Regular readers know that I’m a big fan of The Daily Show With Jon Stewart. Well apparently, Stewart and Tucker Carlson had a bit of a to-do today on Crossfire. Wonkette reports the following exchange:
Tucker: You always scold people like this at dinner at your house?
Jon: If they have a show that’s as stupid as this one.
Tucker: You know, you’re not as fun as you are on your tv show.
Jon: You know what, you’re just as big a dick as you are on your tv show.
Score: Fake News 1, Grown Men in Bow Ties 0.
I’m off to set my Tivo for the next Crossfire airing.
UPDATE: It looks like I’m too late to catch a re-airing, but here are some highlights from the transcript:
STEWART: … In many ways, it’s funny. And I made a special effort to come on the show today, because I have privately, amongst my friends and also in occasional newspapers and television shows, mentioned this show as being bad.
BEGALA: We have noticed.
STEWART: And I wanted to — I felt that that wasn’t fair and I should come here and tell you that I don’t — it’s not so much that it’s bad, as it’s hurting America.
CARLSON: But in its defense…
STEWART: So I wanted to come here today and say…
STEWART: Here’s just what I wanted to tell you guys.
STEWART: Stop, stop, stop, stop hurting America.
STEWART: See, the thing is, we need your help. Right now, you’re helping the politicians and the corporations. And we’re left out there to mow our lawns.
BEGALA: By beating up on them? You just said we’re too rough on them when they make mistakes.
STEWART: No, no, no, you’re not too rough on them. You’re part of their strategies. You are partisan, what do you call it, hacks.
STEWART: It’s not honest. What you do is not honest. What you do is partisan hackery. And I will tell you why I know it.
CARLSON: You had John Kerry on your show and you sniff his throne and you’re accusing us of partisan hackery?
CARLSON: You’ve got to be kidding me. He comes on and you…
STEWART: You’re on CNN. The show that leads into me is puppets making crank phone calls.
STEWART: What is wrong with you?
STEWART: You know, the interesting thing I have is, you have a responsibility to the public discourse, and you fail miserably.
CARLSON: You need to get a job at a journalism school, I think.
STEWART: You need to go to one.
The thing that I want to say is, when you have people on for just knee-jerk, reactionary talk…
CARLSON: Wait. I thought you were going to be funny. Come on. Be funny.
STEWART: No. No. I’m not going to be your monkey.
CARLSON: I do think you’re more fun on your show. Just my opinion.
CARLSON: OK, up next, Jon Stewart goes one on one with his fans…
STEWART: You know what’s interesting, though? You’re as big a dick on your show as you are on any show.
CARLSON: Now, you’re getting into it. I like that.
I’d be curious to hear from anyone who actually watched this whether there was genuine acrimony or whether everyone was laughing.
UPDATE: Digby saw it:
Stewart is trying to make the point that they are contributing to the dumbing down of the discourse by presenting this fake news, or political theatre, that they pretend is news. He isn’t being funny and he isn’t doing the usual celebrity circle jerk and they are finding it very discomfiting.
UPDATE: Video here.