Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Why HBO Will Not Fire Bill Maher

      HBO is not going to fire Bill Maker over his use of the n-word. Too many signs point to Maher keeping his show. This is doubly the case since he has apologized for his racial quip. The sincerity of the apology is up to you to measure. While you contemplate the issue, here are a couple other reasons Maher's position with HBO is safe.
      One, Maher is a liberal in good standing. Liberals in good standing get a lot of leeway when it comes to offensive content. Take Stephen Colbert's recent joke implying oral sex between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin. CBS decided to ride out the controversy. Even the FCC opted not to take disciplinary action. Liberals can often get away with occasional instances of racism and homophobia among other sins that would be mortal for anyone else, especially a noted conservative.
   Witness how a sizable amount of chatter after after Maher referred to himself as a “house n-word” was criticism directed at guest Ben Sasse for his nervous reaction to the joke. Liberals who did not want to condemn Maher for actually making the offensive joke were nevertheless quick to criticize Sasse for not condemning him. Even liberals themselves know the bar is set higher for conservative sand are harsher on them, whether the harsh critique is warranted or not. It is a testament to the high moral standards of conservatism versus the relativist nature of liberal morality.
     Mahor's status as a liberal in good standing may offer him much wiggle room, but it is mostly in conjunction with the second reason HBO will not fire him—he is making money for HBO. It is the same reason Colbert got away with his homophobic joke. His talk show is the number one late night show on television. As a bonus, his rapid increase in ratings is directly linked to his sharp attacks on Trump versus the more mellow comedy of his closet competition, Jimmy Fallon. Maher has been known for courting controversy with his humor. Since HBO has not advertisers to appear and are not likely to lose subscribers over the incident, the network will probably tout the situation as as a sign of its edginess.
      Want further proof? Look no further than Kathy Griffin. She is a liberal, but not in any particularly good standing because she is not making anyone money. She dos not have a regular television gig. She does not have a movie career. She does not even play large venues with her stand up comedy. Liberals do not lose anything by taking a stand against her stunt holding a prop severed head of Trump. In fact, the left has everything to gain. They can appear principled by eating one of their own because they are not going to lose anyone important by doing so. Shock rocker Marilyn Manson beheaded Trump in a music video released in early November lat year. It was even more graphic than Griffin's effort. The video barely registered a blip on the outrage meter because Manson sells tons of albums and fill arenas. Griffin does not.
      On a final note, it must be mentioned Maher was fired from his previous job hosting Politically Incorrect for ABC after declaring the 9/11 terrorists were brave for going down with the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center and Pentagon. The show's ratings were low, and ABC wanted to shift its late night line up to something lighter. Maher gave them both a reason to can him and take the moral high ground simultaneously. His previous firing fits well within the rationale I laid out above.

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