On Friday's Real Time show, HBO host Bill Maher not only complained about what he called "patriotic bulls***" at national sporting events, but he also lauded former Secretary of State John Kerry as someone who "told the truth" about the Vietnam War, and gave him a forum to take credit for the program that fights AIDS in Africa without noting that it was President George W. Bush who pushed for its creation.
At 10:10 p.m. Eastern, as he spoke with Kerry as a guest, the HBO host posed:
But when you talk about truth, I mean, it's so interesting. You're a truth teller. I mean, you're talking in glowing terms about the truth, but people don't really like truth-tellers. ... Because when you really tell the truth -- like you did about Vietnam -- that's what they really hated you for when they, in 2004, which was kind of the beginning of fake news, the campaign they ran against you, a true war hero, and Karl Rove said, 'By the end of this election, they won't know which side he was on,' right? I'm sure you remember that.
He soon added: "You told the truth when you got back from Vietnam, and it is never appreciated in its own time."
Kerry claimed that anti-war activists had saved lives by pushing for the U.S. to abandon the Vietnam War, but it was not mentioned the millions who were mass murdered by communists in Southeast Asia after the United States left.
A bit later, the former Obama administration member recalled the program to fight AIDS in Africa as if it were an Obama administration initiative without mentioning Bush's role.
During the panel segment at 10:43 p.m, Maher brought up talk of ending cheerleading at NFL events, and then began complaining about patriotism as he defended keeping cheerleaders:
Why don't they just take away the militarism? I kind of like the cheerleaders -- maybe that makes me a sexist. But why do we have to mix football, you know, the season just started, with so much of this patriotic bulls***? You know, the fly overs and the flag on the field and the singing?