Comedian Jon Stewart says political commentators “are making a mistake” by focusing on former President Donald Trump’s individual contributions to the erosion of democracy, instead claiming that American institutions are vulnerable to “the idea that power is its own reward ”.
“I don’t know if autocracy is purely the domain of Donald Trump,” the former host of the “Daily Show” said in an interview broadcast Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union”. “Unfortunately, the disorder of democracy is often perhaps one of its greatest weaknesses. People generally want prosperity and security. “
“If a democratic system struggles to deliver this or if it is overthrown by those who want to create chaos so they can form a more authoritarian government, that is also part of it,” he added.
“If we have identified the pressure points where guardrails seem most vulnerable, this is where we should be focusing a lot of our efforts in terms of strengthening. … What’s encouraging is looking at the local level, people who really see it as something that they want to protect and that they want to strengthen, ”said Stewart.
Discussing political developments in the six years between leaving “The Daily Show” and the start of a new show, “The Problem with Jon Stewart,” on Apple TV + this fall, Stewart said media algorithms social have been a key factor in increasing political polarization.
“We are adapting to a new information and political ecosystem. … The delivery system is more sophisticated, more robust and more ubiquitous, ”he said. “It helps radicalize faster or deeper. We have algorithms that ensure that if you start leaning towards something bad… then the algorithm says, “I have a four hour manifesto that you need to see. We have created a machine that makes this kind of radicalization more effective.
Stewart briefly passed judgment on whether President Joe Biden is doing a good job leading the nation – “I don’t think anyone is” – before revisiting the threat critics perceive Trump to be. stands for democratic order, now that the former Republican president is primarily an “efficient vessel.”
“Again, he doesn’t sing new songs. … He sings them maybe better than [the late Sen. Barry] Goldwater, “said Stewart.” But I think it’s a mistake to focus everything on this individual and not focus him more on the idea that power is its own reward, whether it’s in the financial industry or to the government. Power never gives up.
“We have learned a lot from this over the past few decades, but especially maybe over the past four or five years because Donald Trump was so disruptive and so willing to defy the norms, we have learned that much of the American system is built on the honor system, ”said Stewart. “This only works, of course, if you care about honor or even have a sense of honor.”