Thursday, October 11, 2007

Bill Maher hosts lively guests on HBO, talks about international issues

On Wednesday, October 11, 2007 Bill Maher, known for claim of being "politically incorrect" and always an "adult" hosted some controversial guests on HBO (a talk show instead of movie) at 11 PM EDT.

Author and former CIA employee Michael Scheuer ("Imperial Hubris: Why the West Is Losing the War on Terror" and "Through our Enemies’ Eyes: Osama bin Laden, Radical Islam, and the Future of America", from Brassey's) characterizes bin Laden as an insurgent, not a terrorist in the classical sense, and claims the United States will never find him until he is regarded as such. He claims that Afghanistan is gradually reverting, from the south, into a kind of Talibanistan.

Maher talked to comic Janeane Garofalo, Indian-now-British novelist Salman Rushdie and musician Rob Thomas, much of it about the Patriot Act and Bush administration's wiretapping. Janeane said that she no longer uses email, so she can't be spied on. (What about phone calls?) The guests thought that political support of Israel was morally flawed and that the Palestinian people, as individuals, have legitimate gripes since their property was taken away by force at various times in history. There was general talk of taking back the war. Rushdie ("Midnight's Children" and "Satanic Verses") had created controversy by attracting threats to his home in Britain from extremists in Iran for his supposed "blasphemy."

Science columnist Bjorn Lonborg played devil's advocate with the usual arguments about global warming, mentioning that more people die of cold than from heat. One can look at his column "Too Late to Stop Global Warming" at Pacific Views, here.

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