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The Prosecution Rests in the Case Against “UnReal Time with Bill Maher”

October 31, 2009


Since I started at NewsReal in July — first as a blogger before eventually becoming the editor — my beat has been HBO’s leftist gabfest “Real Time with Bill Maher.” The 2009 season of the show concluded on October 16. So NewsReal will not be featuring any more commentaries on “Real Time” until the next season starts in the spring.

Having written about two dozen blog posts inspired by episodes of “Real Time” I’ve come to a more measured judgment of the show than some might expect. The reality about “Real Time” is this: Yes, Maher is thoroughly embedded in the culture of the Left, but the show frequently features intellectually-engaging interviews and debates. Furthermore, Maher is not always out in “progressive” NeverNever Land.

For example, on the season’s final episode Maher revealed himself to be to the Right of Chris Matthews on health care. The two disagreed about who was to blame for the high cost of health care. Maher rejected the frequently-promulgated notion that evil corporations were the sole culprit. Instead he was willing to spread the blame around. He insisted, quite correctly, that doctors ordering unnecessary tests — in order to bill insurance companies for more money — also was a factor. He further claimed that Americans living unhealthy lifestyles — eating garbage and failing to exercise — also exacerbated the problem.

This willingness to to wholly embrace the Left’s class-warfare answers also finds expression in Maher’s choice of guests and panelists. Maher frequently featured conservatives, sometimes even featuring panels which pitted him on his own against two ideological opponents. When was the last time Matthews, Keith “Meltdown” Olbermann, or Rachel “Spoonful of Saccharine” Maddow did that?

In one of my previous blogs I said that as far as Glenn Beck’s program goes I generally find myself at an 80-20 level of agreement. About 80% of the time I’ll be supporting what’s being said. With Maher that number is about reversed. Perhaps 20% of what Maher says I might be sympathetic to in some regard. There are plenty of people on the Left far worse. He’s nowhere near as bad as Michael Moore, for example. And throw in the show’s variety of panelists and interviews and it’s possible to have a watchable program.

So, for those who may have missed some of my previous commentaries on “Real Time” I now collect all of these posts for your reading pleasure:

10.11.09 Hell Freezes Over: Quasi-Leftist Comedian Sarah Silverman Actually Tells One Funny Joke

For my three-part dissection of Maher’s interview with Michael Moore I explain the similarities between the worldview of the communist Left and the director of “Capitalism: A Love Story.”

10.8.09 Neo-Communist Left (Michael Moore) Debates Neo-Socialist Left (Bill Maher) on Real Time, Part 3

10.7.09 Neo-Communist Left (Michael Moore) Debates Neo-Socialist Left (Bill Maher) on Real Time, Part 2

10.6.09 Neo-Communist Left (Michael Moore) Debates Neo-Socialist Left (Bill Maher) on Real Time, Part 1

9.23.09 Bill Maher Embraces Sugar Stalinism

In this post here I explain the advantage of having my last name. If you have an unusual or an unfortunate last name then for someone to poke fun at it — especially as a first reaction to hearing it — instantly indicates that they’re probably a bad person.

9.13.09 NewsReal Sunday: Bill Maher Reveals Himself To Be A Horrible Human Being with an Empty Soul

I’m still quite pleased with the point that I made in the following post regarding hip-hop music. It’s one I’ll probably want to develop further some time down the road.

8.31.09 Even in The Hip-Hop World the Ideas of Left and Right Battle for Supremacy

Use this next blog post any time someone accuses you of being “immoral” for being against single-payer healthcare.

8.30.09 NewsReal Sunday: The Six Moral Arguments Against Socialized Medicine

This next post was a pretty significant find I made.

8.24.09 Bill Maher Lies About Sarah Palin to Attack American Patriots

I’m still quite proud of the points made in these blogs about Maher’s interview with Sam Harris.

8.23.09 NewsReal Sunday: Secularist Sam Harris says “There is a Core of Truth to Religion That We Should Be Interested In.”

8.23.09 NewsReal Sunday: Sorry Sam But Atheism and Agnosticism are Belief Systems Too

The discovery form this next post was just delightful.

