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Monday, October 24, 2016

On Thursday night, Jon Stewart will take his final bow as the host of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, a post he has held for 16 years and four presidential election cycles.

Stewart’s exit brings to a close an era in which the sardonic comedian became, despite himself, the most trusted man in news. The “angry optimist” who played court jester to the media-political machine and ended up becoming one of its most highly regarded and credible luminaries — much to his exasperation.

Although he often deprecated himself as a spitball-throwing silly man of the airwaves, he was anything but inessential. Here are eight reasons why he will be so dearly missed, and why we’re not about to see the likes of him again.

Stewart on Crossfire

Jon Stewart’s 2004 appearance on CNN’s Crossfire turned out to be the death knell of the show. Stewart appeared on the long-running liberal-conservative rock-em-sock-em sideshow at the height of its hysterical election coverage to beg them to dial down the infotainment antics and return to informing the American public. The show, he said, was not so much bad, as it was “hurting America.”

“Stop. Stop stop stop stop hurting America. And come work for us… see the thing is, we need your help. Right now you’re helping the politicians and corporations. […] You’re partisan… whaddya call it? Hacks.”

In a decidedly unamused tone, Stewart accused the pundits of failing in their responsibility to the public discourse: “We need help from the media and they’re hurting us.”

Three months later, CNN canceled the show.

Next: Chris Wallace

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  • Brian_pdx

    Jon Stewart is nearly as big a loss as President Obama not being able to run again.

    • TZToronto

      We can only hope that his successor is ready to speak truth to power. Sadly, there will always be comparison made to what John Stewart did and said, and that’s not really fair. Heck, maybe the Daily Show will be better with a new face. Time will tell.

  • Whatmeworry

    Gosh 7 years as the Obama chief spokesperson

    • Gosh 7 years as the dan ketters chief spokesperson

    • Linda Rae Ketter fell off Williamsburg ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down