What I Learned About Liberalism From Barry Manilow
By Andrew Tallman
Barry Manilow recently gave a seminar on liberalism. Oh, not intentionally, of course. But sometimes unintentional seminars are the most instructive of all.
It all started when the singer suddenly cancelled his September 18th appearance on the television show “The View.” This statement was posted on Manilow’s Web site on the 17th:
I wanted to let you know that I will no longer be on “The View” tomorrow as scheduled. I had made a request that I be interviewed by Joy, Barbara or Whoopi, but not Elisabeth Hasselbeck. Unfortunately, the show was not willing to accommodate this simple request so I bowed out. It’s really too bad because I’ve always been a big supporter of the show, but I cannot compromise my beliefs. The good news is that I will be on a whole slew of other shows promoting the new album so I hope you can catch me on those.
Although he had appeared twice in the past year without conditions, the fuss between Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Rosie O’Donnell back in May changed all of that. As a close friend of Rosie’s and a large Democratic contributor, Manilow didn’t relish the idea of putting himself anywhere near the token conservative. As he told TMZ, “I strongly disagree with her views. I think she’s dangerous and offensive. I will not be on the same stage as her.” When “The View” refused his “simple” request, he declined to appear.
Or did he?
Barbara Walters discussed the event on her radio show with Bill Geddie, her co-executive producer. According to them, Manilow didn’t cancel “The View.” They cancelled him. Geddie explained it this way: “He said, ‘I’ll do Barbara and Whoopi or I’ll do Whoopi and Sherri or some combination, but I won’t sit with Elisabeth,’ and I said ‘Well, then you won’t be on the show. It’s that simple. And that was the end of it. He’s not going to call the shots. You’re not going to tell me how to produce the show.”
So what did Barry Manilow teach me about liberals through all of this?