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Saturday: Jon Stewart, heal thyself

Jon Stewart took on Jim Cramer of Mad Money a couple of nights ago and raked him over the coals about the uncritical journalism of the press that failed to uncover the chicanery of the financial giants.  From the interview, we get this exchange (from Glenn Greenwald, who I’ll get to in a second):

STEWART:  This thing was 10 years in the making . . . . The idea that you could have on the guys from Bear Stearns and Merrill Lynch and guys that had leveraged 35-1 and then blame mortgage holders, that’s insane. . . .

CRAMER:  I always wish that people would come in and swear themselves in before they come on the show.  I had a lot of CEOs lie to me on the show.  It’s very painful. I don’t have subpoena power. . . .

STEWART:  You knew what the banks were doing and were touting it for months and months.  The entire network was.

CRAMER:  But Dick Fuld, who ran Lehman Brothers, called me in – he called me in when the stock was at 40 — because I was saying: “look, I thought the stock was wrong, thought it was in the wrong place” – he brings me in and lies to me, lies to me, lies to me.

STEWART [feigning shock]:  The CEO of a company lied to you?

CRAMER:  Shocking.

STEWART:  But isn’t that financial reporting?  What do you think is the role of CNBC? . . . .

CRAMER:  I didn’t think that Bear Stearns would evaporate overnight.  I knew the people who ran it.  I thought they were honest. That was my mistake.  I really did.  I thought they were honest.  Did I get taken in because I knew them before?  Maybe, to some degree. . . .

It’s difficult to have a reporter say:  “I just came from an interview with Hank Paulson and he lied his darn-fool head off.”  It’s difficult.  I think it challenges the boundaries.

STEWART:   But what is the responsibility of the people who cover Wall Street?  . . . . I’m under the assumption, and maybe this is purely ridiculous, but I’m under the assumption that you don’t just take their word at face value.  That you actually then go around and try to figure it out (applause).

Here’s my problem with this exchange: About a year and a half ago, I *loved* Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. I had Colbert’s devastating take down of the press at the WH Correspondents dinner on my DVR for a long time. And I still have the interview that Jon gave Bill Moyer’s Journal on my iPod. Back then, Jon Stewart was one of us. He was fighting the consensus reality in the only way he could- with humor and wit. He was the jester who could get away with murder in the court of a murderous king. I faithfully recorded The Daily Show and The Colbert Report every night on my DVR.

Then, primary season started. I don’t know if Viacom decided it was going to go for a much younger demographic or what but Jon Stewart left me behind. I have often heard it said that Stewart was initially a Hillary Clinton fan but I couldn’t tell. It would have been nice if he had just remained neutral. That I could have taken. But night after night, it seemed to *this* viewer that he was falling for the same crazy crap that everyone else was hearing. His dings on Hillary took on the same general flavor of rest of the news media that decided that Clinton was the old regime and was running a ridiculous campaign. Those of us who were paying attention know that it was the Obama campaign that was poorly executed, so poorly in fact that it required the assistance of the RBC to gift him with 59 delegates from MI, including 4 of his opponent’s delegates.

Back in the day, that RBC hearing would have been comedy gold for Stewart. Think of it: the candidates are pretty much even with the older, more experienced female candidate having the edge for actually participating in the primaries which conveeeeeniently don’t count (except that everyone knows that this is really Kabuki because they will *have* to count before it’s all over). And what does the RBC do? It takes delegates away from the real winner and gives them to the loser and gives him 59 delegates from a state where he wasn’t even on the ballot, so that he will beat her by a mere 17 delegates when the primaries finally end a few days later. Then, they make it sound like it’s a big landslide, giving him the edge all the way to the convention.  She *should* have taken it to the convention floor and had a knock down, drag out fight for the nomination.  But how could she do it if the one guy she really needed to be critical, Jon Stewart, was out to lunch?

How could you miss that, Jon? That was the epitome of ‘fuzzy math’. You should have been rolling your eyes and should have gotten someone like the RBC’s Allen “this is the thing I am most proud of” Katz or Alexis Herman on your show to eviscerate them, just like you did to countless others. This committee should have been the butt of ridicule for at least a week.  Think about what an incredibly UNdemocratic thing that was for the Democrats to do to their voters. But you said nothing. And why was that, Jon? Were we old, uneducated, working class, sino-peruvian lesbians no longer in the target demographic? Or is it the case that when women are represented by only one member in the ensemble, Samantha Bee, it’s easy to forget that they might have their own sense of honor and fair play?

Whatever. That’s when I removed TDS from my DVR and erased all old episodes. I, and the rest of my demographic, were no longer cool enough to be respected. Not only that but we kept saying over and over again that what we objected to with Obama was that he was inexperienced and unready to be president. But consensus reality said that we were ‘racists’ and ‘Reagan Democrats’, not the smart and professional, thinking liberals we actually are. Jon, the psychology major, should have known better. He should have seen the peer pressure, psychological warfare, and the pandering and flattery frenzy of the Whole Foods Nation, his own audience, and tried to rebalance their perspective. That was what he tried to do with Bush and Cheney and we admired him for it. But when it came to Obama and Hillary, Jon had a blind spot.

Well, thanks, in part, to the effort of Stewart and Colbert, we now have President Obama, a man who never met a multimillionaire, finance guy, banker campaign donor he didn’t like. We now have former Senator Obama, a man who ran and hid any time there was a difficult decision to make or a political controversy to avoid, in the midst of a financial maelstrom where he is dithering, afraid to commit. He appointed finance guys who were insiders, or at least passive observers of the fraud, who are trying to navigate their way out of the problem without upsetting the very guys who were responsible for it. And they are failing.  Who would have thought?  Their anti-Change!™, cautious approach and inexperience are taking the country and the world to the very brink of disaster with economist after economist screaming for them to change course and do something. We have a major catastrophe on our hands and it was all entirely predictable. WE predicted it. But last year, we were the losers and the stupid racists. No one was listening to us, least of all Jon Stewart.

It is all Jon Stewart’s fault?  No, but he’s too smart a guy to not understand what part he played in the nomination of Barack Obama last year.  Glenn Greenwald is just as guilty.  He suffered from a similar blindspot.  Glenn carried a snobby assumption that Hillary was just not viable.  He didn’t really bother to spell it all out so that the rest of us would understand what it was that made Hillary so objectionable.  I never bought the argument of ‘corporatism’ since there wasn’t anything in Hillary’s voting record to suggest that she could be bought.  Obama, however, almost immediately showed us his true colors when he reversed his promise regarding the FISA bill.  Sorry, Glenn, you should have seen that coming.  Obama is not a boat rocker and he demonstrated that over and ovcr with his “present” votes and abstentions.  Once the nomination was cinched, there wasn’t anything you could do to stop him.  His accountability moment had passed.

The idea that now Jon Stewart and Glenn Greenwald are going to start taking on the press again is laughable.  They had their chance last year and they blew it.  They challenged nothing.  They are now as responsible for what plays out as the Jim Cramers, David Gregorys and Brian Willams’s they now decry.  It’s time they spent some time thinking about why they so quickly abandoned intelligence, competence and experience for an empty suit.  For Stewart, maybe it was pressure from Viacom, which makes him no better than his targets.  For Glenn, it may have been part of the pressure of being an A list blogger.  For both, maybe there was a touch of unacknowledged sexism.  But whatever reason, they should know that whatever happens from here on out is partially *their* responsibility for failing to be sufficiently critical.  And we Conflucians and PUMAs, who have been critical of the press since our inception, will hold them accountable for it.

(I’m back.  Thanks for your thoughts and prayers.  We survived the night.  We had cabin 14, right on the other side of the wall from cabin *13*, on the eve of Friday the 13th, at a campsite, on a lake.  Cue the theremin music.  Three of the giggly girls in my charge stayed up half the night communicating with cabin 13 through Morris code and screaming periodically at every bump in the night.  Happily, Jason passed us by.  Anyway, the temperature never got above freezing the whole time and, as a chaperone, I was forced to participate in every activity that the kids did.  When I got home late yesterday afternoon, my entire body was exhausted and frozen.  I’m now thawed out and just stiff in every muscle.  It was a lot of fun but thank gawd it’s over. )

Another one bites the dust during Pod 7C's great Into the Wild 2-day fieldtrip

Another one bites the dust during Pod 7C's great Into the Wild 2-day fieldtrip

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175 Responses

  1. Glad you survived. What was the im,petus for this trip to the tundra?

    • Environmental education, survival skills. It was actually very well done. The YMCA runs the camp and the programs. Kudos to them for an excellent job. They weren’t responsible for the weather and to be honest, the cabins were warm. It’s just that temperature was unusually cold for this time of year and if I’d known, I’d have brought my thermal underwear and gloves. It just never occured to me that I would need to be prepared for a mid-January arctic blast in March. Typically in NJ, we start seeing forsythia buds right about now. That kind of cold just isn’t natural in March.

      • Glad you and the kids survived !! I was out driving in what looked to be a blizzard for about a half hour yeserday shaking my head in complete disbelief …

        ..

