Bill Maher

American stand-up comedian and television host

William Maher, Jr. (born 20 January 1956) is an American comedian, actor, writer and producer. He regularly hosts the HBO series Real Time with Bill Maher.


I'll clue you in on a secret: death is not the worst thing that could happen to you. I know we think that; we are the first society ever to think that. It's not worse than dishonor; it's not worse than losing your freedom; its not worse than losing a sense of personal responsibility.
If I thought the Lord was speaking to me I'd check myself into Bellevue, and I think you should too.
  • Work in the fields? Senator, I'm a house nigga.
  • Jesus is great — is there a better role model? No. It's religion, it's the people who get in between — the bureaucracy, you know. ... It's the way people abuse Jesus. Was there ever a greater victim of name dropping?
  • We have been the cowards, lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away. That's cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, that's not cowardly. Stupid maybe, but not cowardly.
    • Politically Incorrect (17 September 2001); this statement created controversies which resulted in this series being cancelled.
  • I think we need to change that old saying, "I don't need a building to fall on me." Because two did and we still don't get it. I think we all stick our head in the sand as a deep human impulse.
    • When You Ride Alone You Ride with Bin Laden: What the Government Should Be Telling Us to Help Fight the War on Terrorism (2002)
  • If I thought the Lord was speaking to me I'd check myself into Bellevue, and I think you should too.
  • It's very sad how in the information age you cannot get information into people's heads. As long as you write something on the internet and do not add LOL — it is true. "I'm not sure he's a Christian" — I'm not sure he's a mammal, Jay. He could be a werewolf.
    • Interview on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (13 September 2010)
  • I want to thank some very special people without whom I would not be here today. George Bush, Sarah Palin and the Pope. When I came to Hollywood in 1983, I had one dream— to sleep with Jodie Foster. That didn't work out, but this is nice, too.
    • On getting his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (14 September 2010), as reported on Larry King Live (14 September 2010)
  • I don't know how it all began, no one does. But I am pretty sure it's not that God had a son. [laughs] You know he's this orb of perfect energy, this powerful beyond imagination, but he's got kids. That would drive him fucking nuts, let me tell you. So you know we don't know the answers but the answer to that is not to make up stories. If you don't know something, just say, I don't know. That's your gospel right there. The gospel of "I don't know." I combined apathy and atheist, and I came up with apatheist. I don't know what happens when I die, and I don't care.
  • Is it really a sport if you have all the equipment and your opponent doesn't know a game is going on?
  • Dealing w/ Hamas is like dealing w/ a crazy woman who's trying to kill u - u can only hold her wrists so long before you have to slap her
  • There's only one faith, for example, that kills you or wants to kill you if you draw a bad cartoon of the prophet. There's only one faith that kills you or wants to kill you if you renounce the faith... obviously, most Muslim people are not terrorists. But ask most Muslim people in the world, if you insult the prophet, do you have what's coming to you? It's more than just a fringe element.
    • Bill Maher: Jeff Poor, "Bill Maher: Comparing violence of Islam to Christianity ‘liberal bullsh*t’ [VIDEO"], The Daily Caller, April 20, 2013 (archived).
  • America really has no Left party. We have a center-right party -- which I would call what the Democrats are now -- and then we have the Republicans, a party that drove the Crazy Bus straight into Nut Town.
  • [About 6 January 2020:] It's not what [Donald Trump] said on that day. It wasn't like he got up there and said 'Go and take over the capital!' – kind of (laughing) totally – it was that up until that moment he still hadn't conceded. It was not one moment. It was like his hole view that he was telling his people.

The Golden Goose Special (1997)

  • Sex is too easy for women to get, and too hard for men. I mean, honestly, for a man to walk into someplace and have every woman ready to take him home, he'd have to rule the world. A woman would have to do her hair.
  • We don't like mystery. You like mystery, 'cause it's not a mystery to you; you know when you're gonna get laid.
  • The thing I don't understand about homosexuals is, how do they decide which one is the one who's supposed to pretend they don't want it?
  • I am so tired of rearranging my life around what the stupidest people might do.

Be More Cynical (2000)

  • The Partnership for a Drug Free America? Please, make me laugh and gag at the same time with that title. They're a lobbying arm for the liquor and prescription drug industries. They don't want a drug-free America, they want an America free of the drugs that are their competition. Prozac doesn't want to go up against marijuana, it will lose.
  • Please stop assuming that longevity and perfect health is always the correct option. No. Sometimes fun costs ya. It just does, you know? And that's OK, you're willing to make that purchase. Sammy Davis, Jr. was 64 when he died. Give me 64 Sammy-years, I'll be happy.
  • If ketchup had 1/20th of the carcinogens in a cigarette they'd rip it off the shelves tomorrow, so the government is full of shit when they tell you that they care about you.
  • I'll clue you in on a secret: death is not the worst thing that could happen to you. I know we think that; we are the first society ever to think that. It's not worse than dishonor; it's not worse than losing your freedom; its not worse than losing a sense of personal responsibility.
  • We're so inconsistent about what we let kill ya. "Smoking? Must be eradicated. Marijuana? Zero tolerance." But there's lots of ways to kill yourself. You know what I think kills you? Stress, and being a workaholic, and never getting laid, and, uh, McDonalds, and staying mad at people, and lying for a living, and three-martini lunches, and the all-American breakfast, and whatever the fuck Elvis was doing. That's what kills you.
  • Charlton Heston...recently was re-elected president of the NRA for the third term. And they made an exception, because their charter, their constitution, says you can only have two terms, but they changed it. Ah. So constitutions can change. Interesting. Because it is called the Second Amendment. The word "amendment" itself means, "We had another thought! We re-thought something!"
  • I'm a libertarian, which means I'm against the government doing almost anything. But citizens having arsenals? No, that is the kind of rough stuff I would like the government to get involved in....It just seems the debate, — you know, they will not give an inch. There are many attempts to pass a law in states just requesting a limit of buying one gun a month, and it doesn't pass. People are like, "What about Christmas?" I mean, one gun a month. If you started when you were 18, by the time you were 60 that's over a thousand guns. I don't care how small your penis is, that should be enough guns.

Victory Begins at Home (20 January 2004)

I believed in Santa Claus and the Fairy Godmother, of course I believed in a virgin birth, and a guy lived in a whale, and a woman came from a rib. But then something happened that made me doubt all of it: I graduated sixth grade!
  • We used to have a tax in this country called the Estate Tax, which was very popular, because it's a tax on very, very, very rich fucks who die. And people thought, "That's a good person to tax." And that is a good person to tax! Because rich fucks who die should give away their money, or else they give it to their ne'er-do-well kid who becomes Uday Hussein.
  • The republicans are always so much better at that word-game. I remember when they made the announcement that Dick Cheney was going to be the vice-president candidate, they purposely went back to the heartland home of his; back to Casper, Wyoming...and they went back to Dick Cheney's high school, where he'd been the captain of the football team. Folks, this is when I knew I would never be mainstream. ...I would never go back to my high school; I hated my high school. I hated the captain of the football team! ...And then, the piece de resistance, they bring out his wife, who of course had been his high school sweetheart. And again, this so doesn't work on me. That you married the first chick to give you a handjob?
  • The one that's easy to say now is, "I Support The Troops". Doesn't cost ya anything. But I've got a question for you: can you really support the troops if you also support these massive tax cuts for the very rich? Because the people we say are our heroes are paid by tax dollars. And we hear about, teachers have to buy their own school supplies, soldiers in this country are on food stamps...couldn't somebody in congress stand up and say, "Why don't we take half of that big tax cut and give it to our heroes?" Or is that why they're our heroes, because they work cheap?
  • How does a country get away with keeping half its population in beekeeper suits? I'll tell you how. They say the magic word: religion. It's their religion. You say religion, you can get away with anything. The Catholics got away with fucking kids, for crying out loud!
  • The values of Western civilization are not just different, they're better. I know a whole generation has been raised on the notion of multiculturalism, that all civilizations are just different. No, not always. Sometimes things are better. Rule of law is better than autocracy and theocracy. Equality of the sexes, better. Protection of minorities, better. Free speech, better. Free elections, better.
  • You know, if you're an American and you're born at this time in history especially, you're lucky. We all are. We won the world history Powerball lottery, but a little modesty about it might keep the heat off of us. I can't stand the people who say things like, "We built this country!" You built nothing. I think the railroads were pretty much up by 1980.
  • What I have against religion is that they start you when you are so defenseless. I mean, I was three when they started pumping this bullshit into my head. I believed in Santa Claus and the Fairy Godmother, of course I believed in a virgin birth, and a guy lived in a whale, and a woman came from a rib. But then something happened that made me doubt all of it: I graduated sixth grade!
  • "72 Virgins" is very suspicious to me. It's a clue. It tells you we're dealing with people from a bartering culture. Because nobody starts with that number; somebody said, "100 virgins!" "50!" "85!" "69!" "79!" "71!" "73!" "72!" "Done!" That's how you got 72.
  • I would say that the feminine values are now the values of America; sensitivity is more important than truth; feelings are more important than facts; commitment is more important than individuality; children are more important than people; safety is more important than fun. I always hear women say, "Y'know, married men live longer." Uh, yes, and an indoor cat...also...lives longer. It's a fur-ball with a broken spirit that can only look out on a world it will never enjoy, but it does, technically, live longer.
  • "Couples should explore their mutual fantasies." There's no such thing as a mutual fantasy. Yours bore us; ours offend you.
  • Now if you're just out of the mainstream, if you don't have blind Bush love, you are somehow suspect. Don't ever let them tell you that. Be out of the mainstream. I'm out of the mainstream. I enjoy it, who wants to be in the mainstream? When Ronald Reagan was running, he would always say 'it's morning in America' and everybody would smile and I would think 'yeah but, I'm not a morning person'. I'm the guy who thinks religion is bad and drugs are good. I think children aren't innocent, god doesn't write books, and Jesus wasn't a republican. I think girls hate each other, no doesn't mean no and being drunk is funny. I'm for mad cow disease, how am I gonna win that? I'm against suing tobacco companies. I think abstinence is a perversion. I think Bush's lies are worse than Clinton's. I think Vegas was better when it was run by the mob. I think men are only as loyal as their options. I think stereotypes are true and rehab is for quitters.

