Celebrities who choose to espouse their political inclinations in public forums -- and then cry foul about any fallout -- are laughing all the way to the bank.
Strip away their umbrage and indignation, and what you have is a whole lot of free publicity, courtesy of Big Media.
Could it be that the public is being played like a cheap fiddle?
There was Whoopi Goldberg, whose disdain for all things Republican is well-known. That shtick would have drawn yawns at a recent fund-raiser for Democrat John Kerry. So instead, she cut loose with a barrage of crude puns on the president's last name. And guess what• She got noticed , big time, including by Slim-Fast, which canned her as its spokeswoman
Somehow we doubt Goldberg was banking on pitching diet drinks as the mainstay of her livelihood. Excuse us, Whoopi, is that Hollywood calling?
And what of poor Linda Ronstadt• Her admiration of propagandist Michael Moore and his farcical "Fahrenheit 9/11" on stage in Las Vegas spurred a public uproar and got her booted from the casino.
But what The New York Times missed in its editorial touting the rights of entertainers to express their political views was this tidbit: Reportedly, Ronstadt prior to her performance told an entertainment writer, "laughingly," that "I keep hoping that if I'm annoying enough to them, they won't hire me back." Imagine that.
Count on seeing more political pronouncements -- and indignation, wink, wink -- from celebrities as they cash in on the election-year follies.