The Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear: Great Expectations?

Friday, October 29, 2010

David Carr, media columnist for the business section of the New York Times, talks about tomorrow's rally, what to expect, and looks at the line between politics and comedy.


David Carr

Comments [28]

joe from poughkeepsie, ny

jerry is an angry jerk-hardly a voice of reason for the conversations and debates necessary to bring our country back from the brink of the abyss we hover over

Oct. 29 2010 01:22 PM
keith from nyc

The official rally forum board solicited creative ideas for banners and signs for the rally. Here's mine:
Actually, we made a frisbee with this cool design. Discs will be flying at this event!

Oct. 29 2010 11:06 AM
eli from astoria

Big fan of john stewart and the daily show and pretty damn liberal.....but just have to dispute the false equivalency between right and left in terms of extremism in this country. the people at this rally are mostly democrats who voted for obama. fact.
If more than 5% of the people at the rally voted for mccain/palin (or Bush jr) i will eat my hat. it is essentially a liberal get together....and i am all for it.
I would also dispute the idea that the level of extremism on the "american left" is even CLOSE to the new tea party cohort. stewart is trying to equate the 9/11 was an inside job crowd (which barely exists and is not likely to get any seats in the senate or house) with the tea party (who are dangerously close to the levers of national power right now).....and it feels forced and inaccurate.

Oct. 29 2010 10:58 AM
Brie from Crown Heights

The Rally to Restore Sanity is beyond comedy. Could all of these people be going to see Jon Stewart make jokes? He does that every day on TV. I think people are going because they want to participate in a rational, national dialogue.

Oct. 29 2010 10:41 AM

If you watch either The Daily Show or Colbert you know they planned their rallies together. They were never going to be totally separate. Interestingly The Daily Show broadcast from DC this week but Colbert was still in NY so Stewart is the top dog here. But really, the political media doesn't know what to do with this -- why so shrill and mocking? Afraid they might actually bring ordinary people together to make very large statement?

Oct. 29 2010 10:35 AM
amalgam from Manhattan by day, NJ by night

@ Edward from NJ - You're so right about anyone using the phrase/acronym "MSM" not wanting to attend the rally tomorrow. Very funny and exactly the kind of humor that will be deployed tomorrow. I think that there is a sizable percentage of people in the USA who think that the very use of satire is outrageous and elitist. Who cares! If you can't keep up or feel belittled it is incumbent upon you to fashion your own appropriate response. Satire is part of discourse whether one likes it or not.

Oct. 29 2010 10:30 AM
art525 from park slope

Does anyone know how the parking is at Citi Field? I hear there are going to be 10,000 people going on the HuffPo bus.

Charles- the Huff Po buses are leaving from CitiField. There may still be space- I hear they will have as many buses as they need. But you do need to sign up before hand with HuffPo.

And to Jerry-a perfect example of the need to restore sanity. How can you say Jon delivers profoundly mediocre jokes? That's insane! He's the only one on TV who makes me laugh. (Well with him and not at him that is- ie. Bill, Rush, Beck). You diminish your argument by saying that.

Oct. 29 2010 10:30 AM
John from Ridgefield Park, NJ

The point is just to have a showing of numbers for something other than self-serving, grandstanding vitriol to no useful end.

The useful end to THIS rally is for we who are going to look around and say, "thank goodness common ground hasn't been completely abandoned - I was beginning to feel lonely."

Oct. 29 2010 10:25 AM
Ken from Little Neck

Brian makes a very good point about the tradition of the jester. Every generation needs a good political satirist. We're lucky enough to have two.

Oct. 29 2010 10:23 AM
susan in nyc

Does anyone know if Al Franken is going to attend the rally?

Oct. 29 2010 10:23 AM

Am not sure, but I think the Huffington Bus registration has closed - maybe try the Daily Show website to see if they have a link?

Oct. 29 2010 10:21 AM

Hi Brian,

I'm going to the rally tomorrow because I campaigned for Obama. I had people slam doors in my face, someone sent their gigantic rottweiler after me! The group I was with got into a car accident because we hit a buck! It was terrifiying.
Yet I'm going to this rally because I want to contribute my voice and physical presence to this movement (because I think there is a sane movement going on) telling our leaders that we believe in them and refuse to take part in this "crazy" rhetoric. There is too much hate streaming through the media with all this focus on the tea partiers and their platforms based on anger.
Also, I'm dressing up like a zombie tea partier. Gotta have some fun.

Oct. 29 2010 10:20 AM
Hal from Brooklyn

My wife and I are going on a Huffington bus. Those who see Stewart as 'faux news' should take a closer look. It's political satire. It points out the ironies, duplicities and hypocrisies of politicians and pundits on both sides. It points out the need to engage in constructive dialogue rather than hyperbole and vitriolic rants that are divisive and unproductive.