New Rules (2005)

Bill Maher's New Rules (8 April 2005)
  • More and more American pharmacists are refusing to fill prescriptions for birth control because of their personal moral objections. Hey, you know what would really teach us a lesson? If you took off your pretend doctor jacket and got another job. ... Now, of course, I know the other side is saying, yes, but this is a moral issue. Yeah, but the problem is, not everyone gets their morals from the same book. You go by the book that says slavery is okay but sex is wrong until after marriage, at which point it becomes a blessed sacrament between a husband and the wife who is withholding it.
    In conclusion, let me say to all the activist pharmacists out there, the ones who think sex is bad probably because sex with them always is. Fellas, a pharmacist is not a law-giver, not even a doctor. In the medical pecking order, you rank somewhere in between a chiropractor and a tree surgeon.
    You don't answer to a law above the laws of men. You work for Sav-On. The doctors are the ones who make medical decisions because they went to medical school, whereas you were transferred from the counter where people drop off film.

I'm Swiss (2005)

  • I thought this election was an adult discussion on how best to protect ourselves in the face of terrorism, but apparently it was a referendum on boys kissing. I didn't know that, nobody.. told me that. But when homophobia trumps terrorism in America, wow. This country needs to get laid.
  • You've got to give it up for our troops. The mission itself is hard enough, but then there's all sorts of backdoor drafts where they extend their tours, calling up the guard, the reserve; all these Enron accounting tricks so that Rumsfeld doesn't have to admit he got the troop levels wrong, and still they don't bug out. And I see this, and then I watch some reality show, and I see people who are peevish and selfish and greedy and narcissistic and lazy and stupid, and I think to myself, "Why is this first group of people defending this second group of people?"
  • How about the judgment, on 9/11, to keep reading to schoolchildren, when you are told, "The country is under attack"? I mean, talk about being non-partisan; how much of a partisan pretzel do you have to twist yourself into to work backwards to, "Yes, when a president is told the country is under attack, the proper thing to do is to freeze. To choke. To sit there like Forrest Gump." Really. That takes a lot of working backwards to that. ...I know Republicans pride themselves on being loyal, and they are, but loyal to what? To a person? Or to a principle? Because if you defend a president for sitting there for even one second after he's told "America is under attack", you are loyal to a person more than you are to the truth, to a principle, or to your country. If you defend that, you have drunk the Kool-Aid. You are part of a cult. Because any president of any party would have gotten up; Democrat, Republican, Whig -- doesn't matter. "President Van Buren, America is under attack." Would have gotten up. "President Reagan, America is under attack." Would have gotten up. FDR would have gotten up, he couldn't even get up!
  • I wouldn't touch a hot dog unless you put a condom on it! You realize that the job of a hot dog is to use parts of the animal that the Chinese can't figure out how to make into a belt?
  • I'd like to protect children, too, but... is everything worth sacrificing to that? I mean, drugs have done a lot of good. [...] They've midwived a lot of good ideas... lot of great songs, you know? I think "Penny Lane" is worth 10 dead kids. [...] I think Dark Side of the Moon is worth 100 dead kids. There, I said it.
  • Rush Limbaugh, who has made a career preaching that anybody who does drugs has got to go right to jail -- do not pass go, no questions asked, right to jail -- gets caught doing thirty oxycontin a day. Thirty oxycontin?! Do you have any idea how high that is?! I don't, and I've been pretty high!
  • Religion, it stops people from thinking because they think all the answers are in that one book; it impedes progress; it justifies crazy people. Flying planes into a building was a faith-based initiative.
  • We do it all the time, we legislate taste. We do it with the tax code. Churches and children get a tax break, because it's assumed that we all agree that we want to encourage churches and children. I don't. I don't. That's my opinion. I don't want to encourage either churches or children, and it's a very bad idea to put them together.

The Decider (21 July 2007)

  • The comedy gods are smiling on me tonight, because I have been saying, for the longest time, that president Bush must set a timetable for removing his head from his ass...and, by god, today they went in and looked for it. They actually went in and looked for it and... They didn't find it. So now we don't know where it is, but at least for once in my life, I get to see the words "Bush", "operation", and "success" in the same sentence.
  • This country has fuck-up fatigue. That's when someone fucks up so much, that when they fuck up again, people go, "Well, what do you expect? He's a fuck-up." And that's fucked up!
  • Rudy Giuliani's first wife was his cousin. Did you know this? I think that's a very cheap way to go after the Southern vote.
  • I wish someone would just start Fly At Your Own Risk Airlines. How 'bout that? You can have your hair gel, you can have your lighter, you can have a fucking gun, how bout that? You can show up at the gate five minutes before the plane leaves, and pay in cash, like in the good ol' 1980s. The ticket just says "shit happens" on the back, because that's the way it is anyway.
  • It's so childish, "greatest country in the world." It's like saying, "I have the greatest wife in the world. Not just the one best suited for me, the greatest wife in the world. And if you could have my wife, you'd kill your wife."
  • They keep pushing the idea, "The only reliable way to prevent pregnancy is to not have sex at all, because, condoms? Ooh, very unreliable, condoms break all the time." Okay. I've been using these things for thirty-five years. I've never had one condom break. Either I'm the luckiest son-of-a-bitch who ever lived--and I'm not--or this is the most reliable product since the toaster.
  • People love a trip. Even a shitty trip! On the old Dating Game they used to send people to Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia. You remember this? When it was behind the Iron Curtain. And people would be like, "We're going to Dubrov--what the fuck? What? ...Who cares, we're Going!" Because people love a trip, they don't care where it is. And I'll tell ya why they love a trip: because people think, "On a trip, I might get laid. It's not happening here, but Cleveland? That's where it could happen."
  • I was just at the newly opened Creationist Museum in Kentucky.... And they have this exhibit of a giant dinosaur...with a saddle on its back. Because the world is only 5000 years old, so man and the dinosaurs had to coexist, and, of course, we rode them. A theory I thought laughable at the age of eight when I saw it on THE FLINTSTONES!
  • The problem is that the people with the most ridiculous ideas are always the people who are most certain of them.
  • Republicans say that sex is bad, because with them it always is. It is!...I'm sorry, but they're just doughy, asexual, wonky, white people, and if you had to have sex with them it would be over in an excruciating three minutes. It's just, — and from the headlines of the past year I gather the only sex they're really good at, is gay sex. Really. Jeff Gannon in the White House press room, Representative Mark Foley, the Reverend Ted Haggard. I mean, that's a lot of gay when you're running against it in every election.
  • What is with this campy fixation on all things Ronald Reagan? They talk about him the way gay people talk about Barbra Streisand. I think they want him on a stamp so they can lick his ass. I think they wanted to name airports after him so they can say, "I'm coming into Reagan!"
  • Isn't he [Bush] the worst president ever? I mean, when his term is over, he has to walk back to Texas.
  • And that's the key to George W. Bush: It's that he wants to be the smartest person in the room. But in order to be the smartest person in the room, you kinda have to fill that room with a lot of dim bulbs. And that's where we get the Alberto Gonzaleses, and the Harriet Mierses, and the "you're-doing-a-heck-of-a-job-Brownie"'s.

