ALL WOMEN LEFT BEHIND! Matthews loathing of women has long been clear. Why wont lib journals say so? // link // print // previous // next //
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 2007
THE TRUTH ABOUT RUSSERT: An amazing thing has occurred in the past few weeks; for the first time we can ever recall, Jack Welchs angry and very Lost Boys have been forced to defend their gruesome conduct against complaints from the left. Its true: Our liberal journals have been quite timid. The weak young lads who work at those journals arent going to speak until its quite safe. So the toughest complaints have had to come from Democratic politicians themselves. (This is not good strategy.)
This morning, we cheered as Geraldine Ferraro spoke up in a letter to the New York Times—although we disagree with a major part of her focus. She spoke about the conduct of the last Democratic debate:
FERRARO (11/14/07): Watching this debate, I saw two hours of Senator Clinton being bombarded with personal attacks, not only by her opponents but also by the moderator Tim Russert. Yes, shes the Democratic front-runner, and that makes her fair game for challenges on the issues. But when it got so personal that even Bill Richardson, one of her opponents, had to say Enough, I had to agree.Omigod—she directly named Russert! She said he bombarded Clinton with personal attacks—and she suggested he had a personal animus! After saying she thinks this conduct was sexist, she offered an additional thought:
FERRARO: Ill be watching the coming candidate debates on CNN, and if the Republican front-runner, Rudolph W. Giuliani, is the sole subject of two hours of personal attacks, Ill rethink my position.Well, she doesnt have to worry about that! Giuliani will not be trashed in the way Clinton was—and yes, the trashing was directed by Russert and by his handsome side-kick, Brian Williams. In fact, no front-runner has ever been treated the way this particular front-runner was. When Russert hosted a Republican debate in January 2000, for example, front-runner Bush got nothing that even dimly resembled this treatment. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 11/2/07, to recall how the other half lives.
Omigod! Unlike the trembling boys at our liberal journals, Ferrraro was willing to suggest the obvious—Bombardier Russert was taking sides when he directed the trashing of Clinton. But even Ferraro omits the obvious. Yes, this probably happened, in some part, because Clinton is a woman. But it clearly happened because shes a Democrat! Even Ferraro fails to suggest what has been clear for a very long time: Russert, and the rest of Jack Welchs Lost Boys, have a plain partisan animus.
So well offer two cheers for Ferraro today, for putting Russert on the defensive. But even Ferraro fails to describe the shape of the past fifteen years.
Tomorrow, well show you Gene Lyons new column, and a recent post from Digby, in which we read about two groaning errors made by Russert in his trashing of Clinton. Heres our question: Do we still believe that these are mistakes? At your liberal journals, the frightened lads do; theyll get around to alleging a partisan animus at some point in the latter half of the century. (Cowards of the maximum order, they still wont discuss what happened to Gore!) But for ourselves, wed have to say that Russerts pattern has become rather clear. Jack Welchs boys have trashed Big Dems for years. When do we plan to stand up and say so? After Rudys war with Iran?
IN SEARCH OF SEXISM: We can think of only one past debate which even dimly resembled this last one; that was the final Gore-Bradley debate in New Hampshire, in which Gore took a heap of abuse from the principal moderator. But in that case, Gore was a man—and the moderator, Judy Woodruff, was a woman. Why was Woodruff trashing Gore that night—bombarding him with personal attacks? Wed have to say her conduct that night cannot be drawn back to her sexism.
Question: What analysis could help us understand the way this scribe went after Gore? What group dynamic within the press corps explains this plainly repetitive conduct—the repetitive conduct your wet-legged boys will discuss once they get their SS?
Special report: Profiles discouraged!
BE SURE TO READ EACH THRILLING INSTALLMENT: Chris Matthews has savaged Big Dems for a decade. But to this day, liberal journals have failed to produce a profile which even dimly captures his conduct. Why have our liberal journals slept? Read each thrilling installment:
PART 1: The most remarkable fact about Matthews is the fact that he never gets profiled. See THE DAILY HOWLER, 11/12/07.Today, we recall the way Matthews has trashed liberal women, down through all the years.
PART 3—ALL WOMEN LEFT BEHIND: Eight years ago, just like today, Chris Matthews was picking your nominee for you. In recent weeks, he has been running a ludicrous campaign against the deeply troubling way Candidate Clinton claps her hands; back then, he fawned over Bill Bradleys five oclock shadow—and he wouldnt stop trashing Gore. The sheer stupidity of Matthews work is only matched by its anti-Dem vehemence. His hatred of Dems—and his loathing of women—has been clear for a very long time.
