On Friday night’s season finale of his weekly HBO chat show Real Time, Bill Maher encouraged Democrats to recruit a “messaging czar.” They need someone to point their party in the right direction, he insisted. “Vote Democrat because white people suck” isn’t working, Maher said.

“I’d say, do the math, but math is a form of white supremacy,” he went on. Why do Democrats seem out of touch? Because “no one likes a snob” and “your microaggression culture doesn’t play well in the Rust Belt.”

With each dig at the left — which, for conservative viewers, amounted to little more than tired memes and stale culture war ephemera — Maher’s audience erupted in applause. By Monday morning his monologue bashing the wacky excesses of the ruling party was trending on Twitter. Not exactly courageous or groundbreaking stuff. In fact, too little, far too late.

Still, Maher has enjoyed plenty of trending moments lately for calling out Democrats. The streak began, not coincidently, at the exact time his party was slated to regain control of Washington. “Maher is really waking up!” conservatives, who’ve never watched him and know little about him, will gush. From what, other than the sleeping pill he swallowed during the last administration?

Maher took the Trump years off from doing the one thing that made him famous and beloved, mocking political correctness, because his audience had been poisoned to believe they were living in an existential crisis. Maher wasn’t safe to be himself at the height of the left’s moral panic and wrongthink witch-hunt. He assimilated into the tiresome anti-Trump drone of late-night comedy. Orange Man did one of two things to intelligent liberals with bite, not to mention comedians: he either sent them running to his side, as a man of similar constitution, or exposed them as pussies and spineless sellouts. The only difference between Maher and someone like Stephen Colbert is Maher is now attempting to dust himself off and crawl back.

Never forget that Maher helped get these people elected knowing exactly who they were. Seeing the writing on the wall for the 2022 midterms, now he wants to ensure they stay elected by helping them not be better, but sound better.

Perhaps it’s generational. When you’ve carried an identity, like “liberal,” your whole life, it’s a hard thing to shake. Maher is incapable of acknowledging how the political paradigm has shifted. Liberals are no longer the fun-loving, pot-stirring counterculture Maher clearly associates with himself. Their dominance and glut in American culture has turned them tyrannical and they’re not going back until we have full socialism or a race war. He’s still, perhaps gladly, unable to recognize the endgame of liberalism. But we’re seeing it now, just as the other side becomes the leave-me-the-hell-alone, free speech, free-inquiry crowd. Hell, they even want to legalize weed now.

We often call people of Maher’s persuasion “real liberals,” or “classical liberals,” a designation, for those paying attention, that increasingly only means fence-sitting weaklings. Just last week, CNN invited him on for a sit-down, something the network only does with people who can be used in the service of the Democratic Party. The timing couldn’t have been more well planned, in the aftermath of a Republican electoral landslide in Virginia where, we’re told, Critical Race Theory in schools played a major part in the right’s victory.

In the CNN interview with Chris Cuomo, Maher blasted Critical Race Theory and went viral again, mainly thanks to clapping seals on the right falsely believing Maher was coming over to their side. But that’s the truly dangerous thing about Maher in today’s climate. He provides reassurance to all the rational but trembling cowards on the left, suffering in silence and too frightened to speak up, that the Democratic Party is still for them — somehow, somewhere.

It isn’t — and Maher won’t tell them the truth.