But I'm Not Wrong (2010)

  • Don't you miss the days when America was just morally bankrupt?
  • One of the complaints leveled against me is, "Oh, Bill, you're such a meanie. Why do you have to go after religion? It gives people comfort; it doesn't hurt anything." Okay, well, other than most wars, the Crusades, the Inquisition, 9/11, arranged marriages to minors, blowing up girls' schools, the suppression of women and homosexuals, fatwas, ethnic cleansing, honor rape, human sacrifice, burning witches, suicide bombings, condoning slavery, and the systematic fucking of children, there's a few little things I have a problem with.
  • 1 out of 4 Americans believes Jesus will return in their lifetime. See, that's religion: ego masquerading as humility. "Jesus is coming back! Of course he's gonna wanna meet me! ...Hi, Jesus, Bob Flemstein, big fan! I know you're crazy busy with the rapture and everything, but...could you sign? I don't wanna be that guy, but..."
  • You have to understand the Tea-bagger mindset; they have this nostalgia for this America that they think was stolen from them, that used to be, that was better – it's really the 1950s, okay? That's what they think was Shangri-La, and, y'know what they really don't get is that it's kind of insulting to a lot of Americans to pine for this era, cause it wasn't that good for a lot of people. It was good if you were a white man. It wasn't that good if you were Mexican, or black, or Jewish, or disabled, or gay, or a woman.
  • I think the guy was mostly a coke dealer, but I didn't do coke. I never understood that drug. If you want to be edgy and nervous, go to work.
  • You know what they cannot keep on the shelves in America? Guns, and ammo. Even though Obama and every other pussy Democrat has never even mentioned the issue, these people are so sure that he and his Negro army are coming for their guns, they're gonna confiscate your guns, and indoctrinate your children, and socialize your wealth, and then they're gonna replace apple pie with chicken and waffles. And then he's gonna appoint a Cabinet of Shaft, Foxy Brown, Dolemite, Mandingo, Superfly, Cleopatra Jones, and Blacula.
  • I kid the Republicans, with love. I feel bad for them. They got nobody for next time. Who are they gonna run? Sarah Palin, reading off her hand. Did you see that? You saw this? She wrote "tax cuts" on her hand. A Republican so stupid she has to be reminded of the one thing– Tax cuts! This is like if you saw the coyote's paw and it said "Road Runner".
  • Y'know, every time in America some guy gets caught cheating, every media outlet does the same story: "Why Do Men Cheat?" Oh, take a wild fucking guess, would you? I think you're over-thinking this. They're not looking for fantasy, they're looking That's it! They want sex. And not just sex; they want new sex. The way women want new shoes. Right? You have shoes, they're perfectly good shoes, you don't want those shoes, you want new shoes. We want a person, you want a shoe and somehow you're morally superior.
  • There's a word the teabaggers have wanted to use since Obama came on the scene, but they can't because it's not the 1950s. They would love to say this word. It begins with an N and ends with -er, and it's not "nation-builder".

New Rule: Float Like Obama, Sting Like Ali (2009)

What got Van Jones fired was they caught him on tape saying that Republicans are assholes. And they call it "news."
"New Rule: Float Like Obama, Sting Like Ali" at The Huffington Post (11 September 2009)
  • Van Jones got fired because he became the Scary Negro of the Week on Fox News, where, let's be honest, they still feel threatened by Harry Belafonte.
  • I'm supposed to be all re-injected with yes-we-can fever after the big health care speech, and it was a great speech — when Black Elvis gets jiggy with his teleprompter, there is none better. But here's the thing: Muhammad Ali also had a way with words, but it helped enormously that he could also punch guys in the face.
  • What got Van Jones fired was they caught him on tape saying that Republicans are assholes. And they call it "news." And Obama didn't say a word in defense of Jones and basically fired him when Glenn Beck told him to. Just like we dropped "end of life counseling" from health care reform because Sarah Palin said it meant "death panels" on her Facebook page.
    Crazy evil morons make up things for Obama to do, and he does it.
  • The Democrats just never learn: Americans don't really care which side of an issue you're on as long as you don't act like pussies. When Van Jones called the Republicans assholes, he was paying them a compliment. He was talking about how they can get things done even when they're in the minority, as opposed to the Democrats, who can't seem to get anything done even when they control both houses of Congress, the presidency, and Bruce Springsteen.
  • Mr. President, there are some people who are never going to like you. That's why they voted for the old guy and Carrie's mom. You're not going to win them over. Stand up for the 70% of Americans who aren't crazy.

Larry King Live interview (2010)

