Winfrey has become our national confessor, our friendly, neighborhood billionaire philanthropist, the wizard who sprinkles magical dust over every author, entrepreneur, do-gooder and politician within her orbit. What Winfrey doesn't do is as powerful a statement as what she does. How dare she not interview Sarah Palin! The culture, it seems, has declared ownership of "The Oprah Winfrey Show."
Winfrey begs to differ - but only to a point. "I feel it's very much my show in that every decision you see on the show has come from that desk," she says, gesturing toward the pale green, bean-shaped table in her office. "The part that belongs to the culture is every single person who has watched . . . who has found or discovered a piece of light from it. Flecks of light, that's what I call it."