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Jon Stewart on cspan
October 28, 2004 6:06 PM   Subscribe

Jon Stewart on cspan. He is everywhere these days. Can he out media whore the media? He seems to relish taking them on.
posted by Lex Tangible (30 comments total)

 
The video is not showing up for me ... just some system debug-looking stuff. Anyone got another link?
posted by rks404 at 6:07 PM on October 28, 2004


not for me either--i've noticed tho, that cable news stations have been having more comedians on lately--Dennis Miller (ugh), Al Franken, Bill Maher...
posted by amberglow at 6:11 PM on October 28, 2004


Try this

I saw the American Perspectives interview a few days ago - it is worth it if you are a fan or simply want more of that good stuff he gave to Crossfire, but in a longer, less hostile format.
posted by ae4rv at 6:15 PM on October 28, 2004


Lex, you're infected with malware. Get and run Spy-bot SD and Ad-Aware ASAP.
posted by boaz at 6:17 PM on October 28, 2004


Thanks, I run both often but since I switched to Foxfire I've been negligent.
posted by Lex Tangible at 7:07 PM on October 28, 2004


I saw this a few days ago and thought it was okay, but not great. Found it real odd to hear Stewart say that he thought Bush and O'Reilly were decent guys.
posted by dobbs at 7:21 PM on October 28, 2004


For a very un-funny guy, he sure is getting lots of airtime. Baffling.
posted by davidmsc at 7:45 PM on October 28, 2004


From the CSPAN American Perspectives piece, he seems to be totally incapable of performing 60 seconds of serious conversation.

WOMAN IN AUDIENCE: How can we reach out to the Arab world in order to secure peace?

STEWART: *brief serious remark* ... but hey, you probably want to see me dead. ha ha!


in conclusion: not funny, as usual... and not politically effective either. 0 for 2.
posted by rxrfrx at 7:54 PM on October 28, 2004


Jon Stewart conveys dead-on critiques of contemporary absurdities, and he makes it look easy. I don't give a damn if he doesn't project for our news channel consumers his capactiy to hold a proper conversation. He may indeed be an emotionally thwarted person who has trouble not being "on" even in his private life; he's a comedian.

But, in terms of Stewart's importance to the media consuming public, he is capable of getting some very important, usually newsy ideas out to the public in a way that engages and challenges them, and makes them laugh out loud.

Those who dislike him strictly for his politics, your criticism of his technique is uninformed; your usernames foreshadow this knee-jerk approach. If you're in the mood to talk about politics, as regards absurdist comedy, kindly visit this thread and remind us of why Stewart is wrong to question our president.
posted by squirrel at 8:33 PM on October 28, 2004


For a very un-funny guy, he sure is getting lots of airtime. Baffling.

Now that's funny. Yeah, it is "baffling" to those who don't get the humor. "Strange" how many people in America do, though.
posted by soyjoy at 8:38 PM on October 28, 2004


Jon Stewart is tobaccotastic.

I can't view the video either, but I guess it's that 6am one. I understood him more since the Larry King interview on how the media has no jeopardy and how they're contently sitting in the process and working for them, but I think now he's got more concrete ideas about how the media should be. Like the Charlie Rose interview, there's that model-of-fox-news idea that he's regularly talking about it (and, also, that he doesn't want to be involved, that he's a comedian)

So, if that idea were to happen who do you think would do it? Would a current news station revamp themselves in that image -- is there any known consideration of the idea?

And, did Fox News have anything to say about Jon basing it off them?

As a guy on TV he's someone I trust. I show The Daily Show and some interviews (crossfire, etc.) around my friends and they love it. Hopefully the local stations here will start rebroadcasting The Daily Show (I'm a New Zealander) so I won't have to download it. I guess there's a bit of a learning curve for overseas to get the jokes though. I wish him all the best.
posted by holloway at 10:01 PM on October 28, 2004


Anyone ever find a link for his recent appearance on 60 Minutes?
posted by rushmc at 10:35 PM on October 28, 2004


not for me either--i've noticed tho, that cable news stations have been having more comedians on lately--Dennis Miller (ugh), Al Franken, Bill Maher.

Al Franken has decided to try comedy?
posted by Ayn Marx at 11:31 PM on October 28, 2004


Anyone ever find a link for his recent appearance on 60 Minutes?

