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News Link • Philosophy: Libertarianism

Penn Jillette: I didn't want to be a stereotypical Hollywood liberal


Penn Jillette has, as always, a lot to get off his chest.

In an interview with Salon, the director of "Tim's Vermeer," recently released on DVD and Blu-Ray, discussed why he thinks the concept of "genius" is often used as "an excuse for laziness." The film, generally acclaimed, examined one unschooled painter's attempt to perfectly re-create a painting by Vermeer, long regarded as a genius painter of light and shadow.

For his part, the magician and filmmaker says that Tim Jenison, the subject of "Tim's Vermeer," converted him to libertarianism after years as a liberal; the undercurrent of free-market notions (anyone could be a Vermeer if they put in the sweat equity!) somewhat colors "Tim's Vermeer." Of Hollywood, Jillette said, "I think it's a culture that's just very, very smart people who think they have something they don't deserve."

What point were you trying to make with this movie?

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