William Katz:  Urgent Agenda






CONSERVATIVES DISPLEASED BY OSCAR STUNT – AT 8:50 A.M. ET:  There is much fuss this morning over the fact that Michelle Obama made a surprise appearance from the White House during last night's Oscar telecast, presenting the Oscar for best picture.

Some felt the first lady's presence was political and inappropriate, and once again showed the inordinate closeness between Hollywood and the Obama administration.  Bill Clinton made an appearance at this year's Golden Globes.  Republicans need not apply.  From Fox:

"I was hallucinating at that point," Ben Affleck said backstage with regards Obama's presentation of the Best Picture Oscar to his film "Argo." "I was asking people, 'was that Michelle Obama?' It was a huge honor, and the fact she was surrounded by servicemen and women. It was very cool."

However, instead of inspiring, the surprising presenter instantly drew a few head shakes and loud groans from journalists backstage.

"This makes no sense, it adds nothing to the show," one industry expert told FOX411's Pop Tarts column with a bemused laugh, while another surmised it as something of a "suck job."

"They threw all the campaign parties, I guess it was Hollywood's way of acknowledging their continued love and support of the Obama's," said another. "It was stupid and pointless."

Indeed FLOTUS' presentation drew mixed reviews and ignited quite the debate in the twitterverse.

"Forget separation of church and state - we need a separation of Hollywood and state," conservative journalist Michelle Malkin retweeted, while others weighed in that it was "tacky and tasteless" and cheapened the Presidency.

Scores of other viewers gave Obama rave reviews, however, calling her appearance "amazing," "show stealing" and placing her and her designer Naeem Khan gown at the top of the Oscars best dressed list.

COMMENT:  I don't take Hollywood all that seriously, so I think the debate is overwrought.  If I had to decide, though, I'd say the first lady's appearance was a bit much.  It emphasized Hollywood's support of liberal politics, and undoubtedly turned off part of the audience.  Why do that?  Hollywood has already alienated itself from a good chunk of the population.  This, in a small way, just made matters worse.

February 25,  2013