Saturday, October 30, 2010

Why It's OK For Jon Stewart To Have a Rally

The self-righteous people who are trying for this whole "Well, now, gee, he's a comedian and a political satirist and I just don't know if that boy should be involved in some 'Merican politics, there" are really bugging me. Who came up with this crazy idea that political satire is somehow separate from politics?

Voltaire - who wrote one of the best books of all time, Candide, which contained brilliant satire - was so political that he got banished from Paris and while he lived in exile he certainly gave the powers that be a piece of his mind. He and his friends basically invented human rights activism. He was outraged by the death penalty after becoming involved with the case of a wrongfully convicted young man tortured on that awful wheel thing.

Swift - who modestly proposed - was also politically active and he totally hung out with government insiders and was even a pamphleteer. (Which, for those of you who think "media bias" is something you invented, means he disseminated one party's viewpoint on purpose - and that happened in the U.S. newspapers of the 18th/19th century too, by the way. They took a political stand on behalf of their chosen candidates.)

Henry Fielding - Tom Jones and much more - was politically active and held government positions! Like chief magistrate!

Why would people who write and talk about society, politics, and the ideas therein not have a rally? It makes no sense to me. Besides, have you even listened to Jon Stewart talk about it? I have. He was fascinated by the way Glenn Beck's and others' rallies - the rallies themselves - were communication tools! The rally IS the medium - which IS the message!

AND - and! and! and! - why does it bother you if a "comedian" wants to have a rally but not when Republican actors become governor of California and one of them even became president?

I have a lot of work to do today (and I am not at the rally, not in D.C., wasn't necessarily planning to go anyway) so I'm going to make this quick. I am sick of people dividing everything into two categories and then trying to shove everything into those two categories. I was sick of "Republican/Democrat" and "With us/against us" years ago. I am sick of "You either like Obama or you want Bush back" (and the vice versa). NEWS FLASH even though we've been over this already two years ago but OBAMA DIDN'T RUN AGAINST BUSH! Bush didn't even have a protege running for prez. It's not as if it's Andrew Jackson with his little friend Martin Van Buren, when the national election was a kind of vote of approval on a previous president because MVB was seen by many as an extension of Old Hickory. What is with all the people longing for Dubya to be back in D.C.? Dubya Bush of all people?! For heaven's sake! Are you kidding me? He's a monster. And why are they focused on his economic policy? He lied his way into evil wars and supported murder and torture! This is not OK! Everything else pales in comparison!

OK but none of that is the point. The point is that of COURSE Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have the right to have a rally. And, to "be" political, as political as they want to be, as if that's somehow distinct from skewering politicians. I am so tired of people who say it's somehow OK to talk about everything "except politics." Don't they know that the personal is political??!?!

My advice to you is that you stop saying stupid crap and go read a Mark Twain book. Or any book, really.

1 comment:

amy said...


And I thought John/Stephen proved your "it doesn't have to be 1 of 2 boxes" thought very well in the rally.

I absolutely adored the signs. I keep scouring the internet for more "best signs" of the rally.

I just thought I would point out that blogger wants me to type in "cower" as my word verification. Is the universe trying to tell me something? I refuse to look at it in terms of tomorrow's election.