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spencerl964

ROBERT TAYLOR WAS A "SNITCH!"

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>>If I, and others, are suspected of such, that is a matter for the police, prosecutors, perhaps grand juries, but it's none of Congress's damned business.

 

As I mentioned earlier, the LA Police had someone infiltrate the branch offices of the CPUSA and that person had full access to the names of all members. This covered roughly the whole of the 1930s.

 

So, why weren't these names made part of the record earlier than 1955 when William Ward Temple testified? Wouldn't this have been far more cost effective than to call in witnesses one-by-one and ask them for the names of other Communists? If these were "official' membership records, then it would have been far more valid information than someone's possibly faulty memory.

 

This may prove interesting to those who wish to read further:

 

http://writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/50s/navasky-chap10.html

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I wonder if the Smith Act could be applied to someone like Angle in Nevada if she loses to Reid and Reid is then killed since she made some comments about 2nd amendment rights and having to use them if necessary, and when asked about the comments (more than once) didn't retract her initial comment.

 

I'm NOT saying that she should be tried I just wonder from a legal perspective if the Justice Dept could go after her.

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The topic here is the Fed goverment controling free speech and content and the communist hearing during the 50s and someone pointed out the Smith law and how that was used by the Feds. According to that poster the Smith law is still in effect and all I did was ask if the law could be used today by Justice department to go after someone that made a comment that could lead to the death of a member of Congress. I only used the Nevada case as an example since it has been in the news a lot and I also indicated I wasn't saying the Justice department should make such a case. Relax buddy. In fact if one wanted to read something political into my question it would be that the current Dem admin could use the Smith law to crack down on members of the right, something that I'm clearly not for based on all the comments I have made on this topic (that Congress and the Justice dept exceeded their authority). You appears to support granting the Feds that type of power. I find that very funny and iconic!

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> {quote:title=jamesjazzguitar wrote:}{quote}

> The topic here is the Fed goverment controling free speech

 

 

No, this thread is about a bunch of people griping about Robert Taylor?s free speech, fussing about him for talking, because he revealed some of the Soviet-supporting Communists he had known in Hollywood.

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> {quote:title=jamesjazzguitar wrote:}{quote}

> I wonder if the Smith Act could be applied to someone like Angle in Nevada if she loses to Reid and Reid is then killed since she made some comments about 2nd amendment rights and having to use them if necessary, and when asked about the comments (more than once) didn't retract her initial comment.

>

> I'm NOT saying that she should be tried I just wonder from a legal perspective if the Justice Dept could go after her.

 

While I agree that this question is a logical extension of our discussion, and I am of the opinion that the Smith Act would apply to Angle, since she has repeatedly called for taking up arms against the gov., if the voting doesn't go her way, I have to agree with Fred, to an extent. This discussion, broadly, is about how the communist witch hunts of the 50s affected the movie business.

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If I recall correctly, many of the Smith Act convictions were overturned on First

Amendment grounds. It was apparently all right to talk about overthrowing the

government, as long as you didn't actually take steps to do so. I'd have to go

back and check the details. I'm guessing Angle would be covered by the

First and also by the fact that I don't think her statement rose to advocating,

in clear language, killing Reid. And if one wanted to quibble, I guess one could say

that killing Reid, even though he is the majority leader of the Senate, wouldn't

amount to overthrowing the government.

 

Back to Robert Taylor for a minute. There is a fantastic older book called Flesh

and Fantasy by Penny Stallings that deals with all manner of things about the

studio era in Hollywood. In a section called Love and Hisses, she has this to say

about Taylor: "Well, we can't exactly say that Robert Taylor didn't get along with his

co-star in The Conspirator, the seventeen-year-old Elizabeth Taylor, but he

did have his problems with her. Supposedly it was one of the few times in his

life when the lady-killer was able to control his attraction for a woman, but unfortunately,

"not from the waist down." He explained his physical condition to the cameraman,

who agreed to focus the camera on him above the waist." Whether this is a true

story and just some more Hollywood hype I don't know, but it sure makes for a funny

tale. Now Robert Taylor has been snitched upon.

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> {quote:title=MyFavoriteFilms wrote:}{quote}

> I feel this thread is straying a bit.

>

> Why not post some of Robert Taylor's testimony? The focus of this thread is Taylor's so-called squealing.

 

This was published by the US Printing office in book form. The text below was scanned electronically and it contains some scanning errors.

