Whether or not you're still a fan of American Idol, it's still a ratings powerhouse. Could the show go on indefinitely....or not?

Point #1. Idol has been tv's top-rated show for a record seven seasons. And last year it was actually UP four percent in an impresive season-ten rebound.

Point #2. Idol is the leader of its pack. While there are other singing competitions, including Simon Cowell's X Factor and The Voice (my personal favorite), Idol still gets the best ratings of the bunch.

Point #3. Fresh blood freshened an aging show. Randy Jackson has the respect of being there from the start, J-lo and Steven Tyler respect each other as equals, as artists, and seem to genuinely like each other.

Point #4. Its simple, successful formula focuses on the contestants. No mentoring, no competition among the judges, and no feuds (since Paula and Simon left) among the judges.

Point #5. It's a proven star-making machine. From Kelly Clarkson in season one to Scotty McCreery last season, Idol has a track record of creating or introducing stars, including Carrie Underwood (Grammy winner), Jennifer Hudson (Oscar winner), Chris Daughtry, Adam Lambert and David Cook.