Jon Stewart on 60 minutes (Undergroundclips)
posted by dinsdale at 12:50 AM on October 29, 2004


This thread kinda amazes me. For years we get all these right-wing and libertarian-minded people complaining that celebrities should just shut up because they don't know what they're talking about when it comes to politics. Now we're chastizing one of them because they didn't give a full 60 seconds of information of the Middle East peace process. What the fuck?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:52 AM on October 29, 2004


if "tobaccotastic" is the new cool thing to say, then i don't want to be cool.
posted by lotsofno at 5:09 AM on October 29, 2004


What the fuck?

Because this particular celebrity actually does (at least on his show, and elsewhere on TV) know what he's talking about when it comes to politics?
posted by casarkos at 5:26 AM on October 29, 2004


Yes, casarkos, but my point is that tons of other celebrities do too, and yet because they apparently never served as Ambassador to Uzbekistan or whatever Laura Ingraham is allowed to call them stupid. With Jon Stewart, people are suddenly turning the tables to implying he doesn't know enough. I don't think that's fair, considering he's already demontrated more knowledge than Laura Ingraham.

Ted Rall, for example, is passed off as lacking credibility because of the left-wing tone of his writing and cartoons. His title on pundit shows is writer/cartoonist or something to that nature. Yet no one seems to reflect when debating him that he's a Columbia history graduate who hosted a radio show discussing the Middle East for a few years, and has made not one but several personal trips even well before 9/11 to the Afghanistan/Pakistan region. Having talked to him, I can say he's quite possibly one of the most knowledged minds on Middle Eastern history alive today, and yet he'll never be considered to offer credible argument because Bill O'Reilly will point out how he did a mean cartoon about Pat Tillman. The same structure is levelled on Sean Penn, Jeneanne Garofalo, and so on: even though they have a proven record of knowledge and insight into certain issues, at the very minimum as much as people like Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity, they are forced to be filtered through their day job. With the possible exception of Bono, I don't know a single left-leaning celebrity who has ever satisfied the right's requirements for them to "know what they're talking about."

I don't like the idea that Jon Stewart is above/below any expectation of knowledge, when even without a talk show he's proven to have more knowledge about politics and the current issues than 90% of the country.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:22 AM on October 29, 2004


For a very un-funny guy, he sure is getting lots of airtime. Baffling.

Dave, trust me, put your politics aside and the guy is funny, even uproarious on occassion.
posted by jonmc at 6:42 AM on October 29, 2004


Jon Stewart conveys dead-on critiques of contemporary absurdities, and he makes it look easy.


See- that's just the thing (well, one of the things). He refuses to admit that he's a liberal, and he's trying to get Kerry elected, and he thinks GWB is a bad president. He insists on framing his criticisms of GWB as criticisms of "absurdity" and a general failure of the government to engage young people; yet he can only call a duck a horse so long before it's obvious the thing's a duck. He simply does not appear to regard whoever-the-president-is as "absurd" anymore; he makes specific attacks at GWB's thickheadedness, or religious overdetermination, or whatever, and these are the center of his routine. It's this hypocrisy that I can't stand, and it's the reason I've found The Daily Show largely unpalatable for the last few years.

And don't say that my personal politics "foreshadowed" this remark, because I don't recall making a political post on Mefi more than once or twice, and I'm not afraid to say that I'm a liberal who doesn't like GWB and wants Kerry to get elected.


For years we get all these right-wing and libertarian-minded people complaining that celebrities should just shut up because they don't know what they're talking about when it comes to politics. Now we're chastizing one of them because they didn't give a full 60 seconds of information of the Middle East peace process

See: above about not having made political posts. I never expressed an opinion about celebrities in politics in general. If you think Stewart, who wants to be respected for making serious arguments about politics, should not be held accountable for his opinions - that they're just funny jokes! - then explain why.

To clarify, being a highly-viewed comedian with a political act is a powerful thing. Stewart certainly has influence; I want him to justify it.
posted by rxrfrx at 6:55 AM on October 29, 2004


You can't have it both ways - either he's a comedian who makes jokes about political things or he's a valuable news source who is required to act serious on command. Jon Stewart hasn't ever acted like something he wasn't, and I respect him for that.
posted by agregoli at 7:22 AM on October 29, 2004


So, if that idea were to happen who do you think would do it? Would a current news station revamp themselves in that image -- is there any known consideration of the idea?