 

Robert Taylor?s testimony, Part 1:

 

h6. http://www.archive.org/stream/hearingsregardin1947aunit/hearingsregardin1947aunit_djvu.txt

 

The Chairman. Mr. Taylor, will you please raise your right hand ?

Do you solemnly swear the testimony you are about to give is the truth,

the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I do.

 

The Chairman. Mr. Stripling.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, will you state your full name and pres-

ent address for the record, please ?

 

Mr. Taylor. My full name is Robert Taylor. My present address

is 807 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, Calif.

 

The Chairman. I would like to ask all these still photographers to

stay there for a few more minutes, take a few shots, then come down

here and take your positions. We do not want to have any confusion

in the chambers. Moving around brings about some confusion.

 

Mr. Taylor, would you please speak a little louder?

 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.

 

Mr. Stripling. Please state when and where you were born, Mr.

Taylor.

 

Mr. Taylor. I was born in Filley, Nebr., August 5, 1911,

 

Mr. Stripling. You are here before the Committee on Un-American

Activities in response to a subpena which was served upon you on

October 3, 1947, are you not?

 

Mr. Taylor. That is correct.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Chairman, I ask that the subpena be made a

part of the record.

 

The Chairman. Without objection, so ordered.-^

 

Mr. Stripling. What is your present occupation, Mr. Taylor?

 

Mr. Taylor. I am presently employed as an actor by Metro-Gold-

wyn-Mayer Studios in Culver City, Calif.

 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been an actor?

 

Mr. Taylor. I have been employed as an actor since 1934.

 

Mr. Stripling. How long have you been in Hollywood?

 

Mr. Taylor. I have been in Hollywood since 1933.

 

Mr. Stripling. Were you in the last World War ?

 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.

 

Mr. Stripling. In what branch of the service ?

 

Mr. Taylor. The United States Naval Air Service.

 

Mr. Stripling. What was your rank?

 

Mr. Taylor. I was discharged from the Navy as a full lieutenant.

 

Mr. Stripling. During the time you have been in Hollywood has

there been any period during which you considered that the Communist

Party or the fellow travelers of the Communist Party were exerting

any influence in the motion-picture industry ?

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, of course, I have been looking for communism

for a long time. I have been so strongly opposed to it for so many

years ; I think in the past 4 or 5 years, specifically, I have seen more

indications which seemed to me to be signs of communistic activity in

Hollywood and the motion-picture industry.

 

Mr, Stripling. In any particular field?

 

Mr. Taylor. No, sir. I suppose the most readily determined field in

which it could be cited would be in the preparation of scripts ? specifi-

cally, in the writing of those scripts. I have seen things from time

to time which appeared to me to be slightly on the pink side, shall we

say ; at least, that was my personal opinion.

 

Mr. Stripling. Could we have a little better order?

 

The Chairman (pounding gavel). Please come to order.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, in referring to the writers, do you mean

writers who are members of the Screen Writers Guild ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I assume that they are writers of the Screen Writers

Guild. There seem to be many different factions in skills in Hollywood.

I don't know just who belongs to what sometimes, but I assume they

are members of the guild.

 

Mr. Stripling. Are you a member of any guild ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I am a member of the Screen Actors Guild ; yes, sir.

 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever noticed any elements within the

Screen Actors Guild that you would consider to be following the Com-

munist Party line ?

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, yes, sir; I must confess that I have. I am a

member of the board of directors of the Screen Actors Guild. Quite

recently I have been very active as a director of that board. It seems

to me that at meetings, especially meetings of the general membership

of the guild, there is always a certain group of actors and actresses

whose every action would indicate to me that if they are not Com-

munists they are working awfully hard to be Communists. I don't

know. Their tactics and their philosophies seem to me to be pretty

much party-line stuff.

 

The Chairman. May I interrupt for just a minute? We are going

to recess for about 2 minutes and we hope everybody will keep their

seats.

 

(A short recess was taken.)

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Thanks Fred...wonderful...this is the heart of what we're discussing in this thread. We can substantiate or refute impressions of Robert Taylor based on his actual word-for-word testimony. Much clearer now.

 

Incidentally, I find it interesting that he says his full name is 'Robert Taylor.' Actually, that was his stage name. There's no middle name with Robert Taylor, it's a made-up Hollywood name. I wonder if the studios made them legally change it. Or if he was still technically Spangler Arlington Brugh, born in Nebraska.