We do have two Americas. We have the America that's living in reality. The people who understand that Obama is a centrist liberal from Hawaii who is trying to dig us out of the hole we're in. And then we have this other FOX/Matt Drudge/Rush Limbaugh reality where he is a Muslim sleeper cell, Manchurian candidate who was sent over by his Kenyan father …
The sad fact about the mosque is the people who are building that mosque are part of the Sufi fringe moderate part of their religion. That's the good part. That's the liberal part. Those are the Hippies of the Islamic world. We should encourage them.
I don't hate America. I love America. I want it to be better. The only way we can get it to be better is to realistically criticize what's wrong with it.
Interviewed on Larry King Live (14 September 2010)
  • Christine O'Donnell ... was one of our most frequent guests on Politically Incorrect. People who may not remember Politically Incorrect because they're too young or they were watching Johnny Carson or something ... may not remember that we created people like Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham... we did like to book a lot of female conservatives. They were good press and they were good for the show. We loved Christine O'Donnell. I still like her. You cannot not like her. She is such a nice person.
    We have a great clip that used to be in our highlight reel of Ben Affleck on that show just saying "Please, Christine, shut up." Because I guess she would just go on. She was known back then as the girl from SALT. SALT being the Savior's Alliance for Lifting the Truth. ... So part of me for sentimental reasons is rooting for Christine O'Donnell in Delaware. The other part of me is rooting for her because she's going to get her Christian ass kicked in the general election.
  • The Democrats are going to lose some seats, probably a lot. But not as many as they would have if the tea baggers weren't winning the primaries because I think voters are generally conservative. And when I mean — when I say conservative, I mean they're not comfortable with people who are out there, on the left or the right. And these tea baggers are out there. I've said it before probably on your show. When people get in a voting booth, it's like when they go on an airplane. They get scared. They tend to do things that are conservative in nature, even if they're liberal. ... I just think that people — they understand our country is in a lot of trouble. Even people who are angry understand that crazy people are not going to make it better. Christine O'Donnell like all these tea baggers has no plan, no agenda. No policy points. They have one advantage. They're running against Democrats. That's their big advantage.
  • I mean it was bad enough when we had these people called the birthers who thought he was not born here. ... But I was saying last night that I've identified this new group and I'm calling them the churchers. ...The churchers. They're the people who don't think that he is a Christian. They think he's — he's a secret Muslim, Larry. I guess you haven't been paying enough attention. ... When I talked to him, he told me about his plan to use drinking water to sterilize white people. I get — whoops, I've said too much.
  • I have a theory that the Internet makes people stupider — and also FOX News makes people stupider. You know the Pew group did a study recently and they found out that 10 years ago, Democrats, Republicans and independents basically got their news from the same sources, probably more from CNN, for example. Then we had this polarity. ... We do have two Americas. We have the America that's living in reality. The people who understand that Obama is a centrist liberal from Hawaii who is trying to dig us out of the hole we're in. And then we have this other FOX/Matt Drudge/Rush Limbaugh reality where he is a Muslim sleeper cell, Manchurian candidate who was sent over by his Kenyan father ...
  • We're going to get into partisan bickering because more than half of Republicans agreed with the statement that said Obama is trying to impose Islamic law on America. I mean that is a very radical thing to believe. And it's more than half of Republicans. Not tea baggers. Not radicals. The mainstream Republican people.
  • I want to always be an interloper. I never want to feel like I'm a guy who is embraced by the people who are putting me on the air. I want to feel like I broke into the studio and took over and made them mad. If I'm not doing that, I'm not doing my job.
  • The Democrats are very bad at selling their own product. The Republicans are geniuses at it. And I've said it before, a bad product well apologized for is superior in this country to a good product.
    The Democrats do have a better product, as bad as they are. Now it's unfortunate that they couldn't have sold what they're selling better and have better policies.
  • This is a really fascinating time because, again, we live in these two different realities. I don't think it's ever been like this. I know there's always been a — shall we say passionate — a passionate divide in American politics. But I don't think there's ever been a time when the two sides just have two different sets of reality.
    I mean, if more than half the Republicans think that Obama is trying to impose Sharia law on the United States of America, that's not something that you can argue about. That's just something in their view that has to be extirpated.
  • That's the problem with the Drudge-Rush-Fox axis-of-evil news bubble. Nothing gets into these people's heads. They only listen to what they want to hear. They listen to what confirms what they believe. And what they believe is what they got from these people to begin with.
    You know, when Glenn Beck had his big rally on the mall, he said something like — he at one point said, "Today, I was holding George Washington's inaugural in my hand." No — you can't do that — it's in Plexiglas. You can't — it's 200 years old. You can't give that to people to pass around and smudge up with their grimy fingers. But it didn't matter, because it never matters to these people because nothing they say is ever fact-checked. The governor of Arizona talks about how illegals — you saw this on the news — were beheading people in Arizona. When the press asked her about it, because it was patently untrue, she just ran away. Sarah Palin never talks to the press because they might ask her a question that she doesn't have a pat answer for. They know they don't have to deal with reality, because they don't have to go to what used to be the mainstream press.
  • The sad fact about the mosque is the people who are building that mosque are part of the Sufi fringe moderate part of their religion. That's the good part. That's the liberal part. Those are the Hippies of the Islamic world. We should encourage them. The people who want to build that mosque, those are the people we should be courting. Bush used that guy. Bush — that administration sent him overseas. Yes, that's the way to fight terrorism. That's the way to win the war, is to get those people on our side, not to alienate them. ... I mean, the biggest population of Muslims in the world is Indonesia. They're not crazy. The second biggest is India. There's 150 million Muslims in India. They're not crazy. ...But Saudi Arabia, they're crazy. The Taliban in Afghanistan, they're crazy. Parts of Pakistan are crazy. Hamas is crazy. There's enough of them to worry about.
  • The country can't get well if the people are sick. And the people are sick. Now, I know Obama's not been the best president and the Democrats are not the best politicians, but you know what? We elected him just two years ago to fix this massive bunch of problems we have. And because he didn't do it by football season, we are ready to throw him out on the street and bring back the guys who messed it up just two years ago. That's a little too impatient. Yes, when he got the patient, the patient was bleeding to death — he got the patient to stop bleeding. But, OK, the patient is not up and back at the office quite yet. It's no reason to throw the doctor out and get back the doctor who was using leeches.
  • I don't hate America. I love America. I want it to be better. The only way we can get it to be better is to realistically criticize what's wrong with it. That's not what the Republicans do. ... I don't want to be a pessimist. I'm a realist. One man's realist is another man's pessimist. But, no, I'm not like Mitt Romney, whose book is called No Apology, the Case for American Greatness. Really? Always waving the big foam number one finger; we're not number one in most things. We're number one in military. We're number one in money. We're number one in fat toddlers, meth labs, and people we send to prison. We're not number one in literacy, money spent on education. We're not even number one in social mobility. Social mobility means basically the American dream, the ability of one generation to do better than the next. We're tenth. That's like Sweden coming tenth in Swedish meatballs.

Crazy Stupid Politics (2012)

  • It's so interesting to watch it – every Republican debate – Mitt Romney deny Romneycare. Deny the one great thing he did in his life. But when he's on the stage with those other Republicans in front of a Republican audience: "How dare you?! How dare you accuse me of helping people!? I am as much of a cold-hearted bastard as any of the pricks on this stage!"
  • Mitt and his ilk are always saying, "If only we ran the government more like a business." No! Government is there specifically for the things that are not supposed to run like a business. Government is not supposed to make a profit.
  • If it wasn't about race, y'know, if it was really about what the Tea Party says their issue is – deficits – who ran up all that debt? Bush! Where was the Tea Party then? The two wars we put on the credit card, the prescription drug program that wasn't paid for, the tax cuts that weren't paid for, where were they then? *crickets!* But as soon as President Nosferatu took office, then, suddenly, debt is intolerable. I think there's just something they don't like about him... I cannot put my finger on what it is... Just some way he's not like them... Skinny! That's probably what it is. He's skinny, and that's why they hate him... Oh, and also that he's a Muslim socialist out to destroy America and wave his African wonder-schlong in your daughter's face.
  • Women, they always want you to feel that, y'know, they like it when men cry, they think it's so sensitive. Bullshit. That is a trap. They don't like it. You can cry once when your mother dies. Other than that, keep it to yourself. They know people that cry a lot, they're called their girlfriends, they don't need it from you.

