View the article’s original source
Author: Rob Cottingham
Jon Stewart’s farewell episode of The Daily Show wrapped with a fantastic Bruce Springsteen performance, which Stewart introduced with “Here it is, my moment of Zen.”
Twitter lit up, and rightly so; Springsteen’s song and the mass assembly of current and former TDS correspondents will probably be the most talked-about parts of the finale in the next several days.
But it’s the segment before Springsteen’s valediction that I hope has some lasting impact, because it got at the heart of what Jon Stewart seemed to me to be aiming to do for the last decade and a half.
If you haven’t seen it yet, take a look. It probably isn’t Stewart’s most comedic, powerful or strongly written moment – but it’s a wonderfully sincere take on the pervasiveness of bullshit in civic life. And watching it, you get the impression that bullshit has been his true nemesis all along: that Glenn Beck, FOX News, Dick Cheney and all his other perennial targets were just its manifestations.
Indeed, liberal politics notwithstanding, Stewart has never been patient with hypocrisy, trumped-up outrage or misdirection on the right or left. (That tough-on-all-of-them stance sometimes veered into maddening false equivalences… although I recommend you calibrate for my own lefty views.)
And after Wednesday night’s only-slightly-tongue-in-cheek inventory of the show’s failure to single-handedly defeat ISIS, defang FOX and depose kleptocracy, Stewart’s final rant may point to one big positive contribution he has made to civic life: a generation of viewers trained and motivated to look below the surface of public statements and sniff for the scent of bullshit.
All of these texts are owned by its respective writers and are published here under a Creative Commons License. Visit the author’s website (see link below the title of this post) to determine the actual terms of the license.