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Michael Medved: “Chappaquiddick”: A Powerful Reminder of Arrogance and Corruption


The new film “Chappaquiddick” depicts a searing scandal that changed the course of political history. As the only surviving brother in a storied dynasty, 37-year-old Senator Ted Kennedy looked like a sure bet for the Presidency in the Summer of 1969. But after leaving a boozy party with a 28-year-old female passenger, he drove his car off a bridge.

Inexplicably, he waited more than 9 hours before notifying local authorities who might have rescued the trapped young woman. The film highlights backstage manipulations, involving some of the nation’s most powerful figures, that rushed the victim’s burial without autopsy and treated Ted’s political survival as their all-important goal.

For those disgusted by today’s tawdry politics, “Chappaquiddick” provides a powerful reminder that corruption and arrogance have long afflicted American public life.

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Michael Medved: For Dems, Hunting Is Worse Than Abortion


A new poll by the Economist/YouGov organization shows glaring contradictions in the way Democrats define morality, with big majorities saying they accept abortion, divorce, gambling, drinking alcohol, gay sex, pre-marital sex and doctor-assisted suicide.

One form of behavior, however, drew overwhelming condemnation: 82 percent found “hunting animals for sport” to be morally wrong!

If this reflects a tender concern for all living things, isn’t it worth asking if a baby in the womb is a living thing? Even if someone don’t consider the baby to be fully human before delivery, surely that unborn child deserves as much respect as, say, a deer.

Yet Democrats find abortion more acceptable than hunting, by a margin of three to one—showing obtuse inconsistency at best, utter derangement at worst.

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Michael Medved: 2017: A Breakthrough Year for Hollywood Heroines?

Opioid

Hollywood’s so desperate to get past harassment scandals that industry insiders have proclaimed 2017 “the year of the strong woman.” Box office returns show that the three top moneymakers in America all featured female protagonists: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” “Beauty and the Beast” and “Wonder Woman.” “Women truly emerged as the giants of cinema this year,” said box office analyst Paul Dergarabedian.

 

Of course, it’s also noteworthy that this trio of top films, as skillful and enjoyable as they were, all counted as sequels or remakes of properties dating back more than 40 years—hardly triumphs of daring originality!

 

Somehow, these rehashed projects got new life by casting glamorous new actresses: Daisy Ridley of “Star Wars” is 25, Emma Watson of Beauty and the Beast is 27, and Wonder Woman Gal Gadot is 32. It’s hardly a shock to see moviegoers happily investing their money to gaze up at youthful screen goddesses with striking good looks.

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Michael Medved: Necessary Allies, Not Implacable Enemies

Opioid

To place our polarized politics in proper perspective, conservatives need to look back at the nearly half-century struggle known as “the Cold War.” The Soviet Union and its satellites really did amount to an “Evil Empire” and the US and our allies constituted the necessary counterweight of goodness and decency.

But many of the most important nations in the West—including Britain, France, Germany and Canada—were really “welfare states” with centralized, government-dominated economic policies, well to the left of anything the American Democratic Party demands for the US today.

Moreover, many domestic liberals- including Harry Truman, John Kennedy and Senator Scoop Jackson—played heroic roles in opposing the tyrannical menace of international Communism. This history should encourage conservatives to place our current conflicts in the right context. In this dangerous world, contemporary liberals—for all their wrong-headed ideas on health insurance, taxes or social issues—ought to count as necessary allies, not implacable enemies.

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Michael Medved: Trump Turns

Marijuana

For most Americans, Presidents Day counts as a trivial holiday but this year it looks as if Donald Trump made the most of the occasion. Perhaps he saw results of new historian polls and noted that the five all-time greats shared common characteristics. Lincoln, Washington, FDR, Theodore Roosevelt and Eisenhower all made a priority of finding allies in the pursuit of their governing agenda. They displayed determination and optimism rather than erratic plunges into apocalyptic gloom.

President Trump channeled that positive spirit in his speech before a joint session of Congress, emphasizing aspiration over anger, cooperation over confrontation.

Yes: it’s just one speech, but an enormous television audience helped President Trump refocus the administration on a coherent program of common sense, conservative reform. His GOP colleagues should feel relieved, while Democrats struggle to cope with a new Trump who’d rather make deals than wage twitter-wars.

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