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Even if the convictions were overturned the Smith Act was used by the government to intimidate people. Thus we have another 'fine line' between what is an actual act of treason (i.e. really advocating an overthrow) and what is just making 'silly' comments, and how either side of the political sprectrum could use this act (as well as others) to intimidate the other side while in power. I felt the topic here was using Robert Taylor and the commie witch hunts as the basis in defining the extent of government power in these type of situations.

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That isn't the whole of Taylor's testimony. More must have followed the recess as it's missing this comment:

"One chap we have currently, I think is Howard Da Silva. He always seems to have something to say at the wrong time."

 

It's also missing his referencing Karen Morley, and his saying at one point that films should be made purely to entertain and not for propaganda purposes. A few minutes he turns around and claims that he would be glad to appear in any anti-communist films (which I guess he doesn't see as not necessarily being purely entertainment).

 

Also missing is where Taylor is asked whether the party should be outlawed and he said "they should all be sent back to Russia or some other unpleasant place."

 

These comments can be found in Beverly Linet's bio of Taylor.

 

No judgment being made here of anybody, but you have a right to know that what you see isn't all that there was.

 

EDITED TO ADD:

I see now that after I posted this originally, that some of the rest of Taylor's testimony has been added.

 

Edited by: clore on Sep 28, 2010 11:32 AM

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> {quote:title=MyFavoriteFilms wrote:}{quote}

>

> Thanks Fred...wonderful...this is the heart of what we're discussing in this thread. We can substantiate or refute impressions of Robert Taylor based on his actual word-for-word testimony. Much clearer now.

 

I posted Part 1 earlier on this thread. This is Part 2.

 

Robert Taylor?s testimony, October 22, 1947, Part 2:

 

h6. http://www.archive.org/stream/hearingsregardin1947aunit/hearingsregardin1947aunit_djvu.txt

 

 

The Chairman. All right, we will go in session again. Go ahead,

Mr. Stripling,

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, these people in the Screen Actors Guild

who, in your opinion follow the Communist Party line, are they a dis-

rupting influence within the organization ?

 

Mr. Taylor. It seems so to me. In the meetings which I have at-

tended, at least on issues in which apparently there is considerable

unanimity of opinion, it always occurs that someone is not quite

able to understand what the issue is and the meeting, instead of being

over at 10 o'clock or 10 : 30 when it logically should be over, probably

winds up running until 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning on such issues as

points of order, and so on.

 

Mr. Stripling. Do you recall the names of any of the actors in the

guild who participated in such activity?

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, yes, sir; I can name a few who seem to sort of

disrupt things once in awhile. Whether or not they are Communists,

1 don't know.

 

Mr. Stripling. Would you name them for the committee, please?

 

Mr. Taylor. One chap we have currently, I think, is Mr. Howard

Da Silva. He always seems to have something to say at the wrong

time. Miss Karen Morley also usually appears at the guild meetings.

 

Mr. Stripling. That is K-a-r-e-n M-o-r-l-e-y?

_ Mr. Taylor. I believe so ; yes, sir. Those are two I can think of

right at the moment.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, have you ever participated in any pic-

ture as an actor which you considered contained Communist pro-

paganda ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I assume we are now referring to Song of Russia. I

must confess that I objected strenuously to doing Song of Russia at

the time it was made. I felt that it, to my way of thinking at least,

did contain Communist propaganda. However, that was my personal

opinion. A lot of my friends and people whose opinions I respect did

not agree with me.

 

When the script was first given me I felt it definitely contained

Communist propaganda and objected to it upon that basis. I was

assured by the studio that if there was Communist propaganda in that

script it would be eliminated. I must admit that a great deal of the

things to which I objected were eliminated.

 

Another thing which determined my attitude toward Song of Rus-

sia was the fact that I had recently been commissioned in the Navy and

was awaiting orders. I wanted to go ahead and get in the Navy. How-

ever, it seems at the time there were many pictures being made to

more or less strengthen the feeling of the American people toward

Russia.

 

I did Song of Russia. I don't think it should have been made. I

don't think it would be made today.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr, Taylor, in connection with the production of

Song of Russia, do you know whether or not it was made at the sug-

gestion of a representative of the Government?

 

Mr. Taylor. I do not believe that it was made at the suggestion of a

Government representative ; no, sir. I think the script was written and

prepared long before any representative of the Government became

involved in it in any way.

 

Mr. Stripling. Were you ever present at any meeting at which a

representative of the Government was present and this picture was

discussed?