Real Time with Bill Maher

  • ... even scarier is why people have stopped thinking global warming is real. One major reason, pollsters say, is, "we had a very cold, snowy winter". Which is like saying the sun might not be real because last night it got dark.
  • Over the last 30 odd years, Democrats have moved to the right and the right has moved into a mental hospital. So what we have is one perfectly good party for hedge fund managers, credit card companies, banks, defense contractors, big agriculture and the pharmaceutical lobby... That's the Democrats. And they sit across the aisle from a small group of religious lunatics, flat-earthers and civil war re-enactors who mostly communicate by AM radio and call themselves the Republicans and who actually worry that Obama is a socialist. Socialist? He's not even a liberal.
  • By now you've heard the constant right wing attacks on the elite media and the liberal elite, who may or may not be part of Washington elite, a subset of the East Coast elite, which is overtly influenced by the Hollywood elite. So, basically, unless you're a shit-kicker from Kansas, you're with the terrorists.
  • In America, if a Democrat even thinks you're calling him liberal he grabs an orange vest and a rifle and heads into the woods to kill something.
  • If you, the citizen, deliberately vote for someone who won't give you healthcare over someone who will, you need to have your head examined. Except you can't afford to have your head examined.
  • When South Park got threatened last week by Islamists incensed at their depiction of Muhammad, it served or should serve as a reminder to all of us that our culture isn't just different from one that makes death threats to cartoonists: it's better. Because when I make a joke about the Pope, he doesn't send one of his Swiss guards in their striped pantaloons to stick a pike in my ass. When I make a Jewish joke, Rabbis may kvetch about it but they don't pull out a scimitar and threaten an adult circumcision. And when I insult Scientology, the worst that happens is if-[The lights in the studio go out.]
  • Muslims still take their religion too seriously, whereas we have the good sense to blow it off. Catholics don't follow the Pope. In overwhelming numbers they divorce, they have pre-marital sex, they masturbate. And unlike the Koran, no one here seriously considers following the Bible literally. Guys don't look over their fence on Sunday morning and see a neighbor mowing the lawn and think, "Working on Sunday? I really should kill him."... But, before I conclude, it should in fairness be noted that, in speaking of Muslims, we realize that of course the vast majority are law-abiding, loving people who just want to be left alone to subjugate their women in peace.
  • That's America for you — a red herring culture, always scared of the wrong things. The fact is, there are a lot of creepy middle-aged men out there lusting for your kids. They work for MTV, the pharmaceutical industry, McDonald's, Marlboro and K Street. And recently, there's been a rash of strangers making their way onto school campuses and targeting our children for death. They're called military recruiters. More young Americans were crippled in Iraq last month than in any month in the past three years. And the scandal is that Mark Foley wants to show them a good time before they go? When will our closeted gay congressmen learn? Our boys aren't for pleasure. They're for cannon fodder. They shouldn't be another notch on your bedpost. They should be a comma in Bush's war. If I hear a zipper, it had better be on a body bag. Why aren't Democrats and the media hammering away every day about who we're supposed to be fighting for over there and what the plan is. Yes, Mark Foley was wrong to ask teenagers how long their penises were — but at least someone on Capitol Hill was asking questions. We're the predators. Because we have an entire economy built on asking young people what they want, making the cheapest, sleaziest form of it they'll accept, and selling it to them until they choke on it and die. You know who's grabbing your kids at too young an age? Merck, Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline, by convincing you they're depressed, hyperactive or suffering from attention-deficit disorder and so they must all get medicated. The drug dealers hooking your kids aren't in South America, they're in the halls of Congress handing out campaign donations to your congressmen. Mark Foley says he never slept with those kids, and I believe him, because American children are so hopped up on pills I doubt any of them could get it up. From 1995 to 2002, the number of children prescribed antipsychotic drugs increased by over 400 percent. Either our children are going insane — which we might look on as a problem — or, more likely, we have, for profit, created a nation of little junkies. So stop already with the righteous moral indignation about predators — this whole country is trying to get inside your kid's pants because that's where he keeps the money Daddy gave him to stay out of his hair. I don't care if Mark Foley had been asking boys to describe their penises because I have some sad news for you: Your kid is so larded out on Cheetos and Yoo-hoo, he can't even see his penis. We live in a country where the ultimate consumer is an obese 16-year-old hooked up at one end to a Big Gulp and at the other to a PlayStation. So many of our kids today are fat drug addicts, it's almost as if Rush Limbaugh had had puppies. In conclusion, we can pretend that the biggest threat to “our children” is some creep on the Internet, or we can admit it's Mom and Dad. Because, when your son can't find France on a map, or touch his toes with his hands, or understand that the ads on TV are lying — including the one in which the Marine turns into Lancelot — then the person fucking him is you.
  • We can't even reform the way we make pennies and nickels. This week we learn that making a penny now costs 2 cents and making a nickel costs 9 cents, which makes no sense.
  • ... if you rejoice in revenge, torture, and war [...] you cannot say you're a follower of the guy who explicitly said "love your enemies" and "do good to those who hate you". The next line isn't, "And if that doesn't work, send a titanium-fanged dog to rip his nuts off". Jesus lays on that hippie stuff pretty thick! He has lines like, "do not repay evil with evil", and "do not take revenge on someone who wrongs you". Really! It's in that book you hold up when you scream at gay people.
    • "New Rules" segment, May 13, 2011; discussing many Christians' support of Osama bin Laden assassinationn and terrorist torture
  • ... You're supposed to look at that figure of Christ on the cross and think, "How could a man suffer like that and forgive?" Not, "Romans are pussy -- he still has his eyes."
    • "New Rules" segment, May 13, 2011; discussing many Christians' support of Osama bin Laden assassination and terrorist torture
  • But the thing that's really disturbing about Noah isn't the silly, it's that it's immoral. It's about a psychotic mass murderer who gets away with it, and his name is God. Genesis says God was so angry with himself for screwing up when he made mankind so flawed (grr!), that he sent the flood to kill everyone. Everyone. Men, women, children, babies. What kind of tyrant punishes everyone just to get back at the few he's mad at? I mean, besides Chris Christie. Hey God, you know you're kind of a dick when you are in a movie with Russell Crowe, and you're the one with anger issues. You know, conservatives are always going on about how Americans are losing their values and their morality. Well, maybe it's because you worship a guy who drowns babies.
  • President Obama keeps insisting that ISIS is not Islamic. Well, maybe they don't practice the Muslim faith the same way he does, but if vast numbers of Muslims across the world believe, and they do, that humans deserve to die for merely holding a different idea, or drawing a cartoon, or writing a book, or eloping with the wrong person, not only does the Muslim world have something in common with ISIS, it has too much in common with ISIS. There's so much talk ... about wiping out ISIS. You can't, not with bombs. You can only expose that something is a bad idea ... Cultures are different. It's okay to judge that rule of law isn't just different than theocracy, it's better. If you don't see that, you're either a religious fanatic or a masochist, but one thing you certainly are not is a liberal. To count yourself as a liberal, you have to stand up for liberal principles. Free speech, separation of church and state, freedom to practice any religion or no religion without the threat of violence. Respect for minorities including homosexuals, equality for women.
    • [1] September 26, 2014.
  • [Islam is] the only religion that acts like the mafia that will fucking kill you if you say the wrong thing, draw the wrong picture or write the wrong book.
    • [2] October 3, 2014.
  • Did you know that of the 14 states with the highest number of painkiller prescriptions per person, they all went for Trump?
    • January 20th 2017
  • The events of January 6th [2021] were a faith-based initiative, and Trumpism is a Christian nationalist movement. Magical religious thinking is a virus, and QAnon is just its current mutation.
    • [3] February 6th 2021

‘Progressophobia’, (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (June 11, 2021)

  • If you think America is more racist now than ever, more sexist than before women could vote and more homophobic than when blow jobs were a felony, you have ‘Progressophobia’ and you should adjust your mask because it's covering your eyes.
  • And yet there's a recurrent theme on the far-left that things have never been worse! Kevin Hart expressed a view many hold when he told The New York Times, ‘You’re witnessing White power and White privilege at an all-time high.’ This is one of the big problems with wokeness, that what you say doesn't have to make sense or jive with the facts or even be challenged lest the challenge be conflated with racism.
  • But saying that White power and privilege is at an all-time high is just ridiculous. Higher than a century ago, the year of the Tulsa Race Massacre? Higher than the years when the KKK rode unchecked and Jim Crow went unchallenged? Higher than the 1960s when The Supremes and Willie Mays still couldn't stay at the same hotel as the White people they were working with? Higher than during slavery?
  • The low point of race relations wasn't Kim Kardashian wearing cornrows, even though it happened on Snapchat and George Wallace standing in a doorway didn't. Because here's the thing, kids: There actually was a world before you got here. We date human events A.D. and B.C., but we need a new marker for Millennials and Gen-Z, B.Y.— Before You.
  • Acknowledging progress isn't saying ‘we’re done’ or ‘we don’t need more’, and being gloomy doesn't make you a better person.
  • There are a helluva a lot of Americans trying really hard these days to embrace a new spirit of inclusion and self-reflection, and this progressive allergy to acknowledging societal advances is self-defeating because progress and hope that we can achieve it is the product we're selling and having a warped view of reality leads to policies that are warped. Black-only dorms and graduation ceremonies, a growing belief that Whiteness as a malady and White people as irredeemable, giving up on a colorblind society – only if you believe we've made no progress does any of that make sense.
  • It's not a sin, and it's certainly not inaccurate, to say we've come a long way, baby. Not mission accomplished, just a long way.

‘The Woke Olympics’, (2021)


Rule: The Woke Olympics | Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO)“Real Time with Bill Maher” (HBO) (July 30, 2021)

  • Why do we allow the people who just want to bitch to always win?
  • The creative director of the entire shebang of the whole Olympics got shit canned because he once made a fat joke in a private conversation. This is called a purge. It’s a mentality that belongs in Stalin’s Russia. How bad does this atmosphere we’re living in have to get before the people who say cancel culture is overblown admit that it is in fact an insanity that is swallowing up the world?
  • Young people have to stop flattering themselves that they're Nostradamus and would have foreseen, had they been around then, everything that's unacceptable now. And for further context Mel Brooks wrote one of the most successful musicals of all time around the song 'Springtime for Hitler.'
  • That is not a conservative position, my friends. My politics have not changed. But I am reacting to politics that have. And this is yet another example of how the woke invert the very thing that used to make the liberals liberal. Snitches and bitches? That's not being liberal.
  • This new idea that each culture must remain in its own separate silo is not better, and it’s not progress. And in fact, it’s messing with one of the few ideas that still really does make this melting pot called America great. … And that’s the great thing about cultural mixing, it makes things better for everyone. BTS can be a hit in America and I can get kimchi on a taco, isn’t that better than everyone walling itself off from outsiders? I thought walls were supposed to be bad. But we’re living now in a world where straight actors are told they can’t play gay roles and white novelists aren’t allowed to imagine what it would be like to be a Mexican immigrant, even though trying to inhabit the life of someone else is almost the very definition of empathy, the bedrock of liberalism.

