Jump to content

Real Time with Bill Maher


  • Please log in to reply

7217 replies to this topic

#5821

EmperorJon

EmperorJon

    Fanatic

Posted Apr 25, 2012 @ 1:23 PM

Bill just got an extension for Real Time foe two more seasons.
  • 0

#5822

braggtastic

braggtastic

    Stalker

Posted Apr 27, 2012 @ 11:28 PM

I agree with the point Bill was trying to make with the author, but why the hell did he use That Girl as an example? When have NYC apartments portrayed on TV been anything close to realistic? I think that ended with I Love Lucy. The Honeymooners was probably realistic too, but that wasn't Manhattan. By the way Bill, my mother lived in Manhattan in 1960 - she and three other young women all had full time jobs in department stores and they had to share a 2 BR apartment.
  • 1

#5823

A Beaverhausen

A Beaverhausen

    Fanatic

Posted Apr 28, 2012 @ 7:51 AM

I found that whole first segment a little hard to follow. Aside from the fact that their viewpoints were divergent and they never found the middle ground, Murray seems to be a low talker.
  • 0

#5824

Imonrey

Imonrey

    Stalker

Posted Apr 28, 2012 @ 11:23 AM

I haven't read Charles Murray's book, nor do have any inclination to, but I really had no idea what the hell he and Bill were talking about. As far as I could make out, Murray's theory is that people are worse off today than in 1960 because . . . fewer of them are getting married?? Is that it? That's what I was getting out of it. They're spending power is the same as it was 50 years ago? Really?

S.E. Cupp. For those of us who thought Kennedy was too calm and rational. Ugh!


She wasn't nearly as bad as Kennedy (who is?), and I actually thought she made a few good points. However, I really loved the issue about how by any measure, Obama is the more successful of the two candidates for President, based on any criteria for "living the American dream." And Cupp just would not concede on that point, which made her look stupid. Well, maybe not stupid, but willfully ignorant, such a line-tower she wouldn't budge on a rather obvious point. Romney, rich man son of a rich man; Obama, born poor, raised by a single mother, became first black President. If success is measured by achievements how can anyone compare Romney's success to that?

I like Paul Rieckhoff but he really didn't add anything to the show. A decent guest with a great story, but these 3/4 hour guests they bring in just don't work, it just destroys the flow.
  • 0

#5825

Balthazar

Balthazar

    Couch Potato

Posted Apr 29, 2012 @ 12:01 PM

I haven't read Charles Murray's book, nor do have any inclination to, but I really had no idea what the hell he and Bill were talking about. As far as I could make out, Murray's theory is that people are worse off today than in 1960 because . . . fewer of them are getting married?? Is that it? That's what I was getting out of it. They're spending power is the same as it was 50 years ago? Really?

I had a hard time following this guest's argument. I thought Bill picked a poor example with That Girl. I will say that purchasing power is definitely down. In the sixties, my mom could afford to stay home with the 4 kids in a 4 bedroom house while my dad worked in middle management. Try that today.

ETA: Who knew I couldn't stand S E Cupp?

Edited by Balthazar, Apr 29, 2012 @ 12:53 PM.

  • 0

#5826

attica finch

attica finch

    Stalker

Posted Apr 29, 2012 @ 6:25 PM

My favorite Cupp moment was at the very end. All the panelists are talking about how badly austerity plans in Europe are doing for those economies, and she's all "That's not really austerity!" Aah. A fine example of 'my ideology can't fail, it can only be failed', or looked at another way, a No True Scotsman moment.
  • 0

#5827

Ms Sugarbaker

Ms Sugarbaker

    Fanatic

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 9:47 AM

In the sixties, my mom could afford to stay home with the 4 kids in a 4 bedroom house while my dad worked in middle management. Try that today.


My mom stayed home with four kids during the same time,while my father worked one job. But we hardly ever went out to eat, maybe once or twice a year. We had leftovers for lunch. We wore hand me downs. My mom shopped for our clothes at real inexpensive stores, we wore the same sneakers everybody else in our neighborhood did. We didn't have air conditioning, cable TV, video games, cell phones or I phones. Families today consume much more than families of yesterday.
  • 0

#5828

lexloco2

lexloco2

    Loyal Viewer

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 10:04 AM

I had a hard time following this guest's argument. I thought Bill picked a poor example with That Girl. I will say that purchasing power is definitely down. In the sixties, my mom could afford to stay home with the 4 kids in a 4 bedroom house while my dad worked in middle management. Try that today.

