Maher: ‘A Recession Is a Survivable Event,’ What Trump’s Doing Isn’t

On Friday’s broadcast of HBO’s “Real Time,” host Bill Maher responded to the controversy over his earlier comments that a recession would be worth going through if it undermined President Trump’s popularity by stating his critics should “take a course in perspective.” He argued, “A recession is a survivable event, what Trump is doing to this country is not.”

Maher said, “[A]nyone who went apeshit in the last two weeks because I said going through a recession would be worth it if it undermined Trump’s popularity has to enroll in college and take a course in perspective. A recession is a survivable event, what Trump is doing to this country is not. Democracy is about to go the way of the dinosaurs because we’ve been taken over by a dodo bird.”

He added, “Another recession is coming, not because I’m rooting for it, because someone passed a giant tax giveaway to the rich that added trillions to the debt and started a trade war for no reason and deliberately sabotaged the Affordable Care Act and rolled back the rules for banks so they can once again gamble with our money. Those are actual policies, from men with real power, as opposed to me, who just made a wish.”

Maher later responded to criticism from those on the right by stating, “[T]his accusing me of wanting people to starve and die is pretty rich coming from the party that has never been shy about actually enacting policies that starve and kill people. Taking away health care, cutting Medicaid and food stamps and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, forcing government shutdowns. This month’s Journal of the American Medical Association says the Trump environmental agenda is likely to cost the lives of over 80,000 Americans. So there’s that.”

Maher also stated he wouldn’t come out of a recession unscathed, and played a clip of himself saying that he had most of his savings in Lehman Brothers before the 2008 financial crisis.

Maher then concluded, “It’s okay. Because some things are more important than money, and one of them is living in a country that reasonably resembles the one that existed from 1776 to 2016. In a situation this grave, it is not crazy to use economic manipulation. That’s what sanctions are. We pinch countries in the pocketbook so they’ll act better, just think of this as sanctions against ourselves. Although, again, I can’t really make a recession happen. … I’m not rooting for a disaster, the disaster is already here. If a recession is what it takes to make Donald Trump not so cute anymore, then bring it on.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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