'The Lesson of Afghanistan', (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (August 27, 2021)

  • But liberals, as usual in this era, have now gone too far in the other direction, they under-romanticizing America. They have no perspective.
  • I’m sorry your professor said something you didn't like. That won’t be a problem with the Taliban because you're not allowed to go to school. In Saudi Arabia, grown women can be jailed for doing the kind of things we think of as routine without the permission of a male guardian. China rounds you up if you're the wrong religion and puts you in camps.
  • If you think America is irredeemable, turn on the news or get a passport and a ticket on one of those sketchy airlines that puts its web address on the plane. There’s a reason Afghan mothers are handing their babies to us.
  • We’re not the bad guys. Oppression is what we were trying to stop in Afghanistan. We failed, but any immigrant will tell you we’ve largely succeeded here. And yet, the overriding thrust of current 'woke' ideology is that America is rotten to the core, irredeemably racist from the moment it was founded and so oppressive, sexist, and homophobic we can't find a host for the Oscars or ‘Jeopardy!’
  • And this is where your new Afghan roommates that you took in will prove so valuable because they’ll turn to you and say ‘Have you people lost your fucking minds?!’ Have you ever heard of honor killings, public beheadings, throwing gay men off of roofs, arranged marriages to minors, state-sanctioned wife-beating, female genital mutilation, marriage by capture? Because we have.
  • What’s the lesson of Afghanistan? Maybe it’s that everyone from the giant dorm room bitch-session that is the internet should take a good look at what real oppression looks like. Ask your maid, ask your Uber driver, ask the Asian woman giving you a massage.
  • America may not be the country of your faculty lounge and Twitter dreams, but no one here tries to escape by hanging on to an airplane. No, we wait ‘til we get inside the plane to fight — and only because they cut off the beverage service.

New Rule: 'Education', (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) S19E26, Episode 576 (10 September 2021)

  • To me, when people say to me sometimes, like, ‘Boy, you really go after the left these days. Why?’ Because you're embarrassing me. That's why I'm going after the left in a way you never did before. Because you're inverting things that I- I'm not going to give up on being liberal! This is what these teachers are talking about. You're taking children and making them hyper-aware of race in a way they wouldn't otherwise be!"
  • I saw last night on the football game, Alicia Keys sang ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing,' which now I hear is called the Black national anthem. Now, maybe we should get rid of our national anthem, but I think we should have one national anthem. I think when you go down a road where you're having two different national anthems, colleges sometimes now have … many of them have different graduation ceremonies for Black and White, separate dorms -- this is what I mean! Segregation! You've inverted the idea. We're going back to that under a different name.

Andrew Yang & John McWhorter on Dave Chappelle and 'Transphobia', (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) S19E31, (22 October 2021)

  • There isn’t just one true opinion. I’m a free speech guy. Now, I’m Team Dave Chappelle, but that doesn’t mean I’m anti-trans. We can have two thoughts in our head at the same time.
  • Words have meaning, but not anymore. And when I hear 'transphobic,' 'phobic' has a meaning: Fear. I'm not transphobic if I merely disagree with you. It's not hate.
  • Now, if we establish right here at the beginning that all three of us are supporters of all laws that protect trans people, that we believe in all the dignity, equality, and respect that can be afforded to trans people, can we have an honest, free discussion about this?
  • One of the reactions from someone who worked at Netflix said, 'This is not an argument with two sides.' Well, right away you lost me. 'It is an argument with trans people who want to be alive and people who don't want us to be.' Well, that's just ridiculous. Dave Chappelle does not want you to not be alive.
  • You know, you're not automatically right if you're trans. You're completely equal, you're just not automatically right and it doesn't behoove everybody to get their mind around very new changes, I mean, we were boy and girl for a very long time. It's only been 10 years since — how long have we had gay marriage, you know? I mean, talk about the Democratic voter, I'm sure there's a guy in Ohio going, 'I just got on board with gay marriage, could you give me a minute?'
  • This idea that we're not any gender when we're born is very new and very radical that you're born, it's just jump ball, you have a penis, it could mean you’re a boy That's a very new idea and I'm not sure if I'm down with all of it and I don't have to be.
  • NPR said it sounds like Chappelle is using white privilege to excuse his homophobia and transphobia. Wait, now Dave Chappelle can have white privilege? I'm really confused now.

Sen. Chris Coons and Caitlin Flanagan, Natural Immunity, (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) S19E32,(29 October 2021)

  • Also, vaccine? Mask? Pick one! You've got to pick. You can't make me mask if I've had the vaccine.
  • I travel in every state now, back on the road, and the Red states are a joy and the Blue states are a pain in the ass. For no reason
  • The world recognizes natural immunity. We don't, because everything in this country has to go through the pharmaceutical companies. Natural immunity is the best kind of immunity. We shouldn't fire people who have natural immunity because they don't get the vaccine. We should hire them. Yes?"
  • Well, Okay. But you know, people who've had it – I've had it. I mean, I shouldn't be tested anymore. I got the vaccine.
  • The hospitalization rate for vaccinated is actually 0.01% and the rate for unvaccinated adults is 0.89%. So in both cases the correction answer is less than 1 percent. They [Democrats] thought it was over 50%. How do people, especially of one party get such a bad idea? Where did that come from?
  • We have to get back to life. I mean, you might look at the sporting events that are … all three sports are playing now including basketball, which is inside. Nobody seems to be having super-spreader events. I mean, you know, it was great. It was so much fun having a pandemic but, you know, buh-bye.
  • Just resume living. I know some people seem to not want to give up on the wonderful pandemic, but you know what? It’s over. There’s always going to be a variant. You shouldn’t have to wear masks.
  • Social justice warriors who are fond of governing by hashtag like to say that silence is violence. And we know that because it rhymes.
  • Word inflation is a problem. You can try to change reality by changing the words, but you can’t. It just stops you from dealing with it. One of the bad guys in Nineteen Eighty-Foursays, ‘The whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought.’ It’s Orwellian, and Orwell never ends well.

Racism, Critical Race Theory, and guest Michael Eric Dyson (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) S19E33, (5 November 2021)

  • They [parents in Virginia] are not objecting to Black history being taught. There are other things going on in the schools… Like separating children by race, and describing them either as oppressed or oppressor. I mean, there are children coming home who feel traumatized by this. That's what parents are objecting to.

“Bill Maher: Trump is winning. I’m stick of winning” (2021)


CNN’s Cuomo Prime Time, Bill Maher’s interview with Chris Cuomo (17 November 2021)

  • My politics have not changed. I am an old school liberal… when we’re talking about the race issue, they changed, not me… We should be moving towards a colorblind society where we don’t see race. That is the old way to look at it. I think that is still a good way to look at. That how we win, when it doesn’t matter what your race is--the quality of your character, not the color of your skin. That’s not wokism. Wokism we have to see it everywhere all the time.
  • But there is a reason why the term woke has come to signify going to far and doing things that make no sense. I keep saying this to the Democratic Party. The reason why you're so toxic is because you have become the party of no common sense.
  • Kids are taught and sometimes separated into groups, oppressor and oppressed. Again, does a kid even know what those words mean? Would they gravitate toward that if you hadn't told them? I mean, you're taking something that was getting better, race relations in America, and we -- I think everyone recognizes, everyone right-thinking, in my view, that still a lot of work needs to be done.
  • You can't come up with good solutions unless you're realistic about what the problem is. I mean, it was only like 10 or 20 years ago that no state in America would vote for gay marriage. I mean, it was on the ballot like 35 times. Now it's the law of the land and no one is against it.
  • [Cuomo]: It's just the truth, we're just telling them the truth, is that racism continues, it's systemic, it's in everything around us, but you have to be taught where it is everywhere because that's how we remedy it. And otherwise, you're just hiding from the truth." [Maher]: That’s nuts, it’s just silly, it’s just virtue signaling.
  • So don’t put this into a this category ‘this is settled science’,.. anything that deviates from the one true opinion on this means you’re a some horrible bigot and transphobic. That is not what is going on here. I don’t think David Chappelle is transphobic… Maybe we are going too far with the children part of this. You know, kids should not be really making decisions about their gender.