I thought the author struggled to get his point across and that Bill seemed trapped in a bubble of his own. I can't claim personal knowledge of the statistics that underlay this discussion, but can certainly see how the author, not Bill, was correct and that in general, overall purchasing power for the poor is about the same now as in 1960.

I think the disconnect between the author and Bill might be real estate, especially real estate in NYC and Manhattan in particular. "That Girl" was a rather poor example, and I shocked that Bill looked to a silly sitcom for support of a quite serious point. If that's not dumbing down in way he criticizes all the time in other contexts, than nothing is. Isn't another sitcom, "Friends," cited as the posterchild for unbelievable Manhattan real estate where those characters in real life couldn't have afforded anything like the fictional apartments depicted there? The price of real estate, especially in NYC, has not remained constant in inflation adjusted dollars and has fluxuated wildly over the last 30 years or so. Thus, real estate, at least in Manhattan, is dramaticly more expensive then in 1960. But that doesn't mean that purchasing power overall "must" be lower now - which is what Bill seem unable to grasp. Yes, many poor people today stuggle to pay all sort of bills. But they did much the same and to the same degree in 1960 according to the author.

The author's point got bogged down in this debate. I took away from his discussion (never having heard of him before or read his book) that his theory is that values matter and those have changed. As an example, the stigma against out of wedlock childbirth is essentially gone for the poor, while still relatively strong for the rich. Now, most or many poor childen are born to an unmarried mother, while something like 8% of rich children are born to single mothers. His point was this stigma applied more or less equally for rich and poor in 1960 with the same low proportion of children - rich and poor - born to single mothers. But now the situation is very different for rich and poor, and that difference has caused all sorts of other problems, which in turn have caused the rich and poor to live increasingly divergent and distant lives from one another. That's new and the point of his book as I understand it.

I'm not sure I buy his point, but I understand it. It wasn't clear from that discussion that Bill understood his point at all.
  • 1

#5829

maculae

maculae

    Couch Potato

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 10:33 AM

When have NYC apartments portrayed on TV been anything close to realistic? I think that ended with I Love Lucy.

The FX show Louie is pretty realistic. There was an episode where Louis was apartment hunting and was on a limited budget. Found some pretty craptastic but realistic places.
  • 0

#5830

Pippin

Pippin

    Fanatic

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 1:40 PM

I haven't read Mr. Murray's book, but I thought I got the gist of what he was saying -- that community values were eroding; values like marriage, neighbourhoods where everyone knew each other and looked out for each other, etc. etc. My problem with this point of view is that it is a rather rigid one; I suppose I am your typical lefty liberal but I do believe that families do come in all shapes and forms.

My biggest problem is that he failed to address what I see is one of the biggest problems with his thesis; namely, that everyone did his or her part. One certainly cannot argue that the upper class/rich/Beaumont citizens are upholding their end when they are failing to do their most basic of civic duties: pay their fair share of taxes.

And I thought Bill made a valid point: are we supposed to look up to an elite who made their money by cheating the middle class (Wall Street), polluting the planet (take your pick), killing people (weapons/gun manufacturers) and so on and so forth? So many of the elite are elite because they have sleazed their way to the top.

As for the real estate disconnect, I offer you this: when I first moved to Toronto, you could find a nice (repeat, nice) one bedroom apt. for about $300/month. Now the same apartment (and ones a lot less nice) generally start at about $900 - 1,000/month. Try living on a starting salary with those kind of prices. (BTW, bachelors are about $750. That is, apartments in neighbourhoods where you won't get shot or mugged and can get a taxi after dark.) So I am somewhat cynical about similarity in buying power, thanks anyhow.

Overall, I have to say my impression of Mr. Murray was of someone nostalgic for the 1950s. But that's just my opinion.

Edited by Pippin, Apr 30, 2012 @ 1:43 PM.

  • 0

#5831

ganesh

ganesh

    Stalker

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 3:51 PM

I haven't read Mr. Murray's book, but I thought I got the gist of what he was saying -- that community values were eroding; values like marriage, neighbourhoods where everyone knew each other and looked out for each other, etc. etc. My problem with this point of view is that it is a rather rigid one; I suppose I am your typical lefty liberal but I do believe that families do come in all shapes and forms.

I thought mostly the same thing. It seemed to me that he was saying people who get married, have kids, and own a house have values and should be considered successful. Those who don't, have neither. Frankly, I think he is full of shit, data or no data. I think he found the data to support his claim. I don't buy that people never locked their doors either. I rent an apartment in a smaller city. The neighbors look out for one another. My neighbor signed for an important UPS delivery for me, for example. I don't feel that I want to buy a house. I don't need a car, and with gas so expensive, why bother? I like living in a city.

The better question is that because people don't make a lot of money or that money doesn't buy what it used to, then what are today's values?

Overall, I have to say my impression of Mr. Murray was of someone nostalgic for the 1950s. But that's just my opinion.

Again, ITA. I really don't like people like that, always looking back; this is what it was then, what can we do to get back to that? How about, this is what it is like now, what can we do to move forward in a positive way?

It was an incredibly obtuse discussion, and the use of That Girl was dumb.

Also, that woman insufferable. She was actually whining to make her point. If you have to whine, I think maybe what you have to say isn't that credible.

Edited by ganesh, Apr 30, 2012 @ 3:58 PM.

  • 0

#5832

Iguana

Iguana

    Fanatic

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 4:11 PM

Ah, the good old days. Yes, socially things were so much better 50 years ago... What with the separate drinking fountains for blacks and whites, the back alley abortions, the absence of career path jobs for working mothers (and many other women), being gay as a mental disorder, shunning of unwed mothers, the lack of any social safety net for seniors, shall I go on? There are still tons of problems with America today, but Mr. Murray has a serious set of rose coloured nostalgia glasses firmly attached to his nose, it appears.

If his thesis was that the rich are an elite class whose morals and values the poor should aspire to have, he needs to do a better job selling me on the idea that those values are indeed, valuable and worthwhile. If claiming that there's less single rich mothers than poor is the basis of your arguement, it sounds pretty shakey to me, as it presumes that anything other than the traditional husband wife kids family is immoral and presupposes that all single mothers are making conscious, value based choices to be single mothers.
  • 3

#5833

ganesh

ganesh

    Stalker

Posted Apr 30, 2012 @ 10:36 PM

I'm wondering if an African- or Asian- or Mexican-American studied all that data if they would come up with the same conclusion. Because it always seems to me the old white guys are the ones who want to "take America back." I don't think the guy is a racist, but his analysis is kind of within only a certain framework.
  • 0

#5834

Tamasin

Tamasin

    Channel Surfer

Posted May 2, 2012 @ 8:24 AM

I'm wondering if an African- or Asian- or Mexican-American studied all that data if they would come up with the same conclusion.

This!

Never mind That Girl. Bill should have asked if he'd ever watched Mad Men, and did we as a society want to go back to that. As a woman of color, I would never pick 1960 over 2012.

Edited by Tamasin, May 2, 2012 @ 8:25 AM.

  • 0

#5835

ganesh

ganesh

    Stalker

Posted May 2, 2012 @ 3:55 PM

You don't want to drink some beers and sleep over at Peggy's?

Just to be clear, I don't think they guy is racist. I think he just didn't consider that there was another framework within which his data could be analyzed. I don't think this would be published in a peer reviewed journal, which is why it is a book.
  • 0

#5836

solikemybeth

solikemybeth

    Channel Surfer

Posted May 2, 2012 @ 4:09 PM

I've read that Murray included only whites in this book because he wanted to show that his theories transcend race or ethnicity. I think he probably wanted to avoid the controversy that erupted over "The Bell Curve".

I don't know why Bill had to use the "That Girl" example either. How about just saying that women in the 60's could live a nice life working as a shopgirl - try doing that now on a Walmart salary.
  • 0

#5837

marsha

marsha

    Video Archivist

Posted May 3, 2012 @ 10:31 AM

I don't know why Bill had to use the "That Girl" example either.

Also, didn't Ann Marie's father at least partially subsidize her living in NYC?
  • 0

#5838

Tamasin

Tamasin

    Channel Surfer

Posted May 3, 2012 @ 10:32 AM

You don't want to drink some beers and sleep over at Peggy's?

Ha!

I also don't think he's racist, but I don't understand upholding the values of 1960 Belmont or Fishtown when those values also included a pretty terrible status-quo for minorities and all women. I agree that he seems to think financial success through a traditional lifestyle equals the right values (whatever those are), but if that were true we wouldn't have needed the Civil Rights and Women's Rights movements.

As far as the decline in the stigma against unwed mothers, is society having more empathy for women in difficult circumstances really an indication of a decline in values? And without a stigma, does he think women would rush to be unwed mothers? Also, the average age for women marrying in 1960 was 20.3, whereas now it's 26, so is going back to that his solution? IDK, maybe Charles Murray stumbled across Sixteen and Pregnant and is using that as his proof, even though the people producing that show would be from Belmont.

