Monday, June 1, 2015
The Daily Habit!
Whenever it is that Jon Stewart leaves his current post at The Daily Show I will stop watching it. I've been, along with thousands of others, a fan for years and years of this show's incisive commentary on the politics and the news media's coverage of same.
For years liberals hustled fruitlessly to recreate the success of the noxious Rush Limbaugh on the radio, but they did eventually discover success on that level with Stewart in the other medium of television. Stewart is the guy who broke it down and made some sense of the chaos and pablum which is the news, and he and his writers did it with wit and laughs, which made it even more palatable.
Critics complained that Stewart was not qualified to comment (being a mere comedian) but they were wrong. Critics complained that Stewart was too liberal, but he never made much of a secret of his leanings, unlike many of his critics (and poorly kept secrets they are indeed).
Modern news media have descended into entertainment, so this entertainment show which mocked them so effectively was difficult to fathom at first. The crudeness could be off-putting, but the arguments always seemed to ring true, as Stewart time and again cut to the nerve of many issues, bringing clarity to almost always overheated controversies.
Like true satire, an all-too rare thing in our society rich in simple parody, the humor here had a point, to showcase the absurdity of public policy production and some of the policies themselves. It also cast a hard light on the absurd people who claim wisdom and seek to fondle the levers of power, bringing those folks down a few notches. Stewart was a ferocious satirist who was unafraid to tackle targets on all sides, though the barrel of fish which is FOX News was always making itself available.
There is nothing more painful to watch on TV than news folks who think they can be funny in the manner of The Daily Show. They fail and deserve to. Limbaugh often tries for humor and is never funny, only even more harsh. Funny is damn hard, and only true professionals should attempt it.
I'm not stopping watching The Daily Show out of protest of the new host. That would be silly. I'm just not going to make it a part of my regular day anymore. I'll miss it, but then at my age you get used to things ending. Sigh.