Are “communist” Muppets brainwashing kids?

‘The Muppets’ has been accused of brainwashing children with a liberal agenda after making its villain a rich oil baron called Tex Richman.

US TV anchor Eric Bolling, who works for Fox Business Network, said ‘The Muppets’ showed "liberal Hollywood depicting a successful businessman as evil – that's not new,” before asking Dan Gainor of the Media Research Centre if Hollywood is brainwashing children.

“Absolutely,” Gainor replied. “And they've been doing it for decades... Ultimately, what they’re telling kids is what they told you in the movie ‘The Matrix’: that mankind is a virus on poor, old Mother Earth.

[See also: Steve Buscemi stars in 'Dark Knight' spoof for SNL]

“Hollywood, the left, the media, they hate the oil industry. They hate corporate America.”

According to Gainor, TV shows ‘Captain Planet and the Planeteers’, Nickelodeon’s ‘The Big Green Help’ and a recent ‘Sesame Street’ episode also promote liberal views.

Bolling later said: “We’re teaching our kids class warfare. Where are we, Communist China?”

The segment irked progressive watchdog group Media Matters, who put the clip online and it’s since gone viral.

[See also: Conservatives denounce Hollywood's 'liberal propaganda']

As ridiculous as it might sound to some, this is a serious debate going on in the US, with the New York Daily News and The Huffington Post, MSNBC and The Washington Post all weighing on the topic.

The latter said in an editorial: “There’s one problem with Bolling’s rant: Environmentalism wasn’t mentioned in the movie. The Muppets save their theater because it’s a landmark and their historical home — not because they’re trying to hinder the oil industry’s progress, or save the planet.”

It’s also not the first film to be accused of brainwashing children with liberal bias.

Just last week Kyle Smith of the New York post said about Dreamworks’ ‘Happy Feet 2’: "Penguins are seen being victimized by pollution and other environmental degradations associated with the industrial age. Well played, lefties: This is Kiddie Karl Marx."

"Not only are penguins feminists... but who can forget the way the stars of ‘March of the Penguins’ (and the original ‘Happy Feet’) survived by communitarianism?

[See also: Exclusive first trailer for The Cabin in the Woods]

Pixar flick ‘Cars 2’ were also attacked by conservative sites for using an oil CEO for a villain, with a blogger for writing:

“We conservatives and believers in free markets are accused of being paranoid when we say the Hollywood industry is trying to indoctrinate our children with left-wing propaganda. But now movie directors and producers are coming out and admitting what they’re doing."

Do America’s right wing commentators have a point? Or has Hollywood also made its fair share of conservative-leaning films? Let us know in the comments section below.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting