Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Dowd Defends The Funny

The Harvard Review printed an interview with Maureen Dowd that presumably took place when she was in Cambridge giving a speech back in October. I've heard of long lead times, but really. In it she professes her well documented love for Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert:

Well, I watch the Colbert Report and the Daily Show more than I watch the nightly news. And I really think the alarm about that is silly, because I think if you watch Colbert and Stewart, you learn a lot.
Plus you can talk them into writing columns for you. She thinks humor has a place in political discourse.
When I first started my columns, Michael Kinsley and Bill Safire said to me, “You have to stop doing humor columns because you’ll be seen as too girly.” And I said I would never take humor out of politics. I think it’s a fantastic way to tell the truth, but to take a fresh angle that can lure people in and tell them something true. And I grew up loving Johnathan Swift and Evelyn Wong, and I think we can use humor and satire to get at the truth and a larger and different audience.
And by "Evelyn Wong", she (or the under-educated transcriber) means Bennett Cerf.

But I'm not expecting her to drop into the comments section of this blog anytime soon. While recent columns display a dazzling skill with Google and YouTube, she professes to be technologically ignorant.
I’m not very technological. Someone gave me an iPod a year ago but I’ve only just learned how to turn it on. And I don’t blog or anything but I think journalism is about the story or the narrative.
But she doesn't dismiss the power of blogs:
It doesn’t matter to me what the delivery system is. The more, the better, the more populist, the better, the more people engaged, the better, but in the end, it’s about the story and about human nature.
And who should now more about human nature than her.

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