Anyway, I think the stigma is based in slut-shaming and a woman's worth being defined by her body so while I understand the financial difficulties of being an unwed mother, I think it's positive sign if society is becoming more tolerant. Instead of a stigma, why not better sex education, and programs focusing on getting an education? My gut feeling is the differences between 1960 Fishtown and now, are factory jobs being outsourced and the need to have some sort of higher education. And that requires money that 1960 Fishtown purchasing power can't afford.

Edited by Tamasin, May 3, 2012 @ 10:55 AM.

  • 0

#5839

LADreamr

LADreamr

    Fanatic

Posted May 3, 2012 @ 12:24 PM

As far as the decline in the stigma against unwed mothers, is society having more empathy for women in difficult circumstances really an indication of a decline in values? And without a stigma, does he think women would rush to be unwed mothers?


But still, the stigma is on the women. Apparently, men are still not involved in conception, or are at least still not culpable, so they can walk away and never be spoken of, again. But women are vilified for staying and being responsible about it, and usually blamed for the men leaving. I wouldn't expect Bill to bring any of that up, but I'd like to see Rachel Maddow take a shot at him.
  • 0

#5840

ganesh

ganesh

    Stalker

Posted May 3, 2012 @ 12:49 PM

I've read that Murray included only whites in this book because he wanted to show that his theories transcend race or ethnicity. I think he probably wanted to avoid the controversy that erupted over "The Bell Curve".

I can buy that, I guess. But I think a lot is left on the table by doing that. I said before, I really doubt this would pass the peer-review process. Unless you really say, this is only the case with rich/poor white people.

I agree that he seems to think financial success through a traditional lifestyle equals the right values (whatever those are), but if that were true we wouldn't have needed the Civil Rights and Women's Rights movements.

This pretty much torpedoes his whole argument right there. I'm surprised Bill didn't bring this up. I found the whole interview unsettling and I'm a white guy. I don't make a lot, but I've been doing ok for myself. I know it's morbid, but I'm glad these people are old. The sooner they die off, the better off we'll all be.
  • 0

#5841

tisha

tisha

    Couch Potato

Posted May 3, 2012 @ 7:12 PM

Sorry, but in my book Murray is a racist. He co-authored The Bell Curve, for fuck's sake, and his new book seems to be another attempt to take statistics to argue for a kind of white superiority based on class distinction. To my mind, he's no better than phrenologists and other purported "race scientists" from a couple centuries ago.
  • 0

#5842

EndoKE

EndoKE

    Fanatic

Posted May 4, 2012 @ 11:10 AM

But even if he's talking about white people it still makes no sense. The reason divorce rates were lower in the 60's was because divorce meant poverty for women in the 60's.

Bill was trying to explain the Murray that the income may be the same, but the rent is different, Murray didn't want to listen. When I first moved into my apartment, the starting rent was about $300, today that same apartment is $1300, but the wages haven't kept up with the rents and the bills. I wish Bill would remind people like Murray that until the mid 1970's, in the City of New York, you could go to college for free. I went to a private college and my tuition was about 2,000/per year. Most people my age and older had no real debt when we finished school, and Murray didn't seem to want to hear that. He kept harping on values, he kept saying in 1960 poorer people were married and such; I think the reason that was true was because there weren't very many opportunities for women, and at that time, many women went from their parent's home to their husband's home. No thanks, I'll stay in 2012.
  • 0

#5843

TedHinD

TedHinD

    Fanatic

Posted May 5, 2012 @ 7:40 AM

Hated, hated, hated the Arsenio Hall segment. A black man is beaten by white policemen as if he were an inanimate object, the stupid jurors acquit them, the LA police chief refuses to protect the rest of its citizens during civil unrest and 58 people die, one brutally beaten as if he were an inanimate object. Arsenio, sitting by the bedside of the innocent white man with 91 fractures in his skull looked at him and then the black doctor and said,"Yeah, everything is gonna be all right!" Last I heard, Reginald Denny was on disability and living in subsidized housing, still with no anger or malice toward anyone. Maybe Arsenio could drop by.

ETA: Denny moved to Arizona and works as a mechanic. He doesn't like to appear on camera, prefering his quiet life.

Edited by TedHinD, May 5, 2012 @ 7:47 AM.