 

Mr. Taylor. Yes. sir; in Mr. L. B. Mayer's office. One day I was

called to meet Mr. Mellett whom I met in the company of Mr. Mayer

and, as I recall, the Song of Russia was discussed briefly. I don't

think we were together more than 5 minutes.

 

It was disclosed at that time that the Government was interested in

the picture being made and also pictures of that nature being made by

ether studios as well. As I say, it was to strengthen the feeling of the

American people toward the Russian people at that time.

 

Mr. Stripling. The Mellett you referred to is Mr. Lowell Mellett?

 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.

 

Mv. Stripling. He was the Chief of the Bureau of Motion Pictures

of the Office of War Information ?

 

Mr. Taylor. That is right. However, may I clarify something?

 

Mr. Stripling. Yes; go right ahead.

 

Mr. Taylor. If I ever gave the impression in anything that ap-

peared previously that I was forced into making Song of Russia, I

would like to say in my own defense, lest I look a little silly by saying

I was ever forced to do the picture, I was not forced because nobody

can force yon to make any picture.

 

I objected to it but in deference to the situation as it then existed I

did the picture.

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But you know what, I kind of agree with those 'missing' comments. I understand why he was saying them. He's really saying that the primary purpose of motion pictures is to entertain, then if there is to be anything political in them, they should be pro-establishment, pro-American government. And he is expressing his disdain for a political system and a country where it is prevalent. Good for him, speaking his mind.

 

By the way, I know he appeared in SONG OF RUSSIA...but that was before he went to war, and it was MGM's idea, not his.

 

I will always be a Bob Taylor fan. This testimony convinces me about why I like him...he says what he feels. It alienates others, but we know where he stands. I respect it and see it as a sign of character. I do not have patience for others who dodge the issues and waver back and forth.

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Please understand that if I'm going to take the stance that many of the accused posed no threat and were basically innocent dupes, then no matter whether I agree with what the committee was doing or not, I have to also grant that many friendly witnesses were also innocent dupes.

 

By "dupe" I mean that in any case a person can be well-intentioned but still caught up in the hysteria of the moment.

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It doesn't matter to me if they were dupes or not. I am interested in whether they answered directly. Taylor does not say Morley or DaSilva were communists...he says they were disruptive. The committee can fill in the rest of it with testimony from others or from Morley and DaSilva themselves. Taylor was not duped into mentioning them and he did not really snitch on them...he merely makes an observation about their behavior at meetings.

 

As a Republican, I appreciate Taylor and Reagan and Rogers and the others who told it the way they did. We cannot discredit their testimony by saying they were duped and did not mean to say that. They were under oath, they meant it, and I am sure their families are proud of them for being honest.

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> {quote:title=clore wrote:}{quote}

> That isn't the whole of Taylor's testimony. More must have followed the recess as it's missing this comment:

> "One chap we have currently, I think is Howard Da Silva. He always seems to have something to say at the wrong time."

>

> It's also missing his referencing Karen Morley,

 

I posted those quotes earlier. See below.

 

What I?m doing now is posting all of his testimony, but it is a lot and I have to break it up in to 5 separate posts.

 

You could have done this yourself. I gave you the link to his testimony.

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>>You could have done this yourself. I gave you the link to his testimony.

 

No, I didn't want to step on your shoes, that would have been impolite. I only word-searched your post for the Morley and Da Silva references. I could tell by the brevity that it wasn't the entire text.

 

I didn't even click on the link as I've read the whole testimony previously - in fact, it's somewhere in my apartment in storage along with some other complete texts. The one for Lionel Stander is a riot, it could almost have been from a Marx Brothers movie and Ayn Rand's chatter is also amusing.

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> {quote:title=MyFavoriteFilms wrote:}{quote}

>

> I will always be a Bob Taylor fan. This testimony convinces me about why I like him...he says what he feels. It alienates others, but we know where he stands. I respect it and see it as a sign of character. I do not have patience for others who dodge the issues and waver back and forth.

 

I posted Parts 1 and 2 earlier. This is Part 3.

 

Robert Taylor?s testimony, October 22, 1947, Part 3:

 

h6. http://www.archive.org/stream/hearingsregardin1947aunit/hearingsregardin1947aunit_djvu.txt

 

 

Mr. Stripling. Did you have any special qualification, Mr. Taylor,

for the particular part they wanted to fill? I understand you were

selected, among other reasons, because of the fact that you were a

musician.

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, I assume that that might have been a qualifica-

tion for doing a part in Song of Eussia. Yes, I had studied music quite

extensively in college and previous to going to college.

 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell the committee whether or not in your

experience in Hollywood any scripts have ever been submitted to you

which contained any lines of material which you considered might be

un-American or communistic ? any lines which you objected to?

 

Mr. Taylor. Oh, yes, sir. I think from time to time you are bound

to run into lines and situations and scenes which I would consider

objectionable. One script was submitted to me quite some time ago,

but not officially from the studio, which I objected to on the basis that

it seemed to foster ideologies which I did not personally agree with.

 

However, nothing more came out of it. The script has not been

made and I have heard nothing more about it, as a matter of fact.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, there has been quite some testimony

here regarding the presence within the motion-picture industry of a

number of writers who are considered to be Communists. Are you

personally acquainted with any of the writers whom you consider to

be Communists or who follow the Communist Party line?

 

Mr. Taylor. I know several writers ? I know of several writers in

the motion-picture business who are reputedly fellow travelers or pos-

sibly Communists. I don't know about that.

 

Mr. Stripling. You have no personal knowledge of it yourself?

 

Mr. Taylor. I know one gentleman employed at the studio at which

I am employed. Mr. Lester Cole, who is reputedly a Communist. I

would not know personally.

 

Mr. Stripling. Would you say that after Pearl Harbor the activi-

ties of the Communists in the motion-picture industry increased or

decreased?

 

Mr. Taylor. I think quite obviously it must have increased. The

ground for their work in this country was obviously more fertile.

I would say "yes"; it did definitely increase following Pearl Harbor.

 

Mv. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, have you ever joined any Communist-

front organization?

 

Mr. Taylor. No. sir; believe me.

 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever played in any picture with people

whom you had any doubts about as to their loyalty to the Government?

 

Mr. Taylor. Not that I know of. I have never worked with anyone

knowingly who is a Communist. Moreover, I shall never work with

anyone who is a Communist.

 

Mr. Stripling. You would refuse to act in a picture in which a

person whom you considered to be a Communist was also cast ; is that

correct ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I most assuredly would and I would not even have

to know that he was a Communist. This may sound biased; however,

if I were even suspicious of a person being a Communist with whom

I was scheduled to work, I am afraid it would have to be him or me,

because life is a little too short to be around people who annoy me as

much as these fellow travelers and Communists do.

 

Mr. Stripling. You definitely consider them to be a bad influence

upon the industry?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do ; yes, sir.

 

Mr. Stripling. They are a rotten apple in the barrel ?

 

Mr. Taylor. To me they are and I further believe that 99.9 percent

of the people in the motion-picture industry feel exactly as I do.

 

Mr. Stripling. What do you think would be the best way to ap-

proach the problem of ridding the industry of the Communists who are

now entrenched therein?

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, sir, if I were given the responsibility of getting

rid of them I would love nothing better than to fire every last one of

them and never let them work in a studio or in Hollywood again. How-

ever, that is not my position.

 

If I were producing a picture on my own ? and I hope I never do ?

but if I were, I would not have one of them within 100 miles of me or

the studio or the script. I am sure the producers in Hollywood are

faced with a slightly different problem. They are heads of an industry

and as heads of an industry they might be slightly more judicial

than I, as an individual, would be.

 

I believe firmly that the producers, the heads of the studios in Holly-

wood, would be and are more than willing to do everything they can

to rid Hollywood of Communists and fellow travelers.

 

I think if given the tools with which to work ? specifically, some

sort of national legislation or an attitude on the part of the Govern-

ment as such which would provide them with the weapons for getting

rid of these people ? I have no doubt personally but what they would

be gone in very short order.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, do you consider that the motion picture

primarily is a vehicle of entertainment and not of propaganda?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do. I think it is the primary job of the

motion-picture industry to entertain ; nothing more, nothing less.

 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the industry would be in a better

position if it stuck strictly to entertainment without permitting politi-

cal films to be made, without being so labeled?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do. Moreover, I feel that largely the picture

business does stick to entertainment. I do not think they let themselves

be sidetracked too much with propaganda films and things of that sort.

Every once in a while things do sneak in that nobody catches. If the

Communists are not working in the picture business there is no motive

for their sneaking things in.

