Bill Maher and Sarah Silverman on politics, especially Gary Johnson

From Bill Maher’s show, here’s the host talking about the Presidential candidates with The Divine Sarah. Special opprobrium is reserved for Gary “Aleppo” Johnson. It’s a fun verbal fencing match between two (generally) like-minded people, both with quick wits.

I love the way Sarah greets Maher like an old Jewish grandmother.


  1. Randall Schenck
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Yes well, it probably says to us – you don’t want to put yourself in the hands of the Millennials just yet. But then, you most likely don’t want to rely on any of the politicians either. Just vote for Hilary and move on. Johnson is probably still attempting to locate the bathroom.

  2. Merilee
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    What’s a leppo??😖

    • BobTerrace
      Posted October 2, 2016 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

      A cool Leprechaun?

      • E.A. Blair
        Posted October 2, 2016 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

        Mister, around here we call them “Lepregoes”.

  3. Historian
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    I would love to see a poll as to why millennials like Gary Johnson. I would bet that it is because he favors the legalization of pot. Their knowledge of his economic views, which are truly reactionary, is probably little known. The ignorance of the masses is the most powerful tool for a “bad” person to gain political power or at least challenge the halfway sane. There is little indication that this condition will change anytime soon.

    • ploubere
      Posted October 2, 2016 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      Libertarianism has always struck me as a holdover from adolescence, an immature refusal to follow rules. Perhaps that’s why it appeals to the young.

      • Heather Hastie
        Posted October 2, 2016 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

        I have a similar opinion. Libertarianism is inherently selfish and young people often haven’t worked out that those needing help aren’t all losers or in a bad place through their own faults. And I think they see that the Libertarians support the legalization of marijuana and are socially liberal and they don’t look any deeper.

        I’m glad Johnson has done these stupid things because too many aren’t educating themselves about his policy platform so it needs stuff like this to stop people voting for him.

        • Flemur
          Posted October 2, 2016 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

          Libertarianism is inherently selfish and young people often haven’t worked out that those needing help aren’t all losers or in a bad place through their own faults

          Like Bill Maher, Nobel prize winner Milton Friedman and the guys who wrote the Constitution. Etc.

          • Historian
            Posted October 3, 2016 at 7:22 am | Permalink

            If you’re implying that the writers of the Constitution were libertarians, you are totally wrong. The short reply is that the Constitution was drafted to replace the Articles of Confederation, which did not provide an adequate central government. In other words, the Founders called for more government, not less.

            The Bill Maher article in the NYT that you cite was from 2001. In recent years, I have heard him refer to himself many times as a liberal.

            • Flemur
              Posted October 3, 2016 at 10:57 am | Permalink

              The Constitution is still a libertarian document.

              Bill Maher …recent years, I have heard him refer to himself many times as a liberal.

              Well, OK, he was an “inherently selfish and young” person until some time after 2001. I find him to be rather repulsive, and only mentioned him because he’s in the OP; he’s definitely not in the same class as M. Friedman.

              Another libertarian in a recent OP is Lionel Shriver, who, FWIW, predicts a collapse of the US monetary system.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted October 2, 2016 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

        Libertarian is hardly anything more than soft boiled republican. They are essentially saying the same old thing – govt. is bad, it’s worthless and no good, just elect me and I’ll prove it to you.

        • BobTerrace
          Posted October 2, 2016 at 4:13 pm | Permalink


      • Lance
        Posted October 2, 2016 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

        Shrug. I’m of AARP age, a libertarian, and do intend to vote for Johnson.

        • tomh
          Posted October 2, 2016 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

          Why? Do you agree with him that climate change will be solved by the free market? Or that Citizens United was a correct decision? Or perhaps that there should be no limit on size or type of gun an individual can own, including fully automatic machine guns? I’m curious what positions he advocates that would entice someone to vote for him.

          • Lance
            Posted October 2, 2016 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

            I agree with Johnson on two key issues which override everything else: Ending all US involvement in foreign wars, and ending the war on drugs at home. Because not having a President who is mass murdering and mass incarcerating people is rather high on my list.

            That said, two of the three issues you mention are straw-man characterizations of Johnson’s positions. I do agree that Citizens United was the correct decision.

            • tomh
              Posted October 2, 2016 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

              Straw man characterizations? What you’re calling straw man are actually your candidate’s positions, whether you want to admit it or not. A few weeks ago, all the candidates answered 20 questions on science.

              Johnson had this to say about climate change:

              “The very activities that appear to contribute to climate change also contribute to mankind’s health and prosperity, so we view with a skeptical eye any attempts to curtail economic activity. We believe that a motivated and informed market will demand efficiency and reduced greenhouse gases, mitigating at least some of mankind’s effects.” In other words, the free market will take care of climate change. At least become familiar with what you’re supporting.

              The same on gun control. I’ll give Johnson credit in that he differs slightly from the Libertarian platform which opposes “all laws at any level of government” restricting guns. “We should be open to a discussion on keeping guns out of the hands of the mentally ill,” Johnson says. That is the only concession he makes to gun control.

            • Lance
              Posted October 2, 2016 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

              Fail. You just strengthened my point.

              No, what Johnson said is not equivalent to “the free market will take care of climate change.” And your straw-man of his gun control position is even more egregious. Fully automatic “machine guns” have been (essentially) banned since 1934. I don’t think Johnson has advocated a repeal of that law. (He only opposes new gun control laws, and I agree.)

              Regardless, you asked why anyone would vote for him. The primary reason for me is that unlike Clinton or Trump, he opposes the continued mass murder of innocent people by the US military. Everything else is secondary.

