imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Ronald Reagan: B Film Actor, Ladies’ Man and FBI Snitch

by William Hughes Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008 at 12:36 PM
liamhughes@comcast.net

Ronald Reagan’s persona was crafted from 1937 to 1965, working in B films. The Shadow side of Reagan, however, reveals that he was a snitch for the FBI and ratted out his fellow members of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), during the days of the “Red Scare.” He also was a notorious womanizer, according to Marc Eliot's expose: “Reagan: The Hollywood Years.” It was Reagan, too, as U.S. President, who ruthlessly busted PATCO in 1981.

 Ronald Reagan: B Fi...
cover-marc_eliot__s_book_on_reagan.jpg, image/jpeg, 220x321

“Betrayal is the only truth that sticks.” - Arthur Miller (1)

If you are a Hollywood film buff and a political junkie, too, as I am, you will just love Marc Eliot’s latest book, “Reagan: The Hollywood Years.” The author touches on Ronald Reagan’s early days in Dixon, Illinois, but mainly focuses on his film career in which he was cast in one bad B movie after another. The main expose in this absorbing tome is that during the days of the “Red Scare,” late 40s through the 50s, Reagan was a snitch for the FBI! The author writes that Reagan became a “secret informant, code name ‘T-10,’ for J. Edgar Hoover’s red-baiting FBI.” He regularly met with them in LaLaLand and “handed over names of Screen Actor Guild (SAG) members who ‘might’ be Communist sympathizers.” Reagan would also contact his brother, Neil, “from a pay phone on Sunset Boulevard to pass along information” to the FBI. (2)

What brought Reagan, who served as President of SAG, (1947-52), and again in 1959, to do such a terrible thing? I think he was mostly a hollow type of man, vain, insecure and highly self- righteous. The record shows that to protect his rear end, he had become “a commie hunter;” he also carried a gun. The exact number of colleagues on whom Reagan ratted, will probably never be known. Once tagged as a Red “sympathizer,” no matter how scanty the evidence, an individual was subjected to being “blacklisted” and barred from working in the Hollywood Industry. The fact that one’s political beliefs were protected by the First Amendment didn’t stop the witch hunts. Some victims of the blacklisting process were so scarred, that they committed suicide. Mr. Eliot mentions two: Philip Loeb and Barry Crum. (3)

Reagan arrived in Tinseltown in 1937. His prior drama experience came from stage work that he’d done back home in high school and at Eureka College. His also had a better than average speaking voice and projected a wholesome Midwestern look, just what Central Casting was seeking. Like today, however, you can’t get the auditions, unless you have a good agent. Reagan was really lucky on that score. An acquaintance referred him to the William Meiklejohn’s Agency, a well connected Hollywood player, that soon merged into the Lew Wasserman tent. A seven year contract with Warner Brothers quickly followed. Wasserman, a super agent, deserves the major credit for steering Reagan on his nearly 30 year, very lucrative career in Hollywood that lasted until 1965. It all led to the formation of his carefully crafted political persona that was to become his successful calling card.

That job Reagan did as a sportscaster of baseball games (1936-7) worked to his advantage, too. This was at a radio station in Des Moines, Iowa, where he broadcasted the games, giving a play-by-play account, via information coming over a wire. So, Reagan would be sitting in a studio describing a baseball game being played, say in Chicago. This called for him to make up or embellish things in order to enliven the broadcast. Reagan became an expert at “telling stories” and making things up. The telling story thing he got honestly from his father “Jack” Reagan--a shoe salesman. This skill would serve Reagan well, too, as U.S. President, (1981-89), in selling his disastrous “Voodoo Economics” to the people. (4)

Although the author does discuss in some detail Reagan’s two marriages; first to Jane Wyman (1940-49), and then later to Nancy Davis (1952-2004), and also his relationship with his children, I’m going to mostly ignore that sensitive subject. I will only note that Ms. Wyman is one of my all time favorite actresses. Her role in the riveting film, “Johnny Belinda,” is a classic for which she rightly deserved the “Best Actress” award in 1949. It was Ms. Wyman, who had first “urged” Reagan to run for the “Board of SAG,” but she couldn’t stand his right wing zealotry. His incessant “pontificating” about politics tended to “drive her crazy.”

Hollywood, in Reagan’s day, was then, as it is in 2008, the capital of the country as far as very attractive women are concerned. And, he wasn’t shy about dating many leading ladies. In fact, Reagan’s “love life was no secret...It was the talk of the town,” writes Mr. Eliot. Some of the women worked with him at Warner Brothers. Later at the White House, at Cabinet meetings, Reagan would “gossip” in terms “quite graphically,” about the many gals that he’d bedded over the years. It was “a very long list,” according to the author, more than twenty, and it included some fabled female celebrities that would have made even Warren Beatty, a reported legendary womanizer, gasp in awe. (5) Mr. Eliot names Reagan’s putative love interest.

