want on to study at The University of Kentucky where she majored in anthropology, theater and woman’s studied which meant she was destined for Hollywood, a counseling job at the U of K student center or management at the local McDonalds.

 Fortunately for Ms. Judd the whole Hollywood thing worked out for her and she is now beginning a new career as a political activist. While I have often said to that the greatest thing about America is that we have the right to be as stupid as we want to be Ms. Judd has recently demonstrated that we in Kentucky have a way to go before we shuck off our image as being one of the less literate states.

Here are some of her recent pronouncements on the state of affairs in the country. She kicked off her trifecta of stupid back in September by declaring that “a woman who votes for McCain-Palin is like a chicken voting for Colonel Saunders.” Got it? In Ms. Judd’s world any woman who is not for a strict liberal agenda is a moron. So much for reaching out to the right and uniting the country under her new hero President Obama. Have you ever noticed that want a leftie talks about coming together or uniting the country or stopping the partisan politics what they really mean is that conservatives should drop their core beliefs and do what the left wants. When Bush was in the White House descent was their patriotic duty now if you are not lock step with the BHO agenda you are an obstructionist.

I wonder if Ms. Judd is on board with Barack´s latest idea to limit salaries to $500.000. I was just wondering how much she made for her last picture. I am sure if you figured it out on a year basis is was well over the top CEO money. Then after the election she made some snarky comment about now that Bush was out of office it was nice to be living in America again. I have to be honest here and admit I wasn’t crazy about everything Bush did while in office, in fact in a past blog I named him the greatest Democrat President ever. She was speaking about “woman’s reproductive rights” under Bush which is political correct speak for unfettered abortion. I challenge her to find one woman in this country who had been prevented from or prosecuted for having an abortion in the past eight years by our government.

Then this week Ashley voiced an ad for a far left animal rights group protesting Governor Palin´s support for aerial wolf hunting. Again, I don’t know what world Ms. Judd lives in where the lives of wolves are more important to her than the lives of unborn children but since she supports unfettered abortion and opposes the killing of wolves one must assume in her morality wolves trump kids. Since the killing of arctic wolves is necessary to protect other animals I suppose she even has a hierarchy of animals that need protection. I´d hate to see where right wing nut jobs like me finish on that list.