Sunday, May 20, 2018

Ha Ha Ha?

What Can You Say About Bill Maher?

Millionaire comics are a dime a half-dozen at least.  Just look on TV.  Bill Maher is one of them, in spite of his independent streak and being on cable. He was heroically fired from a major network for saying it took guts to fly a plane into the World Trade Center.  Then he made a film making fun of religion (“Religulous”).  So he was never very ingratiated into the politics of the power elite.  That has changed.
What ya smokin' now Bill?

Now, whether smoking too much weed or trying to beat Rachel Maddow at the Trump hysteria / Russia game, he’s become a somewhat sad figure.  His self-reverential shtick is familiar, as it’s usually all about him and his Trump angst.  He only occasionally throws out some off-line opinions to his mostly Democratic Party audience.  This week’s program (Friday, May 18*) was peopled by creepy, suspicious types.  He started out with an ex-FBI agent, Clint Watts, discussing his new book on social media’s influence in politics.  As if the FBI did not engage in social media and media manipulations itself.  So perhaps they are losing now?  His talking-head ‘panel’ consisted of a former CIA agent and Republican, Evan McMullin; Dan Savage, a gay Democrat; and the dreadful opinion editor of the New York Times, hard-core Zionist and former Wall Street Journal reporter Bari Weiss.

Maher’s ‘special guest’ was a neo-liberal woman formerly from Zambia, Dambisa Moyo, who had just written a book on the degeneration of ‘democracy.’ She recommended paying politicians as is done in the private sector, but for their improvements to the country.  As if CEO’s actually get paid for performance.  She pretended there were not enough lawyers in Congress, when they are the majority in the Senate (60%) and 37% in the House.  She advocated knowledge tests in order to vote.  She said that the U.S. is the ‘vanguard of liberal democracy,' the kind of tripe that always gets plaudits from her new benefactors.

Past Maher shows have included generals, Trumps promoters, vicious Republican performance artists like Ann Coulter and a stable of approved editorial figures of the mostly moderate Democrat or Republican stripe.  He used to have Sander’s supporters on, but has run from any left-wingers for a long time now.  For instance, trying to get Tom Morello to agree with him about Hillary Clinton was just too much for Bill.

The panel was united in non-stop talk about Trump’s personal foibles, ignoring any detail of the crimes he and his party are committing every day.  The worst moment was when pro-Israeli NYT editor Weiss claimed that Hamas or the Palestinians trickily staged their protests to coincide with the opening of the embassy in Jerusalem - just to make Ivanka look bad.  Everyone made easy on her bloody Trump-lite comments, including for the most part Maher.  “When is there not a riot in that region of the world?” archly asked Moyo.  McMullin made a noise that perhaps the choice of the date was Trump’s, not Hamas, but he approved moving the embassy at some point anyway.  Savage did not challenge Weiss frontally, but he did agree with McMullin on the timing. They all agreed not to negotiate with Hamas.  The 70th commemoration of Naqba was never mentioned, nor the mass shooting of unarmed Palestinians in Gaza itself.  Weiss was most distressed that 'conservatives' had taken the Israel issue for themselves, taking it from the liberals.  Amazing.

The timing is really Trump’s – he was too stupid to realize that opening an embassy at this particular moment was ‘impolitic,’ as they say.  And so the isolated ruling class in the U.S. again ignores the thrice invaded open air prison that is Gaza, which originated from an episode of ethnic cleansing 70 years ago.

On this program, Savage was the best of this sad bunch, scandalizing the stiffies by making the point that legal prostitution is the best solution to people who cannot get ‘laid.’  This in a discussion of a topic Bill seems to have just discovered, ‘incels.’  Savage himself is not yet integrated enough into the ‘line’ of the Democratic elite or the U.S. ruling class, so he ended up being a bit of a dissident on this program.  The ex-CIA agent promoted the new head of the CIA, Gina Haspel.  Moyo finally challenged him.  Savage pointed out that the Nazis used the some of the same tactics of 'enhanced interrogation' at Dachau.

From this program ‘the Resistance’ to Trump consists of a united front of Republicans, 'ex'-FBI and 'ex'-CIA members, Zionist NYT editors, millionaire comics and neo-liberal black women.  Trump is a criminal but this array is a fake unauthentic Resistance®, the business-as-usual crowd.  A wing of capital stands behind this ‘resistance.’  Maher himself has yearned for ‘business-as-usual’ quite openly.  

Another wing of capital has other ideas.

Note:  Glenn Greenwald took Bari Weiss apart in an Intercept essay in August 2017.  Nothing has changed.

More postings related to this issue or these people:  “Stolichnaya…,” "Religulous," "The Holocaust Industry," "The Death of the Nation and the Future of the Arab Revolution," etc.  Use blog search box, upper left.
Red Frog

May 20, 2018

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