(Screen grab/ NBC)
Bill Maher was a guest on the September 29th Late Night with Conan O'Brien.
He was there to plug his movie, Religulous, a religion-bashing, low-budget documentary.
In addition to his self-promotion, Maher provided some "entertainment" as well. Of course, one person's entertainment is another person's annoyance.
Before talking about the movie, O'Brien wanted to talk about the news.
O'Brien said that so much is happening from day to day. He noted that Monday alone was a roller coaster ride.
Maher began by saying that he wouldn't say that all his predictions are right. He had predicted that Al Gore would win and John Kerry would win. Maher added, "Of course, they actually did."
That's fresh material, isn't it? Gore and Kerry won the elections. Bush didn't. Unhinged.
On the current economic turmoil:
MAHER: I said about a year ago, I said: 'I know George Bush has one more giant screw-up in him.' He is not gonna be happy until he leaves the White House and it is in flames behind him...
And John McCain, I don't think was helpful in this process, the way he flew into Washington.
O'Brien commented that it doesn't matter whether one is Democrat or Republican or liberal or conservative. Americans want their elected officials to work together and solve the problem. He said we were told they were going to pass this plan and it didn't happen. Then both sides started shouting at each other.
Maher, naturally, blamed Republicans.
MAHER: I think people...this is why the House Republicans didn't go for it. They're getting e-mails, 200 to 1, from their constituents, 'We don't want this plan. We can't pay our mortgage. Why are you bailing out these fat, greedy (expletive bleeped)?'
FACT: The plan would have passed if the Dems had voted in favor of it. The Dems have the majority. THEY didn't get it done. Pelosi didn't get it done.
Maher is simply echoing what the lib media have been saying about the bailout. At best, it's inaccurate. At worst, it's an intentional effort to deceive and damage Republicans.
Here's a shocker: The conversation turned to Sarah Palin.
O'BRIEN: Someone else who's been striking a nerve lately... Sarah Palin... She is a lightening rod because...
MAHER: She's a lightening bug. Can you imagine what this world would be like if she was president right now and this crisis was going on? I mean, we could have a repeat of this crisis a year from now. John McCain could become president and pass away. And this person, this stewardess...
O'BRIEN: No one says 'stewardess' anymore.
MAHER: I do, in relation to her. And I know I've been criticized for that, and I apologize... to stewardesses.
Uh, you know, and this argument that somehow if you criticize her you're criticizing all women, that's what they try to throw... You know, that's such an idiotic argument. I mean, she is an unprepared dope, just like Bush was an unprepared dope. And we didn't say all men were an unprepared dope because I said it about George Bush...
But, you know, feminisim is about understanding that it's the individuals who we're judging. I mean people look at Hillary Clinton, I think Americans do, and they say, 'Yeah, she belongs.' And they look at Condoleezza Rice and they say, 'She belongs.'
Sarah Palin, she belongs... She belongs to Delta airlines, and she should be getting me a bag of peanuts is what she should be doing.
Feminists should come to Palin's defense.
Palin was elected the governor of Alaska. She's an accomplished woman, and yet she is mercilessly mocked as being completely incompetent and unintelligent.
Of course, feminists won't come to Palin's defense because she's not on the same page with the pro-abortion feminists. She's pro-life, so she's a stewardess.
It's just like African-Americans failing to defend Clarence Thomas because he's conservative.
Thomas is an African-American with an asterisk and Palin is a woman with an asterisk.
I don't care that Maher is so disrespectful, but it does bother me that so many others are willing to belittle Palin in a similarly mean-spirited manner.
Then, O'Brien and Maher turned to Palin's pregnant 17-year-old daughter.
O'BRIEN: Now you're very passionate about not just, not just Sarah Palin, but you're passionate about the extended family. On your show you have a 'Free Levi Johnston' campaign. Is that right?
MAHER: Levi Johnston is the..., you know Levi? He's the young man who is now the fiance of Sarah Palin's daughter, Bristol...
But this young man, he's eighteen, you know. He's a hockey player. He's just out of high school or didn't graduate high school and he knocked up the vice president electee's daughter. And uh, of course they had to, you know, stuff him into a suit. And you know, they took him out of the wild. It was very unfortunate...
O'BRIEN: Did they hit him?...They hit with a tranquilizer dart, tagged him, and he woke up on the ...
MAHER: They shot him from an airplane like they do with the wolves. That's how they do it up there in Alaska, Conan.
And I just... You know I read in The Enquirer, described him as a 'boozing pot-smoker who doesn't want to get married,' and I thought 'soulmate.'
I can't stand it when Maher and O'Brien and Jay Leno and Saturday Night Live and others go after Palin's children.
What do they or Levi Johnston have to do with the presidential election?
After the segment of bashing Bush and Palin, Maher got down to the business of plugging his movie; but he still managed to work Palin into his promotion.
MAHER: I think religion is silly and destructive, and I think it's about time somebody said it...
So it's a very funny movie and I, I would love people to see it if for no other reason than just to make a statement that we are not going to let the Sarah Palins of the world take over this country.
Yes, we know Maher loves to mock religion. Same old, same old.
What's new lame territory for him is the "make a statement" garbage.
Maher is trying to relate his movie to Sarah Palin, hoping to exploit the dislike some people have for her to convince them to see his film.
He's suggesting that his movie is a referendum on Palin. That's nuts. It's a sleazy marketing ploy.
I understand that he'll do anything to help his movie be successful, but this is really pathetic. On one hand, he says people should go because it's funny. Have fun. Enjoy the movie. On the other hand, Maher gets serious, saying people should go as a form of protest or to show solidarity -- Just say NO to people of faith. We won't let them take over the country.
Buying a ticket to see Maher's documentary isn't making a political statement. It may be poor judgment, but it's not a statement.