The mess at CNN isn’t getting better

Jon Stewart continues to have a field day with the idiocy at CNN.

CNN debate highlights from Jon Stewart

This is going to be a fun political season.

Jon Stewart and the teabaggers

The lunatic fringe has consumed the right. Funny stuff.

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Birther mania

Since Barack Obama announced his candidacy for President, we’ve seen the lunatic fringe on the right push the limits of idiocy. Since his election, the levels of insanity on the right have grown exponentially.

The “birther” movement has set a new standard, even by the standards of the loony right wing. They make the teabaggers looks like sober economic scholars.

Naturally, Jon Stewart, the most trusted newsman in America following the death of Cronkite, has a field day with this one.

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Pay particular attention to his smackdown of Lou Dobbs, who brings up “questions” surrounding Obama’s place of birth several days after a guest host ON HIS OWN SHOW completely debunks the asinine story. Further proof that Lou Dobbs is a complete buffoon. Why is this clown still on CNN?

Liberal media?

More like incompetent media if you ask me.

Liberals bloggers are having a field day ripping John King for his terrible interview of Dick Cheney. Naturally, Arianna Huffington skewered King with her usual flair.

Jon Stewart’s Jim Cramer interview was a pivotal moment — not just for Stewart, Cramer, and CNBC but also for journalism. It was a bracing reminder of what great research and a journalist more committed to getting to the truth than to landing the big get — and keeping the big get happy, and ensuring future big gets — can accomplish.

Stewart kept popping into my head as I watched John King interview Dick Cheney on Sunday. Each time King let Cheney get away with spouting gross inaccuracies and revisionist history, I kept thinking how different things would have been had Stewart been asking the questions. Stewart without the comedy and without the outrage — just armed with the facts and the willingness to ask tough questions.

King consistently refused to challenge anything Cheney said by asking tough follow-up questions. Also, when citing problematic facts, he would always couch them with timid qualifiers.

“There are people…” “They would say…” “And they have some numbers to back up their case.”

These are not some numbers that belong to some people being trotted to make their case. These numbers are actual data — empirical evidence. It would be as if King were interviewing a flat-earther and asked him: “There are people on this planet, watching this interview right now, who would say that the earth is round. And they have some pictures taken from outer space to back up their case. So what would you say to someone out there who is saying that?”

King’s desperate attempt to distance himself from the question would be laughable if it weren’t so repellent. It’s not him asking Cheney why we should listen to him. It’s not him putting forward objective data. It’s some strawman viewers, so please don’t hold it against him. And please, please come back. And tell your friends.

This is the problem with King and too many in the Pontius Pilot traditional media: They are so caught up in the obsolete notion that the truth always lies in the middle, they have to pretend that there are two sides to every issue — and even two sides to straightforward data.

Someone needs to kidnap King and take him to a deprogramming center — preferably one run by Jon Stewart and his team.

If CNN can’t use John Stewart, then perhaps they can have Fareed Zakaria handle all important interviews. The executives at CNN should be commended for putting Zakaria’s excellent GPS program on the air, and to some extent that makes up for spineless hacks like John King.

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