New Rule: Bill Maher the Messaging Czar (2021)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) S19E35, (19 November 2021)

  • You're [Democrats] alienating a whole lot of people, particularly whites without a college degree, which is most of them in a country that is still 70% white. I'd say, 'Do the math,' but math is a form of white supremacy.
  • This is a term [woke] folks like you brought out very recently, had been proudly displaying it every march since. Just last year, The Guardian declared 'woke' the 'word of our era.' I guess they didn't get the memo from the 'Mean Girls Club’… What a great strategy, never missing an opportunity to remind voters how lame and clueless and hopelessly uncool they are, especially since those are the ones who actually vote. But OK, fine. What word would you like us to use for the plainly insane excesses of the left that are not liberalism but something completely different? Because you can't have that word 'liberal' from us and think it should cover things like canceling [Abraham] Lincoln, and teaching third-graders they're oppressors. That's all your new-think.
  • A more pertinent question to ask about the word woke might be why in such a short time gone from a rallying cry to a pejorative. If the word only made you think of rational, deserved causes like teaching a less whitewashed version of American history, AOC would still want to own it. But it's a joke because it makes you think of people who wake up offended and take orders from Twitter. And their oversensitivity has grown tiresome.

New Rule: Apply percussion to the Pandemic: Faulty Powers (2022)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (4 February 2022)

  • There is always going to be another variant. We cannot go on forever in permanent hair-on-fire, cancel Christmas, hand-jobs through a hazmat suit.
  • Beginning with recognizing what we are doing to kids is unnecessary and horrible, and I don’t even like kids. But making kids, where the Covid survivability rate of 99.98 percent, mask up like bandits. Unfortunately, the thing that is getting stolen is their education, their sanity, and their social skills. A study this week from a professor at John Hopkins concluded that the lockdowns we all suffered through had little impact on reducing COVID deaths. Okay, that’s kind of a big one to get wrong.
  • Last July, President Biden said, 'You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations.' Well, I already knew that was wrong then, and now we all do. The former Director of the CDC, Robert Redfield, believes COVID originated in a lab believes COVID originated in the lab, and now our intelligence agencies agree, it might have. But for months on social media, it was banned to even discuss it."
  • Look, I’m not saying the medical establishment isn’t trying to figure s**t out, or that they’re corrupt — although there is some of that, but how about just wrong? Wrong a lot. Wrong about HIV, wrong about lockdowns, wrong about kids, wrong about how you couldn’t get it if you were vaccinated.
  • I’m just asking, how much wrong do you get to be while still holding the default setting for people who represent the science? Eat eggs, then don’t, then do. Take aspirin, then don’t, then do. The food pyramid, really? Bread and milk every day? Fifteen years ago, they were recommending trans fats. Now, they’re illegal, just like almost a hundred prescription drugs which were once called 'safe and effective' and then yanked off the market because they were not.
  • But plainly, the medical-industrial complex has not earned the right to claim monopoly status on information about this virus or medicine in general. Yes, free speech has allowed people to hear misinformation sometimes. And a lot of it was yours.

Toxic Femininity (2022)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (1 April 2022)

  • Thank you all for coming and putting on a brave face. To Will Smith: Stay strong and I got your back… April Fools. You’re a d***. I'm not here to humiliate Will Smith. He gets enough of that at home.
  • Every single person in America was talking about the sucker punch heard 'round the world. That whole 'Keep my wife’s name out of your mouth' didn’t really work out.
  • Then he sees that his wife is giving him the stinkeye. I blame toxic femininity. The Academy says from now on they may ban Will Smith from ever coming back to the Oscars, and my question: 'And what's the punishment?'
  • It exposed, I thought, a lot of aspects of this society we have which are not terribly positive — toxic masculinity, victim culture. Liberal hypocrisy, I think, was the big loser.
  • These are the very people who are always talking about micro-aggressions in the workplace and how you should be, you know, not have to face an uncomfortable moment or, you know, people shouldn't touch you or unwanted leave. Suddenly, they were okay with this. It just seemed to show, to me, broken morals. Like, you really have no principles.
  • What do we make of what's going on with violence and the word violence? Because it's a common word among the woke. They seem to have broadened the definition, silence is violence and words can be violence, but then actual violence? Not a big deal. It's like, 'Violence is not an answer, except when I f***ing feel like it, and then it's a great answer.'

New Rules: A United Theory of Wokness (2022)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (16 September 2022)

  • How we teach our kids history has become a big controversy these days, with liberals accusing conservatives of wanting to whitewash the past, and sometimes that’s true, sometimes they do. But plenty of liberals also want to abuse history to control the present, and last month, a scholar named James Sweet caught hell for calling them out for doing just that. He criticized the phenomenon known as ‘ presentism,’ which means judging everyone in the past by the standards of the present. It’s the belief that people who lived 100 or 500 or 1,000 years ago really should have known better, which is so stupid. It’s like getting mad at yourself for not knowing what you know now when you were ten.
  • Who doesn't have moments from your past that make you cringe? ... You ate dirt, you wanted to be a Ghostbuster, you shoplifted gum, you tried to be a white breakdancer, you wanted to marry Scott Baio. I read Ayn Rand. I smoked, I was into numerology. You had to grow into the person you would become. Humanity writ large is just a collective version of that.
  • Did Columbus commit atrocities? Of course. But people back then were generally atrocious. Everybody who could afford one had a slave, including people of color. The way people talk about slavery these days, you’d think it was a uniquely American thing that we invented in 1619. But slavery throughout history has been the rule, not the exception: the Sumerians, the Egyptians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Arabs, the British, the early Americans, all the way up through R. Kelly.
  • The Holy Bible is practically an owner’s manual for slaveholders. The word ‘slave’ comes from Slav, because so many Slavic people were enslaved, and they’re as white as the Hallmark Channel. Who do you think gathered the slaves from the interior of Africa to sell to slave traders? Africans, who also kept their own slaves. We’re a species prone to making others of our species our bitch. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Humans are not good people, and the capacity for cruelty is a human thing, not a white thing. That’s the truth, even though it doesn’t jive with the current narrative.
  • But in today’s world, when truth conflicts with narrative, it’s the truth that has to apologize. Being woke is like a magic moral time machine, where you judge everybody against what you imagine you would have done in 1066, and you always win.
  • Portland Public Schools has a plan now to teach kids that the idea of gender being mainly binary was brought here by white colonizers. The curriculum guide says, ‘When the United States was colonized by white settlers, their views around gender were forced upon the people already living here.’ Not even Star Trek would try that story, where they discover a planet and give them separate bathrooms.
  • It’s like they finally discovered a unified theory of wokeness, incorporating all their ideas about race, gay, gender, and colonizers. Like the New World was a great big diverse dance club and the pilgrims were the bridge and tunnel crows who ruined everything.

New Rules: A Work Revolution (2023)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (3 February 2023)

  • If you are part of today’s woke revolution, you need to study the part of revolutions where they spin out of control because the revolutionaries get so drunk on their own purifying elixir, they imagine they can reinvent the very nature of human beings.
  • Communists thought selfishness, selfishness, could be cast out of human nature. Russian revolutionists spoke of the new Soviet Man who wasn’t motivated by self-interest but instead wanted to be part of the collective. No, it turns out he wanted to be on a yacht in a Gucci tracksuit, holding a vodka and a prostitute. Not standing all day in line for a potato.
  • The problem with communism and with some very recent ideologies here at home is that they think you can change reality by screaming at it, that you can bend human nature by holding your breath. But that’s the difference between reality and your mommy. Lincoln once said that you can repeal all past history, but you still cannot repeal human nature. But he’s canceled now, so f*** him.
  • Because, again, in China, we saw how a revolutionary thought he could do a page-one rewrite of humans. Mao ordered his citizens to throw off the four olds – old thinking, old culture, old customs, and old habits. So, your whole life went in the garbage overnight. No biggie. And those who resisted were attacked by an army of purifiers called the Red Guard who went around the country putting dunce caps on people who didn't take to being a new kind of mortal being. A lot of pointing and shaming went on. Oh, and about a million dead. And the only way to survive was to plead insanity for the crime of being insufficiently radical and then apologize and thank the State for the chance to see what a piece of shit you are, and of course, submit to re-education, or as we call it here in America, freshman orientation.
  • The banjo player from Mumford and Sons tweeted that he liked a book. A book that apparently had not been approved by the revolution. So, of course, he had to delete the tweet, then take time away from the band. Oh my God! You mean this could have affected Mumford and Sons? And then the cringing apology, ‘I have come to better understand the pain caused by the book I endorsed.’ Pain? From a book? Unless he hit the drummer over the head with it. Whatever happened to, ‘I can read whatever the f*** I want?
  • Good intentions can turn into the insane arrogance of thinking your revolution is so fucking awesome and your generation is so mind-bendingly improved that you have bequeathed the world with a new kind of human, you're welcome.
  • With communists, that human was no longer selfish. In America today, that human is no longer born male or female. And obesity is not something that affects health. You can be healthy at any size. Really, we voted on it. A formerly serious magazine (The Atlantic) last year published with a straight face an article called 'Separating Sports By Sex Doesn't Make Sense.' Yes, it does. Because, again, we haven't reinvented homo sapiens since Crystal Pepsi came out.
  • I've spent 3 decades on T.V. mocking Republicans who said climate change was just a theory and now I have to deal with people who say you know what else is just a theory, biology?

