Friday, October 29, 2010

'Fuck Sanity'

The great Dennis Perrin on Jon Stewart's march of moderates for "sanity":
Fuck Sanity.

Maybe I'm missing the satirical angle here, if there is one. When Jon Stewart apologized for calling Harry Truman a war criminal, I initially thought, "Hey! Nice parody of the wimpy, obedient pundit!" Then I realized that Stewart was serious. Had any other global leader ordered nuclear strikes on civilians, I suspect that Stewart wouldn't be so understanding. But this was an American president -- a Democrat no less! How ugly and partisan it would be to question Truman's action, or worse, satirize it. That is something an insane person would do. And as we know, Jon Stewart is among The Sane.

Again, Stewart could be putting everyone on. I certainly hope so, yet doubt it. You don't achieve mainstream prominence by calling our terrorist culture by its right name. And you sure as fuck don't mock it. Stewart knows his place. Just the other night he sat across from a man who oversees a vast network of theft, torture and mass murder. And how did our most celebrated satirist since Mark Twain react? With deference. Respect. Sanity.
I previously took on Stewart myself for ludicrously claiming Obama had "given back so much executive power" since taking office. (Pathetically for Stewart, Bill O'Reilly had to correct him on that.) And earlier I addressed Stewart's remark that he didn't care if Obama smoked cigarettes, because "I prefer that to . . . bombing countries. I’ll take a smoker." (Congratulations, funny guy, we've now got a president who ends a rough day of cluster bombing Yemeni civilians with a Marlboro. And he's so smart!)

9 comments:

  1. dSquib2:40 PM

    It somehow never occurs that when a President does something radical, and it becomes mainstream, it would take something and someone radical to undo it. And a strong caucus of radicals supporting him or her.

    That is to say, while Bush was not *that* radical relative to previous Presidents, he was in relation to our perceptions of our "place in the world" and our respect for international and domestic law.

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  2. Isn't this really a backhanded indictment of the mainstream media that we expect a comedian to confront the President over war crimes? Granted, I hate The Daily Show's false equivalencies between anti-war activists and tea party douchebags.

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  3. thought he did all right with Obama on his show: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/27/AR2010102709035.html?hpid=opinionsbox1

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  4. jcapan12:37 AM

    As Chomsky has long contended, if the Nuremberg laws were applied, then every post-war American president would have been hanged.

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  5. Stewart jumped the shark a couple years ago. He's been coasting since God-Emperor Sparkle Pony got hired to kill brown people for oil.

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  6. Brian Drake10:43 PM

    I enjoy the Daily Show because I love their evisceration of the media, and the humor is often good for laughs.

    But Stewart is no less a shill for the state than the "real" news people he mocks. I think of him like the court jester. He's allowed to poke fun of the state, even the emperor himself, but he knows his place and his jesting is because he loves, not because he's a principled or authentic critic of the ruling class.

    The Truman-is-a-war-criminal-oh-wait-I-just-uttered-blasphemy-against-my-god-the-State-better-immediately-apologize event was simply a crystal clear example of this fact about Stewart.

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  7. Merry Misanthrope3:05 PM

    Mr. Drake, your jester analogy is perfection.

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  8. Nh....I certainly hope so, yet doubt it. You don't achieve mainstream prominence by calling our terrorist culture by its right name.

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  9. I hate The Daily Show's false equivalencies between anti-war activists and tea party douchebags.

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