But none of this seems to register at our fiery liberal journals—at the journals which make liberals and Democrats think their interests are being defended. To this day, we have never seen a profile of Matthews which even begins to deal with the way he has savaged the Democratic Party over the course of the past dozen years. Indeed, some of our journalistic leaders go out of their way to praise his work! Then, by complete and total coincidence, they end up as guests on his program.
And make no mistake, the ugliest aspects of Matthews character have been on display a long time. Tomorrow, well show you the way he took part in the sexual trashing of Naomi Wolf, back when the press corps was using Wolf as a way to tear down Gore. But then, Matthews loathing of women has long been apparent—more particularly, his loathing of liberal women. Consider what happened on July 29, 1999, when Mary Boyle dared to speak on his show.
As always, Matthews was playing the fool about Gore, engaging in the two-year war which eventually sent Bush to the White House. About half that evenings Hardball show was devoted to discussions about Gore, then the Democratic front-runner. In particular, Matthews asked why Gore was polling poorly against Bush among female voters, and he wondered how the legacy of the Clinton scandals would affect Gores campaign. Throughout, he displayed the abusive tone toward Gore that was quickly becoming his trademark. As he began, he showed completely unremarkable tape of Gore campaigning that day in Cleveland. How could Gore be campaigning so poorly? he then asked his well-trained panel:
MATTHEWS (7/29/99): Is Al Gore just incapable of putting, like, one foot in front of the other in this campaign? Hes a professional politician—It was only July 1999—but Matthews was already comparing Gore to a science fiction monster. But, as usual, more was coming. Mary Boyle, a former Democratic Senate candidate from Ohio (defeated by Voinovich), was appearing live from Cleveland; she said she had been present that day to watch Gore give his speech. Matthews continued his onslaught:
MATTHEWS: What mode was he in? Was he in, was he in the quiet mode, or that sort of Clutch Cargo craziness he gets into, or was he—Boyle said that Gore had been very gentle and approachable and listened to people in their presentations. Soon, Scarborough, a regular guest on the show, returned to the kind of commentary which was becoming so familiar on Hardball. Indeed, it was very much like last weeks Hardball! We were now discussing the way the Dem front-runner had once been seen clapping his hands:
SCARBOROUGH: She says, Al Gore was loose. Thats when hes at his worst. Remember the Olympics, when he was clapping like this? And youre, like, My God, the guy cant even clap. Did they—what—did they teach—Perhaps youre getting the picture. On Hardball, they were trashing the way Gore clapped his hands at the Winter Olympics. (Today, Gore is the Nobel Prize winner. Back then, on this inexcusable program, he was just a dork.) But then, these things never change on this program. All last week, Matthews burned time on his crackpot program berating Clinton for the way she claps her hands! In short, Matthews is a barely sane, Dem-hating nut. And he has been for a very long time.
But lets return to July 29, 1999—eight long years ago. In the segments of the show which dealt with Gore, Matthews said that Gore was like a surgeon who had the shakes; referred to him several times as Clintons bath-tub ring; and said he was a square and loser. He insisted that Gore was pandering to women when he supported abortion rights. He said Gore was into robotics; he said bubbles were coming out of Gores forehead, and that he was like a famous cartoon figure. But then, Matthews would go on to call Gore a bath-tub ring over forty times in 1999 alone; in the year 2000, he would ratchet up his colorful language, saying Gore would lick the bathroom floor in order to get to the White House. (See extra section, below.) And, as crackpots frequently do, Matthews frequently complimented himself for his daring language. Im sure he loves that one, he said on May 14, after calling Gore the bath-tub ring. Ive been very risqué at times, he naughtily boasted, discussing this same formulation a week later. On March 8, he called Gore the bath-tub ring, as I keep saying to the discomfort of many others. On July 21, we finally saw the soul of the artist as one guest seemed to balk a bit at his abusive language:
MATTHEWS (7/21/99): Is he the bath-tub ring of the Clinton administration?Matthews thought that Gore was taking a hit? Gore was taking a hit over Clintons misconduct every night, on his own crackpot program! At any rate, Matthews never did come up with a better one than the very risqué term he had been brilliantly using with Gore. He called Gore the bath-tub ring all year long, then added the image of licking the floor as he worked to send Bush to the White House. The blood of Iraq is on Matthews hands for the disgraceful conduct he engaged in—not that youd ever know such things from reading your liberal journals.
