Bill Maher roasts Canada, a ‘cautionary tale’ of what the US could be

Comedian Bill Maher spent nearly ten minutes of his HBO show Real Time skewering Canada for being more dysfunctional than the United States

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Comedian Bill Maher spent nearly 10 minutes of his HBO show Real Time skewering Canada for being more dysfunctional than the United States and a lesson in what America should avoid.

“If you want to save our country, we should follow the advice good liberals have given for decades and learn from other countries, especially those beacons of progressivism like Canada, England and Scandinavia,” the comedian said as he opened the segment.

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Maher highlighted the lower unemployment rate in the United States, and Canada having more major cities with air pollution, to launch into a broader critique of how the latter was falsely seen as a liberal paradise for frustrated Americans in recent years.

“I’m not citing these stats because I have it out for Canada — I love Canada, its people, and always have — but I hate zombie lies,” Maher continued. “That’s when things change, but what people say about them doesn’t. Yes, for decades, places like Vancouver and Amsterdam and Stockholm seemed idyllic because everything was free and all the energy we needed was produced by riding a bike to your job at the windmill,” he joked.

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“Canada was the Statue of Liberty with a low-maintenance haircut and cross-country skis, a giant idealized blue state with single-payer health care, gun control, and abortion on polite demand. Canada was where every woke White college kid wearing pyjama pants outdoors who had it up to here with America’s racist patriarchy dreamt of living someday. I mean, besides Gaza,” he said to audience applause and laughter.

“There’s only one problem with thinking everything’s better in Canada: It’s not. Not anymore, anyway. Last year, Canada added 1.3 million people, which is a lot in one year — the equivalent of the U.S. adding 11 million migrants in one year. And now, they’re experiencing a housing crisis even worse than ours — and we’re sleeping in tents,” Maher said as a picture of a homeless encampment on a sidewalk was beamed beside him.

“The median price of a home here is $346,000. In Canada, converted to U.S. dollars, it’s 487,000. If Barbie moved to Winnipeg, she wouldn’t be able to afford her dream house, and Ken would be working at Tim Hortons,” he teased.

Maher continued by exploring how Canada has become the G7 country with the highest debt-to-GDP ratio while its “vaunted health care system … (now) ranks dead last among high-income countries.”

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“And it’s not for lack of spending. Of the 30 countries with universal coverage, Canada spends over 13 per cent of its economy on it — which is a lot of money — for free health care. Look, I’m not saying Canada still isn’t a great country — it is — but those aren’t paradise numbers.”

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The comedian then pivoted to directly addressing Canadians, explaining that the segment wasn’t done out of joy but “as a cautionary tale to help my country.”

“The moral of that tale is, yes, you can move too far left and when you do, you wind up pushing the people in the middle to the right. At its worst, Canada is what American voters think happens when there’s no one putting a check on extreme wokeness,” Maher continued, citing transgender Ontario public school teacher Kayla Lemieux, who went viral after images circulated of the educator wearing massive prosthetic breasts in class.

“They say in politics, liberals are the gas pedal, and conservatives are the brakes, and I’m generally with the gas pedal, but not if we’re driving off a cliff,” he said near the end of his monologue.

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In 2015, Maher invited then-Minister for International Trade Chrystia Freeland to discuss the growing public backlash against Syrian refugees.

“This idea that somehow we do share values that all religions are alike is bullshit, and we need to call it bullshit,” the comedian said during the conversation. Maher’s remarks triggered Freeland to underscore how, “now more than ever,” countries need to show respect for “diversity,” and pointed to everyday Canadians as a beacon of tolerance different from the United States.

“We in Canada are not going to say Muslims are worse than Christians, or are worse than Jews, or worse than atheists,” the Liberal party cabinet member said at the time.

“Not as people, the ideas are worse,” Maher responded.

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