Thursday, November 6, 2008

Matthews' Job

Remember this in the next four years:

Is this fair warning not to expect journalistic excellence but an enabling of the Obama administration? It looks to me that the media's treatment of President Obama will be just like its treatment of Senator Obama.

It could be a long four years.


Vinny said...

I guess my question would be whether you think the question that Joe Scarborough wanted to pursue with Chris Matthews is one that journalism excellence needed answered. After watching the whole segment on MSNBC, I tend to think that it wasn't a very important story, although I hope that the shorter clip doesn't really reflect Matthews understanding of his job description.

ChrisB said...

I can't seem to get that link to work.

Was it the question about the lack of polish or professionalism in having people considering whether or not they want to work for him on national tv?

Is that an important question? Not really, but Matthews reaction suggests the media's not through carrying the water for Obama.

Vinny said...

As I recall, Scarborough wanted Matthews to comment on the fact that Rahm Emmanuel had said he hadn't made his decision yet about accepting the chief of staff position. Scarborough thought the fact that news of the offer had leaked before Emmanuel had committed showed some sort of problem with Obama' transition plan. It was just your basic nitpicky point of the type that the 24-hour cable pundits like Matthews love to beat to death.

Given that Matthews was as happy as anyone else to devote inordinate amounts of time to trivialities like the "lipstick on a pig" story, I have no doubt that his taste for this kind of stuff will return soon. I agree that he likes Obama, although I recall him ripping into a Texas congressman after the Texas primary because he couldn't name anything that Obama had accomplished. He made that guy look every bit as stupid as he made Michelle Bachman a couple weeks ago.

I would note that in the more extended clip, Matthews backed off his comment somewhat when Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, and a third guest all challenged his description of a journalist's role so I don’t think it is fair to attribute his attitude to the media in general. I would consider his comment little more than a temporary pang of conscience over the type hackery that he often embraces.

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