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S18.E11: Dan Crenshaw, Fareed Zakaria, and Andrew Sullivan

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Guests: Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas); TV show host Fareed Zakaria (“Fareed Zakaria GPS”); New York Magazine writer at-large Andrew Sullivan

Edited by GoldenGirl90
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I know Bill hates anyone younger than 35 or so, but speaking as an old guy myself, Bill, dude, get somebody to help you set up Zoom or a similar program so you can get back to some semblance of a panel format where guests get to interact.  Because tonight’s episode was terrible.   Absolutely terrible.  Unwatchable terrible.  
 

The monologue started and he was making jokes that would have felt dated at a 1970s friar club roast so I started fast forwarding and, wow, was there nothing— at all—  that made me want to stop. And I’d stop anyway just to see for a minute or two what was being asked and said and, wow, was it tedious.  If Bill doesn’t have anything more to say than repeating a billion kazillion times in slightly different ways that he thinks people are panicking too much about the virus, then, you know, maybe it’s time to use this as a chance to take a long vacation and come back with something that could genuinely re-energize the show.   

 

 

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I was actually yelling at the television for Bill to shut Crenshaw’s nonsense up. For fucks sake, that was awful.

that said, Andrew Sullivan actually was touching. His very heartfelt acknowledgement of how hard this is for single people was genuinely vulnerable and moving. 

Edited by angelamh66
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Crenshaw is trying to gaslight like Trump.  Not surprising, just another loyal Republican.

First you can repatriate from US but those 43k people weren’t screened or quarantined.

He didn’t have a good answer for the testing failures, which still hasn’t been fixed.

Bill could have rebutted him more but this is where lack of a panel to rebut is more missed.

 

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I didn't think it was a total shitshow, because:

1) Zakaria contributed some value, with some relatively calming facts about Covid.

2) Andrew Sullivan was compelling with his personal story.

3) New Rules was funny, and then very on-point (IMO), with the sermon critiquing the media for ratcheting up the state of alarm even beyond where it should be. The science is right and we should be sheltering in place. And wearing masks in public. And doing every other precaution. And being worried for ourselves and our friends and loved ones. But too much of the ought-to-be-respectable media is going beyond this to get clicks.

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Love the show and think Bill is doing the best he can under the circumstances.
However, how was he caught so off-guard on the Texas voting mess-up?
He asked the guy how he can support republican voting restrictions and nefarious tricks, sighting the mile-long lines at the Texas polls, etc. Bill put it right at the feet of the republicans. Then the guy comes back and says the whole thing was in the hands of democrats, that they were running the show. If true it made Bill look bad, real bad. Is what the guy said true? If so, why didn’t Bill now? Could be the guy was blowing smoke, not sure. Overall, the guy countered Bill with his version of the facts on Trump, Trump’s idiotic comments and lies, the virus, etc. Depending on how truthful the guy was, he made Bill look wrong and unprepared to punch back. That’s not usually the case.

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7 hours ago, scrb said:

First you can repatriate from US but those 43k people weren’t screened or quarantined.

Also why the focus on closing borders from China alone when didn't he leave the borders open to people coming from plenty of countries where the virus had already spread? (Including the US--it was already in the US). What he did by bringing it up was get Bill to challenge a single part of it. That gave Crenshaw the opening to start talking as if both of them had agreed that Trump's closing the borders was brilliant, but Nancy Pelosi tried to keep the borders open and Bill not only agreed with Trump but wanted the US citizens kept out too because walls work!

And he probably did it all on auto-pilot, that kind of thing comes to him so naturally at this point.

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Had to FF through about half of the Crenshaw 'interview', which was more of a monologue. He just droned on and on and on while Bill sat there like a corpse. I kept yelling at him to say something, but he just sat there and let that hack spew his party-line crap. If I want to see a Rep pol endlessly ignore logic and common sense, I'll watch Faux News. If Bill is going to give these people exposure, the least he can do is have a debate with them. 

Sullivan was pretty obnoxious the last couple of times he was on the show, but the current situation has clearly knocked him for a loop. I have several friends and family members in high risk groups, so I understand what he's going through. 

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I loved Andrew Sullivan's segment. So real and genuine. For many years, he was one of my favorite guests, even when I disagreed with him, because his passion is always compelling. He's had some bad moments in recent years, though, for sure.

I do have a question though - he mentioned that he was single now. I remember when he and his husband married and he's referred to their life together on Real Time appearances over the years. Does anyone know what happened? That part made me sad. At least he did say that his famous dogs are with him in isolation.

