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Dreamjerks
Everyone has a grievance-minded lobby group these days.


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Mark Steyn

EDITOR’S NOTE: This piece appears in the December 31, 2005, issue of National Review.

Just in time for Christmas, Hollywood released a gay cowboy movie, Brokeback Mountain, whose very title sounds like a definition of unsafe sex. “Homo on the Range,” as the jaunty headline writers of the Bay Area’s SF Weekly called it, stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger as a couple of cowpokes who like to make . . . well, I was going to deploy Shakespeare and say “the beast with two backs,” but I’m not sure that’s the phrase. Maybe Roy Rogers could stroll on and sing “A Four-Legged Friend.”

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The point is: Is Hollywood out of its mind? Jake and Heath are the kind of male stars guys have no interest in and chicks dig as fantasy love objects–the rugged but sensitive type; they don’t want to see them playing cowboys who can’t wait to get into their chaps.

Of course, there’s no end of other movies out there. There’s Syriana, a film in which the CIA subverts a Middle Eastern government. Pardon me while I fall to the floor doubled up with laughter. If only the CIA were that good. The only government they seem the least bit capable of subverting is America’s.

For decades, Hollywood’s cranked out movies where the desperate guy is on the run and he uses a payphone at a dusty crossroads in the middle of Nebraska, and somewhere in Langley the spooks are listening in! He arranges to meet his contact by the newsstand of the concourse at Grand Central but the other fellow gets there early and goes into the men’s room and mysteriously the toilet tank in Stall Three is packed with explosives, though the cops cover up and say it was because it was noncompliant with Al Gore federal cistern regulations.

And all this is total rubbish. The only fellows they’re subverting are Hollywood, where circa 1972 they planted agents in deep deep cover at every studio to pump out movies revealing that, when anything odd happens anywhere on the planet, it’s the Agency that’s behind it. And Hollywood’s happy to go along with the scam because the CIA, “big business,” and Englishmen are the only villains you can have who don’t have grievance-minded lobby groups who’ll picket you and accuse you of “hate crimes”. . .

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