Bill Maher tries to undemonize socialism

Maher is a supporter of Bernie Sanders and he had him on his show to try and make the word socialism not be so scary to many people. It actually was a good discussion that got into some real details about what Sanders means by socialism, something that has been discussed in the comments on this blog. I liked the fact that towards the end Sanders emphasizes that Democrats should not write off the large numbers of working class people all over the country who traditionally vote Republican but actually support his policies.

Following the interview, Maher had a good segment on how Republicans and their media allies re-interpret Sanders’s words to make them seem far more scary.

Meanwhile, Martin O’Malley’s proposal for immigration reform is winning a lot of support from influential Hispanic groups as the most detailed and comprehensive plan that goes well beyond what Sanders and Clinton have proposed.


  1. Robert,+not+Bob says

    The truth is, people hear “socialism” and think Stalin. This is a link constructed, and maintained, by enormous effort.

  2. raym says

    You’re giving the masses far too much credit. They hear “socialist” and think “bogeyman”.

  3. atheistblog says

    Too late Bernie.You were strong in the NH polls, now you are not leading anymore, I don’t think you are leading in Iowa as well. You screwed up the debate. You let hillary, who thousand times evolved for the sake of winning election, came after you.
    Let me be clear, debate are not about honest policy discussion, it’s for low denomination people, its also entertainment. You didn’t distinguish yourself from hillary, instead you were so busy defending her. How do you think those who are supporting hillary gonna change their mind and support you ? definitely not by you defending her mishandling of her emails. You want to talk about issues, then talk about the issues, if you are defending her, then people don’t have to choose you.
    Learn from 2008 obama-hillary debate. He did not win the nomination by defending her.

    You let a warmonger attacking you in democratic debate. Obama said he will sit down and negotiate with iran, cuba, but you are so pathetically fragile and saying syria is a quagmire in quagmire, you didn’t even bring why hillary waged libya war after admitted iraq war mistake ?
    While you defending her, she was constantly attacking her on you. Yah, the same hillary who said how she was so fond of guns and played with guns with her dad, is the one who attacked you. The same hillary who evolved on everything attacked you on changing your mind on gun controls.

    If you are not going to do obama 2008 debate attack on hillary, those who support hillary not gonna support her. Obama went after her and then only polls changed. This is not about personal attack on hillary, this about her poor decisions, her expedient policy. When she was saying she just changed her mind unlike republican, you should have told her that she changed her mind only after looking at polls, and asked her what exactly made her mind on the issues, why she changed her mind on LGBT issue, did she abandon her mind on her family values, shouldn’t she apologize for the decisions against LGBT ?

    Jermy corbn didn’t win election by defending tories and blarities.
    Mark my word bernie, whatever you gonna say, debates are for low denomination people, it’s has entertainment value, you have to F-in go after her like obama did about her policy decisions and changing decisions itself. Otherwise you gonna loose. New Hampshire polls shows that now.
    NH was your strongest, if you loose that, there is no way you gonna win Iowa and the rest. And I am gonna vote for Jill Stein, as usual.

  4. atheistblog says

    And Bernie, first listen to progressives first, and looked at the evidence, not just the evidence for climate change, but the 2008 obama campaign against hillary.

  5. atheistblog says

    Ironically Bernie is the 2008 hillary, adamant on gun issues, unclear on foreign policy, he is like hillary in 2008, he doesn’t want to take progressive stand, but say syria is a quagmire over quagmire, and putin gonna regret his decision. That’s not how you debate against hillary when she was the architect of libya war.

  6. blbt5 says

    Both Bernie and Bill, like most leftists are caught in the rhetorical trap of trying to explain socialism as some kind of “opposite” to capitalism. This obviously can’t be true, since most developed countries, including the socialist ones are mainly capitalist. The truth is that capitalism is an economic tool employed by two opposing social systems: feudalism and socialism. The feudal systems going back to Neolithic times dominated variously by priests and kings was replaced recently by owners, bosses and technocrats. What Bernie and the Left want to do in the immediate term is to replace the feudal system with a socialist one that would still be capitalist. As Bill and Bernie discussed, the democratic Left has successfully reclaimed some basic social relationships from capitalist control, e.g., Social Security and Medicare. This is too confusing to explain, so both Bernie and Hillary are limited to criticizing “capitalism run amuck” while unfortunately and unnecessarily extolling the virtue of capitalism in general, including its immoral administration by its owners and bosses who hoard the 99% of wealth from workers. Nevertheless I thought the conversation about socialism and capitalism in the debate took a remarkable step forward in the general political consciousness.

  7. lorn says

    I like Bernie.

    A popular meme is that Bernie is progressive but Hillary is only half-so. There is something to that but on some issues, like reform of the financial system, Hillary is offering detailed plans much more fully formed while Bernie is offering only vague ideas. Bernie isn’t quite copying Trump, with plans that begin and end with ‘my plans will make America great’ and be ‘fabulous’. But Bernie doesn’t get into the weeds. I feel confident he is genuine in his desire to reform the system but lacking a firm plan he may find it tough to formulate one on on the fly once elected.

    There is something to be said for a plan more fully formed in quiet back rooms and thought through in detail while not under fire. A plan that can be pushed through as unit, in part, by giving people a choice to get on board, or get run over.

    Too often plans assembled in public end up like the proverbial horse designed by committee, the camel. It all ends up a stacked series of compromises that, in the end, nobody feels enthusiastic about.

  8. laurentweppe says

    Look, I’m a card-carrying Socialist, and as far as I’m concerned, the greatest favor the “We’re sooooooo much smarter than the moronic religious rubes” Smug-Hipster-Assholes crowd Maher belongs to can do to my ideology is to shut the fuck up and never, Ever try to defend it. I’d rather not see my worldview tarred by the enthusiastic association of authoritarians douches.

  9. doublereed says

    If feel like whenever people say “It costs so much money!” it should be pointed out that we’re already spending that money on healthcare. It’s not like it would cost extra. If anything, because Medicare is so much more efficient, we’d be getting a steal.

  10. laurentweppe says

    Feudalism doesn’t date back to neolithic times.

    No, but dynastic transmission of wealth, land and statue, the core building blocks of feudalism, most probably began during the neolithic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *