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James Hirsen's Moral Projection, Part 2

The Newsmax columnist still won't apologize for spreading lies about election fraud, but he will hype faith-based films and melt down over a cartoon that wasn't about white Christians.

By Terry Krepel
Posted 5/5/2023

James Hirsen

ConWebWatch has previously highlighted how Newsmax columnist James Hirsen spewed false conspiracy theories about how the election was purportedly stolen from Donald Trump, then abandoned them after the Capitol riot -- and moved on to delve into right-wing culture wars -- without apologizing for his zealous lies.

Hirsen's desire to paper over his deceit, however, led him back to some old habits. ConWebWatch documented how Hirsen was an enthusiastic shill for Mel Gibson's various film projects and conservative politics and faith -- and defending Gibson following his anti-Semitic tirades -- while hiding the fact that he was not only Gibson's friend, he's also the founder of a legal group tied to an ultraconservative Catholic sect founded by Gibson's father. (He only bothered to disclose some of that when Gibson was busted again for using abusive language against an ex-girlfriend in 2010.)

Well, Hirsen has returned to the land of Gibson promotion in a November 2021 column:

Mark Wahlberg and Mel Gibson are starring in an upcoming faith-based movie titled “Stu,” a biopic on the life of a man who was a boxer, actor, museum manager and ultimately an ordained Catholic priest.

The main character in the film, Father Stuart Long, was affectionately known as “Father Stu,” hence the movie title.

Wahlberg began working on the project two years following the passing of Father Stu in 2014. The upcoming feature was financed in part by Wahlberg himself and is currently in post production.

Wahlberg plays the lead role, and Gibson plays the part of Father Stu’s dad, Bill Long.

The rest of Hirsen's column actually focused on Wahlberg, since the film is his project. Still, as usual, Hirsen refused to disclose his personal and business interests with Gibson in promoting his involvement with Wahlberg's film. Hirsen also didn't tell readers that the film's director and screenwriter, Rosalnd Ross, is Gibson's current girlfriend.

Hirsen continued this turn toward the spiritual throughout the 2021 holiday season -- to an almost embarrassing extent. One wonders how much Kevin Sorbo paid Hirsen to write an excessively gushy December 2021 column about him that resulted in this press-agent-worthy glurge:

Kevin Sorbo is a multi-talented entertainment pro.

He first rose to international fame in 1995, when he landed the lead role as Hercules in “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys.” At the time it ranked as one of television’s highest-rated syndicated shows.

Its success yielded the popular 1995 spin-off series called “Xena: Warrior Princess.” Lucy Lawless plays the lead in the TV fantasy offshoot. And the pair of hits allowed for some fun crossover appearances of characters between the two shows.

Kevin also plays main character High Guard Captain Dylan Hunt in the 2000 sci-fi TV series “Andromeda,” which was penned by the creator of the enduring iconic series “Star Trek,” the late, great Gene Roddenberry.

As one of Hollywood’s top celebrities, Kevin’s more recent projects have focused on using his many mighty gifts in spiritually-oriented ways.

As a major co-star in the 2014 watershed faith-based film “God's Not Dead,” he portrays an atheist college professor, who on the first day of class mandates that his students disavow their religious beliefs.

The movie has an astounding profit margin, having grossed more than $62 million on a $2 million budget. It not only succeeded in turning industry heads, but it also ended up launching a whole new film franchise.

Of course, this is all a lead-up to promoting Sorbo's latest film project:

His latest project is a new cinematic adaptation of a “Left Behind” work that is part of the bestselling series co-authored by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins.


Kevin produces and stars in the upcoming “Left Behind: Rise of the Antichrist,” which is currently being filmed in Canada. He and co-star Greg Perrow recently provided some insight as to why they are making the movie, and what people can expect in the re-launch of this beloved saga.

Hirsen concluded by bestowing victimhood on Sorbo for being a right-winger in Hollywood:

Like many other faith-filled people in Hollywood, Kevin has borne his share of scorn.

He noted, “There's a negativity towards Christians in Hollywood, and a negativity towards people who believe in God.”

Maybe, just maybe, Kevin, whose efforts in the past helped bring us tales of battling mythical beasts and who is now taking on the biblical ones, will get some folks to crack open the Good Book.

A great place to start at this time of year is Luke chapter 2, verses 1-20. Merry Christmas!