      • Bless your heart. My daughter enjoys camping; got that from her father.,

      • So good to hear that the YMCA is still in the kids’ camping business. Courtesy of the Y, my junior high buddies and I spent several summers at Camp Archibald in Wisconsin, where we slept in canvas tents on wood platforms, sought to stigmatize fellow campers each night after dinner with the Great And Holy Bone or a live bat in a jar (don’t ask), were dispatched on fruitless snipe hunts, swam in frigid waters, and canoed to an island where we camped out in the rain (no tents).

        The food was so bad that sugar bread was a very popular fallback. But Archibald was cheap, safe, just structured enough, located in the midst of gentle Midwest scenery, and a great lot of fun due to its slightly zany director. For some campers, Camp Archie was also a chance to conquer first encounters with homesickness, something I never experienced. For me, Camp Archibald provided my first taste of a delicious freedom, and my junior rifleman certificate. Bless YMCA’s everywhere.

  2. great analysis…Tucker Carlson (i know, i know) just said that the only reason stewart went after cramer was that cramer had the nerve to question obama’s policies. period. end.of.story.

    • I’m tellin ya – the day I am agreeing with Tucker Carlson – is a very strange day. I guess today is that day.

    • >only reason stewart went after cramer was that cramer had the nerve to question obama’s policies.

      Stewart has always focused on hypocrisies. If Cramer had learned to keep his mouth shut, the whole thing would have blown over a week ago. Because Cramer is manic, he couldn’t resist opening his mouth.

      • Stewart is great at recognizing others’ hypocrisy while ignoring his own.
        He and Colbert both use “p*ussy” to describe men they want to denigrate. They’re no different than the KozKidz, except that they can sometimes be funny.

  3. !!! Thank you Riverdaughter!

    And I’m glad you made it through The Night at the Cabin on the Lake on Friday the 13th — plus all the freezing cold hiking….. And the 13 year old girls….

  4. So glad you survived and didn’t have to confront any mad killers in hockey masks!

    I totally agree with you about Stewart and Colbert. Sadly, they have sold out like rest of the media. I tried to watch the Cramer interview, but I couldn’t get through the whole thing. I just don’t find Stewart credible as a media critic anymore.

    Surprisingly, a lot of the economics/financial blogs are applauding Stewart’s takedown of Cramer. I don’t know enough about Cramer to understand their animosity to him.

  5. I just used one of the buttons on the bottom of your post to put this link on my Facebook profile — what a treat to do it with just one click!

  6. I think Stewart’s White House sanctioned Cramer takedown and Salon, etc., pile-on, has a little something to do with the PBS Frontline assertion that CNBC was Wall Street’s talking drum. Makes a convenient scapegoat.

    • Scapegoat is absolutely the operative word here … yeah CRAMER and CNBC are the reasons for the economic problems and bos inability to deal with it ……. mmmhmmm

      • To be honest, Stewart has a point, and he tried to make it. It’s about the media culture, not Cramer and CNBC. He said to Cramer, “this song isn’t about you.”

        But I absolutely agree with every point Riverdaughter raises. I was pissed off at the stewart and the praise from his pendejo cohorts are giving him. Oh, the new Edward Murrow!! Yeah, right.

        Joe Scarborough is exactly right. Jon Stewart doesn’t have the ball to take on his own side and his own demographic. It’s much easier yelling at the other side.

        Jon stewart, take your own advice. Go f**k yourself.

        • Right on, ghost2. I think Stewart still makes a lot of good points about the idiocy of the Republicans and some Democrats. But he hasn’t done nearly enough to hold Obama and the rest of the media accountable. Jon Stewart will never go after Obama, only a few of his handlers deemed incompetent, but never the man in charge because he knows that will mean losing some of his viewers. I guess he didn’t care about us because he figured he could lose a few to gain a ton of Obots. Stewart will get his soon enough just as the media did with the Bush disaster. Stewart is now part of the media whores who will be proven wrong at the end of the Obama era. I hope Stewart wakes up someday and goes after those who are truly destroying our nation before it is too late.

  7. I am astonished at the number of shows and people from whom I have turned off and tuned out since the primaries. Stewart and Colbert, KO, Bill Mahar to name a few of those for whom watching was a must.

    The over the top slobbering of Obama was causing a bad case of acid reflux. They chose propaganda and let objectivity become and old fashioned virtue for the sake of a second rate politician who had yet to claim his chops on the political scene.

    It would take an act of God for me to return to those shows.

    • I turned it ALL off in Mid-April 2008. That was the point where I concluded that there was a consensus-collusion to take out Hillary AND Crown a Snake Oil Salesman-Smarmy Preacher Man as the Messiah of U.S. and world. After that I spent the time investigating said snake oil salesman-smarmy preacher man and found Chicago Machine Politics. It took only a couple of clicks, so I know the so-called free press could do much better…

    • I’m with you Pat -the only time I watch TV now is for fluff – or shows I like such as CSI or the Eleventh Hour – no more “news” oriented shows – when they come back to actually giving news or objective analysis I might consider going back, but for now I’m totally turned off.

    • Where did my other comment go?
      I’m with you Pat – I stopped watching anything “news” related during the propaganda ridden election season and never went back.

  8. I have to admit that I stopped reading Greenwald during the election season last year. Maybe with all his travel to and from Brazil he just wasn’t keeping a pulse on what was really happening. He is also very chummy with Jane Hamsher, whose FDL blog increasingly became the “cult of Jane” rather than a serious political blog. I’d like to think that Obama’s FISA vote was a big wake-up call for him, but I think you may be correct that being part of the “A-list” crowd was too seductive. He seems to have re-evaluated some of his earlier thinking, especially with regard to the role of the political blogosphere, and I give him credit for that.

  9. I stopped watching Stewart and Colbert shortly before the RBC debacle. The writing had been on the wal for a while and I was just tired of feeling angry every time I tried to get a sense of sanity and reality on the campaign. I’ll start watching TDS and TCR and others when their honeymoon ends and they apologize for their blind obediesance.

    And LESS is MORE, your comment (re: criticizing CNBC) is spot on.

  10. An odd meme seems to be that Stewart is taking up the cause of all the people who lost money in their 401ks or homes, because he’s taking on Cramer? Seen this in a couple of places. Funny how I didn’t realize that protecting Obama from criticism was taking up for the little people 🙂

    • This whole, seemingly orchestrated campaign to Get Cramer feels rather creepy. It feels a whole hell of a lot like censorship. by other means.

  11. I know, RD. Stewart says he’s “not fair,” but what happened last year was egregious (e.g., Colbert smearing HRC with the 60 Minutes “She called Obama a Muslim!” smear). How anyone could miss the RBC decision is beyond me, but what was telling about Stewart is when he said that if the superdelegates chose Clinton it would be the equivalent of stealing, produced from a shady “backroom deal.” I knew then he’s either exceptionally ignorant or, more likely, lying. He had to know the purpose of the supers and yet he said it anyways. Also, he mocked Clinton for claiming “media bias” (she didn’t even mention the misogynistic bigotry) and also when she said her supporters wanted a roll call, which he claimed was her attempt to steal the nomination from Obama even though it was a total break in tradition for candidates not to get one, especially those who are virtually tied.

    It was so absurd last year, sometimes I think, “Did that really happen?” Stewart is right when he told Cramer (something to the effect of), “It makes it look like you’re all in on it.” Yeah, it does.

    • Yeah exactly Davidson. Look in the mirror Stewart. Oh but he can’t afford to be honest with himself. Then what can he afford?

      I guess he can afford to scapegoat somebody else.

      Sorry Cramer.

  12. I also stopped watching Jon Stewart during the primaries and never went back.

  13. Excellent analysis, RD. Clarifies a lot for me.

    Glad you were able to have fun amidst the cold and loss of sleep! Hot chocolate and blankets for you.

  14. I used to like Jon Stewart but stopped watching him in early 2007. It was something he said. I just didn’t expect it of him. Recently, I watched some videos of his that were posted at NoQuarter USA.

    OT but for the first time, I think Obama might have done something he didn’t know he was doing.

    Obama Signs Law Banning Federal Embryo Research Two Days After Signing Executive Order to OK It

    On Wednesday, only two days after he lifted President Bush’s executive order banning federal funding of stem cell research that requires the destruction of human embryos, President Barack Obama signed a law that explicilty bans federal funding of any “research in which a human embryo or embryos are destroyed, discarded, or knowingly subjected to risk of injury or death.”

    http://www.cnsnews.com/public/content/article.aspx?RsrcID=44943

    • He probably knew but was hoping that only the religious right was paying attention.
      That’s a whole nuther post…

      • And from a quick search it seems that you’re right. Those are the only people writing about that amendment. At least so far….

        • Good lord! Someone here should write about it. I have to admit, I’m shocked! No matter how cynical I get, I still can be shocked all over against by this Obama’s two-faced, sell-out, underhanded, repulsive, corrupt behavior.

