Reason Podcast

Is Hollywood Overthinking Representation?: Podcast

The perils-and profits-of being identity-focused in business, content, and audience


#OscarsSoGreen ||| Dave Bedrosian/ZUMA Press/Newscom
Dave Bedrosian/ZUMA Press/Newscom

On last week's Editors' Roundtable episode of the Reason Podcast, guest star Stephanie Slade argued near the end that the racial-reconciliation movie Green Book feels a bit out of step with where America's cultural conversation has moved these past few years. Boy howdy, judging by the torrential response to the movie's Best Picture victory at last night's Academy Awards. So let's pick a fresh scab, courtesy of returning Editor in Chief Katherine Mangu-Ward, who wrote a provocative piece in this weekend's New York Times under the headline, "Stop Counting Women: Quotas and tallies won't bring real progress on gender parity."

Mangu-Ward and the rest of the gang (Nick Gillespie, Peter Suderman, me) have an extended conversation on representation, audience-growing, opinion journalism, the malleability of Spider-Man, and related controversies, including (natch) some of the greatest libertarian movies in history. Also coming under discussion are Venezuelan war-mongering, mixed metaphors, and the expansion of "Selective" Service registration to include lady-folk.

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Audio production by Ian Keyser.

'Songe D'Automne' by Latche Swing is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Relevant links from the show:

"Kurt Loder Wants Lady Gaga to Win an Oscar," by Nick Gillespie

"Are 'Inclusion Riders' a Libertarian Solution to Workplace Inequality or P.C. Run Amok?" by Nick Gillespie

"The Case for Gender Anarchy," by Elizabeth Nolan Brown

"What Do 'Women in Liberty' Want?" by Elizabeth Nolan Brown

"The Time for an All-Male Military Draft 'Has Passed,' Says Federal Judge," by Elizabeth Nolan Brown

"Federal Court Rules Male-Only Draft Registration is Unconstitutional," by Ilya Somin

"Rand Paul to Introduce Muhammad Ali Bill to End Selective Service," by Ed Krayweski

"End, Don't Extend, the Draft," by Sheldon Richman

"Should Women Be Required to Sign Up for the Military Draft?" by Ronald Bailey

"Marco Rubio's Veiled Call for Military Intervention in Venezuela Is a Bad Idea," by Nick Gillespie

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102 responses to “Is Hollywood Overthinking Representation?: Podcast

  1. They gave it to a feel good movie about a black guy and the wokerati still hate them. There is no pleasing these idiots. So all they are doing is ruining their product to try and appease a bunch loons whose entire identity is based on being angry.

    1. Not everyone can be the jovial, happy-go-lucky spirit you are, John.

      1. I don’t even know if it is a good movie. Considering the Academy’s track record, it likely isn’t. But, there is nothing they could have done that would have stopped these people from bitching.

        1. Be the perpetually aggrieved bitch you want to see in the world.

          1. Tony your entire identiy is being the worst cliche of the bitchy queen.

            1. *Throws mimosa in your face*

              1. That is funny Tony. Never let it be said I won’t say something nice to you. That was good.

                1. Yeah, that was actually kind of funny. He does manage to make a decent joke once in a while.

                  1. In fairness John did play to Tony’s one strength.

                    1. I would say something along the lines of throwing Tony the occasional bone, but………….

                      A little too obvious.

                2. The problem with Tony isn’t that he doesn’t have good things to say. Even besides the occasional joke, he has some decent thoughts.

                  The problem is that the stupid stuff he says is so incredibly stupid.

                  And he’s a slaver.

              2. I hope this means you’re feeling better.

              3. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.

          2. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.

        2. The movie industry’s record is that most movies are shitty, especial those that win awards.

          Movies that dont are nominated but dont win awards tend to be unwatchable.

          Some of the best movies of all time were never picked nor selected for awards.

          1. Oscars are industry people. They want artsy and different. Peoples Choice awards are about popular movies, those are the ticket buyers.

      2. That’s why John’s nickname is Peter Pan around these parts.

        1. It’s because of the tights.

      3. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.

    2. There’s never any pleasing of them.

      ‘You need more representation’

      ‘Our lead is African American’

      ‘Not good enough – he’s a man’.

