It was heady, it was thoughtful, it was nuanced out the wazoo—the Stewart/Maddow Comedy/Journalism Conference of 2010  was the opposite of everything that Jon Stewart objects to in our “24-hour politico pundit panic conflict-o-nator.” But much like his fellow believer in bipartisanship, Barack Obama, Stewart came away empty-handed this week from a high-stakes political summit.
Stewart had asked for the interview with Rachel Maddow in order to clear up the perception that his rally last month was whiffy and not about anything, as Bill Maher put it . Of course it was about something—it was about the corrosive effect of the hype, noise, and tone in political media today. Stewart has always had a tone jones: If a presentation is too loud (Olbermann), too goofy (Rick Sanchez), or too shrill (Code Pink, he says), it waves a red cape before his comedic bull. Last night he cited a clip he used to promote his rally of a woman shouting that Bush was a war criminal. “Technically he is,” Stewart said. Then why equate that charge with the far right’s contentions that Obama is Hitler, a socialist, and/or a Kenyan anti-colonist Muslim, none of which is technically, or otherwise, remotely true? “We were talking about tone there, not content necessarily,” Stewart told Maddow. MORE...
culturekitchen with video from MSNBC (49:26).
Howie P.S.: Here are two very smart people.