Bill Maher Does Great, Infuriating Interview with the Director of the New Anti-Drug War Documentary The House I Live In

On last Friday's Real Time, host Bill Maher sat down with Eugene Jarecki, the director of the forthcoming anti-drug war documentary The House I Live In. The conversation is great; it's a serious discussion of the drug war's disastrous effects, particularly on minority communities. Maher even makes a great, withering point about the prison guard unions' vested interest in keeping the war going by dismissing the need for employment as an excuse. Says Maher, boohoo, those guards should "get a new fucking job, find something else to do."

And Jarecki adds that he met the head of the Office of Drug Control Policy, Gil Kerlikowske, and that the don't-call-him-a-drug-czar reminded Jarecki of the cruel joke that is the Obama administration's new take on things: if you change the name, it's supposed to be different. It, as frequently pointed out by this website and anyone paying attention, is not different. 

Throughout the exchange, we can see the Maher who is supposed to be at least halfway on the side of libertarians. After all, he knows the drug war is a serious, top tier issue, he makes great points about it, and he has a great guest in Jarecki. Maher, not for the first time, has some harsh words for Obama on this issue, calling him an "unrelenting asshole, breaker of promises, imprisoner of people...." 

All of this makes the fact of Maher's $1 million donation to the Obama reelection campaign the more infuriating. Maher is free to do what he likes with his own money, but here we have a public figure who cares passionately about drug policy, saying it is a serious issue. But once again, he doesn't care quite enough to, oh, support Gary Johnson, write in Ron Paul, or not vote at all; anything that wouldn't fund the policies Maher claims to despise. Hell, Maher, won't even say that drug warrior and Attorney General Eric Holder is bad. With anti-drug war friends like Maher, prohibition may just stay forever. 

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  • Fluffy||

    Lucy, please doublecheck your headline.

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    Ugh.

  • pmains||

    And if you could, please find out WTF happened on the Ira Stoll post.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    If Bill Maher and his smug are anti-drug war, I might have to rethink my stance.

  • ||

    Don't worry, as the blog entry points out, he's only anti-drug war in words, not in deed. It's the progressive way! (also see foreign occupations, crony capitalism presidential power.)

  • ||

    *and* presidential power. damn statist squirrels.

  • Randian||

    If Bill Maher and his smug are anti-drug war, I might have to rethink my stance.

    You obviously have nothing to worry about.

  • califernian||

    He's not anti-drug war. he's pro-marijuana legalization which is FAR different.

    He'll still be happy to imprison people for "inappropriate" distribution of oxycodon and the like.

  • ||

    Also, Real Time shows on Fridays, not Sundays.

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    Whoops. Fixed, with thanks.

  • The Hammer||

    Who gives a shit?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    HBO replays that garbage ad nauseum.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Any chance Maher's pro-Obama stance is merely an act to keep his friends in Hollywood? Throw $1 million Obama's way, might even actually vote for, but deep down, he realizes the guy is pretty bad?

  • ||

    On a scale from 1 to 100, that theory is about a negative 37 on likely being true.

  • Randian||

    I fail to see how that makes it any better. If anything, that makes him a coward instead of merely stupid.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Agreed. I never said it made it any better. I just want to know how Maher sleeps at night donating $1 million to a candidate he clearly, strongly disagrees with.

  • Randian||

    If it were just an act, I could *urk* sort of understand it. I think his vociferous defense of the Administration is chosen and believed, which makes his embrace of cognitive dissonance all the more galling.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    His deer-in-headlights reaction when Breitbart told him, "You know you're not really a libertarian, right?" probably sums up his political leanings better than anything Maher's actually said.

  • ||

    All of this makes the fact of Maher's $1 million donation to the Obama reelection campaign all the more infuriating

    This is such a perfect example of the mental rot that is partisanship. "Yeah, he's terrible on something I care a lot about, BUT..."

    Partisanship is an instant neon sign for "intellectually bankrupt".

  • Brandybuck||

    I can understand Maher still voting for Obama, if he thought Obama was still good on other issues like ending the war, stopping the siphon of bailouts to cronies, reversing the corporatization of healthcare, etc. You know, like the fantasy Obama that Maher jacks off to.

  • JW||

    Partisanship is an instant neon sign for "intellectually bankrupt".

    Then why does your neon sign say WILL FLUFF FOR FOOD?

  • $park¥||

    Through out the exchange, we can see the Maher who is supposed to be at least halfway on the side of libertarians

    Isn't throughout one word? Judging by all the mistakes, this is why more people don't home school...

  • Lucy Steigerwald||

    Yep. This is why.

    Thanks. Will fix.

  • ||

    Really...and here I was under the impression it was because most people can't afford to pay for their child's education twice.

  • wef||

    but here we have a public figure who cares passionately about drug policy, saying it is a serious issue. But once again, he doesn't care quite enough to .... Hell, Maher, won't even say that drug warrior and Attorney General Eric Holder is bad. With anti-drug war friends like Maher, prohibition may just stay forever.

    Revealed preference.

    Maher has revealed his preferences. He is not a morally serious man.

  • $park¥||

    Maher is free to do what he likes with his own money, but here we have a public figure who cares passionately about drug policy, saying it is a serious issue.

    Yeah, there could certainly stand to be more single issue voters around.

  • BakedPenguin||

    If Maher were like Greenwald - explicitly stating that while he dislikes Obama's War on Drugs, he believes Obama's economic policies are better for the poor - I could understand that. What I don't get is giving $1MM to a "lesser of evils" while blatantly cheering him on.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    I see Maher's audience still applauds EVERY. SINGLE. THING. A. LIBERAL. SAYS.

    Sheesh, cut it out!

  • Anonymous Coward||

    It's nothing new, but Bill Maher has claimed to be libertarian. By his other statements, he is only as libertarian as concerns drugs and pussy. In every other issue, he cries out for the jackboot to be planted firmly on his neck.

  • triclops||

    He is confident the jackboot will never reach his neck, it's your necks for which he clamors be booted.

  • JW||

    All of this makes the fact of Maher's $1 million donation to the Obama reelection campaign the more infuriating.

    How will he stay on the guest list for all the cool parties otherwise? He doesn't want to end up like Stossel.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    I always thought keeping the Stossel-stache after 1990 was what kept him off the guest list for all the cool parties.

  • ||

    For a website called Reason, isn't there someone (maybe who wears a leather jacket) whose job it is to, I don't know, edit posts before they go up? :P

    I really just wanted to facilitate the alcoholics

  • FD||

    He's as low-life as they come.
    He represents the slave mentality, the political version of the Stockholm syndrome, and he wants everyone to join him in his mental enslavement.
    He'll march to the polls on November 6 and pull the lever for the current White House occupier because, as he had said personally, "I love the guy."
    No matter what his master does, he'll follow. He'll whine a little like the teenage punk who's pissed off at Dad and who then later tucks his tail between his legs, cries that he's sorry, and begs the old man for the car keys so he can cruise around with his buds.
    He gets no libertarian points. Because he, like many of the leftist trolls around here, cannot define what libertarian means. Although he'll stumble toward the sensible view for a couple of issues, he's just another empty-headed, celebrity wise-ass.

  • deified||

    Bill Maher is a cunt.

    Lucy, you're free to plagiarize that for all future BM posts.

  • godzleaf||

    I only watch Bill Maher these days for the occasional kick ass drug war rants that occur on his show. Otherwise I wouldn’t even take a glance at Maher if he were to sit there scratching his balls on tv.

    Mr. Zleaf (Please feel free to just call me God)

  • Randian||

    Why? It's pretty obvious that Maher doesn't actually care about the War on Drugs.

  • godzleaf||

    Jarecki does, and Jarecki was certainly worth watching!

  • Randian||

    Says Maher, boohoo, those guards should "get a new fucking job, find something else to do."

    I thought only mean conservatives like Mitt Romney liked firing people.

  • Libertarian||

    I always gave Maher the benefit of the doubt, especially after he was "fired" from Politically Incorrect after his, ironically, politically incorrect statement about the "bravery" of lobbing missiles into countries from offshore.

    However, being a cheapskate, I will never forgive him for calling Gillespie a "republican," because that was the catalyst that forced me to send $100 to Reason.

    And, OBTW, Red Rocks Rockin, that WAS a great statement by Breitbart, "You know you're not really a libertarian, right?"

    It makes me think of Neil Boortz: i.e. the fact that you want to legalize drugs and not pay taxes, does not make one a libertarian.

  • FD||

    Good comment. Indeed to my point earlier, the leftist mouthpieces cannot define libertarian philosophy or its political underpinnings.
    They don't understand the difference between corporatism and individual liberty, nor understand the mechanics of the non-agression principle.
    But calling libertarians "Republicans" is oftentimes a deliberate pejorative, since the establishment left is unable to "sort out" problems without resorting to their perceived government benefactors -- the ones who tell you when to crap, eat, dance, work, screw, as well as tell you where.
    It's amusing to see a left liberal argue against liberty by citing potential abuses -- the very abuses that can only occur when sanctioned by the government they blindly love.

  • SIV||

    Throughout the exchange, we can see the Maher who is supposed to be at least halfway on the side of libertarians.

    Math is not your strong suit, Miss Steigerwald.

  • Paul.||

    Maher is free to do what he likes with his own money,

    Not acdording to the Obama administration.

  • The Derider||

    Of the two candidates with any possibility of winning, Maher backed the one who is demonstrably better on drug policy.

    He does not share your illusion that a vote for a third party candidate has any effect other than helping your worst opponent win. He, like many liberals, made that mistake by voting for Nader in 2000.

    It must be infuriating that he won't drink your koolade! Twice!

  • FD||

    Anybody who is afflicted with a slave mentality, such as yourself, will delude himself into thinking one of the two major party candidates is "worse" than the other.

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