If you're Comedy Central's Jon Stewart, you know you have to do the occasional segment going after the establishment press or left-wing groups to maintain appearances.
The James O'Keefe-ACORN saga in 2009 was one such instance. If Stewart hadn't dealt with it, his pretense of being supposedly fair to both left and right would have been blown out of the water. The incredibly petty New York Times reports on Marco Rubio's traffic tickets and finances fit the media version of the "We'd better do something with this or else" template. The video which follows the jump shows that Stewart only had a pair of strong moments, while missing at least a couple of key opportunities to make important points with humor.
Here is the video:
Stewart got in only a couple of legitimately decent digs in an otherwise rather pedestrian narrative:
- "I assume the New York Times obtained this damning (traffic ticket) information for Marco Rubio's plaque in the Hall of Best Miami Drivers Ever."
- "Paying off law school loans? How dare you? At long last Senator, have you no sense of insolvency?"
He also used the Rubio situation as an excuse to dump on GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney for how much money he spent in his 2012 losing effort. (You see, he can't let a segment go by without at least gratuitous attack on a Republican or conservative.)
There are at least two items Stewart could easily have mocked, and with arguably greater effect:
- The paper's characterization of Rubio's boat as a "luxury" item. A 24-foot boat? Please. Stewart could have found any number of people at your average marina laughing their heads off at the idea that Rubio's boat is a luxury item.
- The paper's unbelievably childish refusal to respond to the Washington Free Beacon over its evidence that the Times relied directly on Democratic Party opposition research without its own timely verification, and without disclosing who provided them their material. (Cue a husky 5 year-old telling a Politico mommy: "That bully is being mean to me." The bully ends up being a 3 year-old who is half the 5 year-old's size.)
But now Stewart has his "see, we're fair" segment in the can, and that's all that matters.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.