          • This is why I call him backtrack.
            Remember if he says it is raining outside.
            look out of the window,then look on the roof to see if someone is up there with a hose.
            He can not be trusted to tell the truth about anything.

            WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE, MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

            PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

          • This is just crazy. Maybe the media will ignore it but surely all the scientists thinking they will get research funding are going to say something?

      • Riverdaughter,

        I wanted to specifically thank you for this post. I have been so pissed at all the praise Stewart is getting. Yes, his interview of Cramer was fantastic, and Cramer was lost. To be fair, Stewart didn’t give it much chance, but Cramer didn’t have a point or a prayer, and was blabbing anyhow.

        I was pissed off for the exact same reason as you. We knew Jon stewart isn’t stupid. That he has an amazing platform, and one joke from him would have gone a long way in shutting down the misogeny (or downright rape) that was going on in the media (see: SNL when it came back. When SNL spoofed the media, it became the talk of the town).

        To top it all, Jon Stewart is way smarter than SNL, and can spoof the media like no one else. Yet, he participated in it. He let it happen.

        Jon Stewart is a sexist d**k, and emulates his audience. Joe Scarborough says that Stewart speaks truth to Republicans, but doesn’t have the balls to speak truth to his own side. Although both Joe Scarborough and Pat Buchanan have been a bit more couragous than Stewart in calling their own people on Hillary treatment, they too are too timid to take on their own network.

        I want to tell Jon to take his own advice and go screw himself.

        Here is the comments that Edgar08 and I wrote last night about this sorry episode.

        Edgar08

        He challenged Cramer and that’s neato but he never challenges his own demographic. Just to point out yeah there are exceptions to the rule he did one day sheepishly look into the camera and remarked “It’s OK now to laugh at Obama.” …

        But Cramer has HIS demographic. And Stewart has HIS demographic, and while I appreciate Stewart’s efforts it comes off to me as all part of the act.

        Stewart knows that entertainment transcends information with his audience. If not, he could just do Charlie Rose style interviews and retain his audience, right? Nope.

        And that was one of the points Cramer was trying to make.

        Cramer freely admitted that entertainment transcended information on his show too. And Cramer was not in a position to speak for everyone else he works with at CNBC.

        Whenever you criticize Stewart in the way I just have, the inevitable response is “He’s just a comedian.”

        But he’s not JUST a comedian. He does have people who listen to him. A lot of people. He has real power. And with power comes responsibility. It’s a trite response, “I’m just a comedian” means, I can say whatever I want about what you do but will take no responsibility about what I do, remember ….I’m just a comedian.

        And I do wish Cramer would be as honest and just look Stewart right in the eye and say “Dude, I’m just a comedian too.” Cause that’s what he is on his hysterical show.

        But in the end they are just two different entertainers with two different demographics, and the interview was fun to watch but ultimately didn’t make any difference to anyone except create more buzz for both of their shows.

        my comment

        Sorry for the long post.

    • This whole stem cell thing is well beyond my Bio 101 but isn’t one of the claims of the scientific community that “stem cells” are not “human embryos”? I think the claim that they are is a claim of the far right that is not substantiated by science. So would this just be a sort of empty gesture?

      • Stem cells are primarily derived from human embryos. You can get adult stem cells and cord blood stem cells but they are harder to harvest. The advantage of using embryos is that they are easier to culture and “train” to do what you want. It’s not really my area but I think the jist of the procedure is that you take a blastula or gastrula (a ball of cells that make up the embryo), and you shatter it. That releases the individual cells of the embryo. Actually, I don’t even know if you have to destroy the whole embryo. Maybe you only have to pick off however many cells you want. Then the suckers get thrown into some environment where they will get careful care and feeding and maybe some cytokines (I dunno, not an expert), where they can do their thing and become the tissue they were meant to be.
        But yeah, I think it’s just so much easier with embryos.

    • The NYTimes discussed this also on 03.08.2009. It seems the MSM didn’t report this aspect . Just more posturing by Backtrack.

      http://tinyurl.com/cgoudb

      Mr. Obama has no power to overturn the Dickey-Wicker ban. Only Congress, which attaches the ban to appropriations bills, can overturn it. Mr. Obama has not taken a position on the ban and does not intend to, Melody C. Barnes, his chief domestic policy adviser, said Sunday. The president believes stem cell research “should be done in compliance with federal law,” she said, adding that Mr. Obama recognizes the divisiveness of the issue. “We are committed to pursuing stem cell research quite responsibly but we recognize there are a range of beliefs on this,” she said.

  15. What’s most pathetic about all of this, is that Stewart is being heralded as some kind of journalistic hero. That’s how far the media has fallen–we have to resort to variety show hosts to get news. To me, this is just an extension of the Obama Apologist Syndrome. Focus on everyone and everything else, so Obama is not responsible. It’s Bush, it’s Limbaugh, it’s Wall St., it’s Cramer. WAPO did a story today that finally identifies the O team’s use of the word “inherited” on a constant basis to shift blame for all economic issues to Bush. And after using the word “catastrophe” since November to bulldoze his own ineffective policies through Congress without anyone having time vet or challenge the specifics, this week he is claiming that the economy is “not so bad.” When does it become HIS responsibility? These people are now just angry because the high is wearing off, due to Obama’s obvious ineffectual administration. DAMN THAT BUSH FOR RUINING OUR FANTASY!

    • fif you are SO ON IT …blame someone/ anyone else ..point the finger so you aren’t paying attention to what i am doing and I am already more than weary of the word inherited ..he has not inherited anything ..his “father was not the fucking king “

    • I actually heard Family Guy Gibbs state a couple of weeks ago that they can’t use the term “inherited” enough, that they need to remind people regularly that this was already happening before BO’s reign. It is an admitted policy to do so. I think its time to change the rhetoric, but maybe the rhetoric czar resigned.

    • Here we have an administration that, above anything else, abhors taking responsibility for anything.

      But loves to claim credit for anything good that it had nothing to do with.

      From the top down through to each obot.

    • No, no, no, no – inherited means that he had no choice -that it was thrust upon him – he could have chosen not to run or to be honest and accept the actual primary votes.
      But he didn’t he cheated to steal the seat that has become too hot for him to sit in now.

  16. Obama too sunny?

    Having defended Obama’s candidacy largely on his economic team, I’m having serious buyer’s remorse.

    Now, he’s building a budget on the promise that this recession will be milder than average, with growth merely dipping to 1.2% this year and returning to trend in 2010. Isn’t there anyone at BLS who could have filled him in on the unemployment figures, or at Treasury who could have explained what a disproportionate impact finance salaries have on tax revenue? These numbers . . . well, I can’t really fully describe them on a family blog. But he has now raced passed Bush in the Delusional Budget Math Olympics.

    http://meganmcardle.theatlantic.com/archives/2009/03/obama_too_sunny.php

  17. THANK YOU so much for this post !!!! Jon Stuart’s attempt at SCAPEGOATING Cramer , was transparent and feeble at best!!! Who does he think he is “kidding” ??? I could say so much more about Jon Stuart… How dare he say to Cramer ” these are real people ??? ” I guess Hillary and the Palins are not ?? The damage he did during the campaign was so totally misogynist it choked me .. I can never find him funny again and that goes for BERT too he is still schiling for bo and mo make no mistake .

    gee Jon how much money did you lose ??

  18. Does anyone know how many more people “obombi “can get up his ass? Seems to me Jon Stewart should just about fill it up. I am not a fan of Cramer…so if you don’t like ..you don’t watch. Just like obombi’s speeches.

  19. The reason why I think he didn’t know is because it has been around since 1996.

    The provision was buried in the 465-page omnibus appropriations bill that Obama signed Wednesday. Known as the Dickey-Wicker amendment, it has been included in the annual appropriations bill for the Department of Health and Human Services every fiscal year since 1996.

    • Um, if it has been included in every annual appropriations bill since 1996, then how could they be unaware of it? It’s a little like Susan Lucci being nominated for an emmy for something like 17 years straight without winning. That amendment should be notorious.
      Or is that the point you’re trying to make?

      • My point is that since it has been there for so long his team probably didn’t pay much attention to the details in the bill. It has always been added there. Their focus might have been on the new provisions.

        • Then he needs to get a new team. This team is not serving him well.

          • As per Paglia ““flacks, fixers and goons, …smirky smart alecks and provincial rubes???”

          • Obviously, they didn’t read it and RD – you’re right – he needs a team that will insure that he doesn’t make blunders like this one

  20. Jon Stewart so often parrots the conventional wisdom for his “radical comedy” that I have to question either his integrity or his understanding of politics and government.

    • He is a comedian! Our standards have gotten so low, that people are now treating Jon Stewart like an oracle? I know comics can be the court jesters–revealing the truth when others will not–but I’ve never seen Stewart that way. He’s like a preppie frat boy. It’s just more People-ization of this culture. I wouldn’t be surprised if CNN didn’t make him a news anchor–seriously.

