Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Real Time With Bill Maher

If you haven't checked it out already, Real Time with Bill Maher on HBO is a must-see this campaign season. It debuts every Friday night at 11pm. This week, Bill's guests include former Representative Bob Barr and Cokie Roberts. Last week's episode (re-airing tonight at 11:30pm) featured the incomparable sight of Bill Maher and Michael Moore literally getting on their knees begging Ralph Nader to get out of the race. He also gave his take on the Democratic convention:

Political conventions are important and they deserve to be broadcast and viewed in their entirety. You can't call everyone in Washington "morons" if you don't know exactly what it is that makes them morons. Now, the conventional wisdom about conventions is that they're no longer worthy of our attention because they're too produced and there's no drama. You want drama? Hitch a ride home with Ted Kennedy. We're picking a president here, not the "Last Comic Standing." The media treats these conventions like pointless interruptions of
their real job covering the Scott Peterson trial. No surprises, no excitement. Hey, you know what's exciting? It's exciting when politicians get drunk with power because people aren't keeping an eye on them. No one expected we'd retaliate for 9/11 by attacking... Iraq! Ooh, unpredictable, exciting! And the reason the conventions are so "produced" is because if they weren't, the networks wouldn't air any of it. And the sight last night of John Kerry rushing through his speech in a cold sweat so that he wouldn't go over time and force viewers to miss the first two minutes of "Elimidate," was one of the saddest moments in the history of democracy. The man is proposing how to rule the globe, and we treat him like it's audition night at The Improv and he just got the light. I'm not saying everyone has to pore over issues and read everything that's out there. We can't even get our president to do that. But the conventions are one of the only times when the election isn't reduced to sound bites and attack ads. When you can get to know these people a little. It's not exciting enough just to hear Theresa Heinz Kerry? Oh, I'm sorry, next time we'll get Justin Timberlake to whip her tit out! You know - you know, maybe the conventions aren't boring. Maybe it's the people who don't participate in their society who are boring. You know, once every four years, the two parties put on
a little pageant for you: "These are our faces. These are our voices. This is our vision of America's future." You'd think that would be a little more interesting than reruns of "Celebrity Poker." But convention viewership was actually down two million. What does John Kerry have to do to get your attention? Fuck Omorosa?! And one last thing. If you think the Democratic Convention was too slick, wait until the Republicans end their convention with Osama bin Laden making a grand entrance in chains from the back of the arena like King Kong!


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