One way the MSNBC cable channel can tell it's in trouble is when liberal comedian Bill Maher -- host of the Friday night HBO program Real Time who almost got his own show on the "Lean Forward" network -- posts a tweet accusing you of “turning into Fox News” and stating that the channel has “stopped leaning forward” since “Bridgegate has become your Benghazi.”
“I'm no good at being noble,” the self-proclaimed “passionate flaming liberal” continued in his rant entitled “MSNBC-YA,” but “it doesn't take much to see that the problems of three little lanes of traffic don't amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world.”
Maher, who recently signed on for a 13th season on the pay cable channel, began his “romantic” missive by stating: “I cannot go on any longer living a lie. MSNBC ... we need to talk.”
“Whatever we had is not working anymore,” he stated. “You're obviously interested in another man: Chris Christie. You're obsessed with” the Republican New Jersey governor. “So I wanted you to hear it from me first: I'm going to start seeing other news organizations.”
Maher jokingly stated:
I'll miss what we had. It was a rocket ship ride. We were both passionate flaming liberals, and we didn't care what the world thought of us. It was a glorious time.
We finished each other's Sarah Palin jokes. But now, we never talk about any of the things we used to talk about: global warming, gun control, poverty ... all because Chris Christie came along and put you under his spell.
“This isn't easy to say, but you and I are no longer on the same news cycle,” the comedian continued. “Sure, you read me the results of a recent Gallup poll, but you never really ask me how I'm feeling. It's not you, it's ... Chris Christie.
“Look at yourself.,” he noted. “You're turning into Fox News. Bridgegate has become your Benghazi, and this isn't easy to say, but you and I are no longer on the same news cycle.”
“You're a young news channel. You'll meet other viewers,” he added. “It's for the best. You can focus on your career. And we can still be friends. We'll always have ObamaCare.
“Here's looking at you, kid,” Maher concluded.
Then on Thursday, Forbes.com posted an interview conducted by J. Max Robins in which Maher said: “A while back I had some extensive talks with MSNBC, and ultimately, we all looked around the room, and we all just knew with advertisers to worry about, we’d never be able to make it work.”
“Given the network’s recent controversies” involving Alec Baldwin, Martin Bashir and Melissa Harris-Perry, “it seems both parties may have made the right decision,” the Forbes writer said.
“Real Time draws four million viewers a week,” Robins continued, and Maher has 2.5 million Twitter followers, which is almost enough to pay for his contribution of $1 million to the Obama re-election Super PAC in 2012.
As a result, Maher has been able to turn down advertisers over the years since “he’s always felt it would mean he’d have to tame his acerbic nothing is sacred act.”
The liberal comedian prefers the Home Box Office commercial-free pay cable channel so “he can use his wicked humor to expose a world filled with hypocritical tycoons and Neanderthal politicians run wild,” Robins stated.
“I’m working off the news; it’s a perpetual comic gold mine,” Maher asserted. “Why would I want to mess with it?
“I’m a controversial, polarizing figure,” says Maher, who believes that’s good for business.
As NewsBusters previously reported, the comedian has worked hard to maintain that status, once comparing Bridget Kelly, the former Christie aide connected to “Bridgegate,” to Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI.
Both persons carried out the shady business ordered by a higher authority, Maher explained. "Remember when Benedict was 'God's rottweiler' or the 'pope's rottweiler' they called him before he got the pope job? Well, she [Kelly] is blob's rottweiler, okay?”
The liberal host has also criticized former Republican president Ronald Reagan by calling him “an amiable square in a cowboy hat who had sex with a woman he called 'Mommy.'”
However, Maher has never had the chance to promote one thing he loves. A longtime advocate for marijuana legalization who freely admits to his own recreational use, Maher is ready to do his testimonial best as a shill for top-flight pot.
“I’d be one credible spokesman,” Maher said with what Robin described as “a bemused chuckle.”
So now when Maher tells a joke that falls flat, and someone asks "What is he smoking?" we'll all know what.