Links to The Daily Show!

Hi Diane,

I was glad to see you on the Daily show again to promote your book and advocate for public education. While Jon Stewart may be a great guy, I get more than a little impatient when he displays his (willful?) ignorance of the corporate takeover of our most cherished institutions. As we know, corporate led privatization or the neoliberal agenda

https://21stcenturytheater.wordpress.com/2013/09/23/david-harvey-and-others-explain-neoliberalism-these-are-the-ideas-that-became-policies-which-in-turn-rule-our-lives/

is decimating the middle-class, breaking unions, and further impoverishing poor people – especially poor people of color. Aside from his naivete (like becoming a booster for McCain until it was brutally obvious he was a pandering, bloodthirsty, right-wing crazy) he seems to have a blind spot when it comes to the neoliberal agenda implemented by corporations and the politicians they buy.

When Stewart attempts to be even-handed, somehow it is always in favor of our ruling corporate elite. It’s like saying,”Sure little red riding hood was eaten by the wolf, but let’s look at both sides, I mean there are some young girls out there that are kind of slutty – and not all wolves kill little girls.” It looks like a replay of his Scahill interview

http://www.cc.com/video-clips/2q4ryu/the-daily-show-with-jon-stewart-jeremy-scahill

where he didn’t see a problem with our military being privatized and filled with mercenaries. The next day he apologized for being totally ignorant, but essentially that was the end of it, and for daily show listeners, that story just disappeared:

http://www.democracynow.org/2007/10/4/daily_show_host_jon_stewart_apologizes

For the amount of time Stewart has spent reading and interviewing politicians he remains dangerously ignorant and out of his depth much of the time. I’m glad he has given you airtime, but his ignorance always seems to end-up in a kind of tacit support for neoliberal policies – and at the very least, doesn’t help the debate, especially, when so many americans “get their news” from Stewart.

I understand that he sees himself as a moderate and willing to listen to “both sides,” but, for the most part, Jon’s guests rarely represent what could be called, “what’s left of the left.” Scahill and a few others are exceptions – and Scahill didn’t get a fair hearing. Our political spectrum has shifted, and the label of moderate now means moderately right-wing. At this point in our history, just being “a good guy” doesn’t cut it. The latest phase of the class war has been waged by the right for almost forty years now. They won – and they’re still fighting. It is clear they want to create a kind of feudalism – and it’s time for us to fight back (as I think you are advocating) and time to help educate people about what could be called corporate led neoliberalism. I hope you can increasingly incorporate that bigger picture into your argument. Without making these connections, we could win the battle and lose the (class) war.

Thanks for all you do,
~ 21st Century Poet
@21st_C_Poet

Diane Ravitch's blog

Yesterday was  my third appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (2003, 2010, 2013). I love being on his show because he is not only funny but a truly kind and decent person. He always comes in for a friendly chat before the interview, to make  a personal connection. He is real. I gave him a pair of green laces for his sneakers (they came from a group called “Lace to the Top,” and I explained that I was wearing “red-for-ed.” Last night I met his new dog Dipper. Dipper is a pit bull with only three legs. He is a rescue dog. Unlike the bad reputation that pit bulls have, he is a sweetheart. But it says something about Jon that he would adopt this dog that no one else wanted.

The interview was fun, and I was laughing out loud as I watched the segments that preceded…

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