The Corner

A Pseudonym Is Born

The amanuensis of “David Kahane” would like to second the sentiments of “Jack Dunphy” regarding pseudonymous blogging, but for slightly different reasons. Unlike Officer Dunphy, I’m not in danger of losing permanent employment since, for screenwriters and other creative people in The Industry, there is no such thing; unless you’re on the writing staff of a TV show, writers are basically freelance hustlers, somewhere between hookers and politicians in the local ecosystem.

Moreover, while I don’t go out of my way to start political discussions, my sentiments are freely shared with those I work with (mostly producers and agents) if and when the subject comes up. Sometimes, true, they’ll stop a dinner party conversation in its tracks, as happened one memorable evening in the Hollywood Hills with a once-famous but now has-been TV and movie star, but they’re generally regarded as a kind of weird affectation, like Wiccanism, that can be overlooked if said producers and agents want to get their hands on the story material. Plus, it’s amusing to see how many conservative sentiments you can sneak into a script before the producer starts to notice.

“David Kahane” was born two years ago to explain the ways of Hollywood and the hard left to those of you on the center-right in a way that is both authentic and, I hope, amusing. Another conservative voice blathering in our echo chamber about the Stalinist conformity of Hollywood would just have been ignored. But every crazy notion that flows from Dave’s pen has its foundation is something that someone on the Left is actually thinking or saying, and to judge by the hate mail Kahane gets from lefties who finally have figured out that he’s mocking them, the truth hurts.

In any case, Dave has taken on a life of his own, including a family (his sainted father, “Che” Kahane, and Uncle Joe), a lifestyle (Echo Park chic), a body of work (mostly sequels, all subtitled This Time, It’s Personal), and now even his own Facebook page. Guessing his identity is also a showbiz a parlor game, and the leading candidates are David Mamet, Mark Steyn, Rob Long, and Bill Goldman; please send in your guesses to Needless to say, he’s very flattered.

Oh yes, and he’s currently out with a book proposal. Maybe one of these days he’ll even write a script under his name, instead of mine.

Since February 2007, Michael Walsh has written for National Review both under his own name and the name of David Kahane, a fictional persona described as “a Hollywood liberal who ...


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