John Stossel. The very name elicits some interesting reactions, depending upon who’s talking. Libertarians love him, and count him as one of their own. Conservatives admire him, but occasionally find he rubs them the wrong way. Liberals loathe him, as his favorite sport seems to be shooting every sacred cow in their hallowed herd of celebrated causes. In short, John Stossel likes to rock the boat. A lot.
Stossel began his career in TV journalism as a crusading, cookie-cutter left-winger, eager to expose Big Business as the evil to the core. His early work does just that – attempts to ‘out’ corporations as evil-doers. But then, a funny thing happened. Stossel started digging deeper, past the P.R., beyond the B.S., to find the truth. And the truth wasn’t what most people were used to hearing.
He discovered that a great portion of what was being passed off as “truth” in the mainstream media was, in fact, nothing more than bias, spin, and propaganda from specific groups pushing their own agendas.
Slowly but surely, Stossel began exposing this bias, earning himself a reputation as first a contrarian, and later as a crusader for common sense. So it was only a matter of time before Stossel turned his attentions to the question “do gun control laws make citizens safer?”
What he found was actually pretty fascinating, not so much because of what data he found (if you’re a regular TTAG reader, you already know that gun control laws = more crime, conceal carry and open carry laws = less crime). No what was so interesting was that the studies he found came from the Federal government itself.
Newsflash: The Feds already know that gun control doesn’t work. That, of course, begs the question: if the Feds know that restrictive gun laws don’t work, why do they keep pushing for them? I have my theories.
But let’s get back to Stossel…
Last year, Stossel left his long-running gig at ABC News (where he was regarded as the ‘token conservative’) and signed with Fox News. He now hosts an eponymous weekly show on Fox Business (which is somewhat problematic, since Fox Business doesn’t reach nearly the number of homes that Fox News does).
Stossel’s biggest advantage is that he’s not Glenn Beck. While Beck performs an invaluable service as the Tea Party’s equivalent of John the Baptist, Stossel’s schtick positions him as more the voice of sanity, a one-man Greek chorus, making common-sense pronouncements on the way of things, from the wings of the stage of life.
It’s encouraging to see someone with the street cred of a John Stossel speak out on the folly of gun control laws. I wish he’d do even more, but when we live in a world full of spin, bias, and propaganda, a sane man’s work is never done.
Stossel enjoys what can be thought of as a target-rich environment, where gun control is but one of hundreds of worthy stories to cover. He can think of it as “job security.” We, on the other hand, can be grateful that he’s on the job.
God bless John Stossel.