Yes, there once was a time when Hollywood actually supported American values
With the abrupt collapse of global Communism in the late 1980s, much has been gleaned from the billions of pages which comprise the former Soviet Union’s most secret of state secrets. Chief among these included the planned infiltration of Hollywood by Soviet Agents, American Communists and their reliably “useful idiots” of America’s liberal artistic intelligentsia.
They were quite successful at it during the 1940s and 50’s. Enough so to prompt a scathing, sworn testimony and warning from Hollywood’s king of the era, Jack Warner. Mr. Warner admitted that people:
“with un-American leanings have infiltrated the film industry. They tried to insert into scripts certain things which, in my opinion, are Un-American.”
These dark years prompted the formation, by the vast majority of Hollywood’s elite who were then loyal, patriotic citizens, of the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals (MPAPAI, also MPA). The “Alliance” was comprised of a whose who of Hollywood elite which included the likes of Jack Warner, Walt Disney, Cecil B. DeMille, John Ford, Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Jack Benny, Errol Flynn, John Wayne, Milton Berle, Jane Russell, Ginger Rogers, Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Barbara Stanwyck and so many, many more – too many to mention here.
These legends of the screen formed the Alliance for one reason: To combat the growing Communist/Progressive threat to subvert American culture and society through the clandestine infiltration of the motion picture industry. Most members were instrumental in, themselves, infiltrating leftist cells and reporting the names of the insidious perpetrators to the studio management and to the U.S. House Committee on Un-American Affairs.
Of course the Leftist/Progressive/Communists screamed foul and that it was a “witch hunt” against otherwise loyal Americans. Unfortunately for them, the evidence proved overwhelmingly that they were up to no good. For decades following these events, misinformed liberals tried desperately to rehabilitate these Communist infiltrators – acting as the Marxist Left’s dependable puppets to the end. However, these cries of foul were soon silenced after the former Soviet KGB achieves became public after the collapse of the USSR. Then, it was all spelled out, with incontrovertible evidence, that the plan existed all along. Names were named and perhaps not so surprisingly, they matched, with uncanny precision, the very names of the Communist/Leftist/Progressive anti-American subversives that the Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals had named to the House Committee on Un-American Affairs.
Below is the Alliance’s “Statement of Purpose” and the contents of a flyer they produced. Yes, you heroes of the silver screen turned out to be heroes in real life!
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
We believe in, and like, the American way of life: the liberty and freedom which generations before us have fought to create and preserve; the freedom to speak, to think, to live, to worship, to work, and to govern ourselves as individuals, as free men; the right to succeed or fail as free men, according to the measure of our ability and our strength.
Believing in these things, we find ourselves in sharp revolt against a rising tide of communism, fascism, and kindred beliefs, that seek by subversive means to undermine and change this way of life; groups that have forfeited their right to exist in this country of ours, because they seek to achieve their change by means other than the vested procedure of the ballot and to deny the right of the majority opinion of the people to rule.
In our special field of motion pictures, we resent the growing impression that this industry is made of, and dominated by, Communists, radicals, and crackpots. We believe that we represent the vast majority of the people who serve this great medium of expression. But unfortunately it has been an unorganized majority. This has been almost inevitable. The very love of freedom, of the rights of the individual, make this great majority reluctant to organize. But now we must, or we shall meanly lose “the last, best hope on earth.”
As Americans, we have no new plan to offer. We want no new plan, we want only to defend against its enemies that which is our priceless heritage; that freedom which has given man, in this country, the fullest life and the richest expression the world has ever known; that system which, in the present emergency, has fathered an effort that, more than any other single factor, will make possible the winning of this war.
As members of the motion-picture industry, we must face and accept an especial responsibility. Motion pictures are inescapably one of the world’s greatest forces for influencing public thought and opinion, both at home and abroad. In this fact lies solemn obligation. We refuse to permit the effort of Communist, Fascist, and other totalitarian-minded groups to pervert this powerful medium into an instrument for the dissemination of un-American ideas and beliefs. We pledge ourselves to fight, with every means at our organized command, any effort of any group or individual, to divert the loyalty of the screen from the free America that give it birth. And to dedicate our work, in the fullest possible measure, to the presentation of the American scene, its standards and its freedoms, its beliefs and its ideals, as we know them and believe in them.
The group produced a pamphlet in 1948. The contents of that pamphlet are as follows:
The purpose of the Communists in Hollywood is not the production of political movies openly advocating Communism. Their purpose is to corrupt our moral premises by corrupting non-political movies — by introducing small, casual bits of propaganda into innocent stories — thus making people absorb the basic principles of Collectivism by indirection and implication.
The principle of free speech requires that we do not use police force to forbid the Communists the expression of their ideas — which means that we do not pass laws forbidding them to speak. But the principle of free speech does not require that we furnish the Communists with the means to preach their ideas, and does not imply that we owe them jobs and support to advocate our own destruction at our own expense.