hollywood-sign-address

Once again Hollywood is on the attack. This time with a “PSA” about Protecting Insurance Companies. Click HERE to view the video via Funny Or Die (a new window will open). NOTE: I didn’t embed the video due the preview slowing down the site.

Of course the predictable “Hollywood are a bunch of stupid, clueless, latte liberal elites” (implied not said) from various sources in Right Blogtopia such as Hot Air, Riehl World View, and Michelle Malkin has started. And the also predictable “I don’t watch any of those Hollywood liberal elites but I really enjoy Heroes, CSI, and other TV series along with their movies on the big screen” is there in the comment sections as well (don’t get upset, Hollywood HAS us…your principals aren’t compromised by watching a flick with a “stoopid Hollywood elite” in it). Happens all the time when Hollywood gets all political and stuff. All that being said, I have a question for Hollywood:

Why do these type of political commercials/PSAs/infomercials anyway Hollywood?

All of you are filthy rich and I’m not mad at you for being filthy rich. The market is what it is. But wouldn’t you be more effective taking your sizable cash reserves and impacting the health care debate directly by, let’s say, starting your own insurance company? Building clinics and hospitals? You know? Sticking it to THE MAN by making something better? But that takes work. And sometimes that work is hard and painful. Case in point, former NBA great Dikembe Mutombo’s hospital project in The Democratic Republic of Congo (from Wikipedia):

In 1997, Mutombo with the Mutombo Foundation began plans to open a $29 million, 300-bed hospital on the outskirts of his hometown, the Congolese capital of Kinshasa. Ground was broken in 2001, but construction didn’t start until 2004, as Mutombo had trouble getting donations early on although Mutombo personally donated $3.5 million toward the hospital’s construction. Initially Mutombo had some other difficulties, almost losing the land to the government because it was not being used and having to pay refugees who had begun farming the land to leave. He also struggled to reassure some that he did not have any ulterior or political motives for the project. However, the project has been on the whole very well received at all social and economic levels in Kinshasa.

On August 14, 2006, Dikembe had donated $15 million to the completion of the hospital for its ceremonial opening on September 2, 2006. The hospital was by then named Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital, named for his late mother, who died of a stroke in 1997.

When it opened in February 2007, the $29 million facility became the first modern medical facility to be built in that area in nearly 40 years. His hospital is on a 12-acre (49,000 m2) site on the outskirts of Kinshasa in Masina, where about a quarter of the city’s 7.5 million residents live in poverty. It is minutes from Kinshasa’s airport and near a bustling open-air market. The hospital has full telemedicine capabilities with the United States and Europe through the network established by Medical Missions for Children.

I followed Dikembe Mutombo’s hospital project very closely. And that man dedicated his livelihood and his life to build that hospital. And he succeeding with dogged determination, drive, and an admirable resilience.

Hey Hollywood, I know some of you are putting your cash where your mouth is. But in general your not. How about following Mutombo’s lead and doing something tangible instead of talking? Don’t worry, many of us will still watch you on TV and in the mega movieplexes. But money talks. How’s about letting it talk for awhile?

**********

By the way, I’m in love with Anna Torv of Fringe. I have to marry her… in another lifetime of course! See Hollywood? The love is still there.

T-STEEL, Site Administrator
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shannonlee
Guest
shannonlee
7 years 1 day ago

Well, they do…you just don’t always here about it. People close to me have seen numerous super stars running in and out of research facilities…giving tons of money….some super stars donate time too. I know of A listers digging holes to planet flowers at public schools.

Every research facility in LA has a name attached to it…David Geffin School of Medicine at UCLA for one.

Interesting side note, the new Ronald Reagan hosptial was named so because the Reagan family promised millions of dollars in funding….they never followed through with the money, but the name stuck.

T-Steel
Guest
7 years 1 day ago

“Well, they do…you just don’t always here about it.”

Well there ya go! How about announcements showing that instead of these little ad thingies pushing political points? They just come off as cheesy and provides ammo to opponents. I like the do’ers. I want to hear more about the Hollywood do’ers.

elrod
Guest
elrod
7 years 1 day ago

I would have agreed with you, until I read my local alt-weekly’s set of stories about health insurance disasters in East Tennessee. By coincidence I actually know two of the people profiled, and the third – a doctor at the local hospital – is a high profile figure around here.

Disgust is an understatement for how I feel about health insurance companies. This is Third World crap. A mocking by Hollywood is nothing considering what they deserve.

