In many of these cases, “libertarian” would probably be a more correct description. Let me explain. Last year, the Washington Examiner’s Philip Klein argued that Ghostbusters was the most libertarian movie ever made. After all, the EPA plays villain. That’s fine if you are libertarian, but not quite good enough if you’re a values voter. Imagine trying to convince a conservative parent, circa 1984, that a movie—which features foul language, Bill Murray attempting to seduce a coed, and scenes of demonic possession—is somehow evidence Hollywood is finally getting it.
The same phenomenon shows up on TV. Conservative Jack Donaghy was often the voice of reason on 30 Rock—but though Jack certainly was pro-capitalism, he was hardly a paragon of conservative virtue. Similarly, Ron Swanson’s arguments on Parks & Recreation are frequently convincing, but he’s a self-proclaimed libertarian.
This is not to say that Hollywood isn’t churning out some solid movies with wholesome family values. Walden Media, an entertainment company that helped bring about films like The Chronicles of Narnia, has played a huge role in this. Meanwhile, we really can’t dismiss the fact that there does seem to be a moral majority out there that rewards Hollywood for occasionally catering to them.