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“The secret of happiness is freedom. The secret of freedom is courage.”
— Thucydides

“A civilization that feels guilty for everything it is and does will lack the energy and conviction to defend itself.”
— Jean-François Revel

Hollywood's Most Certainly Not America

Friday, February 22, 2008

Ferras' "Hollywood's Not America" isn't, as its title led me to expect, a song about Hollywood's monolithically leftish political culture. But the mere suggestion of that in the phrase certainly rings true and timely as the Oscars approach.

It's funny: I grew up in Los Angeles as a big fan of the movies. Many of them became (I now recount with no small measure of embarrassment) lenses through which I came to view my own hopes and dreams, cultivate my aspirations, and imagine my possible futures. I would never then have remotely imagined caring as little as I do now what Hollywood's legions of self-important, self-appointed social commentators think of our country, our culture, our way of life. They've gone off the deep end for sure, and the disconnect between the ideological bubble they inhabit and the rest of America has never been more apparent.

In a silly sentimental way, it's too bad my idealization of Hollywood had to meet with disillusionment. But I'm glad to have realized I have far better things to aspire to than Hollywood could ever cook up, and much better uses for my time than passively taking in the imaginings of others. These days I feel much more inclined to spend my time doing, creating, learning. And that can hardly be a bad thing.