Oct. 29 2010 10:20 AM
RJ from Prospect Hts

I hope that people who are going as a form of activism don't stop there. Going to a demo is a relatively passive form of activism, only a step above check writing. We need people who find a cause they believe in and spend time on it.

It was planned for the 2 to be together. The current alternative to "sanity" has been "fear," so they're pushing home the message that decent discourse has to be pressed instead of fear. "Nothing to fear but fear itself."

Oct. 29 2010 10:20 AM

Lighten up, Brian! *I* can handle both Stewart and Colbert. Maybe it's because I'm younger than 50.

Oct. 29 2010 10:20 AM
Amy from Manhattan

I can't go to the rally tomorrow, but here's my Moderate Manifesto:

1. Talking louder does not make you right.
2. Repeating your argument does not make you right.
3. Taking a contemptuous tone does not make you right
4. Interrupting the person on the other side does not make you right.
5. Making fun of the person on the other side does not make you right.
6. Keeping the person on the other side from making their point does not make you right.

Oct. 29 2010 10:18 AM
charles from nyc

very very hard to find hufpo bus info on line, Oddly. Any info of where to go when?

Oct. 29 2010 10:18 AM

My husband and I are going because it sounds like fun! We're lucky enough to ride the Huffington bus down with two friends.

But we hope to send the message that the dumbing down of the our political process needs to stop. The extremely rude dialogue has to stop dominating. We're quiet, we're busy, we have families, we don't need guns and we don't want our government leader to be our religious leaders. We want to work, not be afraid if we get sick and help our neighbors, and educate our kids!

Oct. 29 2010 10:17 AM
Edward from NJ

If you use the abbreviation "MSM" on a regular basis, the rally probably isn't for you.

Oct. 29 2010 10:15 AM
Edward from NJ

It's kind of ridiculous that the Huffington Post has latched onto this. Go to any article on the HP, read the comments, and someone is comparing someone else to Nazi's. Will they be cross-checking user names before they let people on their buses?

Oct. 29 2010 10:13 AM

I believe comedy can be a high-level form of analysis; and in the case of the Daily Show - it reveals truths that many people would rather ignore. I'm going to the rally, not because I believe it will be an amazing political experience - but I simply want the tv cameras to capture the quantity of people who really are interested in their country, and are not interested in Glenn Beck.

Oct. 29 2010 10:12 AM
Judith from Brooklyn

I'm going! First, Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert are very funny! Second, the message - stop screaming, calling people names - in other words, take it down a notch! - is a message I support. I do not expect this to be a political rally. I expect comedy and music and hanging around with some like-minded people.

Oct. 29 2010 10:12 AM

Does anyone know why the March on
10/2/10 got absolutly zero coverage anywhere?

Oct. 29 2010 10:10 AM
Robert from NYC

Gee Jerry, glad I'm not on your bad side. You're way too articulate, ouch! I'm neutral on the whole subject of this Rally but Jerry does make a point. May I add I do enjoy the Daily Show, it's one of my favorites, but for me it's entertainment.

Oct. 29 2010 10:08 AM
amalgam from Manhattan by day, NJ by night

@ jerry - So what are the solutions you propose to the problems of polarization and unintelligent discourse plaguing the USA? Also, what media do you recommend to the masses apart from the "MSM."

Oct. 29 2010 10:06 AM
Ken from Little Neck

I'm a little surprised by all the anti-Stewart sentiment here. As far as intelligent discourse, have you actually seen some of his interviews? The Daily Show is pretty much the *only* place you can hear political figures with differing views have a civil discussion.

I say all the time, it's really sad that a comedian is the most rational political voice on television, but that does seem to be the case right now.

Oct. 29 2010 10:05 AM

Stewart profits handsomely from the polarization he allegedly decries. He's as phony as a 3 dollar bill and is as corrosive and detrimental to intelligent discourse as the targets he lampoons. Stewart is a major player in Mark Halperin's freak show and is part of the problem not the solution.

Stewart's contention that there's an equivalence in size and influence between left wing extremism and right wing extremism is absurd and reveals his enormous ignorance.

Oct. 29 2010 09:47 AM

Jon Stewart is a vastly overrated comedian who requires 20 writers in order to deliver profoundly mediocre jokes that are drowned out in an ocean of nauseating, non-stop camera mugging.

Stewart is an obnoxious pied piper of snark and it's an outrage that the MSM is canonizing him as a combination of a prophet, a saint, and a reformer.

The Rally to Restore Sanity is a cynical marketing gimmick created to feed Stewart's massive ego and boost Comedy Central's revenue. It will be remembered as the most overblown pseudo-event of the year alongside Lebron James Decision.

Oct. 29 2010 09:33 AM

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