Conservatives embrace Ashton Kutcher's straight talk
August 22nd, 2013
04:00 PM ET
11 months ago

Conservatives embrace Ashton Kutcher's straight talk

(CNN) – Not everyone taking note of the Teen Choice Awards fits neatly into the target demographic.

Take Sen. Ted Cruz. Earlier this week, the possible 2016 Republican contender for the White House took the time to tweet Ashton Kutcher's remarks accepting the Awards' main honor, calling it a "remarkable speech."

And Cruz has not been alone among Republicans in his praise. As recently as Wednesday, conservatives like Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck have honed in on Kutcher's speech, calling out its praise for individual achievement.

"I believe that opportunity looks a lot like hard work," Kutcher said earlier this month.

"I've never had a job in my life that I was better than. I was always just lucky to have a job. And every job I had was a steppingstone to my next job, and I never quit my job until I had my next job."

The Business of Being Ashton Kutcher

Kutcher, who plays Steve Jobs in the new biopic, "Jobs," has for his part built up a reputation as a liberal, donating $50,000 to Obama and Democrats last year. So far he hasn't responded to the conservative praise.

But that hasn't stopped his words from striking a chord with conservatives who are frequently more prone to blast Hollywood than praise it.

Limbaugh and Beck both spent airtime praising Kutcher, Beck saying that "it's a fairly safe to say that viewers don't tune in to the Teen Choice Awards in hopes of hearing an incredibly insightful advice about the hard work of hard work perseverance and dreaming because that's exactly what they got there."

In turn, Palin went to her favorite outlet, Facebook.

"Looks like the Duck Dynasty dudes aren't the only ones speaking truth to power lately," the former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential nominee wrote on her wall, alluding to one of the reality TV stars' recent comments arguing against abortion under all circumstances.

"Hollywood star Ashton Kutcher gave a heartfelt speech about hard work at this week's "Teen Choice Awards."

Former Arkansas governor and presidential contender Mike Huckabee has also taken notice of Kutcher's speech, praising it on his blog.

Anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist took his response a step further than many of his conservative peers, calling out the hard work quote in a tweet that started "More Obama Bashing...."


Filed under: Glenn Beck • Mike Huckabee • Rush Limbaugh • Sarah Palin • Ted Cruz
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. Dano

    It figures the likes of Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck all think that Kelso is smart.

    August 22, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  2. The Real Tom Paine

    To hear conservatives talk, you would think they invented hard work and success. I guess it always amazes them that someone can have different vews on issues than they do, and be a success. Its ironic that Palin bothers to chime in, given her penchant for quitting her jobs: Beck, who ran around in alcoholic stupor before he sobered up, is hardly a model of discipline and focus, either.

    August 22, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  3. mass_opiate_or_opiate_of_masses?

    Why is Mr. Cruz a candidate for president in 2016? Foreign Born = NO WAY. Right? I mean, that was supposed to be an absolute uncrossable red line? Right? I deployed for 3 years so that I would have the opportunity to salute a Canadian? This is making my stomach churn.

    August 22, 2013 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  4. California Gary

    Silly conservatives........they act like they are the only ones that believe in hard work. And I note that those that are praising this speech as though it is anti-liberalism don't have a "real" job themselves, instead making big bucks sitting around bashing people. A lot of liberals have worked hard, do work hard, and will continue to work hard. The difference is: liberals appreciate where they came from and are willing to reach back and help those struggling behind them. Conservatives don't.

    August 22, 2013 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  5. Morgan King

    The conceit that Democrats somehow don't believe in hard work because they also support a robust social safety net is a well-flogged dead horse, but hardly an accurate portrayal of any liberal ideology. The same goes for the 80's 'welfare queen' myth or the 'Obama phone' lady – anecdotes of complacency and system abuse hardly captures the struggle to break out of, at best, paycheck-to-paycheck poverty that so many of our poorest endure.

    August 22, 2013 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  6. Tony

    Republicans are still stuck on the idea that Democrats want handouts from the government. Here is an idea. If Republicans want to start winning elections, they would have to work for it. Voters will not hand out government jobs to Republicans just because Republicans know how to scold people.

    August 22, 2013 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  7. jinx9to88

    Yeah but he is terrible on "Two and Half Men".

    August 22, 2013 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    Obama's expressed the exact same sentiments in various speeches.

    ""Nobody gets to write your destiny but you," Obama said.

    "Your future is in your hands. Your life is what you make of it. And nothing - absolutely nothing - is beyond your reach, so long as you're willing to dream big, so long as you're willing to work hard, so long as you're willing to stay focused on your education - there is not a single thing that any of you cannot accomplish."

    The president said education "never has been more important."