      • Check out his interview with Bill Moyers. He *knew* what he was doing. He felt a sense of responsibility, just like we do. You don’t have to be a professional pundit to be a citizen who loves your country and wants to do something to help it, even if the only way you can contribute is through humor. That’s why it breaks my heart to see what Jon has done to his own credibility.

        • I agree. I thought what Stewart did on Crossfire was really brilliant and heroic. But now that action is tarnished by the perception that he’s just another guy rooting for whatever side he favors at the moment.

        • RD: you know I love you, and with all due respect, I watched half of that interview and had to stop. To me, Stewart is not scary smart. He’s a smart guy, just like many posters here (and less so, compared to many of our regulars–especially you) who is offering his very partisan perspective. Moyers is eager to portray him as a hero, and the audience fawns over every obvious challenge to the Republican p.o.v. I am tired of the self-congratulatory tone of the media and their supposedly incisive remarks. If Stewart is so scary smart, why didn’t he see through the pandering, hypocrisy and lies of Obama the way we did/do? Where were the questions about Rezko, Ayers, Wright, ACORN, caucus fraud, RBC (as you point out) etc? Where was the brave commentary about the use of r*ce to smear critics, including the Clintons, for political gain? It would have been too difficult, and required too much courage, to do that at the height of Obamamania. Now, it’s easy to put it all on Bush, and excuse Obama. The audience will clap and cheer approvingly again, and Stewart can feel like a hero, but I don’t buy it. He talks about the “cult-like” Bush Administration. Seriously? In the face of the Obama phenomenon? He says he accepts that with “Tom Cruise & Katie Holmes” but not Gonzalez et. al. He also accuses Gonzalez of either committing perjury or being a low-functioning pinhead. Well, what about Stewart and the fawning Left who refused to investigate or examine Obama and his teams’ tactics for over a year? As long as the critique is pointed at the “enemy” (ie: all Republicans), it’s laudatory, but if it’s one of our own (and especially the Prince), then HANDS OFF! As you point out, he had the opportunity to do that, and either he didn’t see it or refused to speak up. So which is it Jon, are you a perjurer or a pinhead?

          • Even though many of us and our colleagues watched and enjoyed Syewart, his show seems to have always been written to the 20-30 male college set, the Favreau cohort. They would not have been happy with a pro-Hillary schtick on any prolonged basis, although early on I did sense some pro-Hillary opinions by Jon, who I thought as a Jew at least was leaning in that direction. It didn’t last,however, obviously. It didn’t appeal to his wider audience.

          • Why didn’t he see through it? Who says that he didn’t? This is my point. If he saw through it, then it’s just a matter of time before someone exposes him as the hypocrit he is.
            I, for one, think he *did* see through it and he did it anyway. He may have reasoned that any Democrat was better than another Republican. He may not have thought that it would affect us the way that it did. Maybe he was of the opinion that we would “get over it” and it was all politics.
            But I sincerely doubt that he was unaware of what was going on. His prior history suggests otherwise.
            He knew. And he did it anyway. He’s no better than Cramer.

          • Oh gosh, fif, what a great post. I agree with almost every syllable. This sums it up:

            “I am tired of the self-congratulatory tone of the media and their supposedly incisive remarks.”

            That’s part of it — why, why on earth do they act like they’re so flipping edgy and courageous? You’ve got to be kidding me. Bashing Bush? Shooting fish in barrel and now, that’s a banal, conservative approach both to humor and to political commentary. They’re neither edgy nor courageous. They’re not even especially clever, they just sit in circles telling one another how marvelously clever they are.

            I also agree with RD below: Stewart knew what he was doing. I vote perjurer over pinhead. Don’t think he’s particularly smart, but he’s smart enough to know he’s playing to the hypocrisy of clapping hands. Heh, I think so, anyway. It’s hard to know, since the fauxgressives increasingly live in their preening echo chamber.

          • I second Alice. This post had me saying ‘hear hear!’ fif. I do that with many, many of your posts.

          • Thank you for this, fif. Too bad the NYTimes or WaPo or any number of media sources can’t find the balls or integrity to ask the same, rather obvious questions.

    • I disagree. The problem is that Jon is scary smart. He is very aware of what’s going on. That makes him extraordinarily responsible, MORE responsible than the average media superstar. Compared to Jon Stewart, Bill Maher is just a guy with Oppositional Defiant Disorder. Jon is one of those people who could truly have been heroic but he chose the path of least resistance for ratings. In this respect, he is no better than Jim Cramer or anyone else he criticizes and he’d better mend his ways before someone calls him on it on TV.

      • He is far worse than Cramer imnsho …. Cramer is at least calling bo on his “act” …. Stuart doesnt have the intestinal fortitude …. He is a coward and a smart fool ..

        • I agree. Cramer may be a sort of latter day P.T. Barnum with a cnbc carny barker kind of a shtick. And stock picking – might as well hand a monkey a bunch of darts and stick the financial pages on the wall, but calling out the irresponsible rhetoric and actions of the administration was braver than any other of these dopes have been so far.

          So you MSM folks and obots pound on Cramer all you want. He’s a man and you are mice.

          And Cramer was speaking on behalf of all individual investors, all working people with pensions, 403bs, 401ks and IRAs. That’s me and everybody I know, among so many millions more.

          Jon Stewart really is not speaking on behalf of all of us, unless and until he adds his voice to call for accountability and action from BO and his administration.

      • rest assured, if he’s reading this post right now he’s hanging his head in shame.

  21. I also stopped watching Stewart, Colbert, Maher, Moyers, CNN, MSNBC, etc, etc, since early in the primaries, and agree that I can’t trust most of what comes out of these people’s mouths and was sad that they couldn’t have been more helpful. I’m not sad anymore, just disgusted. Something about this interview seemed too orchestrated to me, however. Why would Cramer have participated? He must have had some inkling as to what was coming. I did find the old clips from 2006 a bit disturbing, but they were from one fuzzy episode of wich I didn’t understand the context. A little too much self-righteousness on Stewart’s part- did he lose a bunch of money in Bear Stearns? I hate to admit it, but I watched part of Maher last night, catching an obnoxious display of the usual post-post-racist drivel from that Univ. of Penn Black studies prof, but caught Maher saying we have to get rid of the elderly hangers-on- “The rich ugly folks who get too much social security” to save the financial mess. I couldn’t believe my ears, and it went unchallenged. What sickening, hateful rhetoric. That’s enough of that. I must be a masochist.

    • It would be satisfying to see Maher meet a fate he richly deserves. I don’t have a particular fate in mind. Just any kind of fate he richly deserves. I’m not picky.

  22. my comment is in moderation- I used the r*cist word- sorry- haven’t had my coffee.

  23. Totally OT, but it’s too disturbing not to mention. I posted the piece yesterday about how half the teens in Boston think Rihanna was at fault for Chris Brown’s savage attack against her, and then this today…when is violence against women going to become a priority? It’s barbaric.

    Note: There is also a picture of a man holding a sign that says: “Women’s rights are human rights.”

    South African men are ‘raping women to cure them of being lesbians’

    Lesbians living in South Africa are being raped by men who believe it will ‘cure’ them of their sexual orientation, a report has revealed.

    Support groups claim an increasingly macho political environment led to inaction over attacks.

    Laura Turquet, ActionAid’s women’s rights coordinator, said: ‘So-called “corrective” rape is yet another grotesque manifestation of violence against women, the most widespread human rights violation in the world today.

    ‘These crimes continue unabated and with impunity, while governments simply turn a blind eye.’

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1161693/South-African-men-raping-women-cure-lesbians.html

  24. Great post, RD. I too took Stewart and Colbert off of my DVR sometime in late 2007.

    He is brilliant, and that’s why this interview and his pandering to his Obot audience is so disappointing. Interviews like this one are reminiscent of KO’s rants. They have nothing to do with factual information, their sole purpose is to push an agenda. I never would have expected it from Stewart.

    Maher, on the other hand, has never impressed me. I never liked him from the start. He’s just not very smart.

  25. It’s the hypocrisy. As long as the hypocrisy exists, the rot exposed so thoroughly during the primary/election season continues to stink. And that is the heart of the problem — it’s not even BO. He’s the manifestation of that problem.

    It’s not about Hillary Clinton for me and hasn’t been for a long time. It’s about the rot that continues to exist. Bostonboomer’s last post about torture. The post above qualifications on stem cell research. My last trip to DU (I know, I know, if I insist on going over to DU, I deserve what I get), where posters were lining up to say that signing statements were okay when Obama did it. All the things that the fauxgressives raged about when Bush did it… crickets with Obama. Prop 8 leaves a bad taste in my mouth: even if you could let BO off the hook for not speaking out about his words being used in robocalls, does he take a leadership role? Nuh uh. What does he do? Invites Rick Warren to speak at his inauguration. And yet, the apologists carry water and perpetuate the rot.

    I understand now that the “progressives” never gave a damn about torture, renditions or international law. They cared about how smugly they could look in the mirror and preen at their own fabulous fabulosity.

