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Book: Charlie Sheen & Matt Lauer Are Liberals Who Say Dumb Things

Incorporating Washington Post Book World.Anyone who writes or speaks about politics (with very few exceptions) is bound to say something stupid and egregious at some point or another. You’ll definitely say something dumb if you’re one of the ambitious but dull people who actually runs for office here in the United States. The Wonkette Goofiness Machine thrives on this stuff, as does much of the political media. But Michael S. Montgomery, a former business writer for the Times-Picayune in New Orleans, feels that the constant, hourly phenomenon of Conservatives Saying Dumb Things is over-reported, while the Dumb Things Liberals Say are under-documented and even suppressed by the lamestream media. To correct this natural imbalance, he’s written The Amusing and Annoying Things Liberals Say From A to Z, a sort of Media Matters for the right, in handy book form.

Montgomery is quite liberal with his definition of “liberal,” as the book’s cast of characters includes everyone from Chuck Schumer, Harry Reid and Al Gore to Sally Quinn, Matt Lauer, Charlie Sheen and Cher. Oh, and Hugo Chavez (who spends 85% of his waking hours ranting against liberalismo) and famously liberal Hamas founder Ahmed Yassin.

Self-described libertarian Bill Maher gets a very, very long entry. Here’s some of it:

In 2002, Maher said, “I have hated the Church way before anyone else. I have been pounding religion on this show.” (“Politically Incorrect,” the ABC forerunner to “Real Time“)

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“I hate religion,” he told the Chicago Sun-Times, as reported by DiscoverTheNetworks.Org. “I think it’s a neurological disorder.”

That IS stupid! Bill hated the Church before anyone else? Before Voltaire? Before MARTIN LUTHER, even? Haha, silly Bill Maher. What does Montgomery have to say about this?

No doubt a young Maher was burdened with guilt by the Church, an unfortunate side effect sometimes of its religious teachings. Perhaps he didn’t like the warnings of eternal life in hell.

Maher may be right in some of his beefs with the Vatican. The priest sex-abuse scandals certainly have tarnished the Church’s image. Perhaps the Vatican should ease up on preaching eternal doom to impressionable children. Perhaps the Church should modernize, such as dropping its ban against birth control.

Nonetheless, Maher shouldn’t stand out in the open during an electrical storm.

We have no idea what that means, other than that Maher has good reasons to poke fun at the Church. Your reviewer does enjoy the image of Bill Maher in an electrical storm, though, waving his bong to the sky like a modern-day Benjamin Franklin. Montgomery also criticizes Maher’s jokes and routines for being jokes and routines instead of serious political analysis, and he implies that Maher is too cowardly to make fun of Muslims, even though he regularly does just that on his HBO show.

Paul McCartney makes an appearance in Things Liberals Say. Montgomery’s section about the savage Beatle’s assault on George W. Bush is actually pretty delightful:

Yeah, yeah, yeah, this Beatle is beloved around the globe and probably far out into the cosmos. But he didn’t ingratiate himself to a lot of Americans while entertaining the Obamas in June 2010 ….

McCartney thanked the audience “and noted how nice it was to receive the award from the Library of Congress.”

In fact, the famed singer/songwriter said, after the last eight years, “It’s great to have a president who knows what library is ….”

The Beatle’s nasty dig at the previous president was especially insulting since Bush’s wife, Laura, is a librarian ….

McCartney should confine his political jabbing to his side of the pond, where the royal family certainly generates plenty of satirical fodder, did you notice?

Watch it, Paul — George W. may borrow Maxwell’s Silver Hammer …

The “Maxwell” character referenced here was a serial killer who crushed people’s skulls with a hammer, so who knows where the author is going with that.

There’s much, much more in this Damning Compendium of Liberal Idiocy. Oldie-but-goodie villains like Jane Fonda and Jimmy Carter pop up for the usual reasons (they love Communism and wanted it to defeat America in that coldest and most glorious of wars). The pop singer Madonna is condemned. At one point Montgomery alleges that, “The press reports Biden’s boners, though not with the nasty edge reserved for Republicans.”

Boners?

He speculates about the existence of a “conservative blacklist” in Hollywood that might have prevented well-known environmentalist and transcendental mediation practitioner Clint Eastwood from winning an Oscar for Gran Torino (the fact that Clint has won two “Best Director” Oscars in recent years doesn’t find a place in the book). He has a good time poking fun at Al Gore’s long history of confusion and wire-crossing, which range from hilarious animal bloopers (“A zebra does not change its spots” and “We all know the leopard cannot change its stripes”) to thinking that Michael Jordan was named Michael Jackson. Silly Gore!

