Thursday, September 11, 2014

Real Time with Bill Maher #328 Sept. 12, 2014 Taking Out the Trash

by Catherine Giordano

Reaql Time with Bill Maher
Bill Maher picks Kline for Flip-A-District

Bill Maher was all about taking out the trash in his return to “Real Time with Bill Maher” after a six week hiatus with a live show from Washington D.C. For one thing he gave us the “winning loser” of the Flip-a-District contest– John Kline, Republican candidate for Minnesota ‘s second Congressional district. I’ll lead with that in this review and recap of episode 28, of Real Time with Bill Maher which aired on HBO on September 12, 2014.
 
Flip-A-District
 
Bill Maher wants to take out John Kline, not because he is the biggest Republican clown, but because he votes the same way the clowns do. In fact Kline is so dangerous because he doesn’t engage in the nutty incidents that are typical of so many Republican candidates. but instead is “The Men’s Warehouse of Empty Suits.” “He’s the silent threat that you never see coming until it is too late. There is Ebola… ISIS... John Kline.”
 
John Kline embodies the “sell-out” crowd in Congress. He has voted the wrong way on everything from rights for women to economic issues, but the worst thing about him is that as Chairman of the Education Committee, he has done everything he can “to keep college kids in their parent’s basements” buried in student debt. Kline’s biggest campaign contributor is the University of Phoenix, an online college that is essentially a scam.
 
Vote for Mike Obermueller
Maher said that he is hopeful that Kline will feel the heat. He warned voters that Kline will call Maher “addled,” and asked people not to be swayed by the push-back.  He said “It’s not about me.” 
 
I hope people follow Maher’s lead—it’s time to take out the trash. If Maher is successful in this, maybe it will start a trend.
 
I hope next week, Maher will give a little attention to Kline’s opponent, Mike Obermueller and why the people of Minnesota’s 2nd district should vote for him. Maybe he should be on the panel or do the interview. Otherwise this whole thing could just backfire serving only to raise Kline's name recognition.
 
 
Nancy Pelosi 
Nancy Pelosi-When-Women-Succeed
Nancy Pelosi: "When women succeed..."
The interview was with Nancy Pelosi, Democratic leader of the United States House of Representatives, and author of author of Know Your Power: A Message to America’s Daughters.
She told Maher don’t be too sure that the polls saying that Democrats will get thrashed in the midterms are predictive. She pointed to Eric Cantor, who the polls said would win his primary by 25 points, and he ended up winning by 10 points.
 
Pelosi said it is all about turnout. She also said that over 50% of the people in this country don’t even know that there are midterms. That is disheartening. What is heartening is that the models that the polls use to predict elections could be wrong. Pollsters tend to make assumptions about turnout based on turnout for past elections. I know there are a lot of Democratic voter registration drives and get-out-the vote efforts.  If people who don’t usually vote in mid-terms, vote this time, the Dems could gain seats, not lose them.
 
Nancy Pelosi wants to motivate female voters. Her campaign message is “When women succeed, American succeeds.” The Republicans have voted against fair pay for women, preventing violence against women, reproductive freedoms for women, and just about every issue important for women. If women come out to vote, Dems will win. And to paraphrase Pelosi, “When Democrats win, America wins.”
 
 
Sarah Palin Gets Trashed
 
Sarah Palin is one woman who I wish we could just put out at the curb with the rest of the trash. In the monolog, Maher mentioned a very public drunken brawl involving most of the Palin family. There are so many puns here, I don’t know where to begin. The Palins were all trashed (drunk), and were trash-talking Willow’s ex-boyfriend which then escalated to punching. In short, they behaved like what some refer to as “white-trash.”  Maher trashed (insulted) her in the monolog. It is well past time for America to take out the trash and stop paying any attention to this family.
 
Jon Huntsman
 
The Panel included Jon Huntsman, former Republican governor of Utah and former Republican candidate for President. He was the only Republican candidate that I would have even considered, and he could never get above 2% in polls among Republicans. He is usually a reasonable man, but reason is out of favor in today’s Republican party.
 
Talking about the last election, in the monolog, Maher mentioned that Mitt Romney recently said that if he ran for president again, the results would be different. “Yeah,” Bill said, “This time he would get his ass kicked by a woman.” The talk about Romney running again is just an indication of the despair Republicans feel when they look at the possible contenders for the Republican nomination for president. 
 
ISIS 
CLICK HERE
As I said, I usually like Huntsman, but then he goes and parrots the Republican line, and he loses me. In the discussion about how present difficulties with ISIS are directly due to George Bush’s ill-considered war in Iraq, Huntsman said “strongman” over and over. He was in favor of deposing Saddam, although Maher and everyone else knows that having a dictator like Saddam is far preferable to today’s mess in the Middle East.
 
Haley Barbour, former Republican governor of Mississippi and author of The Agenda for America. He did not disappoint--he was as insufferable as I expected him to be. I have to scold Maher: With all the politicos in D.C, this washed up old gas-bag was the best you could do?
 
Barbour couldn’t disagree with Obama’s decision to take on ISIS militarily, so he had to trash him by saying that Obama only did it because of the polls.  
 
Andrea Mitchell, NBC News Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent and host of MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports. She is the author of Talking Back: . . . to Presidents, Dictators, and Assorted Scoundrels. She said that America had to act because the Maliki government was a disaster; the Iraqi army is a joke, and the Syrian army is worse.
 