    The only thing I ever enjoyed about Jon Stewart was his appearance Crossfire. I thought that was hysterically, hysterically funny and effective to boot. But nothing else he’s ever done has ever struck me as especially interesting/funny — he’s formulaic: says a line, then smirks at the camera. I wasn’t invested enough in him to be disappointed. At the same time, I see that he’s an example of something larger.

    The rot lives on.

    • I understand now that the “progressives” never gave a damn about torture, renditions or international law. They cared about how smugly they could look in the mirror and preen at their own fabulous fabulosity.

      Exactly. That’s how I see it Alice. And I agree with your assessment of Stewart. I have a strong absurdist sense of humor, and maybe it’s a just a stylistic preference–but I never liked Stewart. He strikes me as sophomoric and, as you said, formulaic. Lenny Bruce, and Richard Pryor were brilliant. Stewart, not so much for me.

      • At least now most of us realize there is no such thing as a “progressive.” That’s just a word for someone who is ashamed to be called a liberal–like Dear Leader. That’s why I’ve had it with people like Jon Stewart too. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

      • Yes, yes, yes, to your first para, fif!!!

  26. “He used to be one of us”

    pretty much sums up Stewart for me. Haven’t been following for a long, long time.
    The media is celebrating the fact that Obama now tortures and illegally detains people under some different pretext than W
    http://edgeoforever.wordpress.com/2009/03/14/jtjr-by-any-other-name/

  27. Maybe I am paranoid but it is almost like the American people are being conditioned to accept dictatorship.
    The failing educational systems,
    the lack of integrity of the media,
    the losers in congress that no longer represent the people they are supposed to represent.
    The robbing of the resources of this country
    The shredding of the Constitution with no outcry except from a few like us
    Election fraud. for the first time in my life people being afraid to say who they voted for
    The overwhelming silence of many American people on all of this.

    Maybe it is just me early in the Am in California.

    WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE,MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

    PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

    • hey .. I really think bo has a third world paradigm
      … he has no concept of what his position is in the world as the head of this country .. .

      • Michelle definitely so. BO possibly thought he could get away with delegating everything.

    • You know the saying: just because your paranoid, doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you…

      too much mounting evidence. I don’t know if it’s intentional, but as Alice said above, it’s definite evidence of rot.

    • I don’t think you’re paranoid. It is pretty evident that that is what is happening. And plenty of credible, responsible people have and are saying so.

      • May this is a stretch but even with the trying to limit health care for the elderly who remember the freedoms we had.
        Who teaches the future generations? Soon no one is left who remembers and it is easier to dominate those who are ignorant or have never been taught.
        Don’t know why this is on my mind today but this post does point out part of the problem.

        WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE, MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

        PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

    • Exactly, HelenK

  28. OT nice article on Hillary

    ” All You Need Is Diplomacy
    Hillary Clinton’s world tour.”
    by James Rosen
    03/13/2009

    http://tinyurl.com/cyfn3k

  29. BTW they have something very similar to the Daily Show in Italy.
    It’s called Striscia la Notizia. It was new during the 90s and really, very, very funny, and politically on the ball.
    Now it seems jaded, and overmuch in Berlusconi’s lap.

    I’m sure there are Daily Show clones all over Europe.

  30. I agree Stewart is a sell out, but he is right about Santelli, Cramer and CNBC.

    this dicky wicker stem cell reversal thingie is unbelievable.

    this is either the stupidest unprepared admin of all time, or he is dumb like a fox.

    • But Santelli was saying the opposite of what Cramer has argued. Santelli blamed mortgage holders. Cramer has been arguing that homeowners should be helped to stay in their homes and the banks should be taken over and restructured. Cramer is an avowed Democrat and supported Hillary in the primaries. He has long been hated by Limbaugh, et al. So how is he in the same category as Santelli?

      • Because he criticized the administration. Cramer voted for BO also, but that isn’t enough to save him from the rabid voracious obots.

        • Well, that’s my point, isn’t it? I think it was RD’s point too. All Stewart cares about is the criticism of BO. These two men critiqued BO from two completely different points of view. So instead of dealing with Obama’s failed policies, Stewart tries to blame CNBC for not anticipating the meltdown. That makes no sense and it’s a complete distraction from what is really important at this point.

          Plenty of people were warning about the meltdown. Let Stewart get them on the show and ask why the MSM and the government ignored all the warnings from economists.

      • I don’t want to defend Stewart, but originally the story was about CNBC in general and Santelli.

        Cramer was thrown in a few times for good measure to show that the Network was basically not doing their job.

        So Cramer decided to speak out.

        Don’t just watch the aired part of TDS go to their site and watch the entire interview which is about twice as long. Very enlightening.

        • Sorry, I can’t bring myself to watch Stewart or Colbert at all anymore. But I have read a lot of Cramer’s recent articles. If Stewart wanted to chastise Santelli, he should have gotten Santelli on the show. Cramer isn’t responsible for everything that happens on CNBC, and he isn’t responsible for Santelli.

        • Furthermore, the attacks by Dems and MSM on Cramer have been because he criticized Obama’s policies–not because of anything related to predicting the crisis. Why didn’t Stewart deal with Cramer criticisms or the fact that Obama himself is apparently in agreement with Santelli?

          Obama is doing absolutely nothing to help homeowners. The money being provided to help people restructure their mortgages is just there to help Fannie and Freddie. Meanwhile even with restructuring, the homes are still going to be overvalued, and the mortgage payers will not gain any equity in their homes.

          • TDS did a skit on CNBC Santelli and making fun of the guru’s

            Cramer wrote a piece defending the network on his web site street smarts or something like that

            Then the brawl came into being.

            He was defending the network and put himself out there at that point.

            that doesn’t mean I don’t understand RD’s point, in fact I agree with her.

            but I don’t have much sympathy for Cramer who was a hedge fund operator, and bragged about shorting and how it is done in 2006.

            I also don’t have much sympathy for him for not telling people what was going on when he knew it, which was the point of the interview.

          • Can you link to that article? The articles I have seen and that have been discussed here at TC were Cramer defending himself for criticizing BO. BTW, do you think Stewart would badmouth Comedy Central in public?

            When Stewart recognizes that the problem is Obama and not some cable TV talking head, maybe I’ll start watching him again. Until then, he’s just another sellout who is helping Obama distract the public from the fact that the U.S. is approaching bankrupcty and the administration is helping it along.

    • I agree with you, Taggles. I haven’t watched Jon in a very long time but I watched the Cramer interview out of curiosity. He was right about Cramer even if Stewart acted as the long arm of the White House. If Cramer had been telling the truth and practicing hard journalism some of this mess could have been mitigated. CNBC and Cramer were out to protect the Wall Street Corporate interests and hide their underhanded means of screwing the middle class investors.

  31. Oh dear-am in moderation-waves

  32. But I sincerely doubt that he was unaware of what was going on. His prior history suggests otherwise.
    He knew. And he did it anyway. He’s no better than Cramer.

    Just saw this post RD. You answered my question above about being a perjurer or pinhead. So few soothsayers out there…it’s easy to “speak the truth” when you are railing against someone hated like Bush. True courage requires speaking truth in the face of great opposition. Not so much of that around.

    • Welcome to the holdouts.

    • LOL, fif, my comment about it is in moderation above, but I loved your long post and I vote perjurer!

    • To only be principled when it is easy, or when it is cool, or when you can look good, is not to be principled at all.

      And to go by principle means you have to apply it in every situation, even when all circumstances are against you, when you have nothing to gain, when you have something to lose.

      And who can doubt after what we have seen that there is a difference in people who try to live up to principles, and people who schlep along on the low road, dishonest, no accountability, can’t be trusted, weak reeds.

      Hey I know who I want to hang out with.

  33. Bio 101 question. I think most scientists claim that stem cells are not embryos. The right wing attack on stem cell research I think was partly based on the claim that stem cells were human embryos. If this is the case, then is there any real conflict between opening stem cell research and at the same time saying human embryos are off limits?

    • I hate to break it to the pro-life contingent out there but stem cell research is probably going to mean “embryos” for the forseeable future. Why do something that takes 15 steps when you can do it in four? The cost/benefit analysis is going to break in favor of embryos.
      Now, if you are strictly pro-life, you should object to it. And that’s fine. It just puts you in the minority. At last count, something like 80% of the population says go for it.
      AFAIC, embryos are entirely at the mercy of the mother’s body. Even good embryos sometimes fail to implant in the uterus and none of us are the wiser. It’s just nature. Until the little sucker attaches and has a willing host, it might as well be destined for another period and if that’s the case, why not put it to good use?

      • Careful, or next thing you know mothers who have sponaneously aborted early on (it happens all the time) will be prosecuted for murder. Even though men who waste millions of sperm masturbating will never be looked on the same way.

  34. Great post RD. I think it will be some time before all of the media—left, right and center—really examine themselves and get to the reality that they have abandoned the gold standard of objective journalism for the fleeting fame of opinion making. The truth is that the history of the 4th estate going back to Benjamin Franklin and even earlier has a long tradition of trying to be king makers and sycophants. The instances of jounalism and truth and writing truth to power are remarkable especially because they are historically so few.