That's not the only gushy promotion Hirsen was handing out over the holiday season. A December 2021 column touted "The Chosen," a streaming show that claims to be "the first multi-season series focusing on the life of Jesus Christ," and its success at crowdfunding. And a column a few weeks later touted the film "American Underdog," a film about football player Kurt Warner made by the "modern-day virtuosos of the faith-based genre" that "remained in the top four [movies] over New Year's weekend"; Hirsen concluded that column with the corny line, "faith is the completed pass into the end zone."

Meanwhile, of course, Hirsen's own journey from Trump conspiracy theories remains incomplete without a full confession and apology.

Christian extremism

Hirsen, meanwhile,turned to a more extreme version of Christianity that attacked other religions and viewpoints for merely existing. Hirsen spent an entire March 2022 column lashing out at the new Pixar film "Seeing Red" for, essentially, dealing with a girl going through puberty and not being Christian enough:

Disney, via Pixar, is currently streaming a movie that is over-the-top in terms of its unsuitability and potential to cause outright harm to our youth.

The film "Turning Red" is being marketed as a coming of age story.

The setting is a Chinatown community located in Toronto, Canada. Lead character Meilin "Mei" Lee is 13 years-old and is in the process of transitioning to full-fledged womanhood.

Curiously, in this new state of transition, Mei discovers that whenever she feels angry, upset, or otherwise emotionally charged, she turns into a giant red panda. This condition is frequently accompanied by an unpleasant scent and some unfortunate occurrences.

The cinematic tale is apparently meant to be an allegory about female puberty, a kind of symbolic representation of the physiological, psychological, and emotional changes that occur in a female’s life as she journeys from youth to adolescence.

The panda manifestation, red in color, problematic, and emotionally intense, only happens to the women in Mei’s family.

The representation of the menstruation process is disrespectful and debasing in nature. But this is far from the worst of the film’s flaws. Adding to the potential mind, body, and soul-altering mix are the exploration of sexual urges and blatant participation in occult practices.

Wait, what? "Occult practices"? Yes, as Hirsen huffs further: "Christian parents should be especially concerned with the depictions of ancestor worship, polytheism, ritualistic practices, and supernatural transformations."

Actually, those things are better known as Chinese culture and Buddhism (the latter of which the right-wingers at MovieGuide similarly lashed out against). Millions of people follow those beliefs, but Hirsen seems oblivious to that. Instead, he found a pastor named Mike Signorelli to spread hate on the movie because shows people who aren't Christian:

During his clerical tenure, Pastor Signorelli has had extensive experience in a deliverance ministry, one in which he has had a key role in confronting evil itself.

This enables him to recognize imagery in the film that is not merely inappropriate, but dangerous to the spiritual well-being of our young ones.

"Even within the first eight minutes, you have chanting, communication with ancestors, and immediately a red flag should start to go off," he stated.

Additionally, he noted that scenes in the film contain numerous concepts that conflict with a biblical worldview. He warns of danger in the fact that "the movie contains an intermingling of spirituality and ritual."


"I cannot in good faith allow you to show this to your children knowing what I know about demonic spirits, knowing what I know about the cultures that demons create," he said.

Parents, relatives, and guardians of children and teens would be wise to take heed of Pastor Signorelli’s words regarding this film and other youth-oriented media that have hidden agendas embedded within.

Films are not inherently evil for showing how non-Christians live, but that's what Hirsen seems to believe.

Conspiracy theories

In an echo of his embrace of extremist Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene for pushing the idea of COVID vaccination passports as the mark of the beast, Hirsen's May 2 column declared getting an implantable chip that could be used for making financial transactions would also be the mark of the beast under the dire headline "Submitting to Microchip Means Forfeiting Your Soul":

Bible adherents who are Christian believe that The Word of God contains prophecies within the Books of Revelation and Daniel, which provide a description of a future time in which a single global government will assert control over a world economy.

Not all Bible believers view prophecy in a literal sense, but a sizable number do. Such individuals give greater weight to the Scripture passage in which a malevolent world leader forces “...all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or on their foreheads.”

The Bible passage goes on to state that the people oppressed by this evil leader would be unable to “... buy or sell unless they had the mark ...”

The demand that one's hand or forehead be marked in order to purchase or otherwise engage in trade is commonly referred to by Scripture scholars and Bible adherents alike as “The Mark of the Beast.”

In order to conform to Biblical predictions, the above described hand implant technology would have to be implemented through coercion. This is not nearly as far-fetched as it used to seem; that power hungry elites would actually force individuals to be microchipped.

