Monday, January 10, 2011

Make ’em Laugh

BREAKING NEWS: Officials at St. Mumbles Home for the Terminally Verbose, a sanitarium in northern California with notoriously porous security (wiki-leaky), confirm this morning that the WORD has again escaped, this time disguised as a scabrous 2-foot octopus. Those with linguistic, political and journalistic sensibilities are warned to spend 2011 with their eyes and minds firmly closed. More details in the unlikely event that they are warranted.

Archimedes’ Lever

“[C]omedy on television, more than journalism on television, may be the most effective outlet for stirring debate and effecting change in public policy. ‘Comedy has the potential to have an important role in framing the way we think about civic life,’ [Syracuse University professor Robert] Thompson said. And [Jon] Stewart has thrust himself into the middle of that potential. . . . ‘I have to think about how many kids are watching Jon Stewart right now and dreaming of growing up and doing what Jon Stewart does. . . . Just like kids two generations ago watched Murrow or Cronkite and dreamed of doing that. Some of these ambitious appetites and callings that have brought people into journalism in the past may now manifest themselves in these other arenas, like comedy.”
—Bill Carter and Brian Stelter, reporters,
“News Analysis: In ‘Daily Show’ Role on 9/11 Bill, Echoes of Murrow,”
The New York Times,
December 26, 2010.
Stewart dedicated a program to discussion of health benefits
for 9/11 first-responders, and is credited with helping move lawmakers to pass that legislation.

Editorial Comment: Make ’em laugh to make ’em think.

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