    • That is so true Jangles and I appreciate you bringing it up because I need the reminder.

      It can also be thought of as a positive sign that millions are abandoning the news media because of the media’s lack of integrity and objectivity, and their inability to correct themselves.

      A few week’s ago I read an op-ed on Real Clear Politics done by a journalist at, I think, the SF Chronicle which had just announced layoffs. She wrote, I paraphrase “You’ll all be sorry one day when we are gone!” Reviewing the comments on RCM, lib and conservative alike said “No we wont because you suck.”

  35. Hi RD-did you see this article on” Why big pharma mergers magnify failures” which Poplicola posted for you yesterday?

    It seems to echo everything you’ve been saying.

    http://tinyurl.com/b3wf2j

    • Yes I did and I both agree and disagree with the author. Be careful how you read this article because it is written by a guy with a conflict of interest. He is part of the consultant class that is trying to restructure R&D. So, while he makes a good case for why mergers are bad for pharma, he doesn’t make a very good case for why what he is suggesting as an alternative, ie, cutting drug development costs by acquiring small biotechs, is any better. In fact, it’s not. What he is suggesting is a kind of outsourcing. He says that these firms are less weighted down by baggage and are nimbler. But here’s the thing: the reason why the small biotechs can’t get a drug even though they have good ideas is because they too lack resources. They lack the shepherding resources of clinical and regulatory type that big pharma has in spades. But what big pharma *also* has is a bunch of people in marketing and advertising, as well as IS, who take up a lot of capital resources and produce very, very little value for the corporation. But so far, we are not hearing about how we have to drastically cut the cost of marketing and IS. Their bloated units, (IS is frequently nearly a decade out of date with technology. We’re still working with IE 6 at work. And firefox? Fuggedaboutit) never seem to come under scrutiny.
      So, until someone comes out with a plan to replace a marketing position with a BS Chemist, who we CLEARLY need, I can’t give these people much credit. I’m right there in the middle of the research dilemna with scientist spending more of their time negotiating contracts with outsourcing companies and less time using their limited resources on real science to know that this guy is full of shit.

  36. RD welcome back from the YMCA wilderness. I have happy memories of YMCA camp, but never properly appreciated what the chaperones were going through all-night-long.

    You mentioned earlier this week that you are a fan of Shri Durga by DJ Cheb i Sabbah. Me too! Also Krishna Lila. I have a couple of others from him but they are not yet standbies. I was tickled to discover another fan. I love indian music of all stripes, remixes no exception.

    • DJ Cheb i Sabbah, *LOVE* Shri Durga. Best. Work. CD. Ever. So mentally relaxing. I have other ragas too of a more traditional variety. I enjoy them too but the remix with all of the ambient noises and the calls to prayer and stuff is just excellent. I feel like I am there in India, not stuck in an office in NJ. One of my elves in my brain is happily entertained by that image and stops distracting me when I’m trying to work.
      Highly recommended.

      • Discussing this has prompted me to play it on the itunes right now. Favorite by far is track 4 maheshvara yogi. But there is a thing that drives me crazy about this track – at the end, I want to know what he is saying – something about knowledge and the ocean not being different from each other but I can not figure it out. I just know it would be something great to understand, too.

        You must get Krishna Lila – it’s essentially like volume II of Shri Durga! We go around singing ‘kriiiIIiiIiiIIsssnaaAAaaa’ when we are being silly at home. That’s how the first song starts out.

        Sabbah’s As Far as a DJ mix also has some great tracks. My #1 itunes most played is from that album – hari om narayan – blissful out of this world.

        I have some other more traditional ragas and then a couple of bhangra compilations, and then some movie soundtracks. Also a fan of traditional indian stories and legends. Ready to talk about that stuff annnyyy time and swap recommendations.

  37. Let’s face it, Stewart, Maher, Colbert are no different than Tweety, KO, and Cafferty.

    • Every one on tv plays to increase ratings and hence their income. You have to judge their sincerity with that in mind. I’d believe a lot of them would forward something completely different if it would play with the demographic-de-jour and increase their ratings. All of them are no different from Jerry Springer in that regard.

      • Don’t forget also how they fired Donohue when he went against the bosses.

        How much freedom do these guys have to state their truth? Of course, Donohue had the integrity (and the money) to speak out.

      • We are getting our news and entertainment fed to us by milionaires and billionaires.

        Exposing truth, even humorouly, could cause problems.

        They”ve harnessed TV and most of the radio stations.

        The internets remain a forum for regular folks to connect and find out what’s going on, at least for now.

        Of course, talking one on one with each other is always the most effective way to get and give information.

        Jon Stewart called out the Bush Admin often and with biting satire, long before the the end of his first term.

        He and Colbert had their moments in the sun, when they had the amazing experience of saying the right and true thing and being applauded for doing so.

        They could still do so, but the applause, at least temporarily, would be muted. Or maybe not, we PUMA’s are a vociferous bunch.

        Now, their words, their integrity, are for sale to the highest bidder. They are firmly entrenched in the millionaire/billionaire club.

        Great post RD, and what a crazy/fun experience you had

        . It brings to mind March mother/daughter camping trips, as provided by the Girl Scouts, at a remote camp in the Rocky Mountains.

        We moms were on the look out for bears and mountain lions, both hungry after the long winter.
        The girls were still Brownies for goodness sake, our worst fear was one of our little ones would encounter an “adorable” bear cub.

        It was still great fun, we moms who went still talk about it fifteen years later.

        🙂

        • My sense is that it doesn’t have anything to do with the money. I think it’s pure gynophobia and Obama-lust. Both Stewart and Colbert are savvy enough that they can support of decimate whomever. Their Favreau with an ounce more creativity.

          I stopped watching Stewart when he blew off the vid of Obama flipping off Hillary. It was the first time that I saw him as dishonest instead of prejudiced.

          Colbert lost me when he used Hillary to plug in the equipment, signalling that she was but a technician, while he featured Obama making one of his canned “inspirational” speeches.

          I’ll say it again because it bears repeating. These are two smart, college-educated men in their forties who still call other men out by describing them as “p*ussies”. They couldn’t care less about women, seniors or the poor except in that abstract way that rich people do. They’re no more than mouthpieces for Obama, ready to thin out the herd based on advanced age or a failure to qualify as “kewl”.

  38. De-lurking;What everyone said about Jon Stewart.

    I’m sorry to be OT; BO gave a speech early this week on education. He supports merrit raises for teachers. If I needed just aone more bit more evidence that BO is a carbon copy of GWB this was it. Same old Regressive Republcan policy-speak,designed to alienate and punish teachers,under the guise of*accountability * and *responsibility*.
    The teachers I work with who voted for him are either angry as hell or *shocked*.
    Talk about more rot.

    • Yep, but people who voted for him should have known about it, because Obama was involved in privatizing education in Chicago and putting all those military charter schools in the poor neighborhoods.

    • I saw that too, slm. I’m surprised that there hasn’t been a huge reaction to this. How much more abuse can teachers be expected to take? I read that he advocates merit pay based on test scores. That’s insane. How can you pay a teacher who teaches in a lower income area where there are more single parent homes and less emphasis on education, less than a teacher in an afluent area just because students’ test scores are lower?

      As well, the teachers will naturally only teach the test. That is my problem with AP classes in high school. They are, in the words of one of my daughter’s AP teachers, nothing but a bootcamp. No emphasis on creativity or any effort to stimulate thinking. Just memorize, memorize, memorize, and then write about what you memorized.

      • Yes-I saw this b4 the election-he was advocating merit pay. Not good at all.

      • I couldn’t agree with you more about this testing madness and the focus on wrote learnring and regurgitation of facts, rather than developing critical thinking skills. The Los Angeles Unified School District has the 2nd largest teacher’s union in the U.S(N.Y.C. has the largest),UTLA, A very vociferious and influential union,that has decried merit based pay raised from day 1. So where is the outcry,the protests? There has got to be a hopium come down in the near future,and it’s not going to be pretty.The future of public education is going to suffer for this, as if we don’t have to worry about already with over crowding,multiple tracks, increasing drop out rates,and gang violence).
        Looks like BO has now thrown all teachers under the bus,not just the one’s in Chicago.

  39. RD, I agree with you 100 percent. Well said.

  40. Can someone translate this into bullet points i can understand?

    it’s a NY times article about the dickey wicker thingey.

    Obama Is Leaving Some Stem Cell Issues to Congress

    WASHINGTON — While lifting the Bush administration’s restrictions on federally financed human embryonic stem cell research, President Obama intends to avoid the thorniest question in the debate: whether taxpayer dollars should be used to experiment on embryos themselves, two senior administration officials said Sunday.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/09/us/politics/09stem.html?_r=1&ref=us

    It appears he reversed the ban on embryonic research but not the funding, which congress has to do. And he has decided to not get involved in that. Right?

    • Taggles, to me this is the same as agreeing to fund Medicaid but then saying that abortions for poor women are excluded from Medicaid coverage. As long as a procedure is legal, it should be eligible for taxpayer funding, IMO. Obama just made embryo stem cell research legal. So, in spite of what he claims, he’s just playing politics with science once again.

      • yes grays, just more prevaricating. Making himself look good without actually doing anything.

        Yes I am glad he undid the signing statement, but don’t expect him to expend any political capital.

  41. I don’t have much to add here since Gary did a post on this on his website.

    However, remember J. Stewart is an entertainer as far as I’m concerned. How do I know this? I saw him on HBO in Death to Smoochy.

    http://tinyurl.com/aobyp3 Luv the hairdo.

  42. here is cramers article, where he mentions comedians, but stewart was not criticizing him speaking out against BO.

    http://www.mainstreet.com/article/moneyinvesting/news/cramer-takes-white-house-frank-rich-and-jon-stewart

    Stewart criticized him only for being inept during the last 4-5 years and his network.

    http://www.mainstreet.com/article/moneyinvesting/news/cramer-takes-white-house-frank-rich-and-jon-stewart

    Then Cramer went on cable and network tv to defend himself, nothing about criticizing BO, but about his bad calls financially that Stewart had pointed out.

    So it is Cramer himself who makes this about his criticisms of BO, not Stewart.

    I am not defending Stewart, I am trying to give facts. You will have to watch TDS to see for yourself whether or not Stewart was going after him because he criticized BO. If you do, I think you will see he was going after Santelli and CNBC for the LOSER comment.

    • I am not commenting at all about whether Cramer is getting whipped for criticizing Obama. I think Stewart’s point was that the finance journalists and cable shows were being insufficiently critical of their guests and failing to act as a watchdog against abuse. Contrast CNBC with Planet Money and you will see a huge difference. Planet Money seems to be taking their charge seriously.
      M
      MY point was that Stewart also failed to be critical and a watchdog last year. As a result, we now have a president who is failing to hold the banking industry accountable because he used their money to win. Stewart completely let us down when he failed to expose the extent to which the corporate media promoted Obama. Now, if Obama fails to reverse the Bush afministration’s laissez fairs policies, Stewart shares some of the blame for the catastrophe that follows. The truth about Obama was always out there for anyone who kept a cool head.

  43. I want to add one more time that I agree with the RD that he really has some nerve, but that doesn’t mean I will defend Cramer.

    I don’t care that he one time criticized the ONE. He’s been a part of the problem from hedge funds, to bad advice, to covering for his friends. And I was glad to see his network called out, even if it was Stewart.

    They are both assholes in my opinion.

  44. It was very hard last year in Manhattan not to get caught up in the media koolaid, especially if your business was entertainment. At some point Stewart made a personal choice, that Obama was one of “us” not one of “them,” then it became a subtle but goal-oriented crusade for him. By March and the Bear collapse, it was evident to most in NYC that the bubble was bursting. Jon believed the guy who was not one of “them” would be better for the country. He was also not above some misogyny, like most comedians. Not as bad as Maher, worse than Colbert.

    Cramer on the other hand knew how deeply the bankers were invested in both Dems in the running. Jim actually saw that a smart and practical doer like Hillary would be better for the harsh environment to come. He’s an interesting paradox, Cramer, a wolf without the taste for blood. He got out of the hedge fund racket because he couldn’t stomach occassionally losing money for his clients. His stoic and accomodating performance at the Stewart interview felt at times like some sort of weird penance that he was actually thankful for. And in the end, both of them naturally benefited from the ratings boost, so some of it is always staging.

    Half of CNBC these days is an utter joke. Problem is they have the toxic cheerleading part all mixed in with some decent financial reporting. It’s hard to separate the fast money bs from the legitimate data reports and interviews. If Cramer wants to stick around, he needs to change his Mad Money format. He could be devastatingly good as a true outsider providing reality checks, holding the system accountable. That’s a decision both he and CNBC are probably going to have to make about their futures.

  45. Obama is an Agent of Cynicism.

    Barack Obama is perpetrating a fiction. And it is fiction from a man who made “change” and “new politics” centerpieces of his campaign. Even many who voted against Obama took him at his word because, to quote Obama himself, “words mean something.” We admired not simply his skills, but his capacity to tap into something real and hopeful in America .

    “Where we are met with cynicism and doubt and those who tell us that we can’t,” Obama said on the night he was elected, “we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people: Yes we can.”

    And when we are met with politicians who pretend that the politics of cynicism is the politics of hope and ask us to go along for the ride, who vulgarize and invert the meaning of words in order to advance their own narrow aims, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the wisdom of an awakened people: No we won’t.

    http://www.commentarymagazine.com/viewarticle.cfm/an-agent-of-cynicism-15097

  46. I found this comment from TDS blog on point :

    Big fan – but Jon completely missed the mark for the first time, and I was embarrassed of him.

    Any valid points he could have made were lost behind the fact that he was being a goddamn bully.

    Stuart’s argument (at least as far as I can decipher) is that he’s against the sensationalized financial journalism put forth by CNBC.

    Here are some of the reasons I really don’t have respect for Stuart’s viewpoint:

    #1, If you invest in the stock market, you know about the risk you are taking.

    Is it CNBC’s job to inform you about the risks of investing? No. If you invest all your life savings in a risky medium, it’s not CNBC’s fault – it’s your fault for being an idiot.

    #2, Cramer offers entertaining opinion.

    Finance is boring. Cramer is there to offer his financial OPINIONS in an entertaining way, and he succeeds. If you don’t get that it’s Cramer’s opinion and not instructions on what to do with your life savings, you’re missing the point.

    #3, Stuart attacked Cramer personally – but said it wasn’t about him?

    Stuart continually attacked Cramer personally, but then said it’s not about him? Sorry Jon, you can’t have it both ways.

    #4, When applying Stuart’s own ‘it’s not a f**ing game’ logic to The Daily Show itself, Stuart ends up being a big hypocrite.

    Polls show most of the younger generation gets its news from The Daily Show, so using Stuart’s ‘responsibility’ logic, you could say that he has the journalistic responsibility to grill his politician guests with the hard questions and take them to task… but he doesn’t. He wants them to come back on, so he goes as limp as Jay Leno.

    #5, It’s more likely that Cramer is NOT a puppet to the companies on Wall Street, and is actually an advocate of the people, as he claims.

    When Stuart pulled a similar bully act on CNN’s Crossfire, the argument was that Begala and Carlson were slaves to their own party – and wouldn’t compromise, say anything bad about their own party, or say anything good about the other party. I tend to agree with Stuart here.

    This time, Stuart tried to make a similar argument of Cramer, yet I’m unclear how much merit this argument has. If you watch Mad Money, or if you’ve read any of Cramer’s columns, you can see that he is indeed consumer-focused. Yes, he did hedge funds before he got the Mad Money job, so showing video of that job and the requirements of it in relation to his current job, is tangential at best, and an out and out smear job on behalf of Stuart at worst.

    When taking all this in consideration, and then considering that Kramer wasn’t really arguing with Stuart’s jabs (he was being apologetic and trying to talk about it), and then seeing that Stuart rolled right on with the chastising over an industry (by his own admission) he does not understand the intricacies of… it comes down to one thing:

    Jon Stuart: bully.

    by Brian C March 14th at 2:21PM

    • Thank you for reposting this here swanspirit. It’s a really good post.

    • Great points. I’m glad to see other Jon Stewart fans who aren’t drinking the kool-aid.

  47. maybe this is why Cramer has been putting himself out there:

    Street.com CEO quits after Cramer’s TV flameout

    Outsized TV personality and chairman of the board Jim Cramer issued a boilerplate statement on Mr. Clarke’s departure, saying only, “I want to thank Tom for his long-time service to the Company and wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

    The abrupt nature of Mr. Clarke’s departure only adds to the company’s troubles in the current bear market. Its stock dropped below $2 per share this week, down from $9.50 per share a year ago.

    The stock in recent years had traded as high as $16 per share in December of 2007, but has suffered with the decline in the media and advertising markets. Its success was tied closely to Mr. Cramer’s popularity, and the recent heavy criticism of his bombastic television personality may be reflected in the company’s performance.

    http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20090313/FREE/903139975

    • Just be honest about it. No one had a problem with Cramer until he criticized Obama on his show. Same with Santelli, except I had never heard of him until his “rant”.

      The Daily Show is not crusading journalism damn it.

      • I agree TDS is not journalism, but a financial news cable channel is.

        I agree wholeheartedly with Riverdaughters post. John Daily could have used his large forum to bring the truth out last year, but he was co-opted as well. He sold himself out and us too.

        But just because that is so, I do not think Cramer is some kind of hero. I won’t defend him. As a matter of fact, he is a weasel imho. Just because some one criticizes the one doesn’t make them the truth bearer of all time.

