BRETT: One of the things that’s happening is we’re starting to see a return to some measure of normalcy. As more and more people are getting vaccinated. The coronavirus, the covid-19 is moving downward in terms of cases. Lockdowns are starting to wind down to a greater extent. I know we still have some flare-ups. We have stuff in Oregon. Michigan’s been suffering lately, now.
But, by and large, it appears that there is a substantial effort being made to try to reopen our economy, to reopen our country, and to reopen some of the grand traditions. I mean, just last night we had the NFL Draft first round. You actually had people in attendance.
You had people in attendance. You had players in attendance. You had throngs of fanatics for their teams that were present in Cleveland. Well, coming up tomorrow, the Kentucky Derby, which reminds us of an epic monologue that Rush did a decade ago about the movie Secretariat.
RUSH: We watched a movie over the weekend: Secretariat. I was surprised, it’s a good movie. I saw a review of this movie, and if there’s anything that indicates the cultural divide that we’re in… I mean, Secretariat, it’s a Disney movie and it’s all about never quitting, never giving up. I was 22 years old when Secretariat won the Triple Crown. That was 1973, and I had just left home and I was starting on my radio career. I didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to the details. I just knew the horse won the Triple Crown.
I had forgotten how phenomenal the horse was, and I did not know any of the backstory of the horse’s ownership or syndicate which is what the movie is really all about. A woman who didn’t know anything about the horse business, inherits it, and everybody in her family and outside says, “You gotta sell it.” She’s offered eight million for the horse while she owes six million to stay afloat. She turns it down because she believes the horse can win the Triple Crown and be worth three times that. She turns out to be right, but everybody tells her she can’t do it.
I mean, the values here are superb, and there’s this review in Salon.com of this movie that slams Secretariat as a Tea Party fantasy. I mean, here’s a movie about standard good old-fashioned “you can do it if you put your mind to it” values and it gets slammed. When you first read this review you think it’s a satire. As you keep going you find out that this guy is dead serious.
“In its totality Secretariat is a work of creepy, half-hilarious master-race propaganda almost worthy of Leni Riefenstahl,” she was, Hitler’s videographer, “and all the more effective because it presents as a family-friendly yarn about a nice lady and her horse.” Nothing in the movie is not true, and this is said to be a half-hilarious master-race propaganda, almost worthy of Leni Riefenstahl. “Secretariat actually goes much further, presenting a honey-dipped fantasy version of the American past as the Tea Party would like to imagine it, loaded with uplift and glory and scrubbed clean of multiculturalism and social discord.”
Nothing could be further from the truth.
It’s 1973. Her own kids are hippies. They’re going to Woodstock. They’re blowing weed. They’re having doobies. The woman’s out there trying to save her father’s horse farm, happens to be she wins a coin toss and gets the foal that produces Secretariat and the rest is history. It really is fascinating. I tell people that here we are in 2010, and the media always hated Ronald Reagan, the media hated Richard Nixon.
We’ve always had a partisan political divide, but the abject hatred that is aimed at decent, middle of the road Americans by the mainstream cultural left is something like I’ve never seen before. There is nothing in this movie to hate. There’s nothing in this movie to dislike. It’s a harmless movie. In fact, it’s uplifting. Even I, ladies and gentlemen, El Rushbo, and Kathryn… We’re watching it together; I got a little misty-eyed at the end of this movie.
I wouldn’t normally admit that to you people. I’m supposed to be Mr. Tough and gruff and so forth. I got misty-eyed. When I start crying I actually suppress it, try not to, so I clear my throat. I was stunned. I saw Seabiscuit. I’ve seen horse movies, but I didn’t know the backstory to this. I wasn’t even gonna spend that much time talking about it, you know me, ’til I read this review at Salon.com.
Again, “In its totality Secretariat is a work of creepy, half-hilarious master-race propaganda almost worthy of [Hitler’s videographer], and all the more effective because it presents as a family-friendly yarn about a nice lady and her horse. … Secretariat actually goes much further, presenting a honey-dipped fantasy vision of the American past as the Tea Party would like to imagine it, loaded with uplift and glory and scrubbed clean of multiculturalism and social discord.’ I mean there was all kinds of multiculturalism.
The groom is black, the trainer is French Canadian portrayed by a Jewish guy, Diane Lane, no conservative, plays the lead role here, Penny Chenery. I mean, her kids, a couple of them, little maggot infested longhaired rock ‘n’ roller type blowing doobies, and this guy says that there’s no multiculturalism in it? In fact, this woman’s husband — I mean you could reverse the roles — this woman’s husband gets mad because she’s never home.
