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Small Details Matter

I'm not going to rehash the Chris Matthews - Michelle Malkin segment from Hardball [transcript] last night, but it's worth noting that Matthews preparation and attention to detail are clearly displayed as stunningly deficient.

Chris, a self inflicted wound does not necessarily mean you shot yourself on purpose. Getting hit by shrapel from a grenade you threw (or launched) qualifies as a self inflicted wound, not an attempt to shoot yourself. There are many other scenarios where you can get injured in the process of engaging the enemy, none of which are an attempt to shoot yourself.

The exchange between Matthews and Malkin leads me to wonder if there has ever been a case made that the first of Kerry's Purple Heart injuries was ever anything OTHER than a self inflicted wound? I don't know the answer to that question, but I suspect the answer is "no." Since it is claimed that the boat was under enemy fire (a claim the SwifVets deny) the injury was "in the heat of fire," and classifiable as a battle wound worthy of a Purple Heart. The only debate is whether the craft was under fire.

I'd also like to see links to those who claim Kerry shot himself on purpose. I suspect they don't exist, as anyone who has read or commented on the sample chapter knows that the only case being advanced is that there was no enemy fire, hence not an injury worthy of a Purple Heart.

Update: Blogger Oliver Willis leads off the Democratic Underground attacks on Malkin, where they compete to see how many ways they can use the words "racist", "whore," and "cunt" to describe her...


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Comments (40)

<a href="http://a1281.v1250... (Below threshold)

Sellout: The Second Ad

I am sure you have had a chance to look at this by now, but if not you should. We now know why Kerry got rabid all of a sudden...

Wow, I had not seen the sec... (Below threshold)
Mike:

Wow, I had not seen the second ad, thanks for the link Jennifer. That ad is powerful and damming.

I was literally stunned, th... (Below threshold)

I was literally stunned, then I started linking. Heh.

At this point, if people are stupid enough to vote for this man they deserve what they get and I will be on a nonstop bitchfest 'till the next election.

One of the most unfair inte... (Below threshold)
Scott:

One of the most unfair interviews I've ever.....read! I'm not much for watching these shows, but Matthews should be ashamed of himself for going after Thurlow so hard and then giving Cleland a free pass. He asks Thurlow 10 times if he can prove who wrote the recommendation, and he never asks Cleland once. Does he really "want to know how we know this is true or not?"

Speaking of preparation, Ma... (Below threshold)
jong:

Speaking of preparation, Malkin completely got her charges wrong. The two guys she tried to quote as accusing Kerry of faking his wounds actually back up Kerry's story. And why would Cleland be asked about Thrulow's recommendation? He didn't write it, wasn't in the unit and isn't the guy whose statements are contradicted by the medial recommendation. Thurlow made the accusations - it's his responsibility to prove them.

Was it me, or did Matthews ... (Below threshold)

Was it me, or did Matthews look pretty flustered after he made his "We are going to keep things clean on this show. No irresponsible comments are going to be made on the show." comments when they went to commercial after that joke of an interview with Malkin?

I haven't watched Matthews for over a year, but was hooking up speakers to a new receiver and the station happened to be on MSNBC. Don't know if I'm glad I caught it or not.

Matthews gave Malkin about ... (Below threshold)
djangone:

Matthews gave Malkin about ten chances to say 'No, he didn't shoot himself intentionally. Nobody's saying that.'

How mancy chances does she want to keep from making an ass of herself?

She got better than she deserved. If she doesn't have the presence of mind to know what she's claiming and what she's not, back off to the sideshow with her.

I know that Chris Matthews ... (Below threshold)

I know that Chris Matthews is partisan but is he this partisan? Or is he just not particularly bright? Sincerely, can anyone comment authoritatively on this?

Goodness knows there are no IQ tests required for hosting interivew programs (particularly cable news interview programs).

Limbaugh just said he's pla... (Below threshold)
James Underhill:

Limbaugh just said he's planning to talk with Malkin at the top of the next hour (1:00 EST) re: her interview on Hardball. Playing clips of the show right now.

I see the partisanism comin... (Below threshold)
Luke:

I see the partisanism coming through from her side.

Look, here SHE equates a "self-inflicted wound" with shooting himself on purpose. The answer was straight and asked repeatedly, like 8 or 9 times:

MATTHEWS: What do you mean by self-inflicted? Are you saying he shot himself on purpose? Is that what you‘re saying?

MALKIN: Did you read the book...

MATTHEWS: I‘m asking a simple question. Are you saying that he shot himself on purpose.

MALKIN: I‘m saying some of these soldiers...

MATTHEWS: And I‘m asking a question.

MALKIN: And I‘m answering it.

MATTHEWS: Did he shoot himself on purpose.

MALKIN: Some of the soldiers have made allegations that these were self-inflicted wounds.

ETC.

She had plenty of opportunity to say "there is a difference etc etc, I'm not claiming that etc etc."

