Jon Stewart: still funny, still wrong
Jon Stewart made a good attempt at going back to being a comedian
on monday, and did a good job. He isn't *all* wrong. Crossfire Blows.
The clip at IFILM though is titled "Jon Stewart Spins his Crossfire Appearance" and that's a good word for it. If someone can't understand what spin is, this is a good example of what it means. Taking your forum and putting your "spin" on the conventional wisdom of the reality of something. We all saw or heard about it, and we all came to independent and diverse opinions on it. Stewart is very funny here, but his view is "spinning" the conventional wisdom of what happened. It wasn't that he wasn't funny on Crossfire. That was one of the biggest clues that he's not content to sit back and make fun of everything anymore. He doesn't quiiite seem to grasp yet the reason that a good bit of the joke is on him.
I'm not saying he's wrong at any point during this, in fact he is self deprecating in parts and the jokes are zingers. And frankly this is the Stewart that I miss. But I can't unforget that he let the guys he makes fun of with his "fake news" come and hijack the "plug your product" couch. Letting Kerry come on there and helping Kerry "spin" our opinions about him with it was WRONG and it made him complicit in the very thing we look to him to help us point out-namely whats wrong
with politics and the world! And when he says that it's adversarial tv and spin, I say he's right.
So anyway, I laughed. I did, and I felt less mad at Jon for the whole thing. He just needs to understand that conventional wisdom is only bad when it's wrong factually or when it is manipulated. Some spin is necessary to counter that, and vying for a spot in the conventional wisdom by competing ideas is a good thing. We are not all idiots who swallow whole spoonfuls of reality from evil manipulators without even bothering to chew. We like for you to make fun of idiocy, but you don't need to save us from it. Keep being funny, and stop letting politicians use your "product spin" couch. In fact, if you came on and pledged to not let that happen anymore, you could have me back respecting you. But maybe you don't care, because as you say you're selling a book and you've got a show that measures its audience. Money might be the only thing it's about. Oh and entertainment. Well, if so then no more making fun of that.
posted by M@ at 10:45 PM