Do you get to be a jerk if you make something wonderful?

August 7, 2009

So I’ve watched a few movies about Florenz Ziegfeld and I have a question.

Is it okay to be a complete jerk if you create something fabulous or wonderful or very useful?

The Ziegfeld Follies gave us Will Rogers and got Fanny Brice out to the masses and treated Bert Williams with dignity.  The Follies also “glorified the American girl.”  Hundreds of thousands of people were entertained by the Follies year after year.

But Ziegfeld himself was a womanizer and a gambler.  He lied to get publicity.  Blah, blah, blah.

Does it matter?

Is it okay to swindle people if you create something as special as the Follies?

I’m sure the movies aren’t honest either but the basic idea stands… can you be forgiven all your sins if you are charming and charismatic?

I’m afraid that it works that way.

I’m bothered by that.

Maybe it’s just me.



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