- The Washington Times - Monday, May 7, 2001

Hollywood hypocrisy
"As everyone knows, Hollywood is a hyper-liberal paradise, where every day, actors and directors and producers try to advance the cause of social justice. Theyre particularly keen on advancing gay rights, and any other trendy social cause that pops onto the radar screen. And yet its still true that there isnt a single openly gay lead actor in the business in 2001. Why? … The answer is surely that the big in Hollywood are scared of losing money if a romantic star especially a man gets a public reputation as gay. Theyll never admit this, of course… . But every now and again, the truth gets blurted out. Heres a quote from Tom Cruises lawyer as to why hes suing a porn actor for a cool $100 million for claiming he had a relationship with Cruise: 'Losing the respect and enthusiasm of a substantial segment of the movie-going public would cost Cruise very substantial sums … vast numbers of the public throughout the world … will be less inclined to patronize Cruises films, particularly since he tends to play parts calling for heterosexual romance and action adventure. So there you have it… . This libel suit, whatever its merits, is in fact a mechanism whereby ostensibly liberal Hollywood sends a deliberate message to its gay stars and actors: Stay in the closet or your career is toast… . So next time Hollywoods elites start prattling on about their pro-gay politics, dont stifle a guffaw."
Andrew Sullivan, writing on "Hollywoods Closet," Wednesday in www.andrewsullivan.com

Obnoxious newspapers

"The American newspaper industry today is a $60-billion-a-year, diversified colossus with profit margins triple the norm for U.S. industry as a whole… .
"The American newspaper industry finds itself in the middle of the most momentous change in its 300-year history, a change that is diminishing the amount of real news available to the consumer. A generation of relentless corporatization is now culminating in a furious, unprecedented blitz of buying, selling and consolidating of newspapers, from the mightiest dailies to the humblest weeklies… . It is revolutionizing, to the point of undermining, the traditional nature and role of the press… .
"One can argue that considering there are nearly 1,500 daily papers in the United States, and considering that most of these are handsomely profitable, the percentage of excellence is abysmally low. Todays typical daily is mediocre, with a strong overlay of provincialism. And industry trends are only making matters worse."
Thomas Kunkel and Gene Roberts in "The Age of Corporate Newspapering: Leaving Readers Behind" in the May issue of the American Journalism Review

End of evolution?

"Francis Fukuyamas recent book, 'The Great Disruption: Human Nature and the Reconstitution of Social Order, is a sociobiological analysis of the moral and social upheavals of the 60s and their aftermath. The books thesis is that human beings have a biologically-based drive to forge social bonds and will build new forms of social order to replace some of what 'the great disruption destroyed. But the most important elements of social cohesion, those 'regarding sex, reproduction, and family life, now wracked by promiscuity, infidelity, divorce and single motherhood, are not likely to be restored.
"Fukuyama writes that the 'different technological and economic conditions of our age make it extremely unlikely that we will see a return to traditional sexual mores, which were driven by fear of unwanted pregnancy and the destitution it might bring. This makes Fukuyamas promised 'reconstitution quite hollow, but that is the most that sociobiology can offer. Were creatures of evolution, you see, and so must continue to evolve in response to our changing environment. Those who seek a vision of an abiding social order based on permanent truths about human nature will not find it in sociobiology or Darwinian evolution."
Carol Iannone, writing on "William Jennings Bryan Was Right," in the April 25 issue of New York Press

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