Brian Williams lied about his personal exploits many times, but Jon Stewart was unabashedly and habitually dishonest. Any standard liberal publication was as likely to contain an unflattering thought about Stewart as L’Osservatore Romano is to run a hit piece on the pope.
Though Stewart has often claimed he does a “fake news show,” “The Daily Show” isn’t that. It’s a real news show punctuated with puns, jokes, asides and the occasional moment of staged sanctimony.
It contains real, unstaged sound bites about the days’ events and interviews about important policy matters.
Stewart is a journalist: an irresponsible and unprofessional one.
Stewart uses his funnyman status as a license to dispense with even the most minimal journalistic standards. Get both sides of the story?
Hey, I’m just a comedian, man. Try to be responsible about what the real issues are? Dude, that’s too heavy, we just want to set up the next d- -k joke.
Stewart is often derided by the right as having minimal impact and low ratings. That’s not true. He and Stephen Colbert ruled the late-night ratings among 18-to 34-year-olds for most of the last five years, though Jimmy Fallon has lately surpassed both.
About 522,000 Americans in that age range watch “The Daily Show” on an average night, but that means many millions of occasional viewers, with millions more watching clips online.
To a key audience, he was a strong influence. Longtime Cooper Union history professor Fred Siegel says his students constantly came to him repeating Stewart’s talking points.
College students, of course, are both little acquainted with realities of adult existence and walled off from conservative views, so they’re the perfect audience for Stewart’s shtick, which depends on assumptions that are as unquestioned as they are false.
Jon Stewart’s defense of Brian Williams was “The Daily Show” in a nutshell – laugh off a scandal and change the subject.
Brian Williams has become a joke for telling lies, but Jon Stewart is a liar for the way he told jokes.