“The kindergarten is already in charge”: Bill Maher on the liberal media

June 18, 2022 • 1:30 pm

Bill Maher, a liberal, is in bad odor among progressives, because he makes fun of their excesses. That’s what comedians do, for crying out loud, and it’s not like you have to look hard for those excesses, either. Here’s his new eight-minute monologue that takes off from the ridiculous shenanigans involving reporters Felicia Sonmez and David Weigel of the Washington Post. Sonmez was fired and Weigel suspended. She deserved what she got, while Weigel was treated excessively sternly.  But the whole social media kerfuffle, which should not be dominating stories about liberal media, bespeaks a juvenility of employees that was the subject of my last post about Sarah Haider.

After I heard this and thought about that episode, and similar episodes at the NYT, I realized that the employees of these papers really are acting like spoiled kids. Lukianoff and Haidt were right.

Have a listen. I love his comment about Watergate’s “Deep Throat” and safetyism!

h/t: Paul

30 thoughts on ““The kindergarten is already in charge”: Bill Maher on the liberal media

    1. I did not know Bill Maher (I live in France). Thanks a lot, he is funny and subtle (he could be French 🙂

  1. Eh, his rant about ‘millenials’ at the end is why I don’t like Bill Maher very much. People who think in such broad terms betray a lack of critical thinking in my opinion.

    1. Much of humor is cast in broad generalities and stereotypes. It’s fine that you don’t like Maher; that’s what remote controls are for. (To which I’ll add that in my youth, we actually had to drag our asses off the couch and walk to the tv set, if you can imagine, to change the channel — of which there were only three, four if you count the snowy reception of PBS, which in those days was broadcast over the UHF band and received through a small circular aluminum antenna screwed into the back of the tv console.)

      /end old dude rant. 🙂

      1. You had three channels and UHF? Luxury. We had one channel in black and white broadcast over VHF. And the poor kiwis had to put up with this when their one channel shut down for the nigh.


        But yes, I enjoyed the cracks about millennials. It was meant to be amusing, not a sustained example of critical thinking. And a refreshing change from toddlers saying “OK, boomer”.

        1. South Pacific Television signed off with a cartoon? Paradise! All we got was a scratchy recording of The National Anthem and a test pattern, and we were damn lucky to have that much!

        2. I read your first sentence in a Yorkshire accent, as it was doubtless intended.

          Due to vehicle issues, I have been driving a truck with only radio, and that only gets one station, which is a “community radio” station. Not NPR, I would not be so lucky. They play NPR stuff sometimes, but never when I am driving. It is a super far left, highly political station, originally broadcast from a commune. Distilled wokeness, really.
          Worse than three stations. More like TV in the 30s, when if you got a signal, there was a good chance that it was DFR, the Nazi channel.
          I got my regular ride back two days ago, and am so very happy to be back to ebooks.

      2. Ken, didn’t Fox get started on the UHF band? I seem to recall WUTV Channel 29 from Buffalo as an affiliate of the upstart that took on the Big Three who dominated VHF, plus of course the CBC in Canada. Living on a bluff in Toronto with a clear view across the lake we could sometimes pick it up if we squiggled the metal loop just right. Did I miss anything?

        1. It’s possible, Leslie, though I first became aware of Fox News when it was an upstart on cable tv during the Clinton years.

          The PBS I recall coming through the airwaves via the metal loop was in the Sixties, before I went off to a rural college in the early Seventies and lost track of broadcast tv.

    2. On the other hand, Sarah Haider’s article, discussed in the boss’s last post, specifically called out the problem with hiring young people. Of course it’s stereotyping. But stereotyping is often accurate when applied to a group as a whole. Only when it is used to judge an individual does it go awry.

      1. I don’t think it’s controversial to say that the woke stuff is way more popular under young people than older people. But that doesn’t say enough to talk about generations in the way Maher does here.

    3. Well, he did mention there are notable exceptions. He paints in broad terms: humour is his trade.

  2. It was widely reported a few years ago (at Spiked, amongst many others) that the middle-aged staffers at the NYT were increasingly fearful of the zealotry and the fanaticism of the young “fully-woke” employees. Similar pieces have also been written about the attitude of older tenured professors at many universities towards the newly-hired faculty, whose moral fervor tends towards the totalizing and the totalitarian. None of this augurs well for freedom of expression in this country.

    1. Boomer and GenX university professors’ wary regard for millennial junior faculty members is well justified. An assistant professor at my publicly funded university argued that as part of decolonization we should increase admission and training of international grad students (using money granted to the university by government from our fellow citizens & taxpayers), and do that at the expense of reduced admission and training of grad students from our own country (that is, the children of our fellow citizens & taxpayers). A kind of reparations. I was blown away by the sense of entitlement (and the missing sense of service & obligation) underlying that idea. Typically these suggestions involve the use of someone else’s money – the suggestion is rarely, for example, that faculty members who want to make reparations should use their own income to do so.

  3. Even sadder is that to save money in these days of declining mainstream media advertising revenue, the wiser old souls in newsrooms are being pushed into retirement (or simply being let go) because the know-it-all J-school grads are cheaper. And it won’t be long before, by default, Maher’s fears will have been realized: the kiddies will be running the show … right into the ground.

    1. Me too. Best pure joke in what was otherwise brilliant commentary not played just for laughs.

    2. Yeah, I think it is an example of so called ‘black humour’, but I fear that term will be cancelled too.

      1. It can morph fairly rapidly into “gallows humour”, particularly if you don’t specify if it’s the gallows user or the gallows operator who is making jokes.

  4. Well, now that we’re at it, I would not be surprised if Felicia Sonmez is ‘bi’ (polar) herself: to go off on such a relentless series of disinhibited rants -seriously compromising her career- sounds pretty manic to me (Note: this is not a diagnosis, just a speculation)

    1. My thoughts exactly. How can you claim that a joke is a distasteful stereotype when you clearly embody it?

  5. Felicia Sonmez didn’t suspend reporter David Weigel, the Washington Post did. The decision-makers f the WP are not millennials. The enablers, probably of Maher’s generation, should be called out too.

  6. Maher’s is a bit of a slam at kindergartners. From my experience and observation, by the middle of their first year many if not most are quite reasonably good models of good behavior and cooperation. I think the more apt comparison is with middle schoolers and possibly (likely?) 5th graders. Over the years I have occasionally asked middle schoolers and 5th graders if they needed a detachment of kindergartners to give them refresher training in good manners/behavior. The fact that kindergartners frequently outdo their older peers in this regard occasionally prompts in me a mild skepticism about lack of sufficient pre-frontal cortex development in adolescence.

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