T-Steel
Guest
7 years 1 day ago

Oh I’m not above mocking the insurance companies. And I have some family members who work for insurance companies and they say more doom than glory. I just think it would come off better if some ordinary folks did it on YouTube. Hollywood has much power (for better or worse) and money. Doing more dollar action is just a better use of their time in the health care debate, in my opinion.

joeaudio
Guest
joeaudio
7 years 1 day ago
T-Steel,You were also, no doubt, enraged at the “Swiftboaters” attacks on John Kerry.Why didn’t those jerks spend their money doing something helpful?And if someone is a wealthy liberal, they are “filthy rich?”What are your feelings toward health insurance CEOs who make millions by declining coverage to their paying customers?Are they “filthy” too?And comparing the “power” of Hollywood to the real power of corporate lobbyist money is a very silly argument. Do you have the slightest clue how much the health insurance, pharma lobbys are spending to twist arms in Washington?Look up that number and tell me that’s okay, but damned… Read more »
T-Steel
Guest
7 years 1 day ago
My answers (even though I’m quite tired of going back in time ALL THE TIME):“You were also, no doubt, enraged at the “Swiftboaters” attacks on John Kerry. Why didn’t those jerks spend their money doing something helpful?”No I didn’t like the Swiftboat attacks on John Kerry. Nor did I like John Kerry. Nor did I like George Bush. I voted third party. I wasn’t enraged simply because I didn’t care for either of them. But I recognized that the Swiftboat attacks were BS. Yes the Swiftboaters could have spent their money doing something helpful. But comparing Hollywood (which I made… Read more »
joeaudio
Guest
joeaudio
7 years 19 hours ago

Well I’m glad you got all THAT out of your system.
So you are unhappy that “Hollywood people” who have a big megaphone use that megaphone to try and counter all the lies in ads from wealthy special interests?
What makes you think it would be a good idea for “Hollywood people” to start insurance companies or build hospitals? Most likely, they wouldn’t be very good at it.
Maybe you should stop wasting your time writing and be a rocket scientist.

T-Steel
Guest
7 years 19 hours ago

Maybe you need to read my above comment to Uncular1. They don’t have to start something from scratch. They can help FUND something from scratch instead of ads. Very simple.

And if I had the cash and a rocket scientist had a damn fine idea with some meat to back it up, I would fund it. But I may not know EVERYTHING. You know, venture capitalists do it.

HemmD
Guest
HemmD
7 years 18 hours ago
T I don’t get your point. People who are “filthy rich” who live and work in Hollywood should spend their money the way you think they should? Interesting, how did you become the socio-financial counselor to the stars? I mean, there are things I wish certain Hollywood stars would do for me too ;-), but wishing for that fantasy is no more realistic than yours. I would suggest you consider that your wishes may be based upon envy. If I had their money and access to main stream media, I’d do things differently too. But that being said, judging them… Read more »
T-Steel
Guest
7 years 18 hours ago
I assure you I’m not envious of their riches. Of course I would love to have that kind of loot but who doesn’t. NOW you do make an interesting point about my expectations due to the drastic changes in myself. I really haven’t thought about that much and MAYBE that does color my views on this issue some. But envious? Naaa….It just seems that Hollywood (on average) is quick to be seen and heard on certain issues. And that’s basically it. I admit that I’m a “put your money where your mouth is” type of guy. I’m not belligerent about… Read more »
HemmD
Guest
HemmD
7 years 13 hours ago
TI sent this in replied email form, but it never showed up on the threadI couldn’t find the “pulling your leg” font, so I guess you couldn’t see I was trying to be more whimsical than critical. I do have a couple general observations on how “average” people seem overly consumed with the lives of society’s elites. I don’t put you in that class by the way.You probably know better than me that this country has a regular industry that touts wealth, power, and the perfect look as a product we should all desire. Indeed, the commercialism on TV sells… Read more »
T-Steel
Guest
7 years 11 hours ago

Consider my leg pulled. LOL!

Thanks the clarification. I was in “serious” mode for far too long earlier today!

HemmD
Guest
HemmD
7 years 8 hours ago
T I couldn’t find the “pulling your leg” font, so I guess you couldn’t see I was trying to be more whimsical than critical. I do have a couple general observations on how “average” people seem overly consumed with the lives of society’s elites. I don’t put you in that class by the way. You probably know better than me that this country has a regular industry that touts wealth, power, and the perfect look as a product we should all desire. Indeed, the commercialism on TV sells these iconic images as real examples of success. If I have money,… Read more »
elrod
Guest
elrod
7 years 1 day ago

Not sure if I agree with you. Remember, the point of enlisting these actors is to get young folks riled up. Middle age Reaganites will call them all sorts of names but younger voters actually DO respond positively to appeals from these folks.

Oh, and I love me some Jordana Spiro…

joeaudio
Guest
joeaudio
7 years 1 day ago

Oh, and by the way “NOTE: I didn’t embed the video due the preview slowing down the site.”is THE lamest excuse I have ever seen for not allowing your readers to see the video and judge for themselves.Here’s the link for people that haven’t had the chance to see the video you are talking about:http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/041b5acaf5/pro

Update: sorry I didn’t see the link in the original article. My error.

