Tucker Carlson calls Jon Stewart a cow (a sacred one)

Jake Turcotte
Are Rush Limbaugh and Jon Stewart the most powerful people in the media? There are similarities. Cross them and they can make your life miserable. And both use humor to get their points across. Many would argue that Stewart has a more potent sense of humor, however.

Is Jon Stewart a slimmed down version of Rush Limbaugh?

If you listen to Tucker Carlson anyway, that's what you could conclude. Carlson appeared on CNN's "Reliable Sources" yesterday and had little nice to say of the Daily Show host.

Carlson claimed Stewart is a "partisan hack" who is so popular that no one dares to criticize him. And that's frustrating Carlson.

If this is the case, then the two do have a lot in common.


Everybody knows what happens if you are a Republican (with standing) and say anything negative about Rush.

He'll call you on it. You get concerned. You apologize. The DNC mocks you on a website. Chris Matthews, Rachel Maddow, and Keith Olbermann all laugh (at you, not with you). And pundits start writing your political obit.

Worser Smackdown

What happens if you criticize Jon Stewart? It's worse.

Ask CNBC's Jim Cramer. He was clobbered last week.

Unlike Limbaugh who will forgive wayward Republicans if they kiss his ring, Stewart went medieval on Cramer.

Granted, Cramer might have had a better outing by not showing up (Rick Santelli is looking pretty smart for bailing). Or perhaps something even more crazy like thinking about what you might say before appearing.

Be mad

But why be upset at Stewart? Many say he is just reflecting society's anger at those who should have known something was wrong with our financial system before it blew up.

It's not that, Carlson said. Stewart took out the long knives as soon as Cramer criticized the president. (see video below)

"Let's be honest, this was a partisan attack," Carlson said. "He went after Cramer the moment Cramer criticized Obama's budget. That was the mortal sin. That's what kicked off this entire feud."

And that makes Stewart disingenuous, Carlson claims. He said Stewart is abrogating his responsibility to his viewers "who actually believe him."


And although many in the media are subject to criticism, Carlson claims criticizing Stewart is like touching the third rail.

Well, the carnage of what used to be Jim Cramer kinda does prove this.

"He's a sacred cow," Carlson said. "There's nobody who [will] attack Jon Stewart because he's too popular. The press sucks up to him like I've never seen -- it's like Oprah.

"I would like to see somebody ... come out and say, Jon Stewart's kind of a pompous jerk, actually," Carlson said.

But he's not, said another guest on the show.

"But he is!" said Carlson.

Lay it down

So laid the gauntlet. Carlson's taking him on.

It's not like he hasn't been here before. He was a victim of a Stewart beat-down a few years ago. Although nothing like the Cramer catastrophe.


Regardless, it's hard to beat funny. Funny works. Because with funny you can dodge, you can pivot, you can better illustrate. You can win.

Let's just say that Cramer came to the show a compelling argument. No matter what he could have said, Stewart still wins with:

"If I had only followed CNBC's advice, I'd have a million dollars today ... provided I had started with $100 million dollars."


Hey, if you follow our advice you'd probably be broke. Regardless, follow us on Twitter (we're brand new to it - so help a brother out).

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