Maher isn’t so sure about Obama’s plan. He feels America is over-reacting once again. Yes, it is terrible that two American journalists were beheaded, but during the same time in Suadi Arabi, 30 people were behead by the government for non-violent offenses, and we are still “holding Hands” with the Saudis. He may have a point—The ISIS beheadings were designed to cause this reaction from America. The ISIS leadership probably feels they have more to gain than lose by American involvement. I hope they are wrong.

Hydra
Are terrorists groups like the hydra?
 
Maher said, “People talk about ISIS like it’s the Ebola virus. We find a cure and it is done.” There will always be a new group.  I just did a post about Hercules and his dragon-slaying exploits. Hercules slayed Hydra, a dragon-like monster with nine heads.  As soon as he removed one head, two more grew back. Islamic terrorists groups are like that. Hercules won because he had an assistant with a torch who cauterized each heedless neck so new heads could not grow back. Who will cauterize the Mid-East?

Bill Maher appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews on Wednesday 9/10/14. Read what he had to say: Bill Maher Talks Sense About ISIS
 
Fox News
 
Maher and Barbour discussed how at one time Congressional Republicans and Democrats could disagree, but could still get along and get things done.  Mitchell said part of the reason for the current gridlock is that ‘As everyone knows, McConnell and Reid hate each other.” Huntsman said that due to gerrymandering, “no one is punished for bad behavior.”
 
Maher said the reason things in Congress are different now is Fox News. It has polarized the country. Huntsman said that Fox is going to have a problem because their audience skews really old. The Millennials don’t get their news from Fox. They get their news in new ways, from social media.(And from TV hosts Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, and Stephen Colbert?)
 
Barbour didn’t accept Maher’s claim about Fox News. He said the problem was that “The president has to lead” and he’s not leading.  Barbour said that every chance he got throughout the entire show. (The Republicans know how to stick to their talking points!)  Barbour even said, “We have to get the president off the golf course.”
 
I would like to remind “Bar-bore” that the president works 24 hours a day, even when he is on the golf course. A bit of relaxation is needed for clear thinking. And you, Mr. Bar-boor, seem to be spending 24 hours a day at the hog trough. Maybe a little more exercise and a less stuffing your face, Bar-boar, and you’d look less like Porky Pig. 
 
Maher mentioned that MSNBC was a counterweight to Fox, but didn’t have ratings as high as those of Fox because conservatives just want be spoon-fed the same thing everyday and liberals have a lot more interesting things to do than sit in front of the TV.
 
I expected Mitchell to defend MSNBC, but she didn’t. So I will. MSNBC is not the same as Fox. MSNBC has conservative anchors for some shows ( like Morning Joe.) They have conservatives on their panels (like Amy Huntsman) and some non-partisan anchors (like Mitchell). Their female anchors aren’t all former beauty queens with low cut blouses and short skirts. Yes, they take a viewpoint, but they don’t lie to support that viewpoint. Stop equating MSNBC with Fox!
 
The mid-show comedy routine was a quickie about how Maher was visiting all the tourist attractions in D.C. It ended with a mention of a woman’s clothing store, “House of Knee-Length Red Dresses.” Maher said they have every shade of red dress. “Nancy Ragan crimson, Dianne Feirstein ruby, and Liz Cheney blood.”
 
Jerry Seinfeld 
Jerry Seinfeld will be the mid-show guest.
 
The comedian Jerry Seinfeld was the special mid-show guest.He is the author of Seinlanguage and the host of a podcast, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.”  Maher said that Seinfeld had reinvented the talk show.  “You always find a way to take out the trash (remove the less interesting bits.) You edit. “
 
Maher and Seinfeld talked about tuning 60 and how it was a license to become cranky. Seinfeld said that everyone told him to make a bucket list. “I made a bucket list, and then changed the first letter from b to f, and that was it.”
 
Seinfeld said that he had kids because everyone else in his life was “on to him.” Maher asked if his kids were on to him. “Oh yes,” Seinfeld said. “I told my 11-year old son that your dad has invented some words that have come into common usage. And my kid says, ‘What? Unfunny?’.”
 
Maher and Seinfeld are old friends and Seinfeld took advantage of that fact. He prodded and interrupted Maher and got away with it. 
 
Keith Olbermann and Michael Moore 
Keith Olbermann and MichaelMoore
There were two bonus guests for this episode, Keith Olbermann (author of Pitchforks and Torches: The Worst of the Worst, from Beck, Bill, and Bush to Palin and Other Posturing Republicans, among other books) and Michael Moore (filmmaker and author of Here Comes Trouble: Stories My Life among other books.) At the end of the show, Maher had to race from the theater where he was recording live to another theater about six blocks away where he would be recording a HBO special stand-up act telecast live. Olbermann and Moore narrated his progress from one theater to the next as if they were doing a sportscast (Olbermann is on ESPN now.)  Maher had a Motorcade— Olberman quiped that the $1 million donation Maher made to Obama was well spent. When Maher was half way there, his motorcade is stopped because a boy scout is helping an old woman across the street and then are blocking the road.  Maher jumped from the car and ran the rest of the way. (The man is in shape for someone turning 60.) 
 
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Way to go, Bill
 
Maher always brings it. The double-header live shows were a great promotion. Maher may trash-talk politicians who earn it, but he himself is always (almost always) a class act.

Following Real Time, Bill Maher did a stand-up comedy act live from Washington D.C. He covered a variety of topics,such as: the midterm elections, income inequality, the Republican psyche, a Trump lawsuit, why the Pope is an atheist, and why tattoos are stupid. Yup, that sounds like Bill.

Bill Maher appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews on Wednesday 9/10/14. Read what he had to say: Bill Maher Talks Sense About ISIS