Patterico's Pontifications

11/7/2007

There is simply no explanation for Chris Matthews anymore

Filed under: General — WLS @ 12:17 pm

Posted by WLS

That probably doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone here.

A few weeks ago I posted the takedown of Matthews by Jack Shafer in Slate. This quote that Shafer took from James Wolcott’s book “Attack Poodles and other Media Mutants” was especially good:

“[For Matthews] Each day on earth erases the days before. He says what he believes and believes what he says, and has the liberating advantage of always working from a blank sheet.”

I bring this up because of some howlers Matthews had in his political roundtable discussion on Msnbc Monday night. I know it was two days ago, but I can’t always stay on top of reading the transcripts when I missed the show — which I do more and more since he went completely loopy with Olbermann.

Here was one such comment from Monday, talking about Obama and Hillary in the New Hampshire primary:

MATTHEWS: Back with the round table. Jennifer, that‘s the question; if Barack Obama does manage to pull an upset in Iowa and win a substantial victory there, can he win in New Hampshire, a state that the Clintons have always owned?

In 1992, Tom Harkin ran in the Iowa Caucuses as the “favorite son” candidate, rendering them largely meaningless to the nomination effort and making the New Hampshire primary the first real contested event of the season. Most of the major candidates from 1988 had opted to not run in 1992 — Gephardt and Gore primarily — and Cuomo did his usual Hamlet impersonation before opting to not run.

Clinton ran second in NH to a hugely underfunded Tsongas, who was not taken seriously by the press early in the campaign season, 35-26%. So 1 in 4 Dem voters in NH were “owned” by the Clintons in 1992. The fact that he survived the Genifer Flowers scandal with Hillary’s help on 60 Mintues following the Super Bowl made him the “Comeback Kid” with the NH showing, thanks to the fawning sycophants in the campaign press corps.

In the general election, Clinton won NH 39.9% to Bush 37.7% and Perot’s 22.6%. So 4 in 10 general election NH voters were “owned” by the Clintons. Or you could say that 6 in 10 NH voters didn’t want him to be President.

In the 1996 NH general election, Clinton won 49.3% to Dole’s 39.4 and Perot’s 9.7%.

In 2000, Gore lost NH to Bush, 49-46.8%.

How the Clinton’s have “owned” NH must be one of those “facts” Wolcott was referring to.

There is no question that Matthews is in the bag for Obama, and that there is no sense of nostalgia on his part for a Clinton Administration 2.0. That was obvious from this comment:

….If Obama pulls a victory, a substantial victory in Iowa, which is possible right now, based on how close it is and the fact he might be moving and people have already decided they like Hillary or not, he seems to be the one with a little speed right now—if he beats her convincingly by ten points, can he win the New Hampshire primary and then go on to greatness?

I’m wondering if Matthews has really been watching this guy? His unspectacular performances in speeches and debates over the last 6 months have really revealed him to be “not ready for prime time.” Matthews is simply over the moon and out of touch.

Yes — I feel about Matthews the same way Patterico feels about Greenwald. Matthews is an intellectually dishonest charlatan masquerading as a journalist.

10 Responses to “There is simply no explanation for Chris Matthews anymore”

  1. There is no question that Matthews is in the bag for Obama . . .

    After the way Matthews truly gushes over Bill, this surprises me.

    dave (c44c9b)

  2. If you need a benchmark, try this:

    Matthews told Chris Jansing that Ron Paul was the only voice of sanity among the Republican Presidential candidates, because of his position on the Iraq war.

    capitano (03e5ec)

  3. Over the past few months, it’s obvious that Matthews is making a greater effort to live up to the name of his show: “Hardball”. Someone must have talked with him, or he’s just taken by Oblermann’s success. He’s doing better, but still has a long way to go. He might now be playing hardball with his guest commentators, but when it comes to the people in power it’s still softball as far as I’m concerned. (And why must he persist in pronouncing Dick Cheney’s name as “Chee-knee”? Aggh!)

    PurpleMinded (f14d8b)

  4. My favorite about Mathews is when someone on the Left tries to say that Chris is a conservative.

    Wasn’t he a senior staffer for Tip O’Neill?

    JD (49efd3)

  5. JD — he was O’Neill’s press secretary for several years. But he’s told a few lies about his time there as well.

    Generally,(and I’m going to say that my recollection of the precise anecdote is a little fuzzy) Bob Novak wrote in his memoirs that Matthews has for years recycled a lie about Tip O’Neill throwing Novak out of the Speaker’s offices in 1983 shortly after O’Neill became Speaker of the House. The reason was that a few years earlier Novak had written a column that implicated O’Neill in the late 1970’s “Koreagate” scandal. Matthews says the O’Neill never gave Novak an interview while Speaker — something Novak rebuts by pointing out numerous instances when O’Neill was an unnamed “Capitol Hill” source for juicy gossip in the Evans&Novak column.

    Matthews has told the story about seeing O’Neill throw Novak out of the offices more than once — the only problem is that Matthews didn’t start working for O’Neill until 1985.

    That’s my recollection of the story from having read Novak’s memiors, but the dates may be off.

    WLS (bafbcb)

  6. What I find most interesting about Chris Matthews is how he can be such a committed Democrat and yet it’s clear he dislikes the Clintons. That’s a difficult fence to straddle if you are a Democrat, let alone a prominent media person.

    DRJ (5c60fb)

  7. He claims he simply has no tolerance for politicians who lie — hence he has no real nostaligia for Bill Clinton, though he thinks he was the best politician of the post-Kennedy era.

    Hillary voted for the war, and has resisted doing the left wing’s required mea culpa, so Matthews can’t forgive her heresy either.

    Obama is his guy. He’s Kennedy re-incarnated.

    Matthews clearly wishes he was born in Hyannisport and not Philadephia. It all about the “Politics of Hope” for him. He’s a Birkenstock wearing beatnick whose only reqret is that he couldn’t re-enlist in the Peace Corps.

    WLS (bafbcb)

  8. Maybe Matthews can be a scab for the late night shows—-comity relief: The easing of a burden or distress, such as pain, anxiety, or oppression.

    The only time I switch over to hardball is when I need my blood pressure to rise. (30 seconds tops)Any longer and you have to get the barf bag out.

    The man is simply dumber than Wolf Blitzer.

    Rovin (7f64b8)

  9. Chee-Knee is actually the proper way to pronounce it.

    Not that I enjoy defending Chris Matthews.

    Patterico (13dd2a)

  10. I think Burt Prelutsky agrees with your opinion of Chris Matthews.

    DRJ (5c60fb)


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