The author also adds all kinds of juicy tidbits in his book to round out his characterization of Reagan. For example, Reagan was “jealous” of the actor Earl Flynn. Well, that one is easy to understand. Flynn was a dashing figure, a “top-of-the-line” star, compared to the boring, wooden Reagan. Also, Mr. Eliot reveals that Reagan loathed the Kennedy brothers, John and Robert, particularly Robert; and that he had a strong dislike for homosexuals; and enjoyed changing his shoes two or three times a day. Reagan also was quoted as saying that he didn’t understand why actors “needed to have a union.” This was another insight into his warped psyche. In August, 1981, then President Reagan ruthlessly fired the striking 11,345 air traffic controllers (PATC0)--busting the union. He did so even though PATCO, and the Teamsters, a national organization, had endorsed him for president over the Democrats’ Jimmy Carter, in 1980. (6)

You might want to know where was the Uber-Patriot Reagan, during WWII? He was making “propaganda movies” in Hollywood, Culver City to be exact, for the government! His eyesight was supposedly “so poor he could be assigned only to limited duties in non combat situation.” When I think about the real patriots that I knew when I was growing up in South Baltimore, who made genuine sacrifices in WWII, such as: Pete “Hooks” Williams, of the legendary “Darby’s Rangers,” who lost a leg at Normandy; “Rip” Burdinski, blinded; Charley Ellenberger, without both of his legs; and Harry C. Agro, who spent nearly three years subjected to vicious beatings every day in a horrific Japanese’s POW camp, I want to scream out about the inequality of it all. (7) Reagan was oiling the propaganda machine, while my heroes were fighting the war. There is plenty more in Mr. Eliot’s gem of a book, on a wide variety of interesting topics, too much for me to summarize here.

I think Reagan, as President of the U.S., pulled a con job on America! He served the Special Interests, not the people. Mr. Eliot’s book opens up a window on the forces, during Reagan’s Hollywood days, which helped to forge this B film actor’s outlook on life. His harmful economic legacy is still with us today. (8)

Notes:

1. Arthur Miller’s finest play was the “Crucible,” which debuted in 1953. It was about the Salem witch trials, but it also served as an attack on the evils of McCarthyism, then rampant in the U.S.

2. Ronald Reagan’s FBI File No. is #100-382196. Another author, Curt Gentry, in “J. Edgar Hoover,” corroborates Reagan’s spying on his fellow SAG members. He writes, at p. 354, that Reagan was a “confidential informant for the FBI since 1943.”

3. “The Inquisition in Hollywood” by L. Ceplair and S. Englund.

4.

http://www.nationmaster.com/encyclopedia/Voodoo-economics

5. http://www.donaly.com/don_alys_column27.html

6. http://www.counterpunch.org/macaray06302008.html and

http://socialistworker.org/2001/374/374_10_PATCO.shtml

7. http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/5060

8. http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Ronald_Reagan/Ronald_Reagan_Legacy.html

©2008, William Hughes, All Rights Reserved.

William Hughes’ videos can be found at: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=liamh2. His latest book, “Saying ‘No’ to the War Party,” is available on Amazon. Email Contact: liamhughes@comcast.net.

Report this post as:

Local News

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M31 5:20AM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 7:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 8:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 9:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 10:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 9:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 8:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 8:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 11:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 8:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A27 5:37AM

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A13 12:39AM

lausd whistle blower A11 6:58AM

Website Upgrade A10 10:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 8:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 6:58PM

Change Links April 2018 A01 6:27PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Against the Rent Madness and For a Nonprofit Orientation! S24 11:56AM

Cybermonde, cyberguerre, cyberespace, cyberterrorisme S24 6:35AM

Paraphysique de psychosomatique S22 6:58AM

Chuck Grassley: Women Abusing, Animal Murdering, Illegal War Supporting Criminal S22 2:58AM

Finance Capitalism and the Digital Economy S21 4:45PM

Muselières syndicales, muselières patronales S21 7:19AM

Jeff Bezos, Amazon, The Washington Post, Whole Foods, Etc S21 2:50AM

Why Choose Nut Milk Over Cows' Milk S21 1:01AM

Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement S19 9:53AM

Abolir l'économie S18 11:18AM

The Dictatorship of Corporations S17 5:26PM

18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting S17 3:13PM

Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue S15 6:51AM

Shopping du bashing S14 8:42AM

After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again S13 8:28PM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen S12 9:30PM

Probabilités de fin d'humanité S12 6:49AM

Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW S11 2:57AM

Steer clear of work morality! S09 12:10PM

The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally! S06 11:23PM

August 2018 Honduras Coup update S06 12:28PM

Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges S06 6:14AM

Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts S05 8:29AM

Paraphysique de contextualité S05 8:29AM

Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism S03 3:39PM

Ex-voto de réification S03 10:24AM

Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh A31 10:45PM

Paraphysique d'exploitation occultation A31 10:24PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy