Friday, February 28, 2014

Why 'Ghostbusters' is the Most Libertarian Hollywood Blockbuster of All Time

By Philip Klein

After learning the sad news that comedy actor and filmmaker Harold Ramis had died, I remarked on Twitter that the 1984 classic "Ghostbusters" (which he co-wrote and co-starred in) was the most libertarian Hollywood blockbuster ever made. I assumed that this was perfectly clear to everybody and that I was making a non-controversial claim -- even asserting the banal conventional wisdom -- but a number of people evidently didn't see where I was coming from.

Read the rest here.

(HT Brad Aefsky)


  1. There is a scene in the first movie where the guys have lost their worthless research grant at the college and forced to go into private business. Aykroyd's character says these words....

    "Personally I like the University. They gave us money and facilities and we did not have to produce anything. You never been out of college. You don't know what it is like out there. I worked in the private sector. They expect results."

    Rest in peace Harold. This Summer at Ravinia Festival I will have glass of wine and a thought of you.

  2. This is funny, I was watching Ghostbusters the other night, and at the start of the movie Ray mortgages the property that he inherited to buy the Ghostbusters fire station building. They state in the movie that his interest rate is 19%. Can you imagine what would happen to home prices and house affordability in this nation if rates were this high again?

  3. Ghostbusters may be one of the most "pro free market" movies of all time.
    But i wouldn't go so far as to call it the most libertarian.

    Although the message isn't openly libertarian, i think the first of the "Matrix" movies has more value as a libertarian movie (the two sequels are incredibly jumbled with different nonsensical messages) because it is about waking up from the illusion that you're not being controlled (kind of like a libertarian awakening) by a ruling elite.

    "Enemy of the State" is scarily prophetic of NSA spying and basically being victimized by government agencies without recourse.

    And Mel Gibson's "Apocalypto" has a great story about an anarchist community being attacked by a "state" dealing in murder, slavery and oppression. In the end it is even shown that the smaller state will be nothing compared to the Spanish colonial state that about to come and take over.
    The message is also historical in the sense that violence was used by larger ruled (city)states to absorb smaller communities.