If you want to own a complete compendium of Hollywood and celebrity arrogance, then "Hollywood Hypocrites" by Jason Mattera belongs on your book shelf. There is no better collection of hypocritical stories about the assholes we pay good money to see on television or the big screen.
Okay, I'm not a liberal and I do live in Los Angeles. I probably should be skulking around in back alleys because I am in a very small minority. I prefer to make my own judgments and opinions on the world around us. I call myself a "fiscal conservative and a social moderate." I generally don't fall into your standard category of political affiliation. As my father used to always say, "they all stink." But, in Tinseltown, disagreeing with the prevailing opinion can be suicide.
Even though they are just as misguided as the folks the Hollywood types like to disparage.
Jason Mattera lays them all out there for you to consider. And, frankly, the double standards run rampant amongst the show business loons.
Take, for instance, Alec Baldwin. Please take him. To another hemisphere or, better still, planet. Here's a guy who left a very public voice mail for his 11-year-old daughter, calling her a "rotten little pig." Some publisher got him then to write a book on parenting! But, wait, there's more. Fat ass Baldwin went up against the big banks during the Occupy movement. How dare they get bailed out??? Meanwhile, he becomes the TV pitchman for Capital One, which received almost four billion dollars of that bail out payola.
You have Barbra Streisand. You can have her. The big-nosed, big-mouthed, and now big-assed Barbra is a global warming zealot. Yet, as Mattera reports, she spends $22,000 a year watering her lawns and gardens, requests 120 bath-size towels upon arrival at production offices, and uses 13 semi-trailers when on concert tour.
Harrison Ford? He's also worried about the environment. But, he owns seven airplanes and brags that he often will fly up the coast for a cheeseburger.
Bruce Springsteen? I've never been a fan of the boss' music and I like him even less now. This champion of the lowly working man has figured out how to use tax loopholes so he can write off 98 percent of his property state tax. It's okay for the poor in the community to get some entitlements just as long as it's not Brucie's money.
Matt Damon runs himself ragged preaching world peace and how we should all fight against violence. Yet, he made four straight movies (for lots of cash) where the poster shows him pointing a high-powered rifle.
Al Gore, the shepherd who wants to save the planet, has a Tennessee house that features the highest consumption of electrical energy in the state. When officials came out to help teach the family how to conserve, the electric bill actually increased the very next month.
And on and on and on. You laugh throughout Mattera's book, but wind up feeling very, very angry.
I've got my own second-hand tale. Years back when she was still doing that daytime gabfest, Rosie O'Donnell fancied herself as a child advocate. She was here to help our kids. A friend to tots all over the country. A friend of mine had his class visit her show. And she ignored the children completely. You see, there were no cameras or press around.
Phony, phony, phony.
If there's one criticism about Mattera's book, it's that he too frequently adds very snarky humor to his research. It diminishes a bit his work and turns it into a "tit for tat" piece. Jason could easily have taken a softer approach and let the double standards speak for themselves.
But it's out there. Loud and clear.
Dinner last night: Chicken salad and broccoli salad.