Speaking of the Gore dynasty, Montgomery devotes a short section to American treasure Gore Vidal:

Vidal once revealed his lack of confidence in the democratic process with this observation: “Apparently, a democracy is a place where numerous elections are held at great cost without issues and with interchangeable candidates.” (Book of Famous Quotes)

We don’t know which essay or interview that Vidal quotation comes from (your reviewer enjoys reading Vidal a lot more than reading the Vidal section of a “Book of Famous Quotes” or some quotations website), but we find it hard to argue with the point.

The only other actual writer to appear in Things Liberals Say is the late great literary satirist Kurt Vonnegut, whom Montgomery chides for taking a dim view of the lives and “sacrifices” of soldiers, even though Vonnegut (like young patrician Vidal, incidentally) actually was a soldier and fought in World War II. Context is a fine thing, which Montgomery seems to acknowledge in his recounting of the incineration of Dresden that Vonnegut witnessed.

All of this begs the question: What is liberalism, anyway? It’s apparently a tent so big that it can hold Bill Maher’s privatization of Social Security and Charlie Sheen’s birther rants and that Hamas guy and even morning teevee host Matt Lauer.

The Amusing and Annoying Things Liberals Say From A to Z by Michael S. Montgomery, CreateSpace, 282 pages, $14.00.

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88 comments

  1. DownFist Troll

    Erm, Bill Maher is categorically against privatizing Social Security. He's a social libertarian.

  2. Barb

    PBS cut the TV footage of McCartney, taking a jab at Bush. Bush aides suggested that McCartney should "get back to where he once belonged"

  3. DashboardBuddha

    sex-abuse scandals certainly have tarnished the Church’s image.

    Tarnished? That's like saying Germany's invasion of Russia tarnished the image of Berlin (aka – leveling).

    Also, I don't think our "author" knows what either liberalism or idiocy is.

  4. MarionNYNY

    Ah crap! I was just joking, but then I looked, and it really is self-published. Shame on you Wonkette. That's like picking on the short-bus kids (and I should know, I'm one of them.)

    1. RadioJack

      Wait, whoa there Marion, have you been paying attention? There are no more short-bus jokes allowed at ye-olde Wonkette.

  5. __kth__

    Those quotes are indeed amusing, and no doubt annoying to wingnut assholes. If they really wanted to make some money, they'd publish a booklet with just the zings but without the subliterate rightard commentary on them.

    1. tessiee

      "Vidal once revealed his lack of confidence in the democratic process with this observation: “Apparently, a democracy is a place where numerous elections are held at great cost without issues and with interchangeable candidates.” (Book of Famous Quotes)"

      ???

      Am I missing something here? From the article, I assumed that the point of the book was to deconstruct and/or make fun of the quotes. The above is the equivalent of repeating your opponent's argument verbatim, but in a whiny sing-song voice.

      1. ChessieNefercat

        It's worked for that Alaskan cretin for the last couple of years. Don't present an alternate perspective/solution, just whiiiinily repeat the view you don't care for.

  6. JustPixelz

    When deciding if a politician's "boner" is worthy of deconstruction, I use "The (Al) Gore Standard". During the 2000 presidential campaign, the right-wing press — lookin' at you Hannity — found lies and damned lies in everything the man said. Even obvious jokes were interpreted as part of pattern of "serial dishonesty". So today, when I hear a right-wing politician or public figure say something hinky, I ask: WWHD? What Would Hannity Do? And then I know the winger must be lying.

    For example, future Biggest Loser Donald Trumpette releases the wrong document as his "birth certificate", then releases another alleged "birth certificate". Maybe he got mixed up. Or maybe he's lying about one or the other OR BOTH.

    Or current Biggest Loser Glenn Beck who says — oh hell, it doesn't matter — HE'S LYING.

    The Gore Standard is the Gold Standard for right-wing truthfulness.

    1. Ruhe

      Deconstruction! Check you out. Of course, Derrida himself used to say that one doesn't "do" deconstruction, rather, deconstruction "happens"…like boners.

  7. Serolf_Divad

    He speculates about the existence of a “conservative blacklist” in Hollywood that might have prevented well-known environmentalist and transcendental mediation practitioner Clint Eastwood from winning an Oscar for Gran Torino

    Or maybe it was the fact that Gran Torino was a mushy, soporific, sentimental, melodramatic bit of mediocre filmmaking… the equivalent of eating a big bowl of banana pudding (with whipped cream and vanilla wafers) for dinner instead of the nice, healthy stir fry your mom prepared.

    (EDIT: you know, on second thought, those are exactly the kinds of films Hollywood loves to throw Oscars at, so maybe there's something to this)

    1. Toomush_Infer

      No, here Montgomery (Greer?) is talking about a special kind of legal maneuver Clint practised on his nutty ex-wife, Sandra Locke…it was all about trying to get her to take the monkey in trade for never acting again, I think (so long ago, who remembers, especially after a few sessions of transcendental mediation….)