Also: would it kill Bill to add a woman to these shows? The only woman who's appeared on the "home" shows was Nikki Glaser, last week. That's 1 female out of 12 guests in 3 weeks.

Edited by Moxie Cat
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This show is just not the same since they had to change the format to accommodate social distancing.  Bill and his staff need to figure out a way to bring back the political panel to interact with him and discuss the week's political news.  Just having one-on-one interviews with various politicians, doctors, celebrities is just not working for me, not to mention that his opening comments are getting shorter and shorter.  It's not like there's a shortage of things to discuss and poke fun at.

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Presuming they didn't let any of the writers go, they should be able to crank out a lot of material.

Just jokes if nothing else.

But they always talk about the writer's room.  So maybe what's missing is collaboration and writers and Bill riffing off each other to shape some of the jokes and the pieces they used to do.

Maybe they don't have the art staff to mock up fake magazine covers and such for those comedy pieces.

Otherwise, seems like they could get much closer to normal levels of content than they have.

Maybe if nothing else, they should solicit some audience questions and do some of them with each guest.  That is if Overtime was widely-watched compared to the show.

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When Bill is wrong, like he was last week about renaming the coronavirus, he's waaay off base. But when he's right, he hits the bullseye. His New Rules sermon about the Liberally Biased Mainstream Media™ projecting their freakout to their audience over the virus hits the target.

Dan Crenshaw can go eat shit and fuck off. Asshole!

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2 hours ago, Moxie Cat said:

I loved Andrew Sullivan's segment. So real and genuine. For many years, he was one of my favorite guests, even when I disagreed with him, because his passion is always compelling. He's had some bad moments in recent years, though, for sure.

I do have a question though - he mentioned that he was single now. I remember when he and his husband married and he's referred to their life together on Real Time appearances over the years. Does anyone know what happened? That part made me sad. At least he did say that his famous dogs are with him in isolation.

Also: would it kill Bill to add a woman to these shows? The only woman who's appeared on the "home" shows was Nikki Glaser, last week. That's 1 female out of 12 guests in 3 weeks.

Why would a misogynist add a woman to the panel?

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11 hours ago, scrb said:

Crenshaw is trying to gaslight like Trump.  Not surprising, just another loyal Republican.

First you can repatriate from US but those 43k people weren’t screened or quarantined.

He didn’t have a good answer for the testing failures, which still hasn’t been fixed.

Bill could have rebutted him more but this is where lack of a panel to rebut is more missed.

 

Bill seems to be placating the right by not pushing back on their bullshit. He seems to be leaning more to the right every day...I guess it's true that the older you get the more conservative you become because Bill certainly fits that description. And he is an old dude now...soon the moniker he started will apply to him..."Whiny little bitch".

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15 hours ago, bobbyjoe said:

I know Bill hates anyone younger than 35 or so, but speaking as an old guy myself, Bill, dude, get somebody to help you set up Zoom or a similar program so you can get back to some semblance of a panel format where guests get to interact.  Because tonight’s episode was terrible.   Absolutely terrible.  Unwatchable terrible.  
 

The monologue started and he was making jokes that would have felt dated at a 1970s friar club roast so I started fast forwarding and, wow, was there nothing— at all—  that made me want to stop. And I’d stop anyway just to see for a minute or two what was being asked and said and, wow, was it tedious.  If Bill doesn’t have anything more to say than repeating a billion kazillion times in slightly different ways that he thinks people are panicking too much about the virus, then, you know, maybe it’s time to use this as a chance to take a long vacation and come back with something that could genuinely re-energize the show.   

 

 

It's easy to say people are panicking too much about COVID-19 when you live in a Beverly Hills bubble with privilege and luxury and have no loved ones (actually, he has no loved ones) that are elderly, have compromised immune systems or haven't experienced this illness personally or have a family member or friend that has had it. Tell the doctors, nurses and healthcare workers on the front lines in NYC and elsewhere that they should just smoke a doobie and chill. Bill is so out of touch and tone deaf it's pathetic. And yeah...his monologues in the last year are bordering on Borscht Belt humor that my parents used to love. 

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The laugh track/video is not good.

I was happy to see Bill call out yellow journalism.  Was surprised he didn’t call it that.

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In one of those old roast clips, it is shocking to see a young Alex Trebek there. Was that from a roast from the mid-late 80s?

