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View Diary: Why is Jon Stewart helping mainstream the Christian right's falsified American history? (210 comments)

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  •  Seriously (8+ / 0-)

    My girlfriend and I couldn't even make it through the segment.  We got so angry every time Barton opened his mouth that we just skipped ahead to the Colbert Report.

    "I seek the truth, which never yet hurt anybody. It is only persistence in self-delusion and ignorance which does harm." --Marcus Aurelius

    by electric meatball on Fri May 06, 2011 at 11:49:50 AM PDT

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    •  Doesn't that by itself prove the value of Stewart (9+ / 0-)

      having him on the show?

      How many other people in the Daily Show audience knew anything about Barton -

      ...and now having seen how utterly posessed this man is, does that not elevate Barton to the level of attention he deserves from Democrats -

      ...or should we just turn our backs on Barton because Barton turns our stomachs, and let him work more magic on the easily persuaded shiny-objects-simple-minds that are going to sway the election....?

      George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

      by snafubar on Fri May 06, 2011 at 01:10:36 PM PDT

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      •  Would help to have a debunker, too. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Doesn't that by itself prove the value of Stewart
        having him on the show?

        How many other people in the Daily Show audience knew anything about Barton -

        ...and now having seen how utterly possessed this man is, does that not elevate Barton to the level of attention he deserves from Democrats -

        It would have been quite different if there had been someone capable of showing what a liar Barton was.

        For instance, the Times article says:

        One of his most contested assertions is that the Supreme Court has misconstrued Thomas Jefferson’s statement that the First Amendment erected a “wall of separation between church and state.” According to Mr. Barton, Jefferson meant that government should not interfere with the public exercise of religion — not that public spaces should be purged of prayer.
        In yesterday's diary from Diary from JGibson, I posted the entire key sentence from Jefferson's Letter to the Danbury Baptists:
        Believing with you that religion is a matter which lies solely between man and his God, that he owes account to none other for his faith or his worship, that the legislative powers of government reach action only and not religion, I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature shall "make no law respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, thus building a wall of separation between church and state.
        It shouldn't take that much to have someone who can come up with actual citations to show that Barton is a liar.

        Greg McKendry, Linda Kraeger, Dr. George Tiller, Steven Johns. Victims of Wingnut violence

        by Judge Moonbox on Fri May 06, 2011 at 07:28:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  methinks Jon Stewart is in a no-win (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          loggersbrat, Judge Moonbox


          If he tries to be a comedian and scores genuine points by edifiying something people normally miss in "serious" circles, he gets little credit - or completely dismissed because he's ONLY a comedian.

          On the other hand, if he does feature a guest who came on the show to use the free publicity as any of his guests do to promote themselves, now Stewart is guilty of two mistakes;

          ...he somehow gave a platform and more attention to someone who his viewing audience (for their own reasons) wishes did not have any at all

          ...and he's labelled inadequate for not exposing, eviscerating, and humilating people his audience should not like into a whimpering simp who's leaving the stage clutching his soiled diaper.

          My point in joining this thread is that Jon Stewart cannot possibly be all the things he is expected to be by all the people who have expectations.

          I salute him for bringing Barton to an audience, as learned and interested as they may be in their own right, who had little reason to dig any deeper into who Barton was or what he was about than they did any other of the guests Stewart brings on.

          If the Daily Show, in a six-minute interview is expected to serve the same purpose as a three-hour "In Depth" C-Span program, I think that the biggest problem is not Barton but people's expectations of the Daily Show.

          The consensus in this diary is that if Jon Stewart cant' serve up all the Democrats political adversaries their rhetorical head on a platter, then somehow Jon Stewart is to blame for giving the wrong people attention.

          Take a good look around - not just Daily Kos, but in general -

          We have been fed a diet of 30-second information for 70 years; we've boiled it down to 140 character tweets and drive-by blogger comments.

          I agree your points have value, but if everyone is driving by the highway at 70 mph, how detailed can you make the billboards and still expect anyone to be able to read anything at all, if not cause a wreck in the effort?

          George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

          by snafubar on Sat May 07, 2011 at 10:32:05 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I don't blame you, BUT (6+ / 0-)

      that's no way to engage the enemy.

      To defeat the enemy, and that's how I think of them, you must confront and defeat them.  Turning away in disgust just means they get to live one more day.

      I'll agree that JS was NOT at the top of his game here, and I think he'd agree too.  Even Gretsky had off days.

    •  Stewart parried very delicately, but (11+ / 0-)

      I cringed when he let Barton get away with the claim that his acquiring 100K documents was a counterweight to the fact that he's not a trained historian.  

      I wish TDS would have a professional historian as a guest who would talk about what it means to do that kind of work.  This would debunk the simplistic representation that Barton gives about reading the original documents.  He's treating documents as a "revealed truth," but anyone whose ever done archival work knows that its far more complex.

      Usually, though, historians come on simply to the story covered in their latest book.  The process of uncovering that story goes unacknowledged.

      •  I wish Stewart had asked Barton if those documents (5+ / 0-)

        are available for historians and researchers to study, or are historians and researchers limited to only reading what Barton says the documents say?  I know of no discipline that ever takes just one person's word for what is or is not authentic in a document.  This is one of the most insidious things Barton has done.  He's bought up what he claims are historical documents and he won't share them.  We're expected to take his word for it.  Oh, yes, he says the letter is up on his website, but as far as I know, he won't let anyone see it.  Is it real, or a forgery?  Has it been tested for authenticity?  I also have to wonder if he has bought and taken out of circulation documents that would debunk what he asserts as the truth.  Unless and until he opens up his document library to any and all researchers and historians, they could be anything at all.  I think that alone destroys any credibility he might have.

        What was new to me was Barton's assertion that he was the editor of a textbook, but he told the publishers not to put his name on it?  That makes absolutely no sense to me.

        Reliance on documents not available publically, not allowing his name to be on a book he asserts he edite - why all the secrecy?  What's he hiding?  

        After watching this, I am certain of one thing - Barton's definitely a master manipulator.

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