      ‘Our new lead is an African American woman’

      ‘Not good enough – she’s het’

      ‘Our new lead is an African American lesbian’

      ‘Not good enough, she’s not cis’

      ‘Our new lead is an African American transwoman lesbian’

      ‘Not good enough, she’s not differently abled’

      ‘Our new lead is an African American transwoman lesbian quadriplegic’

      ‘Not good enough, she’s *thin*’

      ‘Our new leas is a plus-sized African American transwoman lesbian quadriplegic’

      ‘Not good enough, she’s ‘small fat’

      Fuck me – small fat is a thing now.

      1. There’s another bump between the het and cis problems you list. Just have a look at the Ruby Rose/Batwoman controversy. Long story short, since she’s nonbinary she doesn’t count as “lesbian” for diversity purposes

      2. I solved the problem from the start by never watching an Oscar show. By the ratings a lot of others are catching on. They can give their diversity awards, but no one will care or be watching.

    3. I saw part of a sketch thing about ‘Green Book’. Without context I thought it was a legitimate poking of fun at these sorts of stories.

      Then I found out ‘Green Book’ was real.

    4. Their entire identity is likely based on the color of their skin or gender (if female) or their sexual orientation (if non hetero). But they do love being angry and outraged.

  2. Free Robert Kraft.


    1. Throw him in Aaron Hernandez’ cell. He’s not using it.

      1. I laughed out loud at that. I feel guilty but I couldn’t help it.

        1. Kraft would soon be a wide receiver.

          1. +1 former tight end

    2. I brought this up this morning. They ran Donald Sterling out of the NBA and made him sell his team because he told his girlfriend to stop being so public about banging black guys. Sterling patronized a slavery operation. How is that not a hundred times worse?

      Kareem Hunt got cut and missed most of a year and had to resign at league minimum for the sin of pushing some bat shit crazy woman who was screaming in his face. Is there any doubt that if Kraft were a player Goodell would hammer him? You tell me how Gadell doesn’t suspend Kraft for a least a year and fines him several million dollars without having a public relations nightmare.

      One thing about Gadell is that he is not very bright and him doing the dumbest thing possible is always a possibility. So, he may really let Kraft off with a slap on the wrist. If he does that, there will be hell to pay for the NFL.

      1. Yes, on that score, you have a point. If player X is suspended for four games for violating the NFL’s banned / controlled substances regime, player X’s team, presumably, is punished for those four games. The team is punished even though player X did nothing football related.

        Same thing with alleged assaults. The Chiefs were punished even though what Kareem Hunt did was not football related.

        Here, one could make an argument that in order to punish the Patriots, there should some forfeiture of draft picks. John, this past weekend, the talk shows up here were ridiculing Bart Scott for suggesting that the Patriots should forfeit draft picks.

        On the other hand, the moralizing and the virtue signaling, even with some New Englanders, is down right vomitatious. The guy went for a massage.

        1. I think it is absurd. And it is an interesting question about taking draft picks. I had never thought of that. It is possible

          What this does do is further feed into my theory that the NFL is going to ensure the refs totally fuck the Patriots next year to ensure they do not reach the Super Bowl. Can you imagine Goodell having to give the Lombardi Trophy to Kraft after this? Or even the Hunt Trophy for winning the AFC? Not going to happen. No way no how.

          I think Patriot Fans can kiss ever going to another Super Bowl goodbye after this.

          1. You want to hear some funny shit?

            (1) A buddy of mine from West Palm Beach, who is a fanatical Pats fan, and who hates the Dolphins, insisted that Shula was somehow behind Kraft’s arrest. This same buddy also will tell you with a straight face that the Patriots were denied their perfect season because Goodell and Tagliabue along with Jerry Jones, the Rooneys all went to Kraft and Belichich and told them that the Patriots had to lose or else…all in service to Shula and the 72′ Dolphins.

            (2) I heard at least two calls this weekend on WEEI in which the callers claimed that Goodell and the NFL were behind Kraft’s arrest.

            1. That is some really funny shit.

            2. You ought to tell your buddy that unless the refs put superglue on Tyree’s helmet, he can F-off.

              Go Giants!

              1. To give you a little more insight, this buddy claimed that the Pats loss to the Tennessee Titans this past November was no big deal because “it was a fucking throw-away game for us.” This he said after screaming at his wide screen, the refs, the NFL, Josh McDaniels, and the Titans for three hours.

                Final score: Titans 34, Patriots 10.

