On Thursday night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart took a hard look at the plagiarism allegations against Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) In case you haven't been following the Rand Paul scandal, Stewart walked us through the highlights.
First, Paul was accused of reciting whole portions of Wikipedia articles nearly verbatim in some speeches. Stewart played the audio of one of those speeches under the apparently pilfered text from a Wikipedia entry on the movie Gattaca. "OK, I'm going to pretend here that the thing we're supposed to be concerned about is that Rand Paul is copying from Wikipedia and not that he's warning Americans about the role of government by referencing an Ethan Hawke movie," Stewart said.
Paul's initial defense was that 98 percent of his speeches are extemporaneous — or just 2 percent plagiarized, Stewart joked — and that unlike books and articles, speeches don't have footnotes. "The problem is that it doesn't just end with speeches," Stewart said, noting that whole sections of Paul's latest book appear to have been lifted verbatim from a Forbes article and reports from conservative think tanks.
And then, yes, Stewart noted the Washington Times column where Paul borrowed heavily from an article in The Week. The allegations were enough to cost Paul his Washington Times column, but Stewart said the more troubling part was the senator's petulance at being caught. His imitation of a huffy toddler is pretty amusing. (The Week's Dan Stewart responds to apparently being plagiarized by Paul here)
Stewart started out the show, however, by revisiting the ever-amusing crack-fueled drama surrounding Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. The impetus for this segment was a video that surfaced early Thursday, via the Toronto Star, of Ford manically making explicative-laced death threats.
The fact that these videos keep surfacing is proof that even his friends don't think anybody will believe how crazy he's acting, Stewart said. He then points to one of Ford's statements in the video — "I am a sick mother—er dude" — and quips that PolitiFact rates it "True."
The rest of the show (not involving guest Patrick Stewart) is dedicated to the NFL scandal surrounding Miami Dolphin guard Richie Incognito's bullying of teammate Jonathan Martin.
After running through the disturbing ways Incognito has harassed Martin, and the NFL players' response to the allegations (essentially: Martin's being a sissy), Stewart brought out correspondents John Oliver, Jason Jones, and Al Madrigal for a new segment: T.D.S.O.S. The three members of the Best F@#king News Team Ever run through some dos and don'ts for workplace conduct. This is easily the funniest part of the show. Watch:
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