As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Monday, March 16, 2009

Please Give Me Daily Show Airtime

It's clear that Tucker Carlson, well past his prime at the tender age of 39, was trolling for a response from Jon Stewart on Howard Kurtz' show in a desperate attempt to return to relevancy. The comments are hardly worth mentioning (I guess Tucker, who represented "the right" on Crossfire for close to a decade, doesn't consider himself partisan). But isn't the real person who should get a response to this Howard Kurtz, and his booker? How could a media criticism show possibly have someone as biased against Jon Stewart as the guy who was subject to the same kind of takedown five years ago and expect anything approaching a dispassionate analysis? To Kurtz' credit, he did play the Stewart/Carlson Crossfire clip, and asked him if it "colored" his view of the situation, but I'm wondering what value there is putting him on that show at all. He's going to lie about the interview, lie about Stewart's role, and lie about his own background. The verdict from a media standpoint is pretty clear - perhaps Carlson offers some kind of contrarian counter-perspective, but considering that he's still licking 5 year-old wounds, how is that perspective newsworthy? It's like bringing on John McCain to talk about Barack Obama... what, they do that too? Never mind.

I guess you could extrapolate that out and wonder the value in Howard Kurtz himself. However, in his print piece he at least got a statement from CNBC: "CNBC produces more than 150 hours of live television a week that includes more than 850 interviews in the service of exposing all sides of every critical financial and economic issue. We are proud of our record." They denied interview requests and refused to offer anything further. But an actual media critic would critique the media instead of giving audience to a defeated polemicist.

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