Anyone who’s read Big Hollywood for any period of time knows I’m no Jon Stewart fan. On his best days, I find him smug and disingenuous. “But he attacks the Left!”, my friends tell me. Yeah, when they’re not liberal enough or like the ACLU taking a righteous case every now and again, as cover so people will say, “But he attacks the Left!” Sorry, no sale here, and Stewart’s increasingly strange obsession with controlling the way we speak only confirms that decision.Stewart’s unnatural preoccupation with regulating speech, especially political speech, is not only borderline un-American, but you can tell he loses sleep over the frustration he feels when people don’t speak the way he thinks they should. The best example of this occurred just a few months ago at his anti-Beck “Rally to Restore Sanity.” In order to point his sanctimonious finger at the rest of us and wag it like the Church Lady so he could tell everyone else how they should and should not conduct themselves, he puts on this HUGE rally in DC. I’m sorry, but this is not normal behavior.
Sure, the rally was successful, but the irony of someone standing in the heart of our democracy to demand we stop speaking a certain way… Who does stuff like that? Of all people wanting to regulate speech … a political comedian.
The rally also proved that Stewart is nothing more than a hard-left partisan. Think about the environment in which The Rally To Tell Others How To Speak took place. The same Jon Stewart who claims to be concerned with our nation’s political tone chose to ridicule a rally hosted by Glenn Beck that was non-partisan and apolitical. Beck’s rally was a quiet, dignified, respectful gathering where people of all political stripes spoke of issues bigger than partisan politics and about what we have in common and how we must come together. By choosing this event of all events to savage in such a high-profile way, Stewart proved that he not only can’t take yes for answer when it comes to political discourse, but that his weird crusade to change the tone is utterly disingenuous and completely partisan.
Watch the video embedded above from yesterday’s “Daily Show,” where Stewart goes on and on and on and on and on and on about the way Republicans speak for TWENTY FREAKIN’ MINUTES. Here he has almost a full half hour with a rising star in the Republican party, a likely presidential contender, and all Stewart can do is obsess like Captain Queeg over missing strawberries about the age-old practice of political rhetoric.
It is truly 20 of the strangest minutes of television you’ll ever see.
Pawlenty, God bless him, keeps his cool and manages to more than hold his own as Stewart fingers his ball-bearings and mumbles about “tyranny-Obama-unprecedented-Gingrich-Obama-unprecedented.” But if there’s any part of Pawlenty’s brain that resembles mine, it was silently screaming:
“It’s called politics, you totalitarian ass! It’s called rhetoric! Read a book, moron, it’s been going on since man learned to speak!”
I get the politics behind what Obama’s favorite Palace Guard is doing here, that’s laughably obvious, but there’s a slow-motion train wreck quality to it all that’s much more amusing than any smirk.