There have been rumors for a year or so that Al Gore is in the process of developing a 24-hour left-wing counterpart to FOX News. I have no clue if it's currently an idea on a napkin or if it's the process of incorporating and hiring a board of directors, but the thought is out there.
posted by junkbox at 7:31 AM on October 29, 2004


I wandered into the University Hall in Bath, England, to check it out for a conference. Whoops, middle of a lecture. There was Jon Stewart, 30 feet high, pleasing an audience of 300 giggling semiotics students. Did someone say Zeitgeist.
posted by grahamwell at 8:07 AM on October 29, 2004


The same structure is levelled on Sean Penn

Which reminds me: See the last page of "America: The Book" for a specific bit of Stewart / Daily Show hypocrisy on this issue.

I still think he's funny, though.
posted by soyjoy at 9:11 AM on October 29, 2004


There have been rumors for a year or so that Al Gore is in the process of developing a 24-hour left-wing counterpart to FOX News.

Here's something about it--it's NWI, but it's not left, but for younger viewers. (i've been watching it--it's mostly Canadian/Intl news, and very good. Gore hasn't changed it yet i don't think.)
posted by amberglow at 9:42 AM on October 29, 2004


rxrfrx: Wrong. He is quite up front about bush being a bad president. The difference is that he is NOT a democrat, nor does he give the democrats a "free pass" the way Dennis Miller did with Bush.

OK, his interviews with high ranking politicians are often soft, and he didnt ask Kerry the "tough questions". But he didnt claim to. He was equally soft on Richard Perle when he was on plugging his book on "winning the war on terror".

Generally the level of the discussion is proportional to the guests sense of humor. The last time Joe Biden was on, he came across better than many sitcom actors. Ultimately, it is a show made to do a couple comic sketches and have a guest plug. The fact that he engages people in the news is quite a feat, and being consistently funny (or even funny at all) when discussing politics is quite a feat.

This is different from, say, Al Frankens book, where he analyzes the right, but constantly defends clinton and the democrats in general. Stewart does not.

Also, for what its worth, when Colbert was hosting a couple months ago he had a guest on and got in a political discussion and announced he was a democrat.
posted by lkc at 12:22 PM on October 29, 2004


Stewart also had nice things to say about Bush.

He thinks Bush is a great guy. He also thinks he's a lousy President.

He also thinks Kerry isn't going to be a great President, just a less-awful one than Bush. And one that won't get the rest of the world angrier at the USA. Which isn't a big step in the right direction, but at least is not a big step in the wrong direction.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:03 AM on October 30, 2004


Yeah, if you think his political bias shows through that strongly, go look at his interviews with major right wingers - like when he had ralph reed on recently, e.g. He never asks more than a few questions, maybe a couple serious-ish ones, and then some joke question to kind of help wrap it up. He might be very annoying as a close friend in that way, that he might never be capable of having a serious conversation. But the man is a comedian! That's the whole point! (And a damn fine one, I might add, in fact, I will add. I was very disappointed when his late night talk show got canned and happy when it eventually reemerged in the cable universe)

Anyway, I am slightly worried that this won't end well for anyone. Liberals will be annoyed that he isn't pushing harder at the conservatives. Conservatives will think he's biased against them. Those who like his politics will think he's not addressing things seriously enough. Those who think he's funny will think he's getting into territory where he doesn't belong. His point was, and is, that it's really fucking scary when a comedy show is a better news source than most news shows. That is still true and his show is still a comedy show.

Still, I'm glad he's trying to get the point out into the larger media world that news should be about news, not soundbites, teasers, shocks, titillation, and a general stream random bits for an ADD-addled nation. What about in-depth pieces? FOllow up stories? Intelligent interviews? News outside of america? You remember the russian school massacre? On American TV that was on the evening news a night, maybe two, and then it just disappeared. I doubt it even had a chance to really sink into the psyche of most people in the country. If you missed the news that night, you probably didn't even know it happened (assuming you don't get your news online etc as well)
posted by mdn at 3:36 PM on October 30, 2004


My interpretation is that John Stewart bemoans the death of journalism.

Without journalism, the citizens can not be informed. Without informed citizens, there can not be a functional democracy.

It is a damned scary path the USA is treading.
posted by five fresh fish at 5:41 PM on October 30, 2004




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