              • Charles McCullough
                Posted October 2, 2016 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

                I am also an AARP voter. Johnson’s nihilistic climate change remarks are equivalent to those of an elementary student. Every other issue pales in relevance to climate change, including your exaggerated comment on “mass murder by the U.S. military.” It is common knowledge that the automatic weapons ban has been in effect for many years, but the high volume military style weapons appear to be the weapon of choice for most mass shootings. I am a gun owner who hopes they will soon be banned nationally. The basic Libertarian philosophy might appear “Utopian”, but is inhumane, dangerous, and unrealistic in practical politics and a diverse society. Yes, I still wonder how any thinking person can vote Libertarian, and especially for a buffoon like Johnson in an extremely important election.

              • Dave
                Posted October 3, 2016 at 6:39 am | Permalink

                Just out of curiosity, who are all these “innocent people” that the US military is supposedly “mass murdering”? At the moment, the people being killed by the US military are ISIS terrorists in Iraq and Syria, a task which in my opinion is wholly justified and indeed essential if ISIS is to be contained and destroyed. The killing is being carried out largely by precision air and drone strikes, and (one assumes) by covert Special Forces missions, all of which are the antithesis of the “mass murdering” that you seem to think is going on.

              • Lance
                Posted October 3, 2016 at 9:13 am | Permalink

                Here is one recent report from The Guardian. Of course I know this won’t matter to anyone since brown foreign lives don’t matter. Especially not when a liberal Democrat is doing the killing. And besides, Gary Johnson wants to legalize “machine guns!”

                US airstrikes kill 73

              • tomh
                Posted October 3, 2016 at 10:56 am | Permalink

                Why do you deny his plain words? He’s not ashamed of his positions, he’s advocated them for a long time. What is it about, “We believe that a motivated and informed market will demand efficiency and reduced greenhouse gases, mitigating at least some of mankind’s effects,” that you don’t understand? The “market” will mitigate climate change. To further this he would eliminate the EPA and all regulations on clean water. “As president of the United States, I’ll sign legislation to eliminate any federal agency that they present me with,” Johnson said. (06/06/16)

                As for guns, again why deny his words? He’s advocated unfettered access to guns for a long time. Running for president in 2012 he said,
                “I’m a firm believer in the second amendment and so I would not have signed legislation banning assault weapons or automatic weapons,” and,

                “I think [the Second Amendment] was designed to protect us against a government that could be very intrusive.” Johnson said. “And in this country, we have a growing police state – if people can own assault rifles or automatic rifles, I think leads to a more civil government.”

                As a fellow AARP member, I’m even more concerned about his plan to cut Medicare by 43% and turn it into block grants administered by the state. Eliminating Social Security taxes and privatizing it doesn’t sound very appealing either.

                But, hey, if you can sleep better by throwing your vote away uselessly on Johnson, good for you.

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted October 2, 2016 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      Their knowledge of his economic views, which are truly reactionary…

      Yes indeed. Johnson has had three major gaffes in the last week (that I am aware of) and they caught all 3 in their clip. But if you actually dig into the policy positions of Johnson and the Libertarian Party, there is plenty not to like. I was glad to see Maher briefly reviewed that as well. Enjoy substance.

  4. ploubere
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Watched this last night. The pro-Trump yahoo on the panel behaved like Trump, interrupting and shouting over everyone else, especially the woman, with idiotic blather. Bill summed it up nicely when he said he can’t take another month of this.

  5. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    The joke about Silverman’s age had me turn to Wikipedia and I discovered she has the same birthday as Woody Allen (I’ve known the latter for a long time), which seems appropriate somehow. (Two of my favorite comedians along with Chris Rock.)

    Why is there a verb ‘Googling’ but not a verb ‘Wiki-ing’ if you search there first??

    • GBJames
      Posted October 2, 2016 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

      Because one rolls off the tongue and the other makes you wish you had kept your mouth shut?

  6. Claudia Baker
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    She is indeed ‘divine’. A breath of fresh air and hard-hitting at the same time. I love her.

    The Trump-guy on the panel made me want to scream. I think I did yell at the screen once. OMFG, what a rude and obnoxious buffoon. I just wanted someone there to shut him up! It was hard to watch, actually.

  7. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    She is sooo cool.

    • Claudia Baker
      Posted October 2, 2016 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

      Yup. 🙂

  8. docbill1351
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    The winner of Most Punchable was the odious Steve Moore who is like a human Ronco Word Salad Shooter spewing out his verbal diarrhea at 200 psi. He wouldn’t let anyone else get a word in without talking over them, through them and between them. I liked it when Maher finally had enough and shut him up for a few moments.

    The look on Moore’s face at this rebuke was priceless. Although brief. Soon he was back Gish Galloping his fake talking points.

    Someone should invent a Talking Points Collar, like a bark collar, that would give the wearer a mild (OK, who am I kidding? SEVERE!) electrical shock for each falsehood uttered. I’d pay-for-view that!

    • Charles McCullough
      Posted October 2, 2016 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      Continuously talking over another speaker must be an official Trump campaign strategy. From Trump, K. Conway, B. Epsteyn, and S. Moore, all the way to the sludge covered bottom, these obnoxious bullies employ their Gish strategy to perfection. They have no rational or positive substance to talk about, so they prevent those who do, from getting their points across. It must be to force thinking people to switch channels in exasperation, so they don’t hear the vile truth about Trump.

  9. W.Benson
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    My impression is that Libertarianism is philosophically next to Intelligent Design creationism, but without the divine. If you just proactively fight regulations, cultivate ignorance, and benignly ignore everything, the Cosmos will work to the benefit and glory of the hand-working, well-intentioned capitalist.

  10. Sian Evans
    Posted October 2, 2016 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for this.
    I considered voting for Ralph Nader … but then I thought about the Supreme Court.

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