In Bill Maher’s final New Rule of the night, he suggested that if tea partiers get to control the Republican party and act like hostage negotiators, the Democrats should have their own branch party that would be just as ridiculously partisan as the tea party, because the only thing they haven’t tried yet is fighting crazy with crazy.
Reflecting on the past week of debt talks, Maher compared the tea party to that loon you always see in the subway who’s rambling on about something or other. He then compared the tea party’s influence over the Republican party to a really cheesy action movie where a bank robber is pointing a gun at some woman’s head in order to get her cooperation. In these scenarios, as Maher stated, you have the typical police negotiator (played by some random character actor) who can’t get anywhere with the psycho holding a gun, so they have to bring in the renegade, a “Mel Gibson” character, who can talk the robber down because they’re both operating on the same insane level. Maher concluded that if the Democrats are going to be effective negotiators against tea party Republicans, they’re going to need “their own Mel Gibson.”
“The only way they’re going to pull the debate back from the far right is for liberals to elect their own slate of 60 unstable, looney-toon, mad-as-a-hatter, crazy motherfuckers.”
He called for liberals to search for “angry left-wing lunatics” to make them part of a new party, a party residing within the Democratic party, as the tea party does within the Republican party. Maher’s name for this party-within-a-party? The Donner Party. Their platform? “We will literally eat each other before we give an inch.” (Oh, great. Now I’ve got a hankering for Harry Reid stew.) And Maher brought back a familiar face to regular show viewers: face-ripper monkey, who would be the leader of this new Donner party.
But shifting to the serious momentarily, Maher took on the idea that liberals already have groups like that anyway in the ACLU, Greenpeace, or MoveOn.org, arguing “those are educated people,” and a liberal Donner party can only exist with “loudmouths” who can act just as stubborn and partisan as the tea party.
What followed was a point-by-point list of Donner party principles, which perfectly complemented tea party positions on taxes, abortion, guns, and gays. Punishments from this new Donner party government range from not mentioning Jesus’ name when you win a sports game lest you lose your children to performing 200 hours of community theatre. (Yes, that’s how I spell it. Deal with it.)
While the prospect of making Congress more partisan might seem a counterproductive idea to some, Maher has a point in that Obama and the Democrats need to, at some point, stand for what they believe in. Making concessions is part of the legislative process, but compromise should be found in the middle, where both sides can claim some small victory, not too far on one side or the other. And by not embracing the values you claim to stand for (as the tea party does to a great degree), you let down the people who supported you in the first place.
(But before you comment, I should point out that one of Maher’s earlier rules criticized the stupidity of most political discussions carried out by anonymous commenters on the internet. So before you post, do your civic duty and try to avoid calling people “fags” while accusing them of being traitors and scumbags. It hurts your argument, people!)
Watch the video below, courtesy of HBO:
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