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I love reading this testimony. I just love the way he goes on record and doesn't mince words. I doubt that an actor would do this today. There are more liberals in Hollywood now and even the middle-of-the-road ones are afraid to hurt chances of employment...so we would get much cagier responses now or a plethora of 'I don't knows.'

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> {quote:title=MyFavoriteFilms wrote:}{quote}

> I love reading this testimony. I just love the way he goes on record and doesn't mince words. I doubt that an actor would do this today. There are more liberals in Hollywood now and even the middle-of-the-road ones are afraid to hurt chances of employment...so we would get much cagier responses now or a plethora of 'I don't knows.'

 

 

See earlier posts for Parts 1 - 3.

 

Robert Taylor?s testimony, October 22, 1947, Part 4:

 

h6. http://www.archive.org/stream/hearingsregardin1947aunit/hearingsregardin1947aunit_djvu.txt

 

Mr. Stripling. Did you have any special qualification, Mr. Taylor,

for the particular part they wanted to fill? I understand you were

selected, among other reasons, because of the fact that you were a

musician.

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, I assume that that might have been a qualifica-

tion for doing a part in Song of Russia. Yes, I had studied music quite

extensively in college and previous to going to college.

 

Mr. Stripling. Could you tell the committee whether or not in your

experience in Hollywood any scripts have ever been submitted to you

which contained any lines of material which you considered might be

un-American or communistic ? any lines which you objected to?

 

Mr. Taylor. Oh, yes, sir. I think from time to time you are bound

to run into lines and situations and scenes which I would consider

objectionable. One script was submitted to me quite some time ago,

but not officially from the studio, which I objected to on the basis that

it seemed to foster ideologies which I did not personally agree with.

 

However, nothing more came out of it. The script has not been

made and I have heard nothing more about it, as a matter of fact.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, there has been quite some testimony

here regarding the presence within the motion-picture industry of a

number of writers who are considered to be Communists. Are j^ou

personally acquainted with any of the writers whom you consider to

be Communists or who follow the Communist Party line?

 

Mr. Taylor. I know several writers ? I know of several writers in

the motion-picture business who are reputedly fellow travelers or pos-

sibly Communists. I don't know about that.

 

Mr. Stripling. You have no personal knowledge of it yourself?

 

Mr. Taylor. I know one gentleman employed at the studio at which

I am employed. Mr. Lester Cole, who is reputedly a Communist. I

would not know personally.

 

Mr. Stripling. Would you say that after Pearl Harbor the activi-

ties of the Communists in the motion-picture industry increased or

decreased?

 

Mr. Taylor. I think quite obviously it must have increased. The

ground for their work in this country was obviously more fertile.

I would say "yes"; it did definitely increase following Pearl Harbor.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, have you ever joined any Communist-

front organization?

 

Mr. Taylor. No. sir; believe me.

 

Mr. Stripling. Have you ever played in any picture with people

whom you had any doubts about as to their loyalty to the Government?

 

Mr. Taylor. Not that I know of. I have never worked with anyone

knowingly who is a Communist. Moreover, I shall never work with

anyone who is a Communist.

 

Mr. Stripling. You would refuse to act in a picture in which a

person whom you considered to be a Communist was also cast ; is that

correct ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I most assuredly would and I would not even have

to know that he was a Communist. This may sound biased; however,

if I were even suspicious of a person being a Communist with whom

I was scheduled to work, I am afraid it would have to be him or me,

because life is a little too short to be around people who annoy me as

much as these fellow travelers and Communists do.

 

Mr. Stripling. You definitely consider them to be a bad influence

upon the industry?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do ; yes, sir.

 

Mr. Stripling. They are a rotten apple in the barrel ?

 

Mr. Taylor. To me they are and I further believe that 99.9 percent

of the people in the motion-picture industry feel exactly as I do.

 

Mr. Stripling. What do you think would be the best way to ap-

proach the problem of ridding the industry of the Communists who are

now entrenched therein?

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, sir, if I were given the responsibility of getting

rid of them I would love nothing better than to fire every last one of

them and never let them work in a studio or in Hollywood again. How-

ever, that is not my position.

 

If I were producing a picture on my own ? and I hope I never do ?

but if I were, I would not have one of them within 100 miles of me or

the studio or the script. I am sure the producers in Hollywood are

faced with a slightly different problem. They are heads of an industry

and as heads of an industry they might be slightly more judicial

than I, as an individual, would be.

 

I believe firmly that the producers, the heads of the studios in Holly-

wood, would be and are more than willing to do everything they can

to rid Hollywood of Communists and fellow travelers.