  • 0

#5844

Zeke33

Zeke33

    Loyal Viewer

Posted May 5, 2012 @ 7:55 AM

I was thinking WTF, first Arsenio and then Bobcat? Was this has been comics night? It's been a couple of decades since anyone has given a shit if either of those two was still alive. Maybe they're old buddies of Maher's from his early days and he felt sorry for them and put them on the show as charity. He should have just slipped them a couple of hundred dollar bills for food money and sent them on their way. It was a complete waste of screen time to have them on the show.
  • 0

#5845

Imonrey

Imonrey

    Stalker

Posted May 5, 2012 @ 10:52 AM

Well thank God Arsenio Hall wasn't on the panel, anyway. He got the attention he craves in the one-on-one interview. This guy is such a pathetic has-been, every time he's on the panel he derails the discussion trying to get his silly mug on screen to make jokes like he's auditioning for his next talk show. I groaned out loud when I saw his name in the opening credits, so I was relieved he wasn't on the panel.

Bobcat Goldthwait wasn't too bad, although he added nothing to the show beyond promoting his movie.

I get that Susan Del Percio, like a lot of Republicans, have a bug up their ass about Nancy Pelosi like she's the spawn of Satan or something, but to actually suggest Pelosi was leading Obama around by the nose on the healthcare bill was unintentionally hysterical.

My favorite line from Bill was saying he considers a religion a cult when it has fewer followers than Snooki has on Twitter.
  • 0

#5846

attica finch

attica finch

    Stalker

Posted May 5, 2012 @ 5:55 PM

Lawrence Wilkerson didn't say much, but when he did, he brought the hammer down. I like that in a panelist. I like that in a person, actually.
  • 0

#5847

ganesh

ganesh

    Stalker

Posted May 5, 2012 @ 6:16 PM

I wish Bill would remind people like Murray that until the mid 1970's, in the City of New York, you could go to college for free. I went to a private college and my tuition was about 2,000/per year. Most people my age and older had no real debt when we finished school, and Murray didn't seem to want to hear that.

Whereas now, college kids are saddled with so much debt it's practically a mortgage, can't find a job, and have to move back in with their parents. *shudder* Things today are just way, way too complex to box it up all nice like this guy was trying to sell. People probably don't get married today because they can't afford to, and who couldn't get divorced back then were probably miserable.

I get that Susan Del Percio, like a lot of Republicans, have a bug up their ass about Nancy Pelosi like she's the spawn of Satan or something, but to actually suggest Pelosi was leading Obama around by the nose on the healthcare bill was unintentionally hysterical.

I don't watch these pundit people outside of this show, but I cannot understand this groupthink that they have. Do they believe what they are actually saying? Or playing along because they want to oust Obama from the White House. Politicians overinflate issues; that kind of goes with the territory. Clearly, no one really thinks Obama is this massive leftist and radical. Gingrich probably doesn't even really believe that. You blow holes in whatever point you are trying to make by pretending that you seriously believe something like that.
  • 0

#5848

EmperorJon

EmperorJon

    Fanatic

Posted May 7, 2012 @ 12:14 AM

Looking at Bobcat Goldthwait, I couldn't help but think if he spends his days sitting at park benches feeding the birds. A far cry from his earlier days as a wildman comedian.

And I wasn't suprised that Bill brought up the OMGWTF??? tanned New Jersey mother in his New Rules segment. But I was kinda hoping he would have shoehorned John Boehner in there somehow.
  • 0

#5849

B2H

B2H

    Video Archivist

Posted May 8, 2012 @ 9:59 AM

Watched the show on re-broadcast last night.

I didn't mind Arsenio. You get what you pay for with him. His re-counting trying to explain the whole Rodney King thing to his 12 year old was a great story. No one can explain the outcome of that whole thing and trying to explain it to someone that young is certainly eye-opening.

The panel: Ed dominated the discussion, but he usually does. When the Colin Powell dude could get a word in edge-wise, he made some great points. The Republican strategist lady began sounding like she was going to spit up talking points (Pelosi leading Obama around, is a ludicrous statement), but then she conceded that Romney misses his message and a whole lot of other things that made me listen to her just because she wasn't spouting talking points (like Margaret Hoover will shriek next week on the panel). It was clear this one hadn't drunk all the Kool-aid and was still able to think and reason.

Bobcat... his one line in his appearance said it all: "I retired when I was no longer getting work'. There was a reason for that, sir. You weren't that funny to begin with. I'm glad he's made a second career for himself, but that's the extent of it.
  • 0

#5850

ganesh

ganesh

    Stalker

Posted May 8, 2012 @ 12:13 PM

Even though she made a decent point about Romney, I was mostly tuned out when she was talking because her voice is like nails on a chalkboard and she already was spouting how Obama was so radical and leftist earlier that she just torpedoed any legit points she might have made.
  • 0