Bill Maher wrapped up his panel discussion this Friday by asking his guests why Americans seem to go crazy over threats like terrorism, or the recently downed plane that's been all over the news, while shrugging off things like California literally running out of water and reminded everyone of just how stupid things got in that regard following 9-11.
MAHER: I notice that when we have a tragedy like this, people go through these stages, and the first one is shock and the second one is “How could it happen?” And then it's like “Could CNN give it a rest, please?” And then they get to, we should never let this happen again, and I think we have to be very wary of that one, because after 9-11, look at all the crazy, we can't let this ever happen again bullshit we did. The Department of Homeland Security, the war in Iraq, making airline travel miserable. All of this is crazy.
Guest S.E. Cupp started off by responding rationally to Maher's question by saying we're just not going to be able to stop every crazy person that wants to do us harm, or did until former Rep. Barney Frank weighed in on just how damaging it was for Bush and Cheney to take advantage of that situation.
FRANK: The problem though comes, seriously, when there are people with some influence that have an agenda and they are waiting for something to come along so they can act on it.
MAHER: Shock doctrine.
FRANK: Dick Cheney...
CUPP: Like the gun control people?
FRANK: No, I'm talking about Dick Cheney... Dick Cheney who seized on 9-11 to launch an entirely unrelated war against Iraq and in fact to elevate the terrorists, terrible people, but not the existential threat to America that the Communists were or the Nazis were and he was upset that the military budget was coming down, so they seized on this to blow it up into a major threat so you got the Patriot Act, which I'm proud to have voted against, you got the war in Iraq, which I voted against. There are people who want to do more and they wait for something to come along so they can react.
Of course that didn't sit well with Cupp, who didn't want to talk about “how we got pregnant” but what we're going to do about it now, but who was more than willing to go after President Obama for our troubles in Libya and Yemen. Frank said it's past time for the United States to continue to be the world's police and inserting ourselves into every conflict around the world and took Cupp to task for her double talk.
CUPP: Do you think Obama has any responsibility though for creating a chaos say in Libya where he sent troops in?
FRANK: No, I think that... well, he has a little in Libya, more is for George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. That war in Iraq was the biggest...
CUPP: Again, who got us pregnant? Let's stop arguing about who got us pregnant.
MAHER: Why? It's relevant.
CUPP: So what are you going to do about it now?
FRANK: I have to respond. First you say, oh isn't it Obama's fault.
CUPP: I didn't say that.
FRANK: Yeah, you said, isn't it Obama's responsibility in Libya...
CUPP: I asked you if he had some responsibility for sending troops into Libya and then leaving...
FRANK: Yes, in other words, who got us pregnant in Libya, so you're different about your pregnancy tests. But the point is...
CUPP: No, I'm pointing out you only want to blame Bush!
FRANK: Yes I do, because the war in Iraq, the stupidest thing the American government ever did, the most costly and the most damaging is the major reason why things began to deteriorate.
Why Maher's producers believe that the likes of Cupp and her ilk have anything of value to add to these panel discussions is beyond me.