Note: MAJOR spoiler alert for the following post.
My wife and I took our six-year-old son to Cars 2 over the weekend, and I left the theater thinking about Ben Shapiro’s Primetime Propaganda from Broadside Books. I didn’t expect this. My intention was merely to see a cute kids movie that would give my family a few laughs, not to fork over $21 to sit through an hour and a half of environmentalist propaganda.
It pains me to write this, because I love Pixar movies. And that’s saying something, because I’m not a kids movie kind of guy. But Pixar has always engaged me from start to finish with its touching stories and uplifting messages.
Cars 2 shattered all that.
If you had to guess based on logic who or what the bad guy of the movie was, what would you say? If you answered, “an arrogant, mean, and selfish car who doesn’t deserve to ever win a race,” you’d be dead wrong. If, however, you answered, “big oil and a bunch of obsolete, beat-up cars determined to keep everything gasoline powered by sabotaging high efficiency fuel,” you’d be exactly right. The old cars were presented as backward, malicious, and unwilling to embrace change. One of them even featured the vanity plate “Bad Gass” to drive the point home about how eeeeevil gasoline is.
This film was not written for kids. Most will undoubtedly enjoy it–as my son did–and it contained no inappropriate material other kids movies are infamous for, but the entire story and message (and even all the jokes) were aimed at adults.
Maybe this should have angered me, but in thinking about it, I couldn’t help but laugh–and not in the way the writers intended. While trying to portray the fossil fuel industry as hopelessly out of touch with the times and the green energy industry as the immediate future, they don’t realize how silly they appear as the evidence continues to pile up that (a) we have plenty of oil, shale, and natural gas to power the next generation of Americans (and possibly beyond) and help charge our economy, and (b) green energy so far has been a total flop and a net drag on the economy. One day, I expect technology will be developed to make renewable energy a viable alternative–and I do hope that day comes sooner than later–but for now, those who present it as the immediate savior, while deriding “big oil” as the devil, are the ones hopelessly out of touch with the times.
Jon Wakefield is a leader of the Richmond, Virginia Tea Party.