 

I think if given the tools with which to work ? specifically, some

sort of national legislation or an attitude on the part of the Govern-

ment as such which would provide them with the weapons for getting

rid of these people ? I have no doubt personally but what they would

be gone in very short order.

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Hee hee. This stuff is a hoot. The more one reads of Taylor's actual testimony, the

sillier he looks. This matinee idol has been looking for communists for years? Yep.

And so he finds some things in scripts on the "pink side?" And there must be something

not quite right about Howard Da Silva because he tends to have something to say at

the "wrong time?" Goodness gracious, granny. Red alert. All this boils down to is much

hysterical ado about very little. It confirms most of what I thought about the committee-

it really wasn't worth the time it spent on this so-called problem. I love Taylor's last

statement. If only we could find some way, perhaps through national legislation, to get

rid of these people. Yes, that sounds very democratic and fair. What a jerk.

 

Here's a very brief excerpt from Bertolt Brecht's testimony, giving the committee an answer

they probably weren't looking for. The orginal audio is available, and it sounds ever better

with Brecht's German accent. The pols just didn't stand a chance:

 

 

Stripling - Uh, Mr. Brecht... is it true that you have written a number of very revolutionary

poems, plays, and other writings?

 

Brecht - I am uh written a number of poems, songs, and plays, in the fight against Hitler, and, of

course, they can be considered, therefore, as revolutionary, cause, I, of course, was for the

overthrow, of that government.

 

Unidentified voice - Mr. Stripling, we're not interested in

 

Stripling - Yeah

 

Unidentified voice - any works that he might of written, uh, going for the overthrow of Germany,

 

Stripling - Yes, I,

 

Unidentified voice - the government there

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> {quote:title=C.Bogle wrote:}{quote}

> Here's a very brief excerpt from Bertolt Brecht's testimony,

 

Could you post a link to his full testimony, please?

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Ja wohl. This should take you to the links that give both the printed excerpts and the

audio recording. As far as I can tell, the printed material is incomplete, but the audio,

which runs for a little over 26 minutes is complete:

 

Transcript:

 

http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Brecht_HUAC_hearing_%281947-10-30%29_transcript

 

Audio:

 

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/59/Brecht_HUAC_hearing_%281947-10-30%29.ogg

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> {quote:title=MyFavoriteFilms wrote:}{quote}

> I love reading this testimony.

 

See earlier posts for Parts 1 - 4.

 

Robert Taylor?s testimony, October 22, 1947, Part 5:

 

h6. http://www.archive.org/stream/hearingsregardin1947aunit/hearingsregardin1947aunit_djvu.txt

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, do you consider that the motion picture

primarily is a vehicle of entertainment and not of propaganda?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do. I think it is the primary job of the

motion-picture industry to entertain ; nothing more, nothing less.

 

Mr. Stripling. Do you think the industry would be in a better

position if it stuck strictly to entertainment without permitting politi-

cal films to be made, without being so labeled?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly do. Moreover, I feel that largely the picture

business does stick to entertainment. I do not think they let themselves

be sidetracked too much with propaganda films and things of that sort.

Every once in a while things do sneak in that nobody catches. If the

Communists are not working in the picture business there is no motive

for their sneaking things in.

 

Mr. Stripling. Mr. Taylor, returning to the picture Song of Russia

for a moment, Miss Ayn Rand gave the committee a review of the

picture several days ago. In the picture there were several scenes,

particularly a wedding scene at which a priest officiated ; also several

other scenes at which the clergy was present. When you were making

this picture were you under the impression that freedom of religion

was enjoyed in Russia?

 

Mr. Taylor. No, sir ; I never was under the impression that freedom

of religion was enjoyed in Russia. However, I must confess when it

got down to that part of the picture the picture was about two-thirds

gone and it didn't actually occur to me until you mentioned it just a

minute ago.

 

Mr. Stripling. Those are all the questions I have now, Mr. Chair-

man.

 

Tlie Chairman. Mr. Nixon ?

 

Mr. NixoN. No questions.

 

The Chairman. Mr. Vail?

 

Mr. Vail. No questions.

 

The Chairman. Mr. McDowell ?

