Hollywood and the Red Menace The Hollywood Ten Essay

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As Paddy Chayefsky writes in Network, "the world is a business." (Andrew Dominik echoes the sentiment in Killing Them Softly: "America's not a country, it's just a business. Now fucking pay me."). The blacklisting of writers classified as "Communists" was purely a business move on the part of the Hollywood industry -- just as the creation of the Hays Code following the scandalous trial of Fatty Arbuckle and other incidents was a move by the same industry to essentially ward off any unwelcome or hostile takeovers by foreign bodies (i.e., the federal government). In policing itself and throwing a few individuals under the bus, Hollywood could ensure that the movies would keep getting made and the money would keep rolling in. Ideologies, principles and noble ideals were not the underlying motives in any of this. They were simply the barking dogs that the industry had to respond to: and it did respond by throwing the Hollywood Ten to the dogs -- fresh meat for the baying hounds. Just as Chayefsky and Dominik (and others) have understood -- Hollywood, like the rest of America (and the world), has always been first and foremost a business. Idealists need not apply.

Indeed, the fact that Regan helped rat out a number of Hollywood "Communists" and then went on to obtain the Oval Office just indicates the nature of the relationship between business and politics in the modern era. It was a quid-pro-quo arrangement -- a you-scratch-my-back-I'll-scratch-yours type of situation.

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In the post-War era, Communism was the new boogeyman used by the Imperialists to exert their influence around the world (Nazism allowed the Allies to destroy the German infrastructure and rebuild it as they saw fit). Hollywood was an enormous propaganda machine for the government both throughout the war and after. Flushing out a few "reds" from the system was not a matter of morals or ethics -- it was a matter of doing business and the studio system was happy to oblige (just as overthrowing a few dictators or democratically elected leaders here and there was a matter of "ensuring liberty" for the CIA).

It was not a question of Hollywood executives standing by their employees so much as Hollywood executives exerting control of the narrative being written about their industry. In business, public relations are crucial. Condemning a few "leftists" was a type of corporate social responsibility in the post-War era, as far as they were concerned. Should they have stood by their employees? -- perhaps, if they were interested in conveying a different narrative -- but that was not the case in the post-War era. The Cold War was the narrative and the Hollywood industry helped to develop the script.

Of course, the Cold War was scripted by the deep state as….....

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