Maher: Trump Is the Result of ‘The Self-Esteem Movement’

HBO’s “Real Time” host Bill Maher argued that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump “is the logical result of 40 years of worshiping at the altar of self-esteem” on Friday.

Maher said, “Stop trying to pin the rise of Donald Trump on easy targets like racism, xenophobia, and fetal alcohol syndrome, and put the blame where it belongs, on the self-esteem movement.”

He added, “[W]hat Donald Trump really reminds me of is a spoiled 5-year-old throwing a tantrum. He is the grownup version of every pain in the ass kid who ever sat behind you on a plane, kicking the back of your seat, while the parents did nothing. Little Logan is just exploring. No, little Logan is being a dick, and if you won’t shove him in the overhead bin, I will. Every time a parent takes the kid’s side over the teacher’s, or asks a child where they want to go to dinner, or doesn’t say be quiet when adults are talking, you are creating the Donald Trumps of tomorrow. These are the parents who put notes in their kids’ lunchbox that say ‘I love you.’ When there’s already something in the lunchbox that lets kids know you love them, food.”

Maher continued that it’s a “bad idea to teach children that there is nothing better than falling madly head over heels, leaving notes on your own windshield, in love with yourself, and also that anyone who doesn’t agree that you are fabulous and perfect in every way is just a hater and they can suck it. Sound like anyone we know? Have you noticed that nobody ever does anything better than Donald Trump?”

After playing a clip of Trump saying that there are various things no one does better than him, Maher concluded, “I just want a reporter, one time, to ask him about humility so I can hear him say there is nobody better at being humble than me. Nobody loves the Bible more? Nice try, Pope Francis, but unfortunately for you, you’re in the same world with Donald Trump. Unfortunately for all of us, but kind of predictable, Trump is the perfect candidate for the country that scores low in math and science, but off the charts in self-esteem. Yeah, a study of eight developed countries found that US students were dead last in math skills, but number one in confidence in math skills, even though they suck at it. Yes, we’re number one in thinking we’re number one. And when the numbers don’t validate that confidence, well, we know who the real culprit is, those stupid numbers, so we change them. In the 1960s, at Yale, 10% of all grades were As. Now it’s 62%. This is called trophy syndrome. Where no one ever loses and everyone gets a prize. You can run the wrong way on the field and score five goals for the other team, and you’re still a winner, even though you’re actually a big, f*cking loser. And this isn’t just kids. NBA players give each other high-fives when they miss a foul shot. Oprah gets a big round of applause for losing weight, and another one for having the courage to put it back on. We tell our children they don’t have to fix their flaws because it’s the world’s job to accept everything about them and love it. Like they say on reality shows, the most important thing is just you doing you. But what if you is a big a**hole? So, you can vote for Donald Trump if you want, but never think that for him it’s about the country. He doesn’t even really want to be president. He just wants to be called president, because he is the logical result of 40 years of worshiping at the altar of self-esteem, where everything is about you, and every kid gets a trophy wife.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett