|Well, yes you can! Look at Brasil, Blade Runner, The Big Blue and many other movies that were tampered with in the US theatrical cut.|
I think simply adding something to the end credits is a lot different than totally re-cutting a film or adding narration to a whole film. Maybe you don't like the outtakes and that's your prerogative. I don't like a lot of things about a lot of movies, but that doesn't mean everything needs to be changed constantly (ala Lucas). I hated the manipulative ending of the current WAR OF THE WORLDS. So what? A lot of people may have liked that ending. Should Paramount change the ending just for me when it comes out on DVD? I don't think so.
As far as the outtakes being a "mood-breaker", I have to agree with Joe that once the film's end credits start rolling, the film is basically over anyway. I don't think Hal Ashby "directed" the credits. The film was done, it was great, and then here are some outtakes. Big deal. Back in 1982, I worked at the Avco Cinema in Westwood (a flagship premiere movie-house at the time before being chopped-up) and I still remember when we were showing SOPHIE'S CHOICE, a woman came up to complain after the final credits had finished. It seems that after the 5 minutes or so of the somber final credit roll, the lights came up and the automatic 'muzak' started in the auditorium. She thought the auditorium muzak was inappropriate (some light-hearted 50's instrumental). Where do you draw the line to prevent someone's mood from being broken? Do you have to walk each customer out to their car and console them along the way? Follow them home? Tuck them in?
I do agree the outtakes probably do look today a lot more like a gimmick or cheesy, but in 1979, that wasn't so much the case. I really couldn't care less about those outtakes myself, personally, but I guarantee you people who saw and loved the film (with the outtakes) back in 1979 still remember those outtakes as being part of the film. And I doubt that many of those older fans have gotten their panties in such a bunch that the outtakes are included on the DVD. I think a lot of them actually WANT them in the film as they remember it. So a few younger people who grew up watching "INDIANA JONES" (!) now want to have it their way. I say 'so what'. The film may actually work better without those outtakes, but who are you to dictate this? Don't like 'em - don't watch 'em - it's not like they've been inserted into the middle of the movie.
I suggest next time you watch BEING THERE, simply turn the DVD off as soon as the end credits begin. And if you want to see those credits sans outtakes, you can watch your old VHS tape. There, all solved.