Donald Trump is taking a toll on Bill Maher. When reality is simultaneously absurd and continuation of the world at stake, comedy may be harder to perform. On Real Time Friday evening, one (at 4:03 of the video below) of the few funny things from Maher was "There's a pig in theWhite House. He was in Japan this past week and they took him to a sushi place. And they asked him if he'd like some yellowtail and he said 'sure, what's her name?'"
He's less funny, still unnecessarily profane, but nevertheless on target. He explained (at 5:40)
What happened was Republicans tried a new strategy called "trumpism without Trump." And it backfired horribly. Apparently, Trumpism doesn't do well without Trump. With the Republican base, when you say "fuck Mexicans," you have to mean it. Don't phone in your racism- that was their message.
His was not an original thought. However, it coincides neatly with the recent observation, in the article I can't seem to escape, from Michael Kruse about Trump voters in Johnstown, Pennsylvania:
His supporters here, it turns out, are energized by his bombast and his animus more than any actual accomplishments. For them, it’s evidently not what he’s doing so much as it is the people he’s fighting. Trump is simply and unceasingly angry on their behalf, battling the people who vex them the worst—“obstructionist” Democrats, uncooperative establishment Republicans, the media, Black Lives Matter protesters and NFL players (boy oh boy do they hate kneeling NFL players) whom they see as ungrateful, disrespectful millionaires.
It's his bombast and his animus, and the sense of victimization he conveys- nay, trumpets- virtually every day. No one ever has done "angry" as well as has Donald Trump. Many have tried it and many still will, but this President is the master of his own domain.
Nonetheless, while that strategy of Virginia GOP gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie and a few others was obvious, evidently another of Maher's points was far less so. At 1:57 of the video he joked
But nothing beats the defense put up by Alabama State Auditor Jim Ziegler. You've heard this, this is the guy who said, qote, "Take Joseph and Mary. Mary was a teenager. Joseph was an adult carpenter and they became parents of Jesus.That's what he said. I mean, usingJesus to justify child moestatation. Even the Catholics went "tried it, doesn't work."
Admittedly, not very funny. But then he wisely noted
Also, it's been a while since I've been in Catechism but to my recollelection- slight difference. Joseph and Mary didn't fuck. Isn't that the whole point of this story, I recall was that they didn't...? That never happened, O.K.
Yes, that is the point of the story. And it would help if somebody, somewhere would notice that the auditor in Montgomery- who in the heart of the Bible Belt is defending a candidate who believes God's law is to be imposed upon everyone- understood an essential part of the foundation of Christianity.
Instead, it took an avowed, defiant atheist to give us a Bible lesson we shouldn't have needed. Apparently, questioning Ziegler's statement would have been politically incorrect, which may be why we needed Bill Maher to remind us.