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There's something about Jon Stewart...

... that intrigues me and that I find fascinating.

Yesterday, I put up his interview with Chris Wallace and opined that he is clearly in denial as to the mainstream media's liberal bias. 

Today, via Wheat & Weeds, I stumble across his absolute smackdown of that same media's handling of the Sarah Palin email release and find myself laughing out loud.  Watch it and gauge your own  reaction:

In his Wallace interview yesterday, Stewart stated that he was a comedian first and not a liberal activist as Wallace was claiming. I believe that. In fact, what I really believe about Stewart is that he's an honest liberal and that I think is at the center of why there's something about the man.

I rarely find honesty and liberalism to be joined at the hip.  In fact, I can't at the moment think of someone I'd call an honest liberal other than Stewart (feel free to name your own honest liberals in the comments and perhaps freshen my thinking). 

When Stewart claims, as he did during the Wallace interview, that the mainstream media isn't biased but simply lazy and sensationalist, though I may disagree with the assertion, I think he makes the claim with integrity.  In other words, he's convinced it's true and thus proclaims this 'truth' as he sees it and not out of some duplicitous attempt to lie and cover up for those who share his ideology. 

For that I can respect the man even though I usually disagree with him and for that I can confess to being intrigued and fascinated by him.  Of course, nailing the media for their attempted and failed smear of Sarah Palin helps.


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Comments (29)

I'd say Michael Kinsley is ... (Below threshold)
Anon Y. Mous:

I'd say Michael Kinsley is pretty honest. Also, Micky Kaus. Megan McArdle would probably deny being a liberal, but that aside she's usually pretty honest.

I'd say that he is right. ... (Below threshold)
jim m:

I'd say that he is right. He is a comedian first and an activist second. He doesn't make fun of Anthony Weiner because Weiner is his friend so he doesn't think that jokes at the expense of his friend are funny.

The problem with that is that being friendly with major public figures from the left means that he is unwilling to make fun of them. Most people would call that bias. Stewart is too blinded by his bias to see that.

most of the MSM honestly be... (Below threshold)
Jeff:

most of the MSM honestly believe they are not biased ...

they are ignorant fools who refuse to even look at the evidence, just as Stewart refuses to do ...

a truly honest man will look ... Stewart is not one of them ...

No offense, Chief, but if y... (Below threshold)
Tsar Nicholas II:

No offense, Chief, but if you're actually intrigued by what Jon Stewart says, does or thinks then you've got way too much time on your hands.

Out there in Realityville people are dealing with the worst economy since the Great Depression. The country also is involved in three separate shooting wars. We're also at the precipice of a fiscal calamity that will relegate our children and grandchildren to low and arduous standards of living for the next several decades. With that backdrop I think it's safe to say there are bigger fish to fry than Jon Stewart. Voting Obama out of office and making sure Harry Reid no longer is the Senate Majority Leader immediately come to mind.

Congratulations, Rick. You ... (Below threshold)
Art W:

Congratulations, Rick. You look good in big boy grown up pants. Not one word of being a poor widdle conservative who's always picked on by big mean media types. Jay Tea will cater to the cry-baby crowd tomorrow, not to worry.

The problem with that is that being friendly with major public figures from the left means that he is unwilling to make fun of them. Most people would call that bias. Stewart is too blinded by his bias to see that.

Clearly you haven't watched Stewart on a regular basis, jimm, at least not recently. He's spent a lot of time making jokes about Wiener and wieners.

Which just proves further that what passes for right wing blogger doctrine these days is just so much made up crap. Nothing more than baby-faced idiots finding something to cry about.

What are they going to do when the Chief Cry-baby Glenn Beck leaves the air? Who can step in and play the victim and lead those cry baby conservatives down the road to victimhood?

I mean, if there aren't scary, made-up stories about scary black men in the white house what will the Wizbangers have to whine about?

rick,While W trA (... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

rick,

While W trA (tar baby?) is far more "mainstream leftard" in his level of denial, there are a scant few honest liberal's out there. Chief among them would be Christopher Hitchens, though he can't seem to make the final jump and tends to insist that "they all" (libearal and conservative both) are corrupt and self seeking. He may even have a point when it comes to long time residents of the beltway...

But as regards the rank and file, not so much.

Just read W trA and chicka for prime evidence of that.

W art-"I mean, if ... (Below threshold)
Sep14:

W art-

"I mean, if there aren't scary, made-up stories about scary black men in the white house what will the Wizbangers have to whine about?"


Made up stories? Subsisting on Kool aid and dingle-berries has affected your perceptions Wart.

I would suggest Joe Leiberm... (Below threshold)
longrunningfool:

I would suggest Joe Leiberman as an honest liberal. Of course, for that sin, he was effectively removed from the Democratic party.

I'm scratching my head to find another honest liberal in the media though. Maybe Jack Tapper at ABC?

Sep14,Un-wanted vi... (Below threshold)
Rodney Graves Author Profile Page:

Sep14,

Un-wanted visual. 15 yard penalty, you pay for the mind floss.

Can we get some compound-W ... (Below threshold)
Sep14:

Can we get some compound-W for aisle 5 please?

An "honest liberal" is mere... (Below threshold)
Jim Addison:

An "honest liberal" is merely one who has convinced themselves that all the false things they believe are true.

Stewart hits a liberal target every now and then, perhaps as much as 20% of the time if you include just being "incorrect." But that's just for show, to demonstrate his "balance" so he can go back to trashing conservatives.

The key to Weiner coverage isn't the number of jokes made in all, but how it was treated the first week, when Weiner was in denial and using the "hacked" story. It was quite apparent that Stewart and the networks were quite willing to take him at his word or just ignore the story until his ridiculous defense fell apart and he had to give the first presser.

If you weren't covering or joking about the story before Weiner confessed, you were just part of the cover-up.

Chris Wallace was lucky. If... (Below threshold)
Robert L:

Chris Wallace was lucky. If he had pushed Professor Furlong a bit more, those snake thingies would have popped out of his head. Google "The Faculty" imdb for reference.

I think can I recognize an ... (Below threshold)
recovered liberal democrat:

I think can I recognize an elitist snob when I see and hear one. Stewart is an elitist snob. When he speaks I am more convinced that, although he is occasionally amusing, people in government that think like him need to be voted out of power ASAP.

What are they goin... (Below threshold)
Brett :
What are they going to do when the Chief Cry-baby Glenn Beck leaves the air? Who can step in and play the victim and lead those cry baby conservatives down the road to victimhood?

I mean, if there aren't scary, made-up stories about scary black men in the white house what will the Wizbangers have to whine about?

See what Art W did there? He turned the "victimhood" argument around on us, and then dropped in an accusation of racism. Isn't he oh so clever! A brilliant, almost Swiftian, wit - puts him at the very top of his 6th grade class, for sure.

Every time I watch folks on... (Below threshold)
jc:

Every time I watch folks on the right get in a lather over a particular face on TV or a writer at some rag, I can’t believe the old gag is still working. How about considering another perspective?

Suppose some new virus killed John Stewart, the whole Journ-o-list cabal, the entire Hollywood left, and all the lefty talking heads. Do you really think their employers would hire any replacements that weren't from exactly the same political persuasion as those that died?

While we are on the subject of their employers, how many of the media personalities that frustrate you work for huge corporations? How many of them get very large paychecks for very low ratings? How many media outlets lose money year after year, but somehow the parent company just doesn't seem to care? How does that match your life experience; have you ever worked for a private employer that just never cared about losing huge piles of money indefinitely?

OK, maybe they own so many cable channels that they don't care about low ratings at a few of them. Maybe their game plan is to grab every viewer possible through really focused offerings and lots of channels. Well, then why not have both MSNBC Left and MSNBC Right? Having both would produce a much higher number of viewers, much higher ad revenues, and offset claims that it's all BS leftist propaganda. These companies have all the resources and it is an obvious choice. So, why don't they do it?

Is it not reasonable to wonder if the larger companies are getting the return on their investment in some other manner? Suppose you are the new Wiz Kid in the GE Board Room. Which investment are you going to pitch to the boss: 1) maximize ad revenues on some BS cable channel, or 2) keep spewing the type of propaganda that succeeds in controlling the dumbass voters that always fall for it? Choice 1) gets more advertising dollars. Choice 2) gets a high volume tap into almost unlimited tax money. Just one example would be government subsidies for windmills that will never amortize, and there are countless other examples spread across all the government Departments. Which pitch will really impress the GE Board?

Now, suppose Wiz Kid decides to maximize bottom line returns to the whole conglomerate – what choices would he make? Would he hire a media whore who knows they are lying, or would he hire a useful idiot that actually believes the stupid sh*t they say? He would always have to worry about Media Whore not feeling up to the act one day, but Wiz Kid would never have to worry about Useful Idiot failing to look convinced. So, can Wiz Kid find enough useful idiots? I don’t know, but there is always some dumbass willing to freeze his naked nipples off at a January NFL game. All he knows is his team is the bomb and the other team is the enemy, and he wants us to know how much he supports his team. So I suspect it just ain’t that hard for Wiz Kid to find a whole herd of useful idiots.

OK, what’s the best way for Wiz Kid to use his useful idiots to get what he wants? Well, if he wants to get the most tax money for the least value, he needs to control some politicians. Well, here’s an idea, rather than buy politicians with cash – which is both expensive and illegal -- why not buy the politicians with an unlimited flow of propaganda? As a bonus, while Wiz Kid is running a propaganda barrage sufficient to make politicians play the game his way, he is actually collecting a few ad dollars to offset the losses on the venture. And, Wiz Kid also gets “ink by the barrel” power over the politicians he seeks to control: he can say either “Don’t play ball, and you get Palinized,” or “Play ball our way long enough and we will pull out all the stops trying to keep your Weiner out of the news.”