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Bill was more animated than the last couple of shows, so that was a plus.  He has really been phoning it in and making obvious his disdain for the lockdown and the lockdown format for his show.  He could certainly change it up with a panel - join the video conference age, Bill.   It's only been going on for the last 15 years..catch the wave, use a computer.  His writers could also do the same - video conference or conference call - to collaborate on writing.  It's like they all decided to phone it in and do the minimum.

Bill's handling of Crenshaw was ridiculous.  He just let him yammer on without answering the questions and Bill barely called him out on any of it.  It's your show Bill!  This wasn't live, so maybe you could have edited him down some if all he was doing is spreading lies and deflecting from the truth.

Felt bad for Sullivan as a vulnerable human being and hope he stays healthy and safe.  Zakaria is always a great presence and breath of fresh air. 

Edited by izabella
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2 hours ago, kicksave said:

...soon the moniker he started will apply to him..."Whiny little bitch".

Hasn't it already?

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Nick Cordero, Broadway actor, just had to have his leg amputated due to complications from COVID-19. And he’s lucky to be alive...he had to be resuscitated. So yeah Bill...this whole virus thing is nothing to see here. Cordero is young and was healthy BTW when he got hit with COVID-19.

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5 hours ago, Damaris56 said:

This show is just not the same since they had to change the format to accommodate social distancing.  

Though I did like the little pause and then zig to the left Bill did as he exited through the backyard -- to social distance himself from the statuette on the left side of the screen.

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I think it’s interesting that Bill will not even allow his audience to see the inside of his home.  Even last week when it was raining he chose to stay outside under an umbrella. He really has become a curmudgeon in every way imaginable.  My heart went out to Andrew Sullivan; he really seemed alone and vulnerable.

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It's easy to say people are panicking too much about COVID-19 when you live in a Beverly Hills bubble with privilege and luxury and have no loved ones (actually, he has no loved ones) that are elderly, have compromised immune systems or haven't experienced this illness personally or have a family member or friend that has had it. Tell the doctors, nurses and healthcare workers on the front lines in NYC and elsewhere that they should just smoke a doobie and chill.

Bill had a good point about the hyperventilating (so to speak) news coverage of the Covid-19 pandemic.  Tell the facts and let the listeners/readers decide how to feel about it would be a good motto for any news organization.  But any decent point he had was buried by at least two giant turds.  I have nothing to add to Kicksave's response to Bill's assertion that "for most people" quarantining is just a fun excuse to partake of a little weed and binge watch some trashy TV.

But if one more person compares the annual death rate from fill-in-the-blank to  to the number of deaths from Covid-19 I'm going to, I'll just,  by golly I'll.. well I'll write a strongly worded post to an internet forum, that's what I'll do!  His figure of 50,000 deaths from nephritis in the US last year (similar numbers are frequently cited for annual flu deaths) works out to 145 deaths per day in the US.  According to the Worldometer web site there were 1025 deaths due to Covid-19 yesterday.  In New York.  Nationwide there were over 2500 Covid-19 deaths yesterday.  Apparently weed doesn't enhance one's critical thinking nor one's arithmetic skills. 

 

 

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I suspect that the number of cases will drop over the summer leaving people to think the worst is over and a mutated version of the virus will hit us  hard in the winter. 

You really can't go into lockdown again in 6 months without permanently killing the economy.

Not surprised Bill isn't filming this in his house, he seems too private to do that.

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Bill allowed Crenshaw to spit out well rehearsed Republican talking points with no pushback. It was not a debate, just a platform for Crenshaw to defend trump. I thought Bill prided himself in his debating prowess. He was ill prepared. I never realized how much he needs his guests to counter conservatives with facts.

 

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All I know about Crenshaw is that he is the person that was on SNL that Pete Davidson apologized to. And I remember Pete said something bad on Weekend Update that triggered some people due to Crenshaw being a veteran and all. That's how I know about it, too.

Edited by Robert Lynch
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16 hours ago, ottoDbusdriver said:

Though I did like the little pause and then zig to the left Bill did as he exited through the backyard -- to social distance himself from the statuette on the left side of the screen.

I wanted to see more of the dog! Where did the dog go?!

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On 4/17/2020 at 11:17 PM, bobbyjoe said:

I know Bill hates anyone younger than 35 or so, but speaking as an old guy myself, Bill, dude, get somebody to help you set up Zoom or a similar program so you can get back to some semblance of a panel format where guests get to interact.  Because tonight’s episode was terrible.   Absolutely terrible.  Unwatchable terrible.  
 

