Bill Maher Knocks Media for Pushing Covid Fear Porn


BUCK: Sometimes you get libs who will say things that are true, and we will highlight them here on the show. Welcome back to Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show. This is Buck. I’ve done the Bill Maher show a few times. I will say Bill is an interesting guy and occasionally will break with the left on an issue where he does get legitimate heat.

He’s a man of the left, but he can be willing to break with the orthodoxy, which makes nor interesting conversation from time to time. Here is a moment of particularly poignant honesty given what’s going on in the country right now, and here’s what you need to know.

The left is — and Democrats, by “the left,” I mean — is terrified of covid in a way that is irrational. I’m not talking about people who are at high risk, who are in a community with high levels of spread and didn’t have access to the vaccine or something. That was an anxiety that I could totally understand. I know it. I had people my own family that were very concerned who are at risk.

No, Bill Maher is talking about the exaggerated risk in the minds of Democrats who think they’re so well informed. There’s 30 or 40X the rate of hospitalization in their minds, the risk of hospitalizations than they actually are. The numbers don’t lie when you look at the polling, and Maher called this out. I think he was on Jimmy Kimmel’s show discussing this, and here’s how it went.

MAHER: I have to cite a survey that was in the New York Times, which is a liberal paper, so they weren’t looking for this answer. But they were talking about… The question was, “What do you think the chances are that you would have to go to the hospital if you got covid?” And Democrats thought that was way higher than Republicans.

Seventy percent of Democrats thought it was way, way, way higher than it really was. Liberal media has to take a little responsibility for that, for scaring the (bleep) out of people. And the reason why I’m bringing this up is because it’s much harder for every touring act to sell tickets in blue states.

BUCK: This is a real thing, Clay. Blue states think… It’s not just a virtue signaling thing now. They really believe that ultra-caution — even for those at low risk — is still warranted, which is hurting businesses and hurting people’s lives.

CLAY: The worst thing that has happened to media — and this can go across the board — is anecdote based, what I call, “fear porn.” And you guys — and you guys know exactly what I’m talking about, if you get on to Facebook, get on to Twitter, get on to Instagram, Snapchat, whatever social media device you use — or you watch CNN and MSNBC — They will find the one 25-year-old who’s hospitalized, and they’ll put a picture up.

They’ll do a story for them. And we have allowed our media to be almost entirely driven by anecdote as opposed to overarching data. And this is important, Buck, as you well know, because whatever you believe, there is an individual story that can make it seem like a reality. And what’s happened with covid is —  what Bill Maher was hitting is completely true.

People who are under no risk — people who are more likely to die in car accidents or be murdered — are terrified to go outside of their house because of covid. And they are terrified because they watch MSNBC and because they watch CNN. And this has real consequences because the politicians allow that fear porn, as I call it, to drive their overall agendas as politicians. They’re not leading. They’re following in the wake of that fear.


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