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Generally speaking, I enjoy Bill Maher. He's sort of the Rush Limbaugh of the Left - not because he's a sex tourist and abuser of prescription drugs, but because, like Limbaugh, his schtick is an approximation of the conversation you'd have in your favorite bar with your buddies after two beers: crossing a few boundaries, saying some of the things that you think, but find it politically expedient never to say out loud, and usually fairly predictable. Of course, since he's doing that routine from the Leftish side of the spectrum instead of the Hard Right, he comes off as the favorite uncle who gets you porn, instead of the scary grandfather who wants your native-born teacher "sent back where she came from." That's why he's able to disappoint me in a way that Rush Limbaugh can't.

Two weeks ago, Chris Christie revealed that he's had lap-band surgery to help him lose weight; and with that news, Bill's inner prick leaped joyfully to the surface like a salmon going after a fly. Fat joke followed fat joke; and then the fat jokes segued into self-righteous rants about how a man so weak-willed and "desperate" to lose weight that he had surgery couldn't be trusted in the White House. He was embracing the "just say no" school of diet. It was amazing to me.

I grew up fat. Five years ago, I lost fifty pounds and kept 35 of them off; I will lose more this year. I've had to change my entire way of thinking, and it has drastically changed my life - and not necessarily for the better. I've had to re-examine and discard beliefs and habits I've had since childhood, and I relapse. Any addict will recognize this for what it is: the struggle for recovery.

Bill is on record that drug abuse should be treated as a medical problem, and I've never heard him say that JFK shouldn't have been president because he fucked around and popped pain pills. But apparently the overweight are still fair game. It's the classic Los Angeles attitude: Every self-destructive habit gets the presumption of compassion...until you get to the fatties.

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