The monologue started and he was making jokes that would have felt dated at a 1970s friar club roast so I started fast forwarding and, wow, was there nothing— at all—  that made me want to stop. And I’d stop anyway just to see for a minute or two what was being asked and said and, wow, was it tedious.  If Bill doesn’t have anything more to say than repeating a billion kazillion times in slightly different ways that he thinks people are panicking too much about the virus, then, you know, maybe it’s time to use this as a chance to take a long vacation and come back with something that could genuinely re-energize the show.   

 

 

I agree 100 percent,  I found it completely unwatchable.  I think I have had my fill of Bill. 

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On 4/18/2020 at 10:36 PM, UnknownK said:

Not surprised Bill isn't filming this in his house, he seems too private to do that

He just doesn’t want us to see his huge collection of Berkeley memorabilia.

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Like Bill and enjoy his program. But, if Crenshaw was telling the truth, why was Bill caught embarrassingly off-guard with his “republicans in Texas voter suppression” claim? He couched it like it was a no-brainer, mile-long lines waiting to vote, but then was told it was all democrats running the show. If so, Bill’s example fell flat, leaving him slack-jawed and without an ounce of rebuttal. Was Crenshaw right? Wrong? Either way Bill had no answer and it’s not like him to be so stymied. I don’t know if the guy was right or wrong, but Bill should have before presenting his example.  

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3 hours ago, Jimmy Lewie said:

Like Bill and enjoy his program. But, if Crenshaw was telling the truth, why was Bill caught embarrassingly off-guard with his “republicans in Texas voter suppression” claim? He couched it like it was a no-brainer, mile-long lines waiting to vote, but then was told it was all democrats running the show. If so, Bill’s example fell flat, leaving him slack-jawed and without an ounce of rebuttal. Was Crenshaw right? Wrong? Either way Bill had no answer and it’s not like him to be so stymied. I don’t know if the guy was right or wrong, but Bill should have before presenting his example.  

Bill had no answer because he doesn't do his homework. He thinks he can count on his own intuition and cleverness to win an argument. So when he comes across as duuuh over what should be an easy dunking on someone like Dan Crenshaw, he comes out a loser. That's why you can't count on him taking on right wingers.

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5 hours ago, Jimmy Lewie said:

Like Bill and enjoy his program. But, if Crenshaw was telling the truth, why was Bill caught embarrassingly off-guard with his “republicans in Texas voter suppression” claim? He couched it like it was a no-brainer, mile-long lines waiting to vote, but then was told it was all democrats running the show. If so, Bill’s example fell flat, leaving him slack-jawed and without an ounce of rebuttal. Was Crenshaw right? Wrong? Either way Bill had no answer and it’s not like him to be so stymied. I don’t know if the guy was right or wrong, but Bill should have before presenting his example.  

I would presume that Crenshaw was profiting by the GOP's bad behavior. He pointed out that these places with the long lines were controlled by Democrats, but failed to talk about the fact that Texas has been closing polling places since 2013 in order to make it harder to vote, especially in areas that tend to vote Democratic. So of course a lot of these places were under Democratic control.

Bill started out knowing that voter suppression is a GOP tactic that results in long lines (among other things) but then just seemed to accept that all these long lines were the result of Democrats being too flakey to make voting run smoothly--a flaw which Crenshaw generously forgives them for, before going on to talk about all those phantom undocumented people who are doing all this voting.

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I'm a year younger than Bill and I love Zoom, can't imagine stay-at-home without it. It's also one of the most ridiculously easy pieces of technology to use. 

I did agree with the whole "just tell us the news and let us decide how to feel about it." The "It's terrible" quote being from an event planner made the point perfectly.

The long lines on Primary Day in Texas situation is quite a bit more complex than some want to make it. sistermagpie's comments are right, and there's also what happened here in Harris County (Houston) where the intent was actually a good one -- there has been a recent move for people to be able to vote at any county polling place, not just the precinct you live in (so, trying to make it easier to vote). Some of the polling places wound up badly overwhelmed --> long lines/waits. Not what anyone wanted but not malicious like some other tactics I could name.

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On 4/22/2020 at 1:53 PM, Victor the Crab said:

Bill had no answer because he doesn't do his homework. He thinks he can count on his own intuition and cleverness to win an argument. So when he comes across as duuuh over what should be an easy dunking on someone like Dan Crenshaw, he comes out a loser. That's why you can't count on him taking on right wingers.

He also depends on his panelists to jump in with the rebuttals.  No panelists and he got caught flat footed.  

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