    "I'm sure there are going to be times in the months ahead when you're staying up late doing your homework or cramming for a test, or you're dragging yourself out of bed on a rainy morning and you're thinking, oh boy, I wish maybe it was a snow day," he said. "Let me tell you, what you're doing is worth it. ... Nothing is going to have as great an impact on your success in life as your education."

    -POTUS Barack Obama, September 14, 2010

    August 22, 2013 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  9. Dave

    The irony being that all these conservative commentators are the epitome of lazy parasites choosing to manipulate rather than work. Which of course is why opportunity can look like hard work. Parasites live on opportunity. And hard work never looks like opportunity.

    August 22, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  10. dude

    That's a lot of praise of hard work for people who are either unemployed (Palin) or on summer vacation (Congress).

    August 22, 2013 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  11. S.B. Stein

    Kutcher will bash the conservatives soon enough because he likely wants a level playing field that the GOP and conservatives don't.

    August 22, 2013 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  12. sonny chapman

    Attention Repubs.: The last two Presidents who came from Middle Class & worked their way up were Bill Clinton & Barrack Obama. Oh yea, Hillary also comes from Middle Class.

    August 22, 2013 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    And yet, when Obama says these exact same things to children, rabid RWNJ Teatrolls threaten to keep their children home from school and not let them hear the speech because "he's trying to indoctrinate them." What a load of crap. Kutcher should come out and tell these GOP/Teatroll jackholes who are trying to misappropriate his quote for their own selfish purposes that he said it because it's what he believe and what his POTUS has been saying. If I were him and had given $50,000 to Obama and Dems over the past year, I'd be livid that the GOP/Teatrolls are trying to twist my words into a backhanded criticism of Obama, WHO HAS BEEN SAYING THE SAME THING ALL ALONG.

    August 22, 2013 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  14. heh

    Pfft, He was "discovered" while at a mall, total luck...

    August 22, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  15. Jeb

    Ashton Kutcher does not embrace conservatives.

    August 22, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  16. jinx9to88

    "Cruz, Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck" Wow thats a star stud line up there. Yes red welfare states Ashton is talking about you too.

    August 22, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  17. Wake up People!

    Correct me if I'm wrong but I thought the GOP hated Hollywood......

    August 22, 2013 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  18. Marie MD

    Mutant from and the duck dynasty dudes. That is something she knows about.
    Glad to see that when ashton (a Hollywood star) says something the rethugs/teatrolls all alter themselves.
    I take it they like Hollywood now?

    August 22, 2013 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  19. Econ301

    I don't know why Republicans assume that Democrats don't understand the value of Hard work.

    News Flash, most Democrats are successful people who worked hard to get where they are in life... just because we want to do something about the school to prison pipeline and think we should address the failures in our imperfect system, doesn't mean we think everyone should be given everything and no one should ever have to work.

    August 22, 2013 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  20. ally buster

    I'm a lifelong Democrat.

    I have never been fired from a job.

    I have never left a job until I've had another one.

    I have always worked my behind off.

    And I am successful.

    And I will CONTINUE TO VOTE FOR DEMOCRATS!!

    Conservatives have no monopoly on hard work and achievement. They just like to THINK that they do!

    August 22, 2013 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  21. W

    He said "...I never quit my job until my next job" and Sarah Palin praises his speech??! Hahaha the world is truly insane.

    August 22, 2013 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  22. freedom

    Hard work isn't a sin – in fact, it's what makes America great! Obama has tried to brainwash the country that it is – his agenda to have us implode. Good to see a younger man who has a large platform speaking to young people about the virtues of hard work.

    August 22, 2013 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    "paycheck-to-paycheck poverty that so many of our poorest endure."

    Yes, but you see, when Obama points out that hard work should be expected from anyone who wants to achieve, but that it should also come with the expectation that it generates results and rewards, instead of a sub-subsistence wages without any benefits or the ability to save for retirement or a home or education for your children, the GOP/Teatrolls and the plutocrats who control them and the racists who vote for them...all they hear is "those lazy minorities just want handouts." You can't describe it as a two way street to them...that hard work is the input and a reasonable expectation of legitimate reward should be the output. No no. It's a one-way street in their mind: you work for your master and he gets all the reward and you should just be appreciative that you're even allowed to work for him and avoid living on the street. That's NOT what Kutcher was saying, but that's what they want it to mean.

    August 22, 2013 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  24. Elight

    I kinda wondered why all of those guys (Limbaugh, Palin, etc) were watching the Teen Choice Awards. Are they looking for new members? Recruit 'em while they're young! :/

    August 22, 2013 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  25. Winston Smith

    Republican = Shameless opportunist. Republican = Hypocrite. The fact that they embrace entertainers at this point, is proof positive that they would do anything, even lie to gain power and authority. Any other time the entertainment industry, and the people of California, are considered socialist pawns and berated as much as humanly possible to pander to their low educated base. It's as transparent as smooth glass.

    August 22, 2013 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
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