Club Random with Bill Maher podcast (2023)


Guest: Sharon Osbourne, (30 July 2023, episode 73)

  • That's where it all went wrong for us. It's again the same principle as I was saying before about like the reverse of what liberalism really is. Liberalism is for the sake of humanity and compassion; can we get these people off the streets? And woke is, ‘How dare you ask them to move! This is their home...’ No, it's not!
  • And of course, they didn't like it. And it's just a good example of could everybody just stop the posturing? Don't pretend that you love migrants so much and then when we send them to you, you don't like them. You know, you're full of s--- and we can see that. Yeah, you liked them when it wasn't your problem because you're not a border state. And then when they show up in Chicago, in New York, you're like, What the f---? What are we going to do with these people?

Joe Rogan Experience podcast (2023)


Bill Maher interviewed by Joe Rogan, (September 2, 2023)

  • You’re like liberals back when they were more reasonable before they became leftists. And now every liberal kind of has to be a leftist. If you want to be on the team, you’ve got to subscribe to the most fringe ideas that the team is promoting. You can be woke, with all the nonsense that that now implies, but don’t say that somehow it’s an extension of liberalism. Because it’s most often actually an undoing of liberalism. You can have your points of view and your positions on these things but don’t try and piggyback on what I always believe. I have always believed, as liberals do for example, in a colorblind society.
  • The goal is to not see race at all, anywhere for any reason. That’s what liberals always believed all the way through Obama, going back [to] Kennedy, everybody, Martin Luther King. That’s not what the woke believe. They believe race is first and foremost the thing you should always see everywhere, which I find interesting because that used to be the position of the Ku Klux Klan. Again, you can have that position, but don’t say that’s a liberal position. You’re doing something very different.

New Rule: Don't Go to College (2023)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (Oct. 20, 2023)

  • As an Ivy League graduate who knows the value of a liberal education, I have one piece of advice for the youth of America: Don’t go to college. And if you absolutely have to go, don’t go to an elite college, because as recent events have shown, it just makes you stupid.
  • There are few if any positives to come out of what happened in Israel. But one is opening America’s eyes to how higher education has become indoctrination into a stew of bad ideals, among them the simplistic notion that the world is a binary place where everyone is either an oppressor or oppressed, in the case of Israel, oppressors being babies and bubbles.
  • The same students who will tell you that words are violence and silence is violence, were very supportive when Hamas terrorists went on a rape and murder rampage worthy of the Vikings. They knew where to point the finger, at the murdered, and then it was off to ethics class.
  • They don’t know much of anything actually, but it doesn’t deter them from having an opinion. They’ve convinced themselves Israel is the most repressive regime in history because they have no knowledge of history or even a desire to know it. And actually, history doesn’t come up in their intersectionality of politics and genderqueer identities class.
  • College life today is a day’s spa combined with a North Korean reeducation camp. It’s a daycare center with a meal plan, except the toddlers can fire the adults. The fact that college presidents, who usually love to speak out about anything, couldn’t find their voice to condemn the worst attack since the Holocaust. There is a lot about who really controls colleges and why its ignorance is a disease. Harvard Yard is the Wuhan wet market.
  • But the reason why despising Israel became pretty much a requirement of the American left is colleges, elite colleges. The mouth of the river from which this and all manners of radical left illiberal, yes illiberal, nonsense flows. Supporting all-black, that is segregated dorms, segregated graduation ceremonies, and orientation programs, which occur on hundreds of colleges, is illiberal, so is the racism against Asian applicants. And chasing speakers off of campus… there is only one set of acceptable opinions on campus and it is policed hard.

New Rule: The Real Deep State/Stop in the Name of Gov (2023)


Real Time with Bill Maher (HBO) (27 October 2023

  • But there is a deep state, which is the bureaucratic class that justifies its existence by making up new rules and that’s my job. It’s the vast network of regulators, administrators, inspectors, contractor reviewers, project managers, fee accessors, special commissioners, zoning officers, and consultants, whose jobs seem to be to make sure that nothing ever happens and then charge you for it. The people who answer the phone, Permit office. ‘How may I hinder you.’
  • Last year, Wyoming began construction on the largest wind farm in North America that will power 2 million homes in Arizona, Nevada, and California. And to think, it only took 18 years—not to build it, to approve it. Eighteen backlogged, knuckle-dragging, pencil-pushing thumb-twaddling, ball-scratching years to finally get to ‘yes.’ When they started doing the paperwork, Leonardo DiCaprio's girlfriend wasn't even born.
  • How ironic, with all the talk about the urgency to switching to green energy, our deep state of petty tyrants wasted almost two decades over permitting and nitpicking over the environmental impacts and social effects of the very thing that would most positively impact the environment.
  • Semafor estimates that if the red tape could be cut on everything that is currently stuck in the renewable queue, the United States would be 80% zero carbon in 7 years. The enemy of clean air isn't just Big Oil, it's Big Permitting. It's not that America isn't able to get anything done, it's that we're not allowed to. Of course, there should be consideration of the environment on everything we build but as so often happens on the left they seem to have no ability to recognize when they've taken a concept way too far and are in fact hurting their own cause.
  • As Barack Obama once said, one of the biggest lessons he learned as president is there is no such thing as shovel-ready jobs. Environmental impact statements used to be a few pages long, now they’re thousands of pages of legalistic nonsense and take an average of 4 and a half years to complete with thousands of bureaucrats filling out millions of paper forms that kill hundreds of forests to answer the question is this good for the environment?
  • In San Francisco, the city is so nice you'll step in poop twice, there's an area where homeless people were urinating and defecating and it was starting to annoy the people breaking into cars. So, the city tried to build a public toilet last year but then gave up when the cost hit $1.7 million. Not $1.7 million for a public toilet system, $1.7 million for one toilet… So then a private company took pity on San Francisco and offered to build them their toilet for free. But after, quote… ‘project management, construction management, architecture and engineering fees, permits, civic design review, surveys, contract preparation, and cost estimation’, the free toilet was going to cost almost a million dollars.
  • I don't fear A.I. anymore because it couldn't possibly be any more robotic than the humans who run things now.

Quotes about Maher

  • renewable installations present dramatically lower risks than either fossil fuels or nuclear energy to those who live and work next to them. As comedian Bill Maher once observed, "You know what happens when windmills collapse into the sea? A splash."
    • Naomi Klein This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate (2014)
  • "PC" has almost become a household word. In the 1991 Academy Awards pageant, a commentator joked that Dances with Wolves was "politically correct" (it shows Native Americans as decent and most of the white troops trying to exterminate them as bad guys). Since then, movie critics have sneered at films with anti-racist content, like Follow Me Home or Amistad, for their "PC" essence. The term has even inspired a major television show, Bill Maher's "Politically Incorrect" talkfest. Progressive people use the term without thinking twice about its reactionary function.
  • When my dear brother Bill Maher calls, as he frequently does, I do my best to hop out to L.A. and work with him on Real Time. I revel in his comic brilliance and progressive politics even as I joyfully wrestle with his agnosticism.
    • Cornel West Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud, A Memoir (2009)
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