Real Time with Bill Maher and Conservative Boneheads

There’s a great blog post over at The Liberal Doomsayer, and I provided a reply. Here it is.

Great post. Found your blog via Technorati search for Bill Maher (wanted to see what the blogosphere was saying about his latest show, which I just caught last night).

To call her a bubblehead is right on… I couldn’t believe some of the spin this woman was selling. Do you remember when she said that the reason she can say that Iraqi women are doing better now than before the war despite the fact that journalists and reporters have said otherwise is that “as you know better than anyone, Bill, the media in this country doesn’t always tell us the truth.”

Oh, that’s right. If Iraqi women were doing better, the media would want us to think otherwise! When we on the Left say that the media is distorting the truth, say by presenting White House PR as “the truth” or presenting America in the most favorable light possible, the reason we are able to prove this at all is because we know that press access to the White House is controlled by the White House (duh), and therefore, journalists don’t want to piss off the administration too badly since that might cost them contacts in high places.

Would it offend anyone to provide definitive journalistic proof that Iraqi women are doing better after the Iraq war? Of course not! The White House would love an article like that, and we on the left wouldn’t mind it either–after all, what, the hell, are we spending billions of dollars for if humans aren’t even getting basic rights in Iraq?

But this bonehead Conway really is just a talking head of the right, who parrots what the right-wing machine tells her to say. She is what Paul Krugman recently called “an echo chamber”, who simply assumes that what other people tell her in her conservative circles must be true.

Remember when she mentioned that John Kerry voted against what she called “the body armor bill”? She referred to the $87 billion package as “the body armor bill,” even though and other actual analysts have thoroughly proven the distortion in this claim (a distortion used by Bush to win the election of 2004). It pissed me off that Bill Maher didn’t call her bluff and instead simply used the equally propogandistic “Well, Kerry fought in Vietnam.”

In reality, the proper response would be to point out that the $87 billion package included $300 million for upgraded vests, yes, but that was a mere 1/3 of 1 percent (i.e. 0.33%) of the actual bill’s spending.[1] Do you think what Kerry voted against was those $300 million, or is it more rational to assume that Kerry voted against the other $86,700 million dollars spent in that bill?


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