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What is the strongest combination in film’s history?

Not Tracy and Hepburn. Nor Bogart and Bacall. Not even Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.

Nope, the combination that’s tighter than popcorn and hot butter is Hollywood and the American left. The closeness between Tinseltown’s “creative community” and the political causes supported therein can be found in the plot lines of major motion pictures and television shows, the high-dollar donations lavished on Democrat candidates, and the sheer “star power” that energizes campaigns when a candidate’s charisma is in short supply.

Hollywood has even contributed one of its terms from the film industry lexicon: projection.

Production runs its course on location and the sound stage; projection is the “perpetual process,” so vital to the movie biz. Whether in a theater, at a drive-in or via video, films depend on projection for viewing and, ultimately, for revenue.

But in “Hollywood for the cosmetically challenged” — the place we commonly call Washington, D.C. — politics provides a different meaning for “projection.” In a recent column, Victor Davis Hanson describes it as “the psycho-political syndrome of attributing all of one’s own sins to one’s opponents.”

Examples abound. One of the most vexing problems we face as a nation is now called “Bidenflation.” In less than one year, Ol’ Joe and his crew have triggered an inflationary spiral by clamping down on energy production, shutting down domestic pipelines, and imposing even more excessive regulation on the oil and gas industry.

As prices at the pump — and the grocery store — have soared, Democrat poll numbers have tanked. That reality becomes increasingly problematic for members of the House who sit on the left side of the aisle and hope to hang on to their seats in the 2022 midterm elections.

Facing electoral extinction, what’s a leftist to do? If you answered, “projection,” you may one day find work as a political columnist.

Under the guise of oversight, Democrat Reps. Carolyn Maloney of New York and Ro Khanna of California recently held a hearing titled “Fueling the Climate Crisis: Exposing Big Oil’s Disinformation Campaign.” While that title isn’t as catchy as “Jaws” or “All the President’s Men,” this Democrat duo hopes to evade the jaws of defeat, having ignored the actions of “The Biden Bunch,” but impugned energy companies.

Rep. Maloney, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, made it clear she would overlook any cogent responses offered by the energy executives “invited” to testify, as in her scripted remarks she claimed that those executives were obviously lying.

Chairman Maloney chose to define differences of opinion as devious deceptions — even when some who testified agreed that there is, in fact, climate change — but not to the apocalyptic degree enshrined in Democrat dogma.

One glaring omission in this “oversight” hearing was obviously a deliberate oversight: the extent to which energy dollars have fueled the campaigns of Rep. Maloney and the personal fortune of her partner in “protection through projection,” Rep. Khanna. 

Nonpartisan campaign finance watchdogs have documented that the New York congresswoman has taken campaign contributions totaling over $100,000 from the energy industry — including $12,000 from oil and gas interests for next year’s midterms — even after signing a “no fossil fuel” pledge in the last election cycle. In attempting to publicly shame energy executives, Rep. Maloney believes it will deflect attention from her oil-soaked campaign coffers, which, at one point, had her ranked ninth among all 435 House members — Democrats and Republicans alike.

Rep. Khanna obviously believed that he took his “star turn” during the hearing when he demanded that oil executives commit to an “independent audit to verify that none of (their) funds are going to climate denial.” Sad to say, the California congressman is experiencing his own “economic climate denial,” because he never speaks publicly about the energy investments found in his family’s ample portfolio.

Newsweek recently reported that Mr. Khanna’s family purchased between $30,000 and $100,000 in stock from Chevron and ExxonMobil. That same report states that they also purchased $3,003 to $45,000 worth of shares in natural gas companies ConocoPhillips, Dominion Energy and Duke Energy. Those revelations, required by law in annual economic disclosure statements, have put Rep. Khanna on the defensive, but, still, he’s in denial. How else to explain that oil and gas have made up as much as $1.6 million of assets in his fortune? He now claims he’s divesting from the fossil fuel industry, but his recent campaign reports record over $11,000 in oil contributions for the current cycle.

No one is claiming that either member of this Democrat duo is laundering funds. We’re just pointing out that they’re both stuck in a permanent “spin cycle.” And, when they need a break from hanging out their political wash, they will no doubt opt for a movie. Perhaps they’ll next choose to screen “The Candidate,” starring perennial Democrat donor Robert Redford, and released in 1972 — the same year a 29-year-old Joe Biden was elected to the Senate.

Whatever film they watch, Reps. Maloney and Khanna can take turns running the projector.   PT