 

Mr. McDowell. Mr. Taylor, you have been interested in this matter

for quite a long time, and probably know as much about the situation

in Hollywood as any person who lives there. There have been many

statements made since Mr. Thomas and I were to Hollywood last May

and began this investigation into the Communist activities on the

west coast, to the effect that the Committee on Un-American Activities

was attempting to control thought or frighten the producers out there

into producing some sort of picture. Has that been your impression of

our activities?

 

Mr. Taylor. No, sir; not at any time did I get that impression.

 

Mr. McDowell. I am very glad to hear you say that. I thought

a great deal about things I have read in various columns of the papers

as to our attempting to control the great American movie industry. It

is silly. The Committee on Un-American Activities is attempting to

find the enemies of the Nation. We are not concerned with liberals or

conservatives or anything of that kind; we are hunting enemies of the

Nation. We know some are in Hollywood. Thank you for coming.

 

The Chairman. Mr. Nixon ?

 

Mr. Nixon. Mr. Taylor, as a result of your appearance before the

Subcommittee on Un-American Activities in Hollywood a few months

ago, you were subject to considerable criticism and ridicule from

certain left-wing quarters were you not?

 

Mr. Taylor. I am afraid so; yes, sir. It didn't bother me, however.

 

Mr. Nixon. And as the result of your testimony and your appearance

before this committee today and the stand you have taken on this issue

you will be the subject of additional ridicule and criticism from those

quarters ; will you not ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I suppose so. However, any time any of the left-wing

press or individuals belonging to the left wing or their fellow-traveler

groups ridicule me, I take it as a compliment because I really enjoy

their displeasure.

 

Mr. Nixon. You realize, however, that your success as an actor, your

livelihood as an actor, depends to a great extent upon the type of

publicity you receive?

 

Mr. Taylor. Yes, sir.

 

Mr. Nixon. And that ridicule and abuse heaped upon you has a

much more serious effect than it would have upon a person who does

not depend upon public acceptance of what he does ? Yet you feel that

under the circumstances it is your duty as an American citizen to state

your views on this matter?

 

Mr. Taylor. I most assuredly do, sir.

 

Mr. Nixon. As far as you are concerned, even though it might mean

that you would suffer possibly at the box office, possibly in reputation

or in other ways for you to appear before this committee, you feel

you are justified in making the appearance and you would do so

again if you were requested to do so ?

 

Mr. Taylor. I certainly would, sir. I happen to believe strongly

enough in the American people and in what the American people be-

lieve in to think that they will go along with anybody who prefers

America and the American form of government over any other sub-

versive ideologies which might be presented and by whom I might

be criticized. [Loud applause.]

 

The Chairman. Mr. Taylor, are you in favor of the motion-picture

industry making anti-Communist pictures giving the facts about

communism ?

 

Mr. Taylor. Congressman Thomas, when the time arrives ? and it

might not be long ? when pictures of that type are indicated as neces-

sary, I believe the motion-picture industry will and should make anti-

Communist pictures. When that time is going to be I don't happen

to know, but I believe they should and will be made.

 

The Chairman. Do you have any other questions, Mr. Stripling?

 

Mr. Stripling. I would like to ask Mr. Taylor if he thinks the Com-

munist Party should be outlawed, for this reason: This committee

presently has before it two bills which seek to do that very thing,

legislation which would in fact outlaw the party. Do you think that

would reach this Communist influence in the motion-picture industry?

 

Mr. Taylor. Well, in order to answer that, I personally, with all

due regard to Mr. Hoover, whose opinion I respect most highly, cer-

tainly do believe that the Communist Party should be outlawed.

However, I am not an expert on politics or on what the reaction

would be. If I had my way about it they would all be sent back to

Russia or some other unpleasant place [loud applause] and never

allowed back in this country.

 

The Chairman. I am going to ask the audience to please not ap-

plaud. We are trying to get the facts here. This is not a show, or

anything like that. Do not applaud any of the witnesses who are

on the stand, or at any other time. Go ahead, Mr. Taylor.

 

Mr. Taylor. If outlawing the Communist Party would solve the

Communist threat in this country then I am thoroughly in approval

and accord with it being outlawed.

 

The Chairman. Does any other member have any questions?

(No response.)

 

The Chairman. Mr. Taylor, thank you very much for coming here

today. We want to congratulate you for your very frank statement.

We are going to ask all the audience and all the photographers to

please keep your seats while the witness is leaving. We will have

another witness in a few seconds. Mr. Leckie and Mr. Smith, please

escort the witness from the chambers.

Thank you very much.

Mr. Stripling, call your next witness.

 

? end of testimony ?

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