Crank of the Week - April 9, 2012 – Matt Damon
Hollywood actors, producers and directors are constantly at pains to prove that they are in some way socially relevant. It is not enough to make millions of dollars simply entertaining people, the oh so politically correct members of the Hollywood elite just cannot resist commenting on politics and the environment. When spouting off on talk shows like The View is not enough, these self appointed protectors of the unwashed masses often make entire feature films about topics that bother them—the fact that they know little about the underlying subjects is never a barrier to film making. Case in point, Matt Damon, best know for the trilogy of Bourne spy thrillers, has signed on to do “Promised Land,” a film that hopes to do for fracking what “The China Syndrome” did for the nuclear power industry.
Hollywood leading man, Damon Damon and John Krasinski ("The Office") are set to star in an anti-fracking film called “Promised Land” that is slated to film in Pittsburgh starting at the end of this month and through early June. The controversial Gus Van Sant film is causing a lot of media buzz and recently held a casting call in Pittsburgh. PA. According to local reports, most of those who showed up looking for work on the film knew little about the feature's message.
Damon's agency confirmed to Politico that the actor is slated to star in “The Promised Land,” calling it an “anti-fracking movie” that he co-wrote with actor John Krasinski, based on a draft by Dave Eggers (“Where The Wild Things Are”). The exact plot is being kept secret for now. The IMDB page for the movie offers few details , only that “a salesman experiences life-changing events after arriving in a small town.” We would guess that the changes are not for the better. Other members of the cast include Frances McDormand, Rosemarie DeWitt, Hal Holbrook and Sara Lindsey.
Wanted, beautiful Pittsburgh people.
Damon is the second person to put an anti-fracking film in the spotlight. Josh Fox is working on “Gasland 2,” a follow-up to his first documentary hit piece about the possible dangers of hydraulic fracturing. Gasland not withstanding, Damon is the latest big Hollywood star to take up the anti-fracking cause. “Environmentalists are giddy over the news that Matt Damon is starring in an anti-fracking film,” reported the Huffington Post. Robert Redford, Debra Winger and Mark Ruffallo have also campaigned against the process, all solid Hollywood tree huggers. The big question is why?
Natural gas is the cleanest of fossil fuels, favored by California, the greenest of American states, for the generation of electricity, at least at night when solar cells don't work or when the wind dies, idling its burgeoning forests of wind turbines. With oil prices rising, gasoline at the pump at historic highs, and increasing tensions in the mid-East, who can find fault with a clean, domestic source of new energy? True, the EPA continues to “discover” new problems with fracking and the gas industry continues to dispute its reports. As this blog has stated in the past, every form of energy has its environments cost. All things considered, fracking to recover natural gas is one of the more benign sources of energy.
Evidently the claim to have an “all of the above” energy policy doesn't extend to natural gas. This flys in the face of the economic boom that natural gas has created in a number of states—one of the few bright spots in an otherwise dismal economic recovery. At the same time, the public cringes and waits for the next “green energy” company to fail (see “Solar Shakeout Gets Scarier” on the IEEE EnergyWise blog). Is Damon really that desperate for a “cause”?
“So Matt Damon is making an anti-fracking movie. Yay! John Krasinksi will star, no doubt also an expert on this cruel practice that extracts natural gas. Boy, I hope he makes goofy faces like he does on The Office. Adorable!” said Greg Gutfeld, host of the FOX late night show Red Eye and a member of The Five. “But like every film these days it’s just a remake. In the spirit of destroying an industry it harkens back to The China Syndrome, that shrill anti-nuke screed from the ’70s. If you think culture doesn’t shape politics, remember that nuclear power is still recovering from that celebrity-driven smear. Which means you can blame Hollywood for our dependence on oil right now.”
Gutfeld continued his on-air rant against Damon and ‘greenies’:
So why hate fracking? Isn’t it just a horizontal windmill shattering rocks instead of birds? Well, the greenies hate it because it works. Yeah, a funny thing happened on the way to Solyndra: fracking put us toward a path towards energy independence making the green efforts look kind of silly.
And Matt knows we can’t have that. Then America wouldn’t be the bad guy anymore. This one fact alone would eliminate the only major villain in today’s movies. True, with drilling there can be environmental side effects. But there are environmental side effects to everything, including film making. Research has shown that the film industry pollutes like mad thanks to the idling trucks, special effects and set construction. But that’s Hollywood, so never mind.
Gutfeld’s comments on Damon. Source: Fox News.
We here at The Resilient Earth have criticized the often clueless commentary on FOX News in the past, but this time Gutfeld hit the nail on the head. While non-Americans are probably puzzled why people in the US are up in arms over gasoline prices that are still only half of typical EU prices, this issue looms large in the coming Presidential election. At the behest of eco-extreemists and celebrity cronies, the Obama administration continues to suppress the indigenous US oil and gas industry while throwing tax payer dollars at green schemes like Solyndra and Nevada Geothermal Power. Do we really need “The Bourne Fracking!” coming to a theater near you?
Gutfeld concluded his diatribe this way: “Anyway, I think someone must have pumped sand and water through Damon’s head because he certainly exudes enough natural gas to power a small city.” Right on, Greg. So, because Hollywood's hypocrisy and misguided efforts to save the world by the direct application of celebrity-driven stupidity needs to be exposed when ever it crawls out from under the stared sidewalks of tinsel town, this Crank of the Week is for you: Matt Frackin' Damon.