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November 07, 2004

Comments

I guess I just can't see that as much of a backlash, especially the Duke Chronicle excerpt. I have also been waiting to see the media turn on Stewart, but I think he might just get away with it. I think the Daily Show has hit such a nerve, and has done such a good job of parodying actual broadcast news, that they are almost afraid to touch it. That or they are having such a good laugh watching it they don't really mind. As for the Chrionicle's point that Stewart was deflecting responsibility, I think he effectively staked out the level of responsibility he has when he pointed out that his show follows a show featuring puppets making crank calls. The Daily Show is some of the best satire going. It tells the truth through theater instead of, as Stewart seemed to intimate that much of the Crossfire-style shows do, turn truth into theater

While truth may be too broad or important a term, I am thinking of it in terms of the journalistic search for the truth. Not the Socratic search.

I also get the feeling that the Daily Show kind of stumbled into its current role. It didn't seem to be searching to take down the pillars of broadcast news, simply poke fun at lazy reporters and their wardrobes. Yet in the process viewers realized that maybe what the media was focused on, or how it presented information, was a bit skewed and fairly dumbed down.

A similar case has been Dave Letterman. He really turned up the heat after the White House accused the Late Show of doctoring a clip showing a kid acting all fidgety and falling asleep on-stage at a Bush rally. They were simply poking a bit of fun, yet the White House had to lie to CNN that it never happened. They could have let it go, ignored it, but they didn't.

A bit of comedy suddenly drags out some ugly truth.

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