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Published On: Mon, Jan 9th, 2017

Anthony Bourdain targets ‘privileged Eastern liberals’ their ‘utter contempt’ which led to Trump win

Anthony Bourdain, an outspoken critic of President-elect Donald Trump, has called out “privileged Eastern liberals” — including himself — for their “utter contempt” of working-class Americans that he says made Trump’s presidency possible.

In an interview with Reason magazine, the celebrity chef and television host lamented the proliferating “fear of the Other,” which he believes has led to a rise in nationalism globally, citing examples in the Philippines, Russia and Italy, as well as the Brexit vote in June.

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“When people are afraid and feel that their government has failed them, they do things that seem completely mad and unreasonable to those of who are perhaps under less pressure,” Bourdain said.

Bourdain said he was empathetic to the circumstances that led to outcomes in those countries. And he faulted those same forces for Trump’s win in November.

“The utter contempt with which privileged Eastern liberals such as myself discuss red-state, gun-country, working-class America as ridiculous and morons and rubes is largely responsible for the upswell of rage and contempt and desire to pull down the temple that we’re seeing now,” Bourdain told Reason.

“I’ve spent a lot of time in gun-country, God-fearing America,” he added. “There are a hell of a lot of nice people out there, who are doing what everyone else in this world is trying to do: the best they can to get by, and take care of themselves and the people they love. When we deny them their basic humanity and legitimacy of their views, however different they may be than ours, when we mock them at every turn, and treat them with contempt, we do no one any good.”

Bourdain went on to criticize HBO political talk show host Bill Maher as “the worst of the smug, self-congratulatory left” after being asked about an appearance on “Real Time with Bill Maher” a few years ago.

“Not a show I plan to do again. He’s a classic example of the smirking, contemptuous, privileged guy who lives in a bubble,” Bourdain told the magazine. “And he is in no way looking to reach outside, or even look outside, of that bubble, in an empathetic way.”

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