The notion of our economy being transformed into a cashless society, where governing authorities have power over the operation of individual microchips, is a nightmare scenario. Freedom itself would be snuffed out.


When you think about it, if all of your personal data were to be stored in your hand, it would be way too easy for that information to be misused.

Bottom line: If you allow yourself to be chipped, you may find that you have handed over your life to the powers that be. And possibly even your soul.

Hirsen himself seems to be on a journey of trying to reclaim his soul after selling it in the form of enthusiastically embracing Donald Trump's lies about election fraud, which culminated in the Capitol riot -- though he's never confessed to being taken in by Trump's fraud.

For his Sept. 19 column, Hirsen peddled a slightly less esoteric conspiracy theory that has also been embraced by the likes of WorldNetDaily's Joseph Farah:

The Biden administration is pursuing something called a central bank digital currency (CBDC), also sometimes referred to as the “digital dollar.”

In March 2022 an executive order was issued, calling on federal agencies to research a number of topics that include the pros and cons of the digital dollar.

The Treasury, Justice Department, Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, Securities and Exchange Commission as well as other agencies were asked to contribute to the reports.


With regard to the inherent dangers of these developments, there is a whole lot to be concerned about.

CBDCs are very different from cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin are private and untraceable. CBDCs are controlled by government.

Not only are CBDCs able to collect personally identifiable financial information and track the transactions of each and every individual, they are also programmable.

Programmable digital currency gives government leaders something they have never had before — the ability to limit or even stop altogether the purchases of all persons engaged in the digital currency’s use.

Money spent on things that for whatever reasons are deemed by government as “inappropriate” could be restricted, or said purchases could be totally halted.

How could a plan such as this be implemented? With the flick of a virtual switch.

Programmable currency has the capacity to have a built-in off switch. The government powers that be could then de-activate such digital currency and render it worthless, if they so choose.

Additionally, use of CBDCs would enable all shopping records to be stored in government databanks. Records could then be evaluated and measured against government-created standards.

In fact, none of this is happening -- Biden's executive order simply authorized analysis of the risks and benefits and what legislative changes would be needed if such a system went forward. Despite that inconvenient fact, Hirsen concluded with more fearmongering:

Should the digital dollar arrive in our virtual wallets, the longstanding U.S. motto that has graced our coin and paper currency is unlikely to be visible.

But it will prove to be more important than ever.

Apparently, Hirsen has decided that scaring his readers is easier than apologizing to them.

'Top Gun' sequel saved manhood?

Hirsen spent a good part of his May 31 column gushing over Tom Cruise and recounting the long production process of his new film, "Top Gun: Maverick." He then declared that the film has saved both America and manhood:

In part because the new movie is a sequel to a film released over three decades ago, it includes themes that a whole lot of people have been hungering for. It is unapologetically pro-America, pro-military and pro-manhood.

Social media posts tell the story of spontaneous hoots and hollers from gleeful movie attendees being emitted at cineplexes around the globe.

In Taiwan specifically, according to the Central News Agency of Taiwan, audiences who were present at the premiere of the film broke into applause and cheered at the sight of their national flag being displayed onscreen in the movie.


“Top Gun: Maverick” is one of the first slices of entertainment media in quite a while that is not just entertaining. It is a nod to visceral manhood, which over time has been relegated to the cutting room floor.

Hirsen didn't explain what his definition of manhood is or how, exactly. the film fulfills that particular vision. Apparently guys flying jets is what passes for manhood in Hirsen's world. Hirsen went on to lament:

Once upon a time Americans had a common bond in the television that they watched and the movies that they viewed. Hasn’t been that way for a while now.

But there really are palpable things that serve to bind any society together as a culture. One of these things is having a common body of literature, or in modern-day terms, a common body of entertainment fare. Something that everyone is tuned into at a given time.

These media components have the capacity to serve as a kind of glue that secures people together in a life experience. It also can translate into a unifying cultural dynamic.

Hirsen didn't mention that conservatives like him did a lot to destroy common culture because they deemed it too liberal -- reference his earlier attack on "Seeing Red" because it showed the non-Christian and Chinese culture that millions of people live and attacked its allegory of puberty as "debasing" even though it's an experience a full one-half of the planet has.

It seems Hirsen will attack any "common culture" that doesn't reflect his right-wing political sensibilities. If society won't bind around his own personal interests, he would rather ensure it stays unbound.

