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good tv: fareed zakaria’s GPS

Fareed Zakaria doesn’t seem well-suited for the role of television show host. He’s stiff as a board, and he lacks the Jon Stewart wit so effective in livening up otherwise dry issues. Yet Zakaria has managed to create the best news show on TV in Global Public Square (or GPS). How?

First, Zakaria chooses great guests, carefully chosen for their unique takes on otherwise tired issues (e.g., Bjorn Lomborg); these aren’t the standard news circuit hacks. Second, Zakaria avoids the standard pitfalls of tv hosts when questioning his guests. Nobody gets a free pass, but the questions are not designed to embarass or “nail” the guest, but rather force them to respond to the best counterarguments to their position. For example, he presses Condi Rice on why the US doesn’t treat Iran the same way it treats North Korea. And when a guest, such as Ms. Rice provides a vague response, such as her explanation of the political situation in Iraq as a well-functioning Iraqi democratic government, Zakaria points out that the Sunnis are still largely excluded from the regime.

The show airs at 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, and as long as you can stomach the Lou Dobbs advertisements during breaks, I would highly suggest it.

No, Zakaria isn’t a TV host at heart, but if you’re looking for “good tv,” GPS is a great place to start. Enjoy Stewart’s light-hearted take after a hard day’s work, and turn to Zakaria for your critical analysis of the world’s most pressing issues.

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Filed under: Misc

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