Several times over the course of this blog I’ve tried to hammer home the fact that Democrats and Republicans are not remotely the same. The “both sides” argument is bogus, it’s a false equivalence that gave our district Diane Neal and is trying to give the 2020 race Howard Schultz. In his “New Rules” segment last Friday, Bill Maher tackled the same point, so I’ve gone to the trouble of transcribing it for your reading pleasure…and because it’s Sunday night and I’m battling a case of Trump fatigue. Here is the full text with video link below. Enjoy.
New rule. Instead of saying both parties are equally to blame for the mess we’re in, just admit you haven’t really followed politics for the last twenty years. Now, everyone is mad at Howard Schultz for thinking he can be the barista-in-chief but nobody is attacking his central premise: that we need an independent because both sides have become equally extreme. Now I’m not here to pick on Howard, I don’t believe in kicking billionaires when they’re down, and besides, there’s some professional courtesy involved–I also was once a drug dealer. But this idea of a pox on both their houses is just factually wrong. There’s a pair of highly respected scholars named Norm Ornstein and Thomas Mann who have been analyzing Congress for half a century, always criticizing both parties in equal measure, but then around 2012 they began writing something very different, summed up in their article, “Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem.” They wrote, “the Republican party has become an insurgent outlier, ideologically extreme, scornful of compromise, unmoved by conventional understanding of facts, evidence and science.” Exactly. Congress is not broken, the Republican party is broken. So when I hear Howard Schultz say “we are sitting today with approximately twenty-one-point-five trillion of debt, which is a reckless example not only of Republicans but of Democrats as well,” it’s obvious he just hasn’t done his homework. Bill Clinton left office with a surplus. Obamacare was paid for, and Obamas bank bailouts, necessary because of a Republican recession, were paid back. Reagan, W and Trump all ran up huge debt with tax cuts for the rich and their party continues to practice trickle down economics long after evidence has shown it not to work. Yes, evidence. Only one side generally trades in reality anymore. Trump has made over eight thousand false or misleading statements as President. Nothing like this has every happened before. Yes, all presidents lie to a degree but Trump is in a world of his own. He’s Bob Beaman at the sixty-eight Olympics, breaking the long jump record by two feet. He’s Babe Ruth hitting fifty-nine home runs when the previous record holder had twenty seven. He’s…he’s…he’s Tom Brady winning six fucking Super Bowls. But this leveling of truth is a war being waged on Democracy by only one side. Fifty-one percent of Republicans still believe in birtherism. I once joked that Trump was the son of an orangutan and he sued me for it…but it didn’t become a foundational belief of the Democratic party! A majority of Republicans believe Hillary ran a pedophile ring out of a pizza parlor. They believe three million people voted illegally in 2016. They believe reverse racism is a bigger problem than racism. If you drew a Venn diagram of “insane” and “21st century Republican” it would be a circle. Howard Schultz says both parties engage in revenge politics but it wouldn’t have even occurred to Democrats that you could simply refuse a president to fill a Supreme Court vacancy. Mitch McConnell did that. He said, “I know it’s in the Constitution. I don’t care. Make me.” Both parties are not extreme–that’s extreme. Al Gore conceded the 2000 election for the good of the country. Would Bush have? Would Trump? Only one party thinks it’s okay for presidents to have a side gig as a Russian agent. Trump fired the head of the FBI for doing his job with the Russian investigation, then he had the Russians over and laughed about it. That’s not a bi-partisan problem. If Obama did it, he’d be in SuperMax now trading cigarettes with the Unibomber. And are you really going to tell me that both sides are equally to blame for the state of the environment? One party trusts the science on climate change and the other asks, “How can Earth be warming if I’m holding a snowball?” So when you say they’re both equally bad just know that doesn’t make you a sage. It’s a stupid person’s idea of a smart thing to say. It’s a cheat that says you’re above it all when you’re really just too lazy to tell shit from shinola. And it is the central fraudulent idea that allowed an outsider like Trump to get elected. It’s one step up from “I don’t vote.” It’s like claiming that “I don’t read” makes you smarter. And “I don’t shower” makes you smell good.
And here’s a link to the actual video:
Republicans are the problem so keep resisting…