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Amanda Marcotte

I like Howard Stern, too. Sometimes. ;)

I wonder how many people who've squalled about how crude and vulgar I am like Stern. I'm guessing 75%.

ballgame

Howard Stern is undeniably a brilliant humorist at times. I occasionally watched him years ago when they were actually showing some slightly sanitized versions of his show on broadcast syndication (I've never had cable), and he can be incredibly funny. He also has a measure of integrity that his imitators lack, as you allude to, and I have to give him props for doing his best to help unseat Bush after Dear Leader's FCC started acting as a wing for the fundies that constitute Bush's remaining support.

Unfortunately, in addition to the sexism you refer to, I think he's also been one of the biggest contributors to the 'sneer and scorn' mode of critical discourse which often substitutes for genuine open-minded debate.

Also, I have to say that "he doesn't necessarily get a feminist gold star" seems a surprisingly mild rebuke to give someone who enjoyed videotaping a woman walking down the streets of Manhattan wearing nothing but panties, a bra, and a pair of tampons stuck up her nose.

chipmunk

I know other women who listen to (like) Howard Stern. I don't get it. Then again, maybe I'm not in touch with my inner adolescent.

Txfeminist

I grew up with K Rock, Stern's first big gig. A friend and I sat in study hall sharing her walkman headphones across the desks so we could roar (silently) to the Howard Stern show...I never felt like he was particularly hard on women - at least not in comparison to himself or others. His phone pranks were the best.

Who couldn't laugh at Ba-ba-booey? I ask you.

TangoMan

I never did learn to appreciate Stern but I have listened to Tom Leykis about a dozen times in my life and I enjoyed his shows even though some feminists claim he is a misogynist. All he does is offer his wisdom, via Leykis 101, to guys who want to get laid and not be in relationships. I almost spit out my drink the first time I heard his Tabasco Sauce Rule.

The Happy Feminist

Not funny. Sorry.

Ann Bartow

I have very conflicted feelings about Stern, and about your post. There is a lot of truth in what you say about Stern and the subtle way he seems to be satirizing misogyny rather than endorsing it. I listened to him way back in his WNBC days when I was growing up, and then I listed to him in the late 1980s when he began simulcasting his show in Philadelphia, and he made me laugh far more than he made me cringe. But here's the problem. His audience largely doesn't get it. For them, he normalizes and legitimizes the misogyny that you and I think he is mocking. I love Stern's Lenny Bruce like moments of social commentary, but to build an audience, I think then when he went national he ramped up the cruder compenents of the show and it lost a lot of its appeal. I'm curious about how he is going about trying to build a satellite radio audience,in terms of what the content of his show is now, but not curious enough to subscribe :>)

Ann Bartow

I have very conflicted feelings about Stern, and about your post. There is a lot of truth in what you say about Stern and the subtle way he seems to be satirizing misogyny rather than endorsing it. I listened to him way back in his WNBC days when I was growing up, and then I listed to him in the late 1980s when he began simulcasting his show in Philadelphia, and he made me laugh far more than he made me cringe. But here's the problem. His audience largely doesn't get it. For them, he normalizes and legitimizes the misogyny that you and I think he is mocking. I love Stern's Lenny Bruce like moments of social commentary, but to build an audience, I think then when he went national he ramped up the cruder compenents of the show and it lost a lot of its appeal. I'm curious about how he is going about trying to build a satellite radio audience,in terms of what the content of his show is now, but not curious enough to subscribe :>)

will

I think Ann Bartow hit it on the head. I have laughed listening to Stern as well. Yet, I feel like he is a net negative because of the reasons mentioned by Bartow.

ms

I agree with Ann completely. Sometimes Stern really made me laugh, a lot of times Stern really made me cringe. But he's too subtle for most of his audience (witness his callers and even his guests). Ann's hit it right on the head.

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