Uncular1
Guest
Uncular1
7 years 22 hours ago

T,
I think one of the big reasons here is that actors, screenwriters, etc. aren’t all filthy rich. Since most of these people are independent contractors their insurance is through the Screen Actor’s Guild (if they have any at all). Let’s face it, that PSA would get much less airtime/viralness(?) if it featured cameramen or set dressers. Get it? These people are the face for an entire industry so they are out there speaking for those folks. That’s why Jay Leno and others supported the writers strike as well.

T-Steel
Guest
7 years 21 hours ago
How about if I say “Hollywood A-Listers”?My point is that PSAs like this really don’t do much except harden positions on both sides of the aisle. While some think that is fine and champion it, I don’t. Not in today’s political environment. We need do’ers outside of Washington. Folks willing to create, innovate, and produce (or fund that in some capacity).Let’s say Will Ferrell and Jennifer Anniston spearheaded an initiative that created an alternative hospital or clinic that was able to treat any and all (don’t ask for details, I’m just putting it out there). Look at how much force… Read more »
TheMagicalSkyFather
Guest
TheMagicalSkyFather
7 years 20 hours ago
I agree with you on this, I feel the same way about CEO’s and many in the public sphere. If you have a problem then do something about it, if you just want to talk to “change everyones mind” then do not use a megaphone provided on our public air waves. If you want to move public opinion do it the way the rest of us have to, one person at a time otherwise do something with your piles of money that will fix the same problem. I know that people pay for these advert slots but honestly that is… Read more »
shika_one
Guest
shika_one
7 years 21 hours ago

I agree with you T. I’m a big Hollywood slappy. I love the glitz and glam. But i’m just not feeling this recent parody PSA. It feels all cheesy stupid cheesy. I don’t know. I want health care reform in the USA so badly even though I spend half a year in Japan. And like you T, I agree Hollywood big timers could help more with their dollars outside of addys. But those insurance companies aren’t easy fish to fry. and do you want to fry ’em all?

Great post T!

caymen
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caymen
7 years 20 hours ago

I love this PSA, it addresses outrageous claims about healthcare reform in a tongue in cheek way. I think it will be quite effective in reaching some people.

Uncular1
Guest
Uncular1
7 years 19 hours ago

T,

So you are saying that the more money one has the less legitimate their voice is in public debate? If your point is ‘sarcasm doesn’t help’ that’s one thing, but you seem to be dismissing someone’s call for action on health care reform because they make too much.

On a related point do you know for a fact that Will Farrell et al. don’t support free clinics financially in the U.S.? Or is that just an assumption since it hasn’t been on Sportscenter (ala Mutumbo)?

T-Steel
Guest
7 years 19 hours ago
Yes, sarcasm doesn’t help many times. And no I am not saying “the more money one has the less legitimate their voice is in public debate” (that’s dumb… not calling you dumb). On the contrary, they have a bigger voice. And action would make their voice a supernova. So I want to see more action. From my research on Will Ferrell, he doesn’t do much or nothing at all concerning health issues (free clinics and the like). He could be but it’s not publicized. But that is something I would want publicized if I were him. And regarding Mutombo, I… Read more »
Uncular1
Guest
Uncular1
7 years 19 hours ago
T, Thanks for your responses. We have different points of view here, but it’s a good discussion. I still see them lending their voice to (what they percieve) the need for gov’t sponsored health care reform, but I agree that the tone won’t change a whole lot of minds (seems that way on both sides doesn’t it?). On a related (kinda) note, I’ve always wondered why most U.S. religious organizations tend to do their hospital building overseas when there is a huge segment of the U.S. population that would benefit from some health care/charitable work here. I always assume the… Read more »
archangel
Guest
archangel
7 years 15 hours ago
“wondered why most U.S. religious organizations tend to do their hospital building overseas when there is a huge segment of the U.S. population that would benefit from some health care/charitable work here”Hi there: and welcome to TMV… just to add to your comment: fully 1/4 of the hospitals (may be more) in the US were built and are run by the Catholic nuns, many expanding in just this decade. Some of those Catholic hospitals tried to partner with corporate in the past, and swiftly kicked the corporates out as they did not carry the moral compass to help those who… Read more »
Leonidas
Guest
Leonidas
7 years 16 hours ago

T-Steel, how dare you call on Progressives to use their own money only for Hope and Change. You are asking them to go against their religion you know.

Will Ferrell
Salary
Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006) $20,000,000
Bewitched (2005) $20,000,000
Kicking & Screaming (2005) $20,000,000
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004) $7,000,000

GreenDreams
Guest
7 years 14 hours ago
T-S, I understand your point. But Hollywood stars have something more valuable than their personal fortunes. They have the ability to access media in ways we can’t. They have star value that to many people is compelling. How they spend their money depends on their goal. It’s ironic that you have taken this position in a post directly following Kathy’s Dickens post. Scrooge said “are there no poorhouses? Are there no orphanages?” In this post you argue that instead of using their voice and media access to try to get our society to remedy one of its most glaring deficiencies,… Read more »
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