Hollywood-linked virtue signaling

Hirsen's June 28 column cheered the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade and bashed Hollywood types for criticizing the ruling:

Following the ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court on June 24, to return to the states the power to determine the legality of abortion, Americans now find themselves in a post-Roe v. Wade world.

What’s it like? In a word, awesome. But not for everyone.

Folks are still in disagreement with one another, perhaps more intensely than ever before.

We can’t even seem to come to terms with the premise that — there is no constitutional right to abortion but there is a fundamental right to life. So demonstrably obvious and yet so seemingly elusive.

Alongside the tragedy of abortion itself is the fact that we have fallen woefully short in bridging this divide.

Hollywood isn’t helping.

Celebrities of the pro-choice persuasion are using over-the-top language while simultaneously attempting to virtue-signal to the max. It’s occurring largely through social media.

As if Hirsen isn't also engaging in virtue-signaling by serving up rote attacks on Hollywood type for not being a right-winger like him. Indeed, he went on to praise right-wingers in Hollywood:

On a positive note, there are still a sizable number of prominent and influential Hollywood stars, who have fought the good fight in defense of our babies and their right to live.

Included in this brave bunch are Patricia Heaton, Kelsey Grammer, Mel Gibson, James Caviezel, Chuck Norris, Celine Dion, Jack Nicholson, Martin Sheen, Kirk Cameron, Candace Cameron Bure, Kanye West and Justin Bieber.

Hirsen spent his July 18 column complaining about the show "Stranger Things" touching on dark subjects (despite that's what you would reasonably expect from a show about the supernatural), grousing in particular that it's "a show about children and is highly attractive to children" (as if adolescents in real life have never had to deal with some very adult things):

Unfortunately, Season 4 of “Stranger Things” has descended to a base level of darkness that has parents, grandparents and guardians of the innocent casting the program out of homes, schools, etc., and questioning whether the show has the proper rating attached to it.

In addition to gruesome imagery and intensely aggressive behavior, Season 4 of the streaming series contains inappropriate sexual scenes and unnecessary profanity.

A reasonable explanation for the increasing coarseness of programming content is hard to come by.

Writers could have maintained the Steven Spielberg-influenced style and technique of the early episodes, which made Season 1 so appealing to viewers.

Instead the show altered its approach and is using enhanced computer graphics to peddle emotionally-laden themes, which feature graphic torture scenes, some involving child victims.

Hirsen went on to parrot complaints from the right-wing Parents Television Council that the show has too many swear words in it for at TV-14 show ( wrote up that very same PTC press release). Hirsen then admitted how much he was buying into the PTC press release: "Where there’s awareness there’s hope. So as word about this issue gets out, the public just may get a ratings system that is once again accurate and reliable. After all, stranger things have happened."

Hirsen's Aug. 23 column hyped the new Christian film "Lifemark," starring the above-mentioned Kirk Cameron, proclaiming it "a movie that deals with some of the most central and poignant themes of our times — relationships, forgiveness, and the film’s primary focus: adoption." Hirsen provided a platform for Cameron and the film's makers to trash Hollywood and piously promote their film's allegedly positive values. By contrast, a Christian reviewer found the movie boring and lacking conflict: "'Lifemark' portrays a healthy and wholesome family as one that never fights, where the teenage son never struggles with deep anger against God when bad things happen, where the parents are flawless and unquestionably wise and where trite Christianisms resolve all internal anguish. That’s not a healthy family. That’s a family that doesn’t exist anywhere, Christian or not."

Hirsen devoted his Aug. 30 column to gushing over actor Shia LeBeouf for allegedly having undergone a religious conversion to Catholicism while playing the title role in a film about Padre Pio, a Catholic priest who has recently been elevated to sainthood. Hirsen oddly soft-pedaled LeBeouf's pre-conversion behavior,stating only that "back in 2020 his former girlfriend had sued him, accusing him of sexual assault," which he called "debilitating" -- for LeBeouf In fact, the ex, musician FKA Twigs, accused LeBeouf of not only that but much, much more, like knowingly passing an STD to her, and that her attorney also noted his history of abuse with women. And in an attempt at an apology to the ex in an podcast interview a few days before Hirsen's column was published, LeBeouf couldn't even say Twigs' name, referring to her only as "that woman."

Hirsen also hyped that "A transformational event in Shia’s personal journey was experiencing the Catholic Mass in its traditional Latin form." But he didn't mention who was apparently responsible for this embrace of right-wing, anti-Vatican II Catholicism: Mel Gibson. That's right -- Hirsen's far-right Catholic buddy and business partner.