So, do you really care about every talking head, or is it worth considering the bigger picture? If enough of us stop falling for the gag, maybe we can get a better class of useful idiots.

An honest liberal is one wh... (Below threshold)
JB:

An honest liberal is one who merely has a Jupiter-sized blindspot about his bias, as does Stewart.

Jon Stewart was condescendi... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Jon Stewart was condescending and disingenuous in this interview. If you watch closely, you'll see him say no less than three times that C.Wallace "doesn't understand". He is in total denial regarding liberal bias. You could show him a thousand examples and he wouldn't see it. The only honest thing he said came at the end of the interview when he admitted that conservatives have been called bigots unfairly.

In fact, what I really b... (Below threshold)

In fact, what I really believe about Stewart is that he's an honest liberal

I would suggest you need to spend some time at Newsbusters' site and search 'jon stewart'.

"When Stewart claims, as he... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

"When Stewart claims, as he did during the Wallace interview, that the mainstream media isn't biased but simply lazy and sensationalist, though I may disagree with the assertion, I think he makes the claim with integrity."

When you speak with a person who has a mental illness, and they tell you about their world and why they do what they do, it sounds crazy to you. However, you need to keep in mind that no matter how crazy it sounds to you it makes sense to them. No matter how inappropriate their behavior is, it is a logical and reasonable response to the world THEY live in. They will sincerely believe what they are saying.

Did I just say that Jon Stewart has a mental disorder? No. Did I just say liberalism is a mental disorder? No. What I said is that EVEN people with a mental disorder sincerely believe what they are saying. Under the right circumstances anyone can sincerely believe just about anything. Sincerity is not much of a test, Rick.

Funny. You'd be hard presse... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

Funny. You'd be hard pressed to find a media clip of anyone mentioning "Troopergate" when there really was one. The American Spectator completely carried the water on that one. Unfortunately, it occurred before the internet came into full being to prevent total news blackouts.

I've known some honest libe... (Below threshold)
Wolf:

I've known some honest liberals. There wasn't a one of them that was into political activism though. They just had their opinions and maybe sometimes they even bothered to go vote.

The ones that are serious about their politics though, they'll lie to their own mothers even when mom knows better. And they'll get away with it.

Art W was one of those brag... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Art W was one of those bragging the week before the release about how the emails were going to bring Palin down and ruin "our hero". Well ARt W, where oh, where are they? Come on, bring it on. YOu were so sure. Idiot. ww

If you want to find an hone... (Below threshold)
recovered liberal democrat:

If you want to find an honest liberal ask them where liberalism has worked. If he says he, or she, can't think of anywhere it has worked. You might have found one.

John who?Sorry, bu... (Below threshold)
Oldflyer:

John who?

Sorry, but I really don't care what comic-pundits have to say. I don't find them to be very funny, since their humor is invariably of the sort that tears others down. Nor do I find them wise.

I do acknowledge that, to our detriment, a portion of the population apparently depends on the John Stewart's of the world for interpretation and commentary on the issues. So, what could go wrong when such shallow sources drive our opinion? Repeat after me, Barack Hussein Obama.

Camille Paglia is an honest... (Below threshold)
Kathy:

Camille Paglia is an honest liberal. If you want to know more, you'd probably need to find a good mental institution, where they go once they attempt to tame the cognitive dissonance between honesty and progressivism.

In my opinion, it is imposs... (Below threshold)
PA Patriot:

In my opinion, it is impossible to be honest, intelligent AND liberal. One can be any two of the three, but not all three. Therefore, if Jon Stewart is honest and liberal, then I must conclude that he is an idiot. Wouldn't you agree?

If Jon actually is an hones... (Below threshold)
PBunyan:

If Jon actually is an honest liberal he'll man up and admit that he was wrong.

Proof at Politifact.com via The Blaze.

Rachel Maddow, Bill Moyers,... (Below threshold)

Rachel Maddow, Bill Moyers, Phil Donahue, Noam Chomsky all are very honest and consistent in their worldviews and their ethics. You may not like what they have to say, but they saying what they believe and don't back up or tolerate dishonesty among people they agree with.

And for honest conservatives I disagree with because I'm liberal, but still acknowledge for their general honesty, I would have to say Barry Goldwater, Will Durant, Ron Paul, and Pat Buchanan. Buchanan's worldviews I find personally horrendouse, and his recent book that was arguing against us joining WWII I found so ludicrous that it might be a sign of dotage. Nevertheless, he believes what he believes after a lot of consideration, has rationales to back all of it, and honestly and consistently doesn't hide it.

If you want to fin... (Below threshold)
If you want to find an honest liberal ask them where liberalism has worked. If he says he, or she, can't think of anywhere it has worked. You might have found one.

Let's see what was forgotten in this statement?

WWII, the Marshall Plan afterwards, the GI Bill of Rights, civil rights, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, the interstate road system, rural electrification...and that's just through the 1960's.




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