    2. V572..whatever

      It did, however, have the best single instance of "Get off my lawn" in cinematic history And didn't Clint get an Oscar for the movie about the girl snuffing herself?

    3. Lascauxcaveman

      Yeah, there's something to it. The Academy has collectively (yet unconsciously) decided it's sucked Clint's dick enough already.

  8. catchtheflava

    All this sounds suspiciously like a way to defend the hierarchy and inequality that currently characterizes the good ol' US of A, and with all the chiding appeal of a schoolmarm! Don't stand out in the open during an electrical storm, INDEED!

    1. V572..whatever

      Fear of divine retribution is the most honorable and sincere form of faith. Jeebus has a very special place for those who worship Him because they're afraid they'll go to Hell if they don't. It's nice and warm in that place!

      1. tessiee

        Even accepting that argument hypothetically, are we to assume that the writer is suggesting that Bill Maher should be afraid of the wrath of Thor?

  9. edgydrifter

    It's got Jimmy Carter on the cover, so you know it's filled with the finest trenchant conservative wisdom. If you find Jeff Foxworthy thought-provoking, you're going to love this book.

    1. cheaphits

      Michael S. Montgomery correctly assumes that anything funny must have come from a liberal since in the last 100 years the only truly funny comment intentionally made by by a Republican was Evertt Dirksen with his "a billion here, a billion there, it adds up" in the '50's..

      Republicans do not "get" humor any more than they "get" economics…or war…or sex.

  10. Mahousu

    $14 may seem like a lot to spend on a book like this, but don't worry – when you're done with it, Amazon will buy it back for 78 cents. Yes, the market is that hot.

  11. SayItWithWookies

    It's so clever of Mr. Montgomery to suggest death by divine retribution or serial killers to the subjects of his ire. I guess he couldn't assemble a whole book of dumb quotations without showing the world he could do them better.

    1. tessiee

      Yeah, sucking worse than the person you're making fun of pretty much defeats the purpose of making fun.

  12. BeWoot

    This Montgomery person has an electric writing style, doesn't he? There might be a real future for him writing ingredient lists for processed food packaging.

    1. V572..whatever

      I'm thinking more along the line of the Hammacher-Schlemmer catalog:

      This nose and ear hair trimmer earned The Best rating from the Hammacher Schlemmer Institute because it cut hair closer, faster, and with more comfort than any other model. Panelists lauded The Best model for trimming "the closest and quickest, without pulling" and its curved, narrow head "allowed it to reach more parts of the ear." The panel preferred The Best Nose Hair Trimmer in tests for comfort because it "did not cause any irritation or tickle" while it cut. The Best Model was the only unit that could be used in a shower and the head rinses under a faucet for easy cleaning. The trimmer has dual hypoallergenic stainless steel blades and its ergonomic, lightweight design ensures optimal maneuverability. Requires one AA battery. 5 1/4" H x 1 1/4" Diam. (2 oz.)

      "Mom, Dad? Guess what! I finally got a job writing in New York!"

  13. Captain_Quark

    Does Biden's boner sport the famous Biden combover? Actually, "boner combover" sounds like some kind of kinky game I don't want to know about. Or maybe some kind of cocktail.

    1. tessiee

      "Actually, "boner combover" sounds like some kind of kinky game I don't want to know about. Or maybe some kind of cocktail."

      Buttermilk with a shot of Clorox.

  14. DangerHelvetica

    Maher may be right in some of his beefs with the Vatican. The priest sex-abuse scandals certainly have tarnished the Church’s image. Perhaps the Vatican should ease up on preaching eternal doom to impressionable children. Perhaps the Church should modernize, such as dropping its ban against birth control.

    Nonetheless, Maher shouldn’t stand out in the open during an electrical storm.

    Whew! Good thing he backpedaled, he was dangerously close to an actual insight there for a moment. Also, he seems to have confused Yahweh with Thor.

  15. Schmannnity

    Charlie Sheen is a liberal? That must be the pre-crack Charlie Sheen, not the post-crack birther Charlie Sheen.

  16. arihaya

    gosh they never cease demonizing Jimmy Carter ?

    will they leave the poor old man and his peanut farm alone?

          1. ChessieNefercat

            Yeah, that's it! Next thing you know, they'll think they can be president! Legumes need to know their place.

  17. genxr

    Oh those wacky liberals. They've just been wrong about everything. First, they were against civil rights, then they supported the Vietnam war (or didn't let us win it, you pick), and now they're ranting and getting fired from TV shows and tweeting from backstage at their horrible stand up comedy road show!

    So who is your favorite liberal? Hitler, or Stalin?