8.18.09 Ashton Kutcher Comes Out of the Closet on “Real Time”

8.17.09 Bill Maher Can’t See The Answer Staring Him in the Face

8.10.09 Bill, it’s not Americans that are stupid. It’s the human race that’s stupid

One thing that I noticed throughout this season of “Real Time”: Maher frequently took his cues from Maddow. Subjects and guests on her show would appear on Maher’s show a few days later.

8.3.09 Bill Maher copies Rachel Maddow in promoting Jeff Sharlet’s “The Family”

7.29.09 Maher decries “profit motive” and sees conspiracies in healthcare, prisons

7.27.09 Bill, one can’t pick minorities’ “side” when one denies the Left’s lie of a racial war

7.20.09 Bill Maher’s redemptive moments

7.18.09 Just because you have an excuse to be racist doesn’t mean we’ll tolerate your racism

7.13.09 Meghan McCain is not Generation Y’s Best Voice… Yet…

And here we have my very first NewsReal blog post.

7.6.09 Are You Pro-Socialized Medicine because you’re a nurse or because you’re a socialist?

  1. Prudent Man, CFA permalink
    November 1, 2009 9:23 am

    The only thing Liberal about these people is their perversions of Truth. Since the Welfare State Progressives stole “Liberal” from the “Libertarians” their eighty year move to Fascist Socialism has been apparent that they would try to destroy any form of individualism and individualistic thought. As they are mainly composed of Welfare Recipients, Tax Deductible Foundations, collectivist academics, politicians,union leaders, and government employees it is obvious that the host of productive taxpayers that these parasites feast on is striking back – finally!

    It is remarkable to me that Leftist Mouthpieces on George Soros’ payroll think that they are going to be in business when they have outlived their usefulness. The demise of CNN, CBS and NBC/Universal should be apparent to these ignorant, bigoted antagonists of Free Speech. For proof of the Leftist Thugs modus operandi just refer to those ruthlessly discarded by the Clintons and Obamas when they were drained of their political usefulness.

  2. Prudent Man, CFA permalink
    November 1, 2009 9:58 am

    Bill Maher should not go out on a windy day or this effete wimp would get blown away.

    I suggest that Sarah Palin challenge the draft-dodging Maher, Letterman and Chris Matthew to arm wrestling. If these clowns are examples of American Manhood the Feminist Movement has really castrated America.

    Do you see, as I do, those who have done the least for America while becoming wealthy criticize our way of life the most? I suggest they all serve a term in Afghanistan and Iraq before they ever get behind a mike again. They are proof that people pervert and destroy what they don’t work and sacrifice for.

  3. heather permalink
    November 1, 2009 10:12 am

    Bill was not old enough to be drafted. I don’t know about the other two. Darn those women for wanting equality!

  4. peachey permalink
    November 1, 2009 11:03 am

    The most amazing element to the Progressives argument promoting the distribution of wealth, is that it will not include their wealth which is generally sheltered or held in off-shore accounts (Oprah, Gates,Soro’s,Maher,Barney Franks,Pelosi,the Kennedy’s, the Hollywood crowd, etc.). When will they be forced to contribute to the forced sharing/redistribution of wealth? Will they also be constrained to the same rules as the general population? Will they be attacked or silenced if they speak against Obama? Somehow, I believe that we are looking at the formation of a super-elite that will be exempt from the rules applied to the general population.

  5. November 1, 2009 6:11 pm

    My impression from him and from watching his show is of a moderate thinker surrounded by Leftist information.
    Given the crowd he finds himself amongst day in and day out it is impressive that he has been as moderate as he has.
    I have always felt he was a better target for debating and recruiting than ridiculing.

    • Sarah J permalink
      November 25, 2009 8:32 pm

      you are correct. Bill has a good brain, but I feel he’s holding back with what he knows.

  6. November 1, 2009 6:52 pm

    Maher is as he is…but for HBO, there is no excuse.

  7. Header permalink
    November 10, 2009 3:01 pm

    Swindle – perfect name.

  8. Sarah J permalink
    November 25, 2009 2:21 pm

    as to Bill Maher: I use to be a fan. Until I noticed, he stopped just short of telling the truth ( I believe he knows the truth, he’s too smart not to ). He avoids hotbutton-issues, for instance: Chemtrails!
    Other things too, seems to shy away from telling it like it is.
    Sorry Bill. I am fan no more.
    Prove me wrong next season, I’ll be taking a peek.

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