      2. Lonely old widower pays some chick to rub one out. Crime of the century. (Phila. Inquirer on Sunday gave 24 column inches to the Kraft story and only 21 inches to the R. Kelly one.) Why is this illegal? Doesn’t the painfully shy video game nerd, the obese unattractive gay dude, or the disfigured military vet get to have sex because they’d rather pay for it in coin than try to find a chick to take to dinner and a movie a half dozen times before she comes across? Cash prostitution should be as legal as putting out for a trip to the Bahamas or Vegas, or a hunk of precious stone or even a couple of joints and a Lady Gaga concert.

        1. Yes, it should be. It’s crazy. Particularly crazy are the people who seem to believe that no woman would ever do it willingly. Shit, if I didn’t have much else going on money-wise and there were people willing to pay me to have sex with them, and enough of them that I could be fairly selective, hell yes, I’d do that. But I’m a not particularly physically remarkable man, so there doesn’t seem to be a lot of demand there. I can’t imagine it looks all that different to a similarly situated woman. I’m sure plenty of people never would do it, and good for them. But that doesn’t mean that those who would choose that kind of work are oppressed victims.

          1. Zeb, don’t sell yourself short.

        2. Women cannot control men if men can legally ignore their wives and get jerked off and get a massage.

  3. Editor in Chief Katherine Mangu-Ward, who wrote a provocative piece in this weekend’s New York Times under the headline, “Stop Counting Women: Quotas and tallies won’t bring real progress on gender parity.”

    Which no doubt caused consternation among the erudite city dwellers who read the Times, causing tens of subscriptions to be canceled. Thousands of others considered it, but what else are they going to read? The Post?!??

    1. Is it really thousands of subscribers? Are there really that many old people living on the upper east side?

    2. But did she wear a provocative piece while writing it?

      1. KMW carried a provocative piece while writing it.

        1. Can’t we have both?

    3. The comments thread of the NYT is one of the most depressing on the Internet.

      The insufferable smugness goes up to 11.

      1. People like that is why I have been saying we have to do something about the progressives. There are millions of those slaver shitbags. And they will never, ever stop.

        Look how little differenceit made to win the presidency and both houses of congress in 2016. Something more will have to be done.

  4. Is Hollywood Overthinking Representation?

    Yep. Just keep telling yourself: “It’s only a *movie*!”

  5. some of the greatest libertarian movies in history

    I hope one of them was Rollerball.

    Shenandoah and Sometimes A Great Notion are good libertarian movies but I’m hard pressed to think of one as great as Rollerball.

    1. A Face In The Crowd.

    2. The Secret of My Success

      1. De bow bow….

    3. Risky Business

      1. Or Kinky Business. Starring Ginger Lynn and Tom Byron. A true classic.

      2. Risque Business

    4. Ghostbusters.

      However, your other choices are excellent, especially Rollerball, you dirty pervert.

      1. You are referring to the recent remake of Ghostbusters, I hope.

    5. The Outlaw Josey Wales

      1. Oooh, good choice. Clint’s best movie.

        1. Every Which Way But Loose?

        2. but is it the most libertarian movie of his? I think The Beguiled shows very clearly why there are no libertarian women

      2. I wore this frock coat in Washington, before the war. We wore them because we belonged to the five civilized tribes. We dressed ourselves up like Abraham Lincoln. We only got to see the Secretary of the Interior, and he said: “Boy! You boys sure look civilized.!” he congratulated us and gave us medals for looking so civilized. We told him about how our land had been stolen and our people were dying. When we finished he shook our hands and said, “endeavor to persevere!” They stood us in a line: John Jumper, Chili McIntosh, Buffalo Hump, Jim Buckmark, and me ? I am Lone Watie. They took our pictures. And the newspapers said, “Indians vow to endeavor to persevere.”

        We thought about it for a long time, “Endeavor to persevere.” And when we had thought about it long enough, we declared war on the Union.

        1. The genius of the libertarian ethic is reflected in the scene with Ten Bears. That scene is my go to cinematic reference for libertarianism not being libertopia.

    6. Sophie’s Choice.*

      *I never saw Sophie’s Choice.

      What about ‘Somaliland?’

      Or what about ‘Orphans in the rough’?

