To the Editor:
Susan Crabtree’s story on Sen. Joe Lieberman’s “back to bashing” Hollywood (Daily Variety, April 3) omits an immutable truth: Lieberman needs America’s vote, not Hollywood’s. While those holding court in Hollywood like to think they are the center of the universe, Lieberman isn’t stumping against Hollywood because he has “lost” the town as supporters — as your unnamed studio exec posits. Lieberman does it for a far more pragmatic reason: Votes.
Visit the cafes and diners in Kansas City, Palestine, W.Va., or Round Rock, Texas, to name a few, and one will hear these hinterland handwringers articulate strongly held beliefs that Hollywood’s work product — films, TV, music, vidgames — are the reasons society has become so violent and immoral. They also calmly assert the entertainment business is run by millionaire zealots corrupting the nation’s children largely unchecked by regulators. (I’m often surprised at how cogent and lucid an argument these folks can make, despite the flawed premise).
These fly-over state denizens also would quickly embrace a government that more closely controls the release of these products; their axis of evil is terrorism, the economy and Hollywood. Biz execs may disagree with Lieberman’s views, but his position resonates with voters, and provides solace to this blue-collared crowd. And, as the presidential race gains momentum, one can expect other candidates to try to get voter traction by carping about the biz, as well.
(The author is managing director of The Spectacor Group, a corporate communications firm.)