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Elections 2004 — Voters Take Heart

Coffee comfort for voters.

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• Jon Stuart on CNN – A New American Hero

Voters must RELY on news media in order to actively participate in our democracy. Jon Stewart has become something of a hero lately as he articulates what is lacking in our news media and why current news coverage is so harmful to America. On CNN’s Crossfire, Charlie Rose and with Ted Koppel.

For anyone watching Crossfire, Jon Stewart, host of the Daily Show, is being deadly serious and is calling the show a lot of crap, that the show is hurting America, the show is bad, the hosts are political hackery, that the show is to debate as much as the WWF is to real wrestling. If you missed it, link to the video of Jon Stewart on CNN here:

There are more links to the CNN video on Lost Remote:


Coffee Comfort

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Coffee as Health Food?
Tea & Coffee, Vol 179, No. 6
June/July 2004

• Jon Stewart Asks the News Media to Safeguard the Public Trust

From the Lost Remote archives:

Stewart: 'The media is getting creamed'

(from the Lost Remote entry) I tuned in late to last night's Nightline and discovered Ted Koppel and Jon Stewart squaring off in another interview about the news media. (Did anyone TiVo it, stream it, transcribe it?) The first interview was incredibly enlightening, and from what I gathered this time around, they focused on whether the media dropped the ball on the Swift Boat story. I grabbed a few quotes...

Ted Koppel made the distinction between fact and truth, using himself as an example. [Actually, Ted Koppel told Jon that he was confusing "truth" with "facts."] What if, he said, President Bush revealed at the convention that Ted Koppel is a "drug dealer and pedophile." Would it be a fact to report that the President said that?

"There is a difference between facts which are reported immediately [and the truth]," Koppel said. "The truth may not catch up for another week or two."

"That's a vulnerability in the system," Stewart said. "The media is getting creamed. They need to take a more active role in safeguarding the public trust."

In an earlier interview with Ted Koppel, Jon Stewart pointed out the way in which mainstream news is so deficient that viewers are turned off:

STEWART: It's that the partisan mobilization has become part of the media process. That they realize that, this real estate that you possess, television, is the most valuable real estate known to rulers. If Alexander the Great had TV, believe me, he would have had his spin guys dealing. Napoleon would have had people working. The key to leadership is to have that mouthpiece to the people. And that's what this is. You guys are... This is the battle for the airwaves. And that's what we watch, and I think that's what is so dispiriting to those at home who believe that... I think, there's a sense here that you're not participating in that battle, and there's a sense at home that you're ABSOLUTELY participating and complicit in that battle.

KOPPEL: Go a little further on that.

STEWART: I'm a news anchor. Remember this is bizarro world. And I say, the issue is health care and insurance, and why 40 million American kids don't have insurance -- 40 million Americans are uninsured. Is this health insurance program being debated in Congress good for the country? Let's debate it. I have with me Donna Brazile and Bay Buchanan. Let's go. Donna. "I think the Democrats really have it right here. I think that this is a pain for the insurance companies and the drug companies and this is wrong for America." Bay. "Oh no, what it is..." And then she throws out her figures from the Heritage Foundation, and she throws out her figures from the Brookings Institute, and the anchor -- who should be the arbiter of the truth -- says, "Thank you both very much, that was very interesting." No it wasn't! That was Coke and Pepsi talking about beverage truth. And that game has, I think, caused people to think, "I'm not watching this."

KOPPEL: Alright, so you have found an answer through humor...

STEWART: No. It's not an answer.

KOPPEL: Well, an answer that...

STEWART: I found an outlet. I found a catharsis. A sneeze, if you will.

KOPPEL: It's not just a catharsis for you, it's a catharsis for your viewers. Those who watch say, at least when I'm watching Jon, he can use humor to say BS, that's a crock.

STEWART: But that's always been the case. Satire has always been...

KOPPEL: Ok, but I can't do that.

STEWART: No, but you CAN say that's BS. You don't need humor to do that because you have what I wish I had which is credibility and gravitas. This is interesting stuff, and it's all part of the discussion and I think it's a good discussion to have, but I think it's important to take a more critical look. You know, don't you think?


Coffee comfort for voters.