Speed Reads

scrutiny

Jon Stewart says heads of news divisions refused to come on his show to 'defend' themselves

Jon Stewart has a problem with the heads of major news organizations. 

The comedian devoted the latest episode of his Apple TV+ show The Problem with Jon Stewart to examining the news media, particularly cable news, and he interviewed former Disney CEO Bob Iger, who oversaw ABC News. But on The Howard Stern Show, Stewart said he unsuccessfully attempted to get the current head of any news organization to come on and "defend their product," Mediaite reports

"We tried very hard to get a person who runs a news division now to come on the show to speak publicly," Stewart said. "They all turned us down. Now, these are people who run news organizations, people that, their business model relies on access and transparency." 

Stewart said he did hold some Zoom calls with individuals at news organizations about this but that these discussions never went anywhere.

Howard Stern called this revelation "amazing," but Stewart told him it's "not amazing, it's f--king crazy" that those who "work in an industry where the reason for being is to find out the truth and to illuminate the dark corners and to expose corruption" are not willing to "come on and allow that same scrutiny to be applied" to them and their "exploitative" business model. 

Stewart did get to have a discussion with Iger, in which he noted that the heads of news divisions were "reluctant to speak" with him on the record. When asked why this might be, Iger said "there's a sense" that news organizations are "being scrutinized and being criticized in a way that they've never experienced before, and I think there's a bit of a bunker mentality that has set in."