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The Mediocrity of Jon Stewart

Froma Harrop on

And so John Oliver was shipped out to "interview" me. The segment that aired had Oliver repeatedly hollering a bleep-out F word, followed by a spliced-in photo of me allegedly looking shocked, followed by canned laughter. It was on that level.

Stewart's favorite theme was to broadly condemn the mainstream press as hopelessly lazy and incompetent. And then Stewart pinned on me beliefs I never had based on what some blogging bro said they were. He had done zero research.

Stewart opened by hissing "Journalists! Journalists!" After the segment aired, the blogging pest praised it as "comedy gold."

When Oliver had his own show years later, many of the greatest traditional news sources had fallen into deep trouble. The ever-earnest Oliver looked into the camera with doggy eyes and beseeched the audience to subscribe to their local newspapers.

Just a few weeks ago, lo and behold, Wall Street Journal columnist William McGurn was recycling one of his raps on liberals when he took yours truly to task for those beliefs I never had. And what was his impeccable source? "The Daily Show" of 10 years ago. I mean, my real beliefs are all over Google.

 

As Mary Trump notes, the stakes are too high for guys like Jon Stewart to get away with neutralizing the toxicity of Donald Trump with comparisons totally lacking in substance. It's a creepy kind of brand-building. And it comes at the expense of our fragile democracy.

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Follow Froma Harrop on Twitter @FromaHarrop. She can be reached at fharrop@gmail.com. To find out more about Froma Harrop and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com.


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