Hirsen's silence on his conflict of interest in promoting his buddy's friend's new project sadly meshes with his refusal to apologize for spreading lies.

Judging humor

Despite not being known for having anything remotely resembling comedy chops, Hirsen spent his Nov. 7 column complaining that Jimmy Kimmel is too liberal to be funny:

A lot of folks have been wondering what’s up with Jimmy Kimmel. The late-night comic has become more and more vicious in his politics and extreme in his one-sided humor.

As a result, the ratings for his TV show have really taken a hit.

Here’s a theory about how Jimmy’s comedy got wrecked and how his once-popular program fell into a rating’s ditch.

James Christian Kimmel was raised a Catholic. In his youth, he was fervent enough in his faith to step forward and serve at Mass as an altar boy.

Now, both in his politics and joke delivery, he appears to back every left-wing narrative that the dominant media and reigning powers-that-be are pitching, including a load of Dem-devised policies antithetical to his own faith heritage.

As host and executive producer of Jimmy Kimmel Live, he has consistently been serving as sort of a polar opposite altar boy for the Democratic Party.

Hirsen's theory, such as it is, is that Kimmel is atoning for all the deliberately politically incorrect and misogynist humor he did a couple decades earlier on "The Man Show" -- though it's more likely that Kimmel simply evolved and even shock comics get tired of shocking. Still, Hirsen remained committed to his bit in order to fit his partisan agenda:

By committing the above cultural violations over the years, he has broken a whole host of woke rulebook provisions, many of which were memorialized on video.

Maybe he has been trying to do penance as it relates to his newfound woke religion. Or maybe his kowtowing to the left has been the means in which he has avoided the cancellation of his prized television show and reputation.

In any event, although things seemed to have worked for him up until now, the past has a funny way of catching up with a person.

Or in Jimmy’s case, maybe a not-so-funny way.

By contrast, in his Nov. 15 column, he praised a comedy writer who turned right-wing and hasn't done anything notably funny in years:

Humor is David Zucker’s specialty.

Not the lazy blue variety that passes for comedy these days, but the laugh-out-loud kind that makes your sides hurt, your eyes water and the world disappear.

The mega-successful film director, producer and screenwriter is best known for the legendary spoof flick “Airplane!” and the side-splitting “Naked Gun” and “Scary Movie” franchises.

He happens to be one of our culture’s current reigning experts on all things funny, and he’s sounding an alarm bell for all to hear.

Lucky for us he has joined the ranks of other comedy greats who have issued similar warnings: Dennis Miller, Jerry Seinfeld, Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, Gilbert Gottfried, Mel Brooks, Adam Carolla, Steve Harvey and John Cleese.

The giants of humor are all saying pretty much the same thing; that Tinseltown’s head honchos and their like-minded fellow residents of the New Woke Hollywood are virtually strangling comedians, comedy writers and comedy itself.

Zucker was recently featured in a video posted by PragerU, where he shared some reflections on his trademark comedy.

Yes, right-wing PragerU is truly the place where one goes to talk about comedy -- which sets up the complaint that comedy is too liberal for Zucker and establishes that Zucker is a right-winger. The achievements of Zucker that Hirsen cites are decades ago. More lame politicking ensued:

He is often asked whether his most iconic film could be made today.

“When we do screenings of 'Airplane!' we get the question if we could do 'Airplane!' today,” he said. “The first thing I could think of was, ‘Sure, just without the jokes.’”

According to Zucker, although in the current comedy climate freedom may be taking a hit, the future actually looks bright.

“Comedy is in trouble, of course, but I think it’s going to come back,” he said. “There’s a pendulum, and the pendulum will swing back. I’d like to see comedy filmmakers do comedies without fear.”

Zucker has gone against the grain in liberal Hollywood. He has even worked on political ads for the GOP and directed a political parody film at the expense of Michael Moore, titled “An American Carol” (2008).

Pretty much nobody thought "An American Carol" -- basically a tantrum against Michael Moore for making "Fahrenheit 9/11" -- was funny. Also, since "Airplane!" already exists, there is no need to make it today.

The whole thing has a whiff of staleness, with Zucker whining and blaming politics for his increasing irrelevance when it's actual issue is that he stopped being funny -- and, thus, is why he has to run to the biased PragerU to complain about it. Hirsen, however, is not about to call Zucker out for this; it fits neatly into the right-wing victimhood narrative, after all.

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