Listen to former radio star Howard Stern tap dance in a very choreographed manner around the attempted suicide of his drug-addicted, besotted, obese loosely-comic "sidekick," Artie Lange. After years of facilitating, exploiting and egging on Lange's demons for entertainment and outrageousness for close to a decade, Stern begins by turning his anger on the news media for reporting a story he and those around him had covered up successfully for days, before insisting that the self-stabbing incident of an out-of-control comedian who has made a living by upping the ante on his dangerous and unhealthy drug use -- and with his July 2009 DUI arrest, shown to be endangering a public that would probably know him only as the unshaven, slovenly and inebriated buffoon who disrupts television talk shows-- is a "family matter" that Stern can sidestep comment about because he's part of the family.
Problem is, Stern's not part of "the family." He's a cynical show biz ringleading enabler who gets laughs out of the disabled and made his fat drunken drug addict "sidekick" the equivalent of a bear dancing on a hot plate. Only instead of striking back like circus elephants or Las Vegas tigers sometimes do, Artie Lange turned the violence on himself.
The Artie Lange suicide attempt is very sad, but not surprising considering the sad career we've chronicled. To hear Howard Stern say he didn't realize the extent of Lange's "demons," and is too "sick" to talk about it, and to hear his partner Robin Quivers tell him that commenting on the "It would be like the Johnsons coming on to talk about their daughter (recently-deceased lesbian socialite Casey Johnson), is to be astounded at the hypocrisy of the man once regarded to be a successor to Lenny Bruce and shows that Stern and crew have been trapped in their private bubble too long to come out.
Did Stern really think he could keep the story covered up? Does he think he has the power he once wielded as the "king" of media. Does he think he's dealing with the Las Vegas news media?