When The Colbert Report ends its run on Comedy Central this December, the late night news world will not only be losing one of its most hilarious characters, but it'll also be losing television's most effective educator of politics and campaign finance. According to Deadline, a new study has found that viewers of Colbert's super PAC coverage during the last presidential election season "were better informed about campaign financing and the role of money in politics than viewers of actual news channels and other, actual-news shows."
Dubbed Stephen Colbert's Civics Lesson, the study was conducted through phone interview data from 1,232 adults ages 18+ between December [...]
So it's as bad as we thought. When the Colbert Report first began highlighting the looming threat of Super PACs last year, the rest of the country was still obsessed with the president's birth certificate and the wording of Sarah Palin's latest tweets. We are paying attention now. We see in hindsight that it was Super PAC spending, and not the Tea Party "movement," behind the 2010 elections. We have watched this year's Republican election be hijacked by three delusional millionaires, and only one of them is a candidate.
Thanks to the efforts of Stephen Colbert and a few others, we have awareness of campaign spending abuse aplenty. [...]
It's Colbert vs. the Supreme Court: the Court may have nine members, but Colbert has the self-assuredness of at least 20 people. This article outlines how Colbert "has probably done more to undermine public confidence in the court’s 2010 Citizens United opinion than anyone, including the dissenters." It's a good summation of the many opinions out there on what exactly his Super PAC is giving us: an entertaining performance? A frightening lesson? An ironic middle finger? It's also a good reminder to think about which members of the current Supreme Court would be toughest in a physical fight. (Without question, Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Right?)
Stephen Colbert was all ready to retrieve his Super PAC from Jon Stewart's avuncular, custodial arms when he was shocked to find those same arms greedily hoarding the money – and continuing to do so four days later. In an email to PAC members (below), Stewart admits he's gotten into a bit of a jam vis-à-vis liquid assets. "I didn't mean to spend so much. But you know how it is – you gold-plate one plate, and then you realize you've got to do all the dishes, or else they won't match." Tell me about it, Stewart. I just chipped my tooth on a gilded frying pan. [...]
Stephen Colbert visited Morning Joe today, or as he rechristened it, "Evening Joe brought to you by Jack Daniels." Up for discussion was last night's Republican debate, from which Stephen was conspicuously absent. He also talks about Herman Cain, coyly maintains that he's only exploring a presidential run, and most importantly reveals why the "t" in his last name is silent – all the while criticizing the "garbage" questions thrown at him by these so-called journalists. Navigating the media is a tightrope walk, but Colbert maneuvers it with the grace of a real Southern gentleman.