        This whole thing started at the TDS with Stewart going after CNBC as a whole because they had no journalistic integrity, and Rick Santelli for calling working Americans LOSERS.

        Cramer decided to write about it on his website. It took off from there.

        I do question why Cramer took it upon himself to be a spokesperson for CNBC and take such offense when he would have never been mentioned further. He was part of a larger story on CNBC and it’s lack of journalism.

        So now we learn his public venture is bleeding oodles of money stock shares have sank from $19 to $2 dollars and quite possibly he is trying to make himself more relevant. That show he appeared on was the tenth most watched TDS ever. I don’t think it’s a leap that he tried to take advantage and gain himself some notoriety and try to rehabilitate himself to make more money for himself, his stockholders.

        That is afterall what it’s about, right? I can’t believe it’s some kind of real virtue with Cramer.

        • Cramer pointed out that Stewart took Cramer out of context, which he did in his clip about Bear Stearns.

          Quite frankly I have to wonder why instead of chatising Mr Cramer Mr Stewart doesn’t instead choose to chatise a Democratic Congress(who also seemed clueless about the meltdown). Scapegoat much Jon.

          I lost respect for Colbert and Stewart during the primary. I don’t watch them anymore.

  48. Riverdaughter
    before I leave to take a nap before work tonight.
    I found this planter plaque and I am going to send it to my daughter who has a 14 year old girl. We love her and she is a great kid but she is 14 years old.

    “fertilized with the ashes of obnoxious teenagers”

    I thought you could use the laugh after your weekend.

    WOMEN WITH INTELLIGENCE AND EXPERIENCE,MEN WHO SUPPORT THEM AND COUNTRY BEFORE PARTY ALWAYS

    PUMAS,BUBBAS,EQUALISTS AND THOSE PEOPLE RULE

    • LOL! To be honest, they were really fun to be with and I enjoyed every minute, except the minutes they kept me up squealing in fear of Jason. But I only had to get terse once.

  49. The only problem i really had with John Stewart is that I don’t think of CNBC as financial Journalists. They just report stock ticks up and down and what’s on the street and they talk to folks. It’s just like hollywood reporters report on celebs. It’s a parasitical relationship. I think political commentators are the same way. You can’t expect any of them to be like journalists because they’re not really journalists. Just like Stewart is an actor, comedian, and tv personality not Murrow.

    You can hold the food network responsible for obesity. You can hold ETV responsible for Brittany Spear’s meltdown. You can hold CNBC responsible for bubbles. You can blame Rush Limbaugh for the Republican Agenda. You can blame Tweety for Obama. OR you can get real and realize they’re all special interest programs aimed at feeding folks what they want to hear and making money off it …

    again, no different than Jerry Springer lining up the dregs of humanity like barnum and bailey for the money

    • I think you are right on with the analogy of CNBC/economic meltdown = Food Network/obesity.

    • You hit the nail on the head. It’s whyI no longer watch the boobtube for news, its strictly for entertainment. I read the news in my local paper or get it from a variety of sources online

  50. OT but

    I’m currently having dinner in a restaurant here but I swear I just saw Janet Napolitano.
    Is she really in Berlin?

    • Wow, you’re good MABlue. I wouldn’t recognize Janet Napolitano if I tripped over her, but, yes, she is in Germany this week.

  51. BostonBoomer & MyIQ, you’ve got mail.

  52. This is a very interesting take. You are saying that the one guy who could have bravely reviewed the election last year while it was going on, and actually given a different and plausible position that supported Hillary Clinton, probably didn’t do it because it would have alienated a good portion of his youngish, “hipper” audience that had already drank the Kool Aid.

    Meaning Stewart is no different than Jim Cramer.

    Great comparison.

    http://www.DailyPUMA.com

  53. Glad you made it back okay! And didn’t get jasoned….remember for us how it was the story of the guy with the hook? OMG. I remember that from Girl Scout camp! — the watery hot chocolate — the up all night and the giggling…..

    on Indian music — Ravi Shankar — Ry Cooder “Meeting by the River” — Oh! — totally fab.

    on media– I didn’t have TV (cable) when I began to read Conf. It had just been off for about oh 15 years? So, on the limited channels I had at the time last year, if I couldn’t sleep I watched the comedy (horrible) on late at night. Like Leno.

    I could not believe my eyes or ears at what I saw RD & Co. The jokes they thought they were making. My news was coming only from LAT at the time, or in here. The media has the power to sway opinion — massively– and those comics need the kind of feedback you just wrote, here. In my opinion, they all blew it. They blew it.

    My husband has this book, The Age of Missing Information” — from ’92 — by Bill McKibben. I’m going to read it—- because, what I see is just a blank. A ZERO in what is being broadcast as news?
    That has already happened in the American Press (newspapers) — but TV?

    I had this whole break from that –so coming back?
    You would not believe what I can see in terms of target-marketing pharma. Whew. Also — the GenObot is the prime target market?
    All these mid-30 somethings. The ad messages are strange as well, very strange…

    MiQ refers to Zombies a lot? Well, what I see on TV is inappropriate affect? What that means is– what people laugh at? For instance– a newscaster will laugh after there has been a tragedy? When the affect we should be seeing is tears? (The feelings) — seeing this gives me insight into the “dumbdown” problem — and why we are sensitive to the things that seem so awry like with that weird TelPrompter Cinie writes about.

    If this group is numbed out — psychically– they aren’t going to be functioning at the same levels — they may think laughing is appropriate — because they see the TV types doing that?

    Anyway, it’s just strange. And that never happens here, does it?
    Here people (writing) are firing on all four cylinders. It was the non-reality of most of the arguments we saw coming from the trollsquad over time, no? The non-logic? That is the Brave-New-Worldy part…. (overly pilled-out into a blank)

    Glad you are back, and that Spring is rolling around! We can count on that, can’t we?

    ps: There is almost nothing on TV! I mean, when we were kids? We used to look forward to the 13 channels or something, I swear.
    I guess I better get the Ipod tech eventually…but, just imagine?
    How Tech has changed everything since say 1990?

    Society is no longer “learning” all together en masse? We have so much available — but if you have audiences only learning what they want by say, watching only a few channels they like?

    Hmmm……..

    GenO might take that old blog as gospel where you used to be and never see opposing viewpoints that they have to “think” their way through? — I mean THINKING! — really THINKING! People weren’t thinking in this election and now? Like you said, the repercussions of all of this, globally?

    This is not what we needed post-Bush. Thinkers knew that. Long ago last year.

  54. Upstairs!

  55. it’s obvious that reporters/news tellers went to the same ethics classes as the bankers and ceos of the major investment houses that bellied up. leaves most of us little people out here in the dark. thanks to everyone. it tickles me to think however that john stewart and those high paid obama reporters at msnbc lost a lot of their investments, same as o’reilly at fox.

  56. […] in the middle of rant about Jon Stewart as tedious and sanctimonious as it was wrongheaded, Km wrote the following. And what does the RBC do? It takes delegates away from the real winner and gives them to the loser […]

  57. I have started watching Jon Stewart again but only sparingly. I used to watch him religiously but I agree that he really lost me last year. He is funny and I have tuned in once in a while if I see a clip deemed funny on a pro-Clinton site but I don’t even plan on watching the Cramer v. Stewart match. It’s a waste of time. There are worse people in this financial crisis that Stewart has yet to attack. How about starting with the politicians, Stewart? Oh, but that would be going after Obama and your Obot audience would never allow that. It’s sad that Stewart has become what he has so despised.

  58. “For both, maybe there was a touch of unacknowledged sexism”

    –That’s the truth, they were calling everyone else racist, but that was just a mask for their sexism. A psychologist before the election found that people’s sexism outweighed their racism by far. Chris Matthews actually said it on air, “Do you think people have more trouble with a woman leader than a black man, I do.”

    Such a great post. I’m off Colbert, Stewart, Olbermann, Matthews, Maher and more too. Same reasons: primary revealed things I didn’t know. Sexists. Now they’re Obama’s Fox News.

  59. Stewart went after Cramer because Cramer went after Obama.

    Exactly.

    The Jon Stewart that Jon Stewart pretended to be would have been happy to see the press questioning this government’s clandestine actions, course of action in a crisis, and judgment. Now, Stewart’s just part of the crush dissent, new policy of don’t question The Obama or else.

  60. Also, if you want to make your opinions known on The Daily Show blog, go here to comment: http://blog.indecisionforever.com/2009/03/13/jon-stewart-and-jim-cramer-the-extended-daily-show-interview/
    Let Stewart and his crew know how you feel about the interview and Stewart’s cowardliness since Election ’08.

  61. Great post, RD. So very nice to hear a similar voice. Very disappointing that Jon Stewart is part of the “media” he so deeply dislikes.

  62. brillliant post, rd. I can no longer watch or stomach Stewart or Colbert. This bruhaha with Cramer is just the icing on the cake. The turning point for me was the sickening attack on the Clintons by Stewart at the academy awards last year which elicited a chorus of boo’s from the audience. What a cowardly small man.

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