  18. keepem_sikanpor

    Always with the religion. Doesn't this "author" know that if God were alive today he'd be an atheist?

  19. mavenmaven

    Is it in Reader's Digest yet? If it doesn't fit square on the back of the toilet its not likely to be bulk purchased by church groups.

  20. pinkocommi

    So, this is a book filled with supposed "liberals" saying things like "I hate religion" and "George Bush is stupid" that CONSERVATIVES are supposed to buy? Sounds like a best seller.

  21. carlgt1

    I anxiously await their tell-all book about the Jack Stuef/Trig "scandal" (which has been so laughably overblown; and the reich-wingers are lying through their teeth exaggerating Stuef's comments in an effort to have wonkette lose all its' advertisers)

  22. CapeClod

    Yeah, because expressing your dislike of a person or institutions you don't agree with is roughly the equivalent of saying "90% of what Planned Parenthood does is abortions," and then having an aide tell CNN that what you said should not be taken as a factual statement.

    Al Gore mistaking Michael Jordan for Michael Jackson isn't the same thing as telling a flat out lie on the floor of the Senate.

  23. johnnymeatworth

    "Paul McCartney makes an appearance in Things Liberals Say." No no, you're thinking of the Beatles song "Things We Said Today."

    1. tessiee

      "In fact, the famed singer/songwriter said, after the last eight years, “It’s great to have a president who knows what library is ….”"

      If Paul McCartney actually said this, it's one of his least sappy and most clever quotes.

  24. Goonemeritus

    Ok in the giving spirit of the season here is one quote you might want to incorporate into your new book.

    “Republican men aren’t necessarily hung like hamsters”

    I would guess the average fifth grader knows that’s not true.

    1. tessiee

      "“Republican men aren’t necessarily hung like hamsters”

      I would guess the average fifth grader knows that’s not true. "

      Your average fifth grade *boy* knows that's not true, anyway.

  25. Guppy06

    "a former business writer for the Times-Picayune in New Orleans"

    I'm sure there's a great deal of former business to write about in N'awlins.

  26. ChessieNefercat

    "…a sort of Media Matters for the right, in handy book form."

    Now what on earth is "handy" about something in "book" form for a rightard?

    1. tessiee

      "Now what on earth is "handy" about something in "book" form for a rightard?"

      It eliminates the necessity of a) learning how to work a computer and b) paying your electric bill?

  27. seppdecker

    All of this begs the question: What is liberalism, anyway?

    I think liberalism covers anything that the right-wingers don't like. That's why this tent has to be so damn big, because those rascal-riding scaredy-cats hate about everything.

  28. guangho

    Michael S. Montgomery follows the customary pattern of conservative discourse by labeling something liberal and stupid and then laughing at the liberal stupidity of it all without ever actually considering whether it is liberal and/or stupid.

  29. loulouroo

    Yeah. Bill Maher admits he's a comedian. Michele Bachman and Christine O'Donnell are still in denial. Admitting you have a problem is the first step, ladies…

  30. Doktor Zoom

    Yeah, here's the sort of callous thing Kurt Vonnegut said about Our Soldiers and their Noble Sacrifices:

    "Human beings are chimpanzees who get crazy drunk on power. By saying that our leaders are power-drunk chimpanzees, am I in danger of wrecking the morale of our soldiers fighting and dying in the Middle East? Their morale, like so many bodies, is already shot to pieces. They are being treated, as I never was, like toys a rich kid got for Christmas."

    EDIT: Or maybe this?

    "You know – we've had to imagine the war here, and we have imagined that it was being fought by aging men like ourselves. We had forgotten that the wars were fought by babies. When I saw those freshly shaved faces, it was a shock. "My God, my God – " I said to myself, 'it's the Children's Crusade.'"

    Or maybe it's this line from Hocus Pocus that's insufficiently reverential?

    "During my three years in Vietnam, I certainly heard plenty of last words by dying American footsoldiers. Not one of them, however, had illusions that he had somehow accomplished something worthwhile in the process of making the Supreme Sacrifice."

    Excuse me, asshole, it wasn't the soldiers that Vonnegut had a problem with.

    1. ChessieNefercat

      Why was my comment deleted? Congress persons who yell the loudest about supporting the troops, do vote against legislation intended to help the troops.

  31. Doktor Zoom

    Hah-hah, you know who else must have been a dumb liberal because he made fun of George Bush? The guy who said this:

    To the C students, I say, 'You too can be president of the United States'

  32. ttommyunger

    Oh well, on the bright side, the Koch's and the Mellon-Scaifes will be a couple of Million lighter buying this Turd-Burger a slot on the Best Seller List for a couple of weeks.

  33. tessiee

    A site that makes fun of right-wingers is, by definition, picking on the mentally handicapped.

Comments are closed.