    7. Cool Hand Luke

      1. Maybe in light of #metoo and today’s inclusiveness: We The Living

      2. But he dies in the end! What kind of libertarian moment is that?!

        1. Or does he?

          ‘Cool Hand Luke 2: This Time, it’s Personal’.

          Coming in 2020, directed by Michael Bay

    8. Rain Man.

      Totes libertarian.

    9. I had some closet libertarians among my high school teachers. My econ teacher had us watch Rollerball on the last day of the semester. Another good libertarian-ish movie was shown to us by a world history teacher, a great Chinese drama called To Live that showed the reality of the cultural revolution.

      1. +100

        Partly Filmed not far from me in Georgia.

    10. Lenny (Dustin Hoffman’s biopic of Lenny Bruce)

    11. I actually think Russel Crowe’s Robin Hood deserves an honorable mention. It’s easy to make him out to be a socialist folk hero but it had more of a free market angle to it. Not even close to perfect, but it was surprising how they chose to portray the character.

  6. Why does Matt even give the Hollywood community the amount of respect necessary to write such an article? They aren’t worthy of it.

    1. Is Hollywood thinking overrepresentation? Yes.

      Is Hollywood over thinking representation? No.

      1. Is Hollywood representing overthinking? Yes

        Is Hollywood over representing thinking? No

        is thinking Hollywood over representation? Maybe

        Is representing “Yes” Hollywood thinking? Over.

  7. Another inter racial buddy flick? And it won? Golly gee what a surprise.

    Look America! While you sleep, we’re woke!

  8. “”guest star Stephanie Slade argued near the end that the racial-reconciliation movie Green Book feels a bit out of step with where America’s cultural conversation has moved these past few years. “”

    Who cares? So long as it makes affluent white progressives feel all warm and tingly that they are on the right side of an issue long since put to rest, that’s all that matters. “You white right thinking people are good, gosh darnit!”

    1. America’s cultural conversation

      “I think Lucerne Plain is probably the best, or at least the most cost-effective, non-Greek yogurt.”

    1. Kinda hard to be for Free Trade and against a robust navy. At least in the real world

  9. Hollywood only cares about surface level representation. The end game is simply putting more minorities in positions of power and influence, creating an illusion of breakthrough and progress. If the Origami club became 35% less white, no one would give a damn.

    Meanwhile Hollywood will soundly reject any scripts that make China look bad, even if the director came up with the story from real life experience. Thanks to this latest brouhaha, studios will be hesitant to take on any projects in which white protagonists have a positive influence on minorities.

    They’re a business, they can green light whatever they want. But they should strut around town pretending to be some Salon of creativity that promotes “bold and diverse projects”. They’re never going to represent people like you and me. And their idea of groundbreaking representation is Crazy Rich Asian, an embarrassing sinocentric mess that flopped just about everywhere in Asia.

  10. I would like to see us eliminate the draft registration, but I would settle for raising the draft age to 60 and drafting all men and women above the age of 60 into the civil disobedience branch of our military. Then we can send them over to North Korea to sing kumbia until the North Korean regime tumbles or our social security expenditures dramatically shrink.

    1. What the…and the award for most random non-nonsensical topic goes to…

  11. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.

  12. Fuck Hollywood and all those smug elite assholes.

    eat shit fuckers !!!

  13. If you want to get more women to be libertarian, you’ve got to stop pandering to progressives. Look at the vitriol that KMW got in her NY Times piece. Progressive women indoctrinated in college are so far gone, so distance from reality, there’s no turning around that level of stupid. Especially when there’s a shortage of men to satisfy them.

    There’s a reason most every libertarian runs as a republican. Many women are single issue voters. One of the biggest single issues is abortion. So how about, for a start, you write an article about the born-alive bill and how evil demcorats are for voting it down.

    But you won’t. you’ll continue to pander to progressives, just as democrats pander to them. Except you don’t have any free shit to offer.

    1. Ryan, you ignorant slut.

    2. The truth is that the AVERAGE female is simply wired as such that they don’t give a shit about things the same way men do. They crave security, which is promised to them via the state, which is more powerful than a single man who would have provided such security in days gone by. They’re naturally inclined towards left wing thinking. Psychological studies show this on issue after issue.

      That said, we could do better with messaging to reach the ones that are more logically minded. Which honestly would probably be the ones that lean trad con now.

      Prog men are not likely to convert to being libertarians either… This Cosmotarian idea of appealing to leftists is a fools errand.

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