Entertainment

Hollywood Political Watch: Bill Clinton is so dreamy, Lohan talks Egypt, and Bieber on abortion

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Ruth Graham
Contributor

If there’s one thing Americans want Hollywood stars to provide, it’s insight into current events and public policy. That’s why Los Angeles is the moral and intellectual capital of the country. And that’s also why this new column will be devoted to finding out answers to pressing questions such as: What does Miley Cyrus think about public sector unions? What’s Shia Lebeouf’s take on corn subsidies? Does the popular young cast of “Glee” think unemployment benefits should be extended beyond 99 weeks?

In my nonpartisan quest to find out what Hollywood is saying about matters that concern Washington, I’ll comb through Twitter, the late night talk shows, and the world’s number one source of ill-informed opinions, the Huffington Post. When the star of “Must Love Dogs” takes to the internet to opine about an attorney general’s most agonizing decisions, I’ll be there. When a “Friends” cast member promoting his new sitcom slams Fox News, I’ll be there. And when a 16-year-old pop star muses about the legal right to abortion, I’ll be there, too.

Let’s get started.

This week, prominent American historians Kevin Spacey, Ben Stiller, and Mary Steenburgen weighed in on one of the greatest questions of our time: Is Bill Clinton awesome, very awesome, or super-triple totally awesome with a cherry on top?

The venue for their ponderings was “President of the World,” a star-studded MSNBC President’s Day special hosted by Chris Matthews. The position of this “documentary” on President Bill Clinton was something akin to the position Monica Lewinsky used on Clinton back in the mid-1990s. (Ba-dum ching!) Matthews’s narration fawned over the “movie stars” who gather at the Clinton Global Initiative, including lingering footage of Demi Moore and Geena Davis. He included photographs of Clinton posing with Bono, Matt Damon, James Earl Jones, Michael Jordan, John McEnroe, Jon Bon Jovi, and other celebrities. In a short segment about the opening of Clinton’s presidential library in Arkansas, Matthews gushed, “In the crowd are such friends as Barbra Streisand and Robin Williams!” Psst, Chris: Being a former president of the United States is a lot more impressive than getting Robin Williams to show up for an event. You don’t have to prove to us that Clinton is popular. Also, Robin Williams is the worst.

The highlight for celebrity-watchers will be the on-camera interviews, however. The special opened with Ben Stiller speaking about Clinton: “He’s taken whatever capital he had as an ex-president and has really put it towards trying to do real good in the world,” Stiller told the camera. That’s the kind of insight that could only come someone who knows what it means to do great things with great integrity: the star of “Madagascar,” “Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa,” “Merry Madagascar,” and, coming in 2012, “Madagascar 3.”

Later, we heard from actor Kevin Spacey: “He listens,” Spacey said of Clinton. “He understands. I think he innately has an affection for and an understanding of people who have gone through difficult times and are struggling, and I think that that has been a huge part of what drives him.” Spacey came to this earth-shattering insight by traveling with Clinton through Africa back in 2002. (Fun fact: Spacey and Clinton were flown there on a private jet by billionaire Jeffrey Epstein, who spent a bit of time in jail just a few years later for soliciting prostitutes.)

The person who received the most screen time in “President of the World,” aside from Clinton himself, was probably former DNC chair Terry McAuliffe. Unfortunately I have no idea what McAuliffe said, because his face, his suit, and, incredibly, the actual words coming out of his mouth all blended together to become a kind of beige clump emitting only a low, muffled murmur.

Luckily, the person with the second amount of screen time was actress Mary Steenburgen, who is very pretty and has a voice that makes words. When she came on screen, which was often, my mind drifted pleasantly to her role in the hilarious yet underrated Martin Short movie “Clifford.” That made it easy to not think too much about these searing observations she provided about President Clinton:

  • He has “an enormous intellectual capacity combined with an enormous heart.”
  • “This is a person who has led a very purpose-driven life, so he had to find his purpose again.”
  • “There’s one phrase that people have said to me, and that’s that he’s president to [sic] the world.”

Um, Mary, is it possible that those “people” were actually just one person, and that person was Chris Matthews?

  • redla

    Armchair editor here, can you bullet it by topic or celeb or otherwise separate out the quotes to make it easier to scan?

    That would keep this one reader coming back for a quick dose of Holly-wise.

  • toomuchinfo

    I’m no expert, but I’m guessing the 50k is the black mail you pay to get the b to not have the lil mo fo in the first place, thus saving your g-A$$ millions.

  • williamjwills

    This is a person who has led a very purpose-driven life, so he had to find his purpose again. Monica might still have his special purpose.

    • JustAnotherConservative

      I was wondering if mine was the only brain that threw the word “special” into her quote.

  • lukuj

    West’s comment made me want to vomit. Is this guy any kind of role model for any living being? And why can HE use the N word, especially in such a degrading way? I don’t care if he’s black or not, it’s disgusting and he is disgusting. If I still had young kids or teens, they would not be allowed to listen to or watch anything that included this “person” (I use the work very loosely.

  • trent26

    I guess Charlie Sheen wasn’t available for his insights

  • DIANE TX

    Well let’s just look at what really happened. Jimmy Carter – destroyed the economy, foreign policy, ALMOST as weak as Obama. Ronald Reagan – very strong foreign policy, the hostages were released upon his election. Then we had George H Bush who said “no new taxes” but there were. Next there was Bill Clinton – womanizer in Chief, who got two terms only because the Republicans had the majority in Congress. Next was George W. Bush, who had the 09/11/2001 attack nine months into his Presidency. He got a second term because Americans were still barfing over Clinton’s two terms.

    Now we have Barack Obama. His foreign policy is to unionized the entire World into an one World Union. “Workers of the World Unite”. His domestic policy is that if the Democrats lose State elections, run and hide so that nothing can get done.

    The truth is that Barack Obama’s agenda is to do away with Capitalism. He believes that Capitalism is an evil system. Only “Marxism” is acceptable to him. In Barack Obama’s World, the crack addict deserves to be compensated as “equally” as the person who started a company and employs hundreds of people.

  • Hi Seoul

    How disturbing is it that Lindsay Lohan made the most sensible comment of the bunch? Reminds me of during the ’08 campaign when Paris Hilton came out with an energy plan better than either candidate’s.

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  • Totzke

    mental giants with hearts of gold and plenty of your money to give away to others that ‘need it’…don’t touch theirs , though!

    • John

      My sentiments exactly. It’s that super liberal progressive ideology of using OPM. (other peoples money)

      It’s lets spread your wealth around, but not their own.