I hate it when people attempt to make commercials for their own tv "news" shows. They are always so incredibly self-important, and I never fail to marvel at their almost unnerving ability to blow their own horns. But no one on television can spread the Check Out How Amazing I Am bullshit like aging MSNBC bloviating talking head Chris Matthews.
"I think I'm unique in this business, in that I really enjoy a good argument" Matthews begins. Oh, PLEASE!! Anyone who has ever watched Hardball knows what Matthews thinks a "good argument" is: It's Matthews asking a question, interrupting the answer three seconds later to add to the question or repeat it, interrupting five seconds later to restate the question, and finally interrupting five seconds later to answer it himself. Matthews asks questions for one reason and one reason only-to hear himself talk. Getting the answer from the guest? Not important.
"I especially love it when I Outsmart somebody." To Matthews, "outsmart" means "outtalk." It means interrupting, changing the subject when things aren't going the host's way, and getting in the last word (which is unsurprisingly easy when you are the host of the show.) Anyone who has watched Matthews over the years knows that he couldn't "outsmart" a box turtle.
"What I love most is when someone tries something that's worked on someone else, and it doesn't work on me. And I nail 'em. I love that." I've never seen this in perhaps a thousand viewings of Matthews' various shows over the last decade or more. Unless "nailing 'em" means "Oh Come On!" or "I don't believe it!" or "ok, that's your opinion!" I suspect it does- which helps me understand why Matthews clearly thinks that he's always by far the smartest man in the room. The bar to "winning an argument" is set so very low.
Here's what you really need to know about Chris Matthews: He was a huge cheerleader for the Iraq War, which he now calls a debacle and anyone who supported it a fool. He has suffered in the past from very public and disgusting man-crushes on George W Bush, Mitt Romney, and others, obsessed with shoulder width ("you could land an airliner on Mitt's shoulders!") and successful play-acting ("Bush looked AWESOME and so MANLY in the flight suit, men love that, he looked like he REALLY COULD fly that fighter!") He is obsessed with Hillary Clinton and is always ready for a quick Bill Clinton snark, no context necessary. He enjoys waxing poetic about times that never were, when "tough Irish boys and tough Italian boys played stick ball on the streets and grew up to be police on the beat, and Mayors." He's a failed politician who I KNOW continues to fantasize about himself in the White House, and is bitter toward people who succeeded in achieving HIS boyhood dream. And he's the only person on television who thinks that "brokered conventions" are still political possibilities and that having worked on Capital Hill thirty years ago gives him some kind of current "inside knowledge" to how things "really work up there."
In short, he's a loud-mouthed, rude, witless punk whose time came and went roughly twenty years ago, and his abrasive asshattery comes through loud and clear in his ads. He needs to just STFU and go the hell away.
Oh, and Chris? Take Joe Scarborough with you. Please.