Thursday, September 30, 2010

There's Nothing Fake About Real Time with Bill Maher

With the election about a month away it’s time for people to start focusing on the issues and those running to either implement them or obstruct them. Or just pose for pictures in front of the flag and get their mug on TV. Everyone runs for different reasons.

The best way for people to understand their candidates is go see them at rallies and town halls. But since most people have jobs and can’t take the time to meet the candidates, they turn to other mediums to learn about their choices. One of these choices is cable news. However, if you want to learn something good about a Democrat and watch FOX News, you’ll be watching until 2011. Conversely, if you want to see a positive stance on a Republican candidate and watch MSNBC, Reagan will come back from the dead first. The point here is cable news is a waste of time and nothing more than each of the main political parties using a cable channel to tell them they’re pretty.

If you want the chance to see several points of view, in a mature and adult setting, with the occasional curse word thrown in, tune in to Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO.

I don’t agree with Maher on many of his political stances, but I find the show very informative and entertaining. Even though he is basically a liberal, he is at least open to hearing the opposing view without shouting it down. For example, in the height of the Iraq War I remember Maher being willing to give President Bush the benefit of the doubt in bringing democracy to the country even though he disagreed with going to war in the first place. Not many liberals were as open-minded. For example, the former ESPN employee on MSNBC has as many Republicans on his show as I do, and I don’t have a show. Yet.

Real Time starts off with a monologue by Maher. After a few yucks, Bill interviews someone for about ten minutes. These guests range from senators to activists to actors. There’s not much humor in this part of the show, but I don’t think there’s supposed to be.

Then we meet the panel. Usually made up of three guests, Bill’s panelists discuss the issues of the day. Almost without fail there is a very liberal Hollywood personality who doesn’t listen to reason (cough… Janeane Garofalo…cough). There’s also a conservative voice on the show, but often they are of the kind that doesn’t serve the conservative movement well, which in today’s conservative movement is most of them. The third panelist is often an academic or journalist with somewhat mainstream ideals to offer a nice balance between the other extremes. This type of person is also known as an independent voter, or the part of the country that votes the least.

My biggest complaint with the show is with the live audience. It is made up of some of the most partisan liberals you’ll ever come across. There are less liberals at a Code Pink rally. They cheer at every point made by a Democrat and boo/hiss at the conservative point of view. The great Christopher Hitchens said it best regarding the Real Time crowd. Bill Maher is famously not religious and he makes very valid arguments as to why he isn’t. Every time he makes an anti-religion comment the audience claps like they’re at a revival. I would bet dollars to donuts that at least 90% of the crowd who claps for these sentiments celebrates Christmas.

After the panel is through dissecting the issues of the day, Bill closes his show with New Rules, a series of jokes and punchlines that target people and subjects that usually deserve it.

Since New Rules are my favorite part of the show I’m going to give my own version a shot. My apologies in advance to Bill Maher for butchering his gift to cable TV. Without further ado:
New Rule: You can’t constantly harp on mainstream media being liberal when you are the #1 watched network and decidedly not liberal. FOX News constantly blabbers on and on about the mainstream media being a leftist group. Then in the next breath they brag about having all the top shows on cable. If you are watched by the most people, by definition you are mainstream. Harry Potter isn’t an indie film and Bruce Springsteen doesn’t play in dive bars. By this rationale, FOX News is mainstream media. And full of shit too.

New Rule: If you call someone a partisan hack on your TV show, you yourself can’t be a partisan hack. Recently Chris Matthews, the same guy who has an orgasm at the mention of Obama’s name, called Pat Buchanan a partisan for saying he’d prefer 100 Sharon Angles in the Senate instead of 100 Harry Reids. Chris, he’s a Republican and Harry Reid is one of the anti-christs to them. What do you think he’s going to say? “Well Chris Sharon Angle is as bat-shit crazy as you are annoying and I’m going to support Reid?” Get your inflated liberal head out of your ass and go jerk off to the Obama campaign poster over your bed.

New Rule: You can’t be considered presidential material if you refuse to give interviews to anyone who doesn’t pay your salary. Newsflash, being president is a tough job. You can’t just take your ball and go home. Difficult decisions need to be made on a constant basis and if you can’t handle a question from The New York Times how the hell will you be able to deal with the hard choices. You know, like when to cut your Vice President’s mic.

And finally, New Rule:  You can’t say you represent everything the Founding Fathers hoped for in the country when if the Founding Fathers were here today they would laugh their asses off at you while you called them elitist secularists who had the same family values Tiger Woods. There’s a growing anti-intelligence movement in this country, fueled by the Tea Party and others on the Right. This is the same group who constantly talks about how the Founding Fathers did not plan on the country being run the way it currently is. If they’re referring to a black man in charge, then yes they’re right. Well, the Founders might have been ok with Obama controlling 3/5 of the Oval Office.

If Jim DeMint, Christine O’Donnell, Sarah Palin or Glenn Beck actually knew what the Founding Fathers stood for they wouldn’t rally behind them. They’d call them gay for wearing wigs and stockings. The Founders represent everything the Tea Partiers hate. Education? Thomas Jefferson founded a college. And a good one too. Technology? Ben Franklin invented lightning rods, bi-focals, fire companies, and odometers among many more things. Oh, he also founded several newspapers. Something else a lot of today’s “just-like-me” politicians wouldn’t recognize except for when they pass the time playing with Silly Putty. Speaking of Ben Franklin, the guy got more ass than a toilet seat. And not from his wife. Let’s not forget the Founders studied Greek and Roman history as the basis for the new country they formed. But Greece and Rome are in Europe, so who needs to listen to those pussies, am I right?

Buy hey, things could be worse. We could have candidates who distort speeches that seriously compare their opponents to the people we are fighting against overseas to keep our way of life intact.

Oh. My bad. Now if you'll excuse me I'm going to go listen to old tapes of Tim Russert and cry myself to sleep.

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