50333_118856078167623_3500_n The date 10/30 has been set for competing D.C. rallies from satirists Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, who plan to step into the political limelight, in what are clearly skewerings of Glenn Beck and polarized discourse.

The Comedy Central hosts appeared on each other’s shows to announce the events — each with opposite tacks. Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Sanity” is described on his site as “Woodstock, but with the nudity and drugs replaced by respectful

His site says, “Ours is a rally for
the people who’ve been too busy to go to rallies, who actually have
lives and families and jobs (or are
looking for jobs) — not so much the Silent Majority as the Busy
Majority. If we had to sum up the
political view of our participants in a single sentence… we couldn’t.
That’s sort of the point.”

On his show, Stewart mocked shout-filled rhetoric and conspiratorial talk of all types, playing clips of anti-war protesters calling George W. Bush “Hitler” and Tea Partiers doing the same with President Obama. He even got a clip of a screaming Lady Gaga at last year’s rally for gay equality.

Colbert’s event is the opposite, the “March to Keep Fear Alive.”

He describes it this way: “America, the Greatest Country God ever gave Man, was built on three
bedrock principles: Freedom. Liberty.
And Fear — that someone might take our Freedom and Liberty. But now,
there are dark, optimistic forces
trying to take away our Fear — forces with salt and pepper hair and way
more Emmys than they need.
They want to replace our Fear with reason. But never forget — “Reason”
is just one letter away from “Treason.”
Coincidence? Reasonable people would say it is, but America can’t afford
to take that chance.”

While these events are all in the name of comedy, don’t doubt that there will be a fair amount of political punditry on the effect that these satirical rallies actually have on the process and as a mitigating effect on the Tea Parties, particularly if there is a sizable turnout.

“Superman” Stunted?: Last night’s premiere of “Waiting for Superman” in D.C. featured a panel that included Washington’s schools chancellor, Michelle Rhee, who is in the documentary as an example of a reformer taking on the system. Trouble is, her tenure is now in doubt with the defeat of Mayor Adrian Fenty.

Per Politico, she said at the event, “Let me not mince words, and say that yesterday’s election results were DEVASTATING – devastating. Not for me, because I’ll be fine. And not even for Fenty, because he’ll be fine, too. It was devastating for the children of Washington, D.C. [applause] … The biggest tragedy that could come from [the] election results is if the lesson that people take from this is that we should pull back. … That is NOT the right lesson for this reform movement. We cannot retreat now.”

Peace Plan: Mike Murphy, campaign strategist for Meg Whitman’s gubernatorial campaign, is no fan of the GOP’s Delaware Senate nominee Christine O’Donnell, but he says he has a suggestion “to the snarling combantants in the GOP’s looming civil war.”

He writes, “I think the architects of the O’Donnell putsch, namely S.C. Senator Jim
DeMint and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, should both temporarily move
to Delaware full time and personally lead the O’Donnell campaign.
Control it, direct it, and own it. Show that Georgetown cocktail party
addicted and hapless GOP establishment how it’s really done. I’ve got my
notebook out, and I’m ready to learn. Call me a peacemaker.”

So much for that. O’Donnell has already raised $1 million since her victory.

More on the Money Trail: Melissa Etheridge will perform at a Sept. 25 fund-raiser for Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), with Rhea Perlman and Danny DeVito also headlining. The tickets start at $200-per-person and the event will be held at the Hidden Hills home of Syd and Linda Leibovitch. Sheryl Crow is set to sing for Boxer at an event Sunday at the home of Magic Johnson.

Paul Hodes, running for Senate in New Hampshire, returns to L.A. on Sept. 24 for a $500-per-person event in Beverly Hills. Co-hosts include HBO’s Michael Lombardo and Andy Spahn and Jennifer Perry.

Lady Gaga Lobbying: Here’s her message to the Senate as it prepares to vote on the appropriations bill that includes a repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Coming Up: The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center’s honorees at its anniversary gala and auction on Nov. 13 will be Jane Lynch from “Glee” and Harrah’s Entertainment. Matthew Morrison will present the award to Lynch, and Lily Tomlin will host.