Tuesday, May 14, 2013

HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher #282 “Crazy Glue”

by Catherine Giordano

HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher, episode 282, which aired on Friday night, May 10, 2013 had a lot of good moments, serious and funny.

Bill had a big target during his opening monologue with Christ Christie and his lap band surgery--the surgery that staples off part of your stomach so your smaller stomach limits the amount you can eat. Bill reported that Christie lost 40 pounds. “He skipped breakfast,” Bill said. Many people think that Christie wants to lose weight because he wants to run for president. Bill commented that having this surgery is tantamount to admitting that you have no will power. He added,“That’s exactly what you want in a president—no will power.”  

He also got a shot in at Sarah Palin. Bill said that when Sarah Palin heard about the arrest of Ariel Castro in connection with his kidnapping of the three women in Cleveland, she said that she was glad that he “was no longer ruling Cuba.”

Bill had a dig for Obama-hating Republicans. “Obama has just done the worst thing ever. We just have to find out what it is. They can’t find the smoking gun. Imagine, this is America and they can’t find a gun.” [The Republicans are so desperate for a scandal and whether it is Benghazi, tax audits, vacations, they can’t get anything to stick. Maybe if they had some Krazy Glue. [They’ve got “the crazy”, all right, they just need the glue.]

The interview was with Mark Bittman, an op-ed writer for The New York Times and the author of VB6: Vegan Before Six. He claims you can lose weight if you eat vegan before 6 pm, while eating whatever you like after 6 pm. [It’s probably a regimen that can help some people—no bacon and eggs for breakfast, no hamburgers for lunch reduces caloric intake--but it is not a sure thing for a lot of people.] Bill pointed out that someone could eliminate all animal foods from his diet, but still be fat if he ate a lot of sugar. [My take: If your excess weight comes from eating too much meat and dairy, the VB6 diet can help you lose weight if you replace those foods with fruits and vegetables.]

This conversation gave Bill an opening to criticize Chris Christie for having lap band surgery—He said, “It is like a cocaine addict Krazy Gluing his nostrils shut to force himself to stop using cocaine.” 

The panel included Glenn Greenwald who writes for The Guardian.  He has just written a new book, With Liberty and Justice for All: How the Law Is Used to Destroy Equality and Protect the Powerful. During the discussion about the kidnapping of the three women in Cleveland, Greenwald pointed out how there is no longer class mobility in America. The abductor was “hiding in plain sight”, but he held those young women captive for ten years because boarded up windows were nothing unusual in the poor neighborhood where he lived.

Joy Reid, who writes for The Grio (a news website targeted to African-Americans) and an MSNBC contributor was also on the panel. She spoke about the Middle East saying that whenever we try to impose democracy we get something worse. Whenever they overthrow a dictatorship, they get the crazy—a theocracy; democracy just doesn’t stick .

The conservative panelist was Charles Cooke who writes for The National Review Online. Usually, I want to crazy-glue the conservative guests’ mouths shut, but Cooke was OK. He’s a libertarian, but not off-the-wall crazy. He said the Libertarians should be alarmed about the government getting involved in things like prohibition, the war on drugs, and removing the specs for making a gun from the internet. There was agreement with the first two, but not with people making plastic guns that could evade metal detectors at home.

For the mid show comedy segment, Bill gave us part three of his ongoing segment “Craziest Congressman.”  He talked about Paul Broun, a Republican Tea party representative from Georgia. Broun believes that Obama is a Marxist who want to destroy the U.S. from the inside. [t is one thing to disagree with Obama’s policies and feel that they are harmful, but to claim that his goal is to destroy America is crazy.  [As much as I thought G.W. Bush was an evil person, I never thought he was trying to destroy America; I believed that he was destroying America because he was incompetent, not because he hated America.] Bill said the Broun is a doctor who doesn’t understand embryology, and opposes abortion because “it puts storks out of work.” He’s the one who said that science is “lies straight from the pit of Hell” guy. [I’m glad he is not practicing medicine anymore.]

Broun was paired with Michelle Bachman, the Tea Party Republican from Minnesota.  Bill said that she thought that “Thomas Jefferson’s slaves were friends with benefits.”  “A woman once told her that her daughter got retarded because of a vaccine and she said ‘Mom?” You know she is way far-out crazy when you learn that the AP stopped fact-checking her because it overloaded the system.

The mid-show guest was Zachery Quinto, an actor who portrays Dr. Spock in the new Star Trek movie. He has come out as gay.  Quinto said that gays have to have visibility.  A total of 12 states have now made gay marriage legal and there is no stopping it now. Bill added that “when you say that the Bible is against the gay, it makes young people question the Bible.“

I liked Quinto. Sometimes I see actors who I like on the screen, but when they do an interview, I see that they are empty-headed morons. Quinto was intelligent and thoughtful. He calls himself a nerd. [Carey Mulligan, the actress who plays Daisy in the remake of The Great Gatsby is a case in point. She’s been doing a lot of TV interviews to promote the movie, and she comes across as an empty-headed moron. She giggles a lot in the hope that all the giggles will cover up the fact that she has nothing to say.]

Bill’s “New Rules” began with a discussion of The Great Gatsby. Bill said the movie is out of date because the wealth gap is so much greater today than it was during the 1920’s.  Today one in four Americans makes less than $10 a hour. Working at McDonald’s used to be a kid’s job, now people are trying to support a family with the earnings from that job. Close to half of all recent college grads have to live at home because they can’t afford to live on their own. A CEO makes 300 times more that the average worker. The six heirs to the Wal-Mart fortune have more money than the 130 million poorest Americans.  [The statistics are frightening.]  

Bill talked about countries that have huge financial inequalities, like Mexico--kidnapping becomes a way of life. A kidnapping for ransom takes place 72 times a day in Mexico. He used this observation as a warning to the uber-rich in America. And it also gave Bill
an opportunity to to stick it to Donald Trump.

This is the “Don’t-get-into-a-fight-with- a-guy-who- buys-ink-by-the-barrel” moment of the week. [I’m referencing an old saying about not getting on the wrong side of someone who writes for a newspaper because he could inundate you with bad publicity.  Let me change that to “Don’t get into a fight with a comedian with his own weekly TV show.  He will make you the butt of his jokes over and over I bet Donald Trump regrets getting into it with Bill Maher.] Bill concluded his remarks about kidnapping by saying “I’m talking about you, Donald Trump” when he spoke about how the trophy wife of a rich man is not going to raid the Swiss bank account “to save your sorry ass.”

“What is the difference between a hedge fund manage and a mosquito?” Bill quipped. “A mosquito stops sucking blood before it explodes.” [Heed the warning!  A socialite once quipped, “You can never be too thin or too rich.” Perhaps you can be too rich.]

I’m glued to the TV set every Friday night When Bill Maher airs a new show.  You never know what crazy thing the guests will say or how crazy funny the show will be.

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Bill Maher made Donald Trump the butt of his joke on Friday, May 10, 2013 when he joked that his trophy wife "was not going to raid the Swiss bank account to save your sorry ass" if Donald was kidnapped.