OK, my blood pressure has finally returned to normal after watching the coverage of the New Hampshire primary a couple of nights ago. I'm left with a couple of questions:
1 - Since when is getting a little choked up about the difficulties of being mercilessly pilloried over the stupidest of matters and the passion that makes you willing to undergo that public pillorying constitute "having a breakdown"? Have the people who can't stop referring to Clinton's answer in the diner the other night as a collapse even seen the clip they're running while they render their opinions? Yes, Clinton was emotional about her answer. Thank heaven - I wouldn't want someone without some stake in the matter to be a front-runner for the nomination of my party. Did she come unglued? Hardly - she gave a perfectly reasonable answer, and if she let her feelings about that answer show while giving it, so be it. I'm not a Clinton supporter, but for heaven's sake, STFU already about her "collapse"!\
2 - Could Chris Matthews possibly be any more of a fatuous windbag? Is there no limit to the inanities he can come out with? Comparing Obama's and Clinton's campaign strategies to the story of the Turks and Arabs (as told in the movie Lawrence of Arabia) was a new landmark in moronic references, and the bar was already pretty damn high. Tip O'Neill must have been an incredibly patient man, if he put up with this buffoon for six years.
3 (or maybe 2a) - Was there some wild and lascivious Christmas party at MSNBC, at which all of Matthews' colleagues got drunk and naked, and he took pictures? What other explanation is there for the acquiescence of those on-air colleagues to the self-important and wildly distorted commentary that spews out of Matthews' mouth in their presence? Matthews performed a full Bill O'Reilly on Dee Dee Myers on the night of the primary, shouting down her answer to a question he asked her, and Keith Olbermann, who is at regular pains to deride O'Reilly for such behavior, sat there and lapped it up.
Myers was trying to say that Clinton hadn't always been the front runner for the nomination, which may be a debatable assertion, but Matthews didn't debate it - he shouted at her that she was wrong and wouldn't let her make her point. Like O'Reilly, Matthews regularly has guests on his show to serve as foils for the presentation of his own biases, but the fact that he does that on Hardball doesn't mean that his colleagues need to cover for him when he's doing it on programs without his signature brand of stupidity. I avoid Hardball like the plague for that reason - do I have to watch the same thing during the coverage of actual, you know, news?
3 (4?) - Why did nobody take any issue with the endlessly repeated trope that the voters of New Hampshire had made a decision that they would prove the pollsters and the pundits wrong in order to make the primary contest last longer? This is what I believe is known in logic as a category error. The effect of the voters decision may be that the contest lasts longer, but that's not the same thing as saying the voters made that decision for that reason. Their primary contest in New Hampshire is over - it ended on Tuesday, regardless of what happens later or who gets the nomination. If the voters in New Hampshire made the decision to prolong the contest, it was a decision to have their votes not count for much. I know people from New Hampshire, and they're not that stupid, even if the pundits who keep prating on about why they got it so wrong are.
4 (Oh hell, I have no idea what number this is now - math was never my strong suit) - You'd think that since these folks all get paid hundreds of thousands of dollars each year for their skill with the English language, and they have staffs of dozens of people backing them up, that somebody among all those folks would have ponied up for a bloody dictionary. Language note, gang: What happens at a coronation (and therefore didn't happen on Tuesday night) is that somebody gets crowned. Coronate is not a verb, and you meatheads aren't getting paid by the syllable!!!