Chris Matthews Is Wrong Again — Praise Him!

Chris MatthewsFor some reason, Martin Longman watched Hardball with Chris Matthews recently. Is he suffering from a savior complex? Is he intentionally suffering for the sins of cable news? I cannot say. But he highlighted an interesting exchange between Chris “Blowin’ in the Political Winds” Matthews and Deputy State Department spokesperson Marie Harf about the Islamic State. And Matthews, who is always and forever looking for ways to raise the level of public discourse asked, “Are we killing enough of them?” And because she works for the American government, which actually has quite a lot more blood on its hands than the Roman Empire ever did, responded, “We’re killing a lot of them and we’re going to keep killing more of them.”

Ye-ha! We gots us a good old fashioned reason for bombing the hell out of huge areas — killing mostly people whose only sin is that they live in the wrong place. First they were oppressed by Saddam Hussein. Then they were oppressed by the Shiite run Iraqi government. Now they are oppressed by the Islamic State. And to top it off, the American government and its allies are killing “a lot of them and we’re going to keep killing more of them.” Well, that ought to set Chris Mattews’ mind at ease. The talentless multimillionaire must know all about how your life prospects depend upon luck. So kill them all! They don’t matter! They weren’t born in America! They don’t have their own television shows! Kill them all!

Unfortunately, Marie Harf had to go and spoil the whole episode by adding, “But we cannot win this war by killing them. We cannot kill our way out of this war.” And then she said the thing that must never be said: that this was about opportunity and jobs and food and stuff like that. But Matthews was too clever for her. He noted that we won’t be able to do that in “fifty lifetimes.” You see, there will always be poor people. Of course there will! That’s because people like Chris Matthews, who I wouldn’t hire to copy edit a blog post, is worth $16 million after being wrong about every foreign policy question he’s ever expressed an opinion on.

Indeed, the rich are more than happy to tell you that there will always be poor. They state it as an established fact. But it is actually an aspirational claim: there will always be poor people as long as I have something to say about it! The whole thing must bring fond memories for Matthews of the good old days when he was pushing for war in Iraq and getting Phil Donahue fired from MSNBC because the network didn’t want to stand out as a media outlet that allowed anyone who would say anything against that Just War™.[1]

You would think that after the total catastrophe that was the Iraq War, that Matthews would be slightly circumspect. But you would only think that if you’d lived in a cave the last thirty years. Matthews wasn’t held accountable for his cheerleading for the Iraq War. In a sane world, he would have been fired long ago and gone off to play the “liberal” on The McLaughlin Group. But no. Let’s just suppose Matthews got his way and there was a full scale war with the Islamic State and it erupted into a regional conflict with millions dead including more than a hundred thousand Americans. What would the response be of American media? First MSNBC would give Matthews a raise. And then he’d get some kind of award for great journalism, which today just means good ratings.

How far can an empire sink before it crumbles to bits?

[1] Note how clueless media executives are. There was a huge audience out there that was against the Iraq War and not a single cable news network was willing to go after it. I see this again and again in corporate culture where they insist upon going for the largest market, even though it is already crowded with competitors. Corporate executives are generally cowards.

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

2 thoughts on “Chris Matthews Is Wrong Again — Praise Him!

  1. Thank you for reminding me to be horrified. Are we killing enough of them? Body count reports, anyone? Used to be a big hit. I am reminded of the ending of my favorite Vonnegut book, “The Dark Ages never ended. This is still a Dark Age.” There is no bottom to their depravity. And so I become desensitized to it. The proper response to Matthews, or Bill Kristol, or Dick Cheney, John McCain, and a thousand other such assholes is “SHUT UP STUPID OLD WHITE MAN!”. If enough people could find their voice to say this we could change it. Peacefully, while there’s still time for that. But I think it more likely that my grandchildren, if I have any, will ask of me about the disaster of a world we gave them “Why didn’t you do anything to stop it?” And I’ll explain how the liberal electorate didn’t like voting in midterm elections and such. And that will sound like a weak ass cop out. Because it is. And the one in the anarchy t shirt will tell me that for evil to prosper it only requires that good men do nothing. And she will be right. Enough. If I keep typing I’m going to get as morose as Chris Hedges.

    • It reminds me of Catch-22 and the obsession with bombing patterns. But I do think that liberals have a bit of an out. The poorer the person, the more liberal their politics — statistically speaking. And as a country founded by men who were mostly antagonistic to democracy, we make it hard to vote. So I don’t blame some poor woman with three part time jobs for not showing up to vote. The system is designed for her to not show up. If we had a voting requirement, this country would be unrecognizable. It’d be like Sweden.

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