- The Washington Times - Monday, March 27, 2000

Independent raunch

"Over the past few years, the profile of independent films has risen so high that studios, not satisfied with buying up independent companies and hiring independent directors, have tentatively begun to experiment with films that are in most ways except production values indistinguishable from their 'off-Hollywood' counterparts… .
"Many of the independents look to the films of the '70s for inspiration… .
"The crucial difference between now and then is that today the studios are hardly hurting, and consequently, although they're hungry for young talent, they'll be dictating the terms of employment to all but a lucky few. Moreover, today's independents and their fans are young and irreverent, but not necessarily 'political' in the way the counterculture audience of the Vietnam era was. A lot of these filmmakers are just as eager to make the next 'American Pie,' last year's raunchy teen-age blockbuster, as viewers are to see it."
Peter Biskind, writing on "American Beauty or American Pie?" in the April 3 issue of the Nation

MTV's Trojan horse

"MTV's onslaught of sex-related shows has less to do with music and more to do with intentionally teaching kids how to live amoral, unchaste and perverse lives… .
"MTV is certainly keeping their sponsors like Trojan condoms happy. And now that they are re-launching their so-called 1-800-BESAFE1 campaign a deceitful program which only helps kids to be sexually active behind their parents' backs Trojan will see an even greater increase in sales… .
"First they pump the kids full of sex with their programming, then they teach them how to avoid their parents and the consequences… .
"MTV needs to make up its mind. Are they a music video station or an adult entertainment network for kids?"
Bryan Kemper, founder of Rock for Life, in a Wednesday press release, "MTV now Sex TV"

Western triumph

"There is work to be done, and that work involves the will to preserve the fruits of Western civilization in the 21st century and to debate with our opponents on the current terrain of the real. For generations, the great defenders of the humane consequences of the allocation of capital by free markets rather than by central planners have remained unexplored, marginalized, or dismissed as absurd by most American intellectuals most students simply do not know of Ludwig von Mises or F.A. Hayek or Milton Friedman.
For generations, the lionized intellectuals dreamed about and debated how to make the inevitable transition from unproductive capitalism to the cornucopia of central planning. Now, we have witnessed the collapse of both the Soviet Empire and Marxist theory (everywhere but at Western universities) a victory of the greatest good the world has ever witnessed over the greatest evil the world has ever witnessed. Unless we win the war of ideas, however, Western intellectuals will teach this history as simply the Soviet self-correction that shows how absurd Western fears were from the start, or as merely economic collapse of the Communists who in various ways betrayed their ideals or failed to temper them with adequate pragmatism… .
"Convinced that the West has been the agent of creating artificial relationships of dominance, subservience, and the commodification of human life, leftist intellectuals have little interest either in an object analysis of the manifest data about free markets or the conditions of life and death under the Bolsheviks and their heirs, or in the confirmation and disconfirmation of various theories in the crucible of the Cold War."
Alan Charles Kors, from "Did Western Civilization Survive the 20th Century?" a speech published by the Institute for Humane Studies

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