(By the way: One month after this July 29 program, Matthews spent a half-hour on his program letting Gennifer Flowers go on and on—and on and on—about both Clintons murders. No one said boo—or ever has.)
But yes—that July 29 program was pretty much like other Hardballs. Except for what happened when Mary Boyle tried to defend Gores performance—when we got to see, as we saw last week, Matthews familiar loathing of women, especially liberal women.
In fairness, Boyle made a mistake on this show. A first-time guest, she tried to offer sensible commentary about Gores actual Cleveland speech, which she had actually witnessed. As noted above, when she said that Gore hadnt seemed like a sci-fi monster—when she even tried to list the issues he had discussed—Boyle quickly found herself confronted with Matthews standard lunacy. Heres a slightly fuller excerpt, so you can drink it in:
MATTHEWS: Mary Boyle, who ran for the Senate out there. Go ahead, Mary.That was the way this sick, disturbed kook was covering your White House election.
At any rate, Boyle was on the wrong program. I want to tell you just very briefly about [Gores speech], she said, because you probably would like covering the news. Condescendingly saying, Can I give you a chance here? Matthews quickly took the discussion back into dumber waters. But when Boyle spoke up in a later segment, the full force of her hosts scorn was unleashed. He told his guest he would speak very slowly so she could get what he was saying:
MATTHEWS: Mary—Mary, let me explain—Molinari seemed a bit uncomfortable with the mocking tone Matthews was extending toward Boyle. But any viewer of this program should have been found it quite familiar; Matthews had aimed his withering scorn at liberal women all through the year. He had trashed Elizabeth Holtzman in January when she dared make accurate statements about her hosts favorite Clinton-accuser, his dearest darling, the Faire Lady Willey. And he would trash Norah ODonnell all through the year—back in the day when ODonnell routinely spoke up to challenge her hosts inanity, before becoming the multimillionaire android she has agreed to perform as today. (At some point, she made a choice.) Just last week, we once again saw the snide condescension Matthews directs toward women who challenge him; he lectured Mika Brzezinki on the Morning Joe program, then directed his standard short fuse toward Chrystia Freeland on Hardball. (His pique toward Freeland was evident again Monday evening, when she dared suggest that journalists should avoid forcing our own media interpretation onto the Clinton-Obama race. By contrast, when Joe Klein said the same thing last night, Matthews took it like a man.) Indeed, anyone who watches this show has seen the endless gender disturbance which animates so much of Matthews conversation. Tomorrow, well look in on more of that gender disturbance as we watch the way this unwell man trashed Wolf during November 1999—helping send Bush to the White House.
In print, its hard to convey the condescension Matthew showed toward Boyle, who dared to say that Gore didnt have bubbles coming out of his forehead when he spoke in Cleveland. (Boyle never appeared on Hardball again.) But anyone who watches Hardball has seen that rude, dismissive condescension toward women again and again—and his kooky, throwback gender disturbance, which he has aimed at Clinton all year. Thats what makes it so amazing, when even our female liberal editors refuse to assign a profile of Matthews—of his long-time, repugnant, Dem-trashing conduct. For the past decade, Matthews has been trashing Major Dems in the stupidest ways imaginable, while displaying his endless gender disturbance. But in the world of liberal journalism, even our Big Liberal Women have refused to complain; one of them even goes out of her way to praise the gentlemans work. We have never seen a single profile which begins to capture this mans gruesome conduct—which even begins to capture the harm he has done in the past dozen years. Even our female editors wont assign that profile—the profile which still hasnt been written.
All week, were asking one question: Why on earth wont they order that profile? Were afraid the answer is obvious.
TOMORROW—PART 4: Eight years ago this very week, Matthews was trashing Vile Wolf.
AMERICAN FRUITCAKE: On July 4, 2000, John McCaslin included the following item in his daily Washington Times column. It quotes a piece from a kooky-con journal. In turn, the kooky-con piece had quoted an anonymous American crackpot sounding off about Candidate Gore:
MCCASLIN (7/4/00): In every race, there's a winner and a loser. So what happens to the loser in the 2000 presidential race?Sidak knew to use the Eddie Haskell put-down—the same one Bob Herbert would use in October. And she quoted a well-known Washington pundit—a man who seemed to be cracking pots all over Washington town.
What must happen before liberal journals profile this big fruitcakes work?