She’s off running the family business in 1973. The feminazis should love this! The feminazis should latch on to this and say, ‘”his is what we were talking about,” except she didn’t have an abortion. Ah, maybe the feminazis couldn’t launch into her for that. But, regardless, to say this thing is milquetoast and pure fantasy and hunky-dory, so sweet that you could get an insulin shot from it is ridiculous. What’s this guy’s name?
Andrew O’Hehir, probably O’Hare, and the guy obviously feels threatened by the movie. I had no idea, it opened this weekend. I have no idea how it did. “The year Secretariat won the Triple Crown,” this is from the review, “was the year the Vietnam War ended and the Watergate hearings began. You could hardly pick a period in post-Civil War American history more plagued by chaos and division and general insanity (well, OK — you could pick right now maybe).
“Wallace references that social context in the most glancing and dismissive manner possible — Penny’s eldest daughter is depicted as a teen antiwar activist … but our heroine’s double life as a Denver housewife and Virginia horse-farm owner proceeds pretty much as if the 1950s had gone on forever. (The words ‘Vietnam’ and ‘Nixon’ are never uttered.)” Well, I don’t know what Nixon and Vietnam had to do with Secretariat. I don’t know that Secretariat ever knew ’em. Secretariat was a horse.
Sports… You have to call horse racing a sport. Sports has always been an escape from the daily humdrum. Sports has always been Fantasy Island for people. It’s what most of us wish we could do, wish we had the talent to do, wish we had the ability. That’s the beauty of spectator sports. It’s the one thing I always say in which you can totally invest passion without consequence. You can’t do that in any other area of life.
You’re always guarded, your team, you’ll give them everything you got. The only thing they’ll do, they’ll disappoint you and lose. Of course, my team did kick me out of the stadium once, but normally that doesn’t happen. It happened to me, but I was able to take it, rebounded well from it as is evidenced by the fact that I’m still here.
It’s a fun movie and this horse won the Belmont Stakes by 31 lengths. I had forgotten that. I don’t know that I ever knew it at the time. And the theory was this horse couldn’t last that long in the Belmont Stakes. You know, the horse’s history was to start last in the pack and then accelerate for the whole race and win. The same thing happened at Belmont.
Only five horses in the final, it never trailed, and 31 lengths, it’s never been done since. Not even close. There’s nothing in this movie to feel threatened by, there’s nothing in this movie to dislike. The only thing in this movie is to be informed, educated, enlightened, and inspired. (interruption) What part made me cry? Just the ending when everything came together.
BRETT: This is a great example of how far we’ve come — or, better yet, how far we’ve slid. So you see this piece by Andrew O’Hehir talking about how out of touch and wrong the Secretariat movie was. Well, this is 2010. Rush has the power of the EIB microphone. He’s talking about what a great movie it was ’cause he personally saw it.
He’s offering you a counternarrative to what it is you’re getting from Andrew O’Hehir trying to saying this some kind of a terrible movie, a terrible story. But think about how far we have slid in 11 years, because if this were replicated today exactly as it played out in this Salon review…
Here’s a movie, Secretariat. No diversity! It’s a Tea Party dream, comparisons to Hitler, comparisons to Leni Riefenstahl, comparisons to all of that. This movie would have been canceled. Like, if you just listen to the descriptive by this guy O’Hehir, this movie would have been canceled.
If this movie, if Secretariat had come out in 2020-2021, it’d been like, “We gotta get rid of it! We can’t put it out. This thing is radioactive. I mean, my gosh, the review itself says it’s Naziesque! We can’t do this at all! It’s terrible. It’s like triumphal. It doesn’t mention Vietnam or Richard Nixon or…” I mean, it’s really remarkable when you think, right?
Because Rush being the counterweight — and I know I’m getting political on something that was a really great feel-good story, which it is. Secretariat’s a great story. But this illustrates how far we’ve gone in 11 years, because this guy was taking potshots. I don’t think he was necessarily trying to cancel it, but he wanted to be the smartest guy in the room unaffected by the movie.
Today, somebody writes that review of this movie being released now or of a movie similar to that being released now, they’re sunk. Major corporations are pulling out. They won’t allow you to sell concessions of their products in the theater if you dare show the movie. This is exactly why Rush is so timeless, because it shows you along that timeline how much more extreme — extreme — the left has gotten.
Secretariat’s a great movie.