But she didn't, frankly, because she is a far more partisan firebrand than Matthews is and wanted to imply that by self-inflicted he hurt himself intentionally.

She was a busch league guest and wanted to fight from the beginning. It's obvious why she's primarily a written word journalist--she couldn't compose a complete sentence, even when Matthews wasn't cutting her off and asking her to clarify her elliptical speach.

SHE was poorly prepared.

Bullcrap guys, it's Matthew... (Below threshold)
JFH:

Bullcrap guys, it's Matthews that twisted what she said to turn it into an outragous claim... He could have said: "What do you mean by "self-inflicted""

Besides all of us that read blogs right AND LEFT know the allegations of the Swift Boat Vets, how come Matthews doesn't during a segment where he's discussing the very allegations!

Why should Matthews know ev... (Below threshold)
djangone:

Why should Matthews know every detail of what the SwiftLiars are saying?

The burden of proof is on the SBVT. The Navy, the people in his own boat, and many of the SwiftLiars themselves as recently as a year ago agree that Kerry's service record is just fine.

Until the SBVT can make a case that passes muster in even a high school newspaper, they'll get smacked down by the big boys every time. As will their little familiars like Little Miss Overmatched Malkin.

Sorry, it's not a liberal media thing vs. the truth. It's a case filled with retractions, inconsistencies, self-contradicions and flip-flops that isn't worthy of the standards to which basic journalism holds itself.

He's not discussing them be... (Below threshold)
Luke:

He's not discussing them because the allegations are stupid, they mask the real issues of the political year: THE CURRENT WAR, the current economy, etc etc.

The only people who really care about the allegations are idiots like Mike Savage. If you're part of the Savage nation, then I feel sorry for you.

YES Kerry was stupid to bring up his service but it's equally stupid to harp on it and second guess the medals he received.

Bush should denounce the swifties, Kerry should shut up about his medals, and we should get on with some real political discourse.

If Chris is gonna talk abou... (Below threshold)
cbk:

If Chris is gonna talk about the book than he should read the book. He needn't "know every detail" but it is evident to me that he has not read it and I believe he never will read it.

CBK

Luke, I'm with you o... (Below threshold)

Luke, I'm with you on this one. Let both sides denounce their 527's let's get on with it. Ain't gonna happen.

Re: JFH's PostI as... (Below threshold)
JoeY:

Re: JFH's Post

I assume you read the post directly above yours where the posted transcript shows that Matthews asked EXACTLY the question you wanted him to.

MATTHEWS: What do you mean by self-inflicted? Are you saying he shot himself on purpose? Is that what you‘re saying?

My apologies if you were being sarcastic and actually supporting Matthews, lampooning the Malkin supporters who apparently can't read. My pity if you weren't.

Luke,Yes, Malkin a... (Below threshold)
akm:

Luke,

Yes, Malkin also deserves blame for not just saying "No" in response to Matthews. The two of them were talking past each other. But I'd say the bulk of the blame goes to Matthews. Listen to the audio. He falsely equates "self-inflicted" with "deliberately self-inflicted" (and "wounded" with "shot"). He's brow-beating her, and interrupting her. If he shut up and let her finish an answer, she may (or may not) have answered the "deliberate" part of his countercharge. In which case we'd know what she really meant. It's pretty much impossible for almost anyone to remain focused and responsive while being browbeaten.

Thanks Dave, the last thing... (Below threshold)
Luke:

Thanks Dave, the last thing this country needs is more divisive, petty rhetoric.

As well-intentioned as the McCain Feingold bill was, it opened up a horrible Pandora's box with the 527s.

--I don't know about the specifics, if the MCF bill actually created the 527 designation or what, but the buzz seems to be that it lit a fire under them--

It's so annoying. I understand they have agendas and issues they feel are important to the country, but they succeed in doing nothing but muddying the waters of an election year discourse that was already pretty crappy to begin with.

Also, I should note, regard... (Below threshold)
JoeY:

Also, I should note, regarding Kevin's original post that it is Matthews that correctly points out that there is no one that is claiming that Kerry shot himself on purpose. It is Malkin who explicitly states that there are some veterans who say that.

MATTHEWS: No. No one has ever accused him of shooting himself on purpose.

MALKIN: Yes. Some of them say that.

So, basically, Matthews agrees with you and knows the facts and Malkin does not. Glad to clear that up for you.

AKM, you're right they were... (Below threshold)
Luke:

AKM, you're right they were talking past each other, but I really think Matthews was trying to get a straight answer. Look at how elliptical she is:

MALKIN: Well, yes. Why don‘t people ask him more specific questions about the shrapnel in his leg. They are legitimate questions about whether or not it was a self-inflicted wound.

(CROSSTALK)

MATTHEWS: What do you mean by self-inflicted? Are you saying he shot himself on purpose? Is that what you‘re saying?

MALKIN: Did you read the book...

MATTHEWS: I‘m asking a simple question. Are you saying that he shot himself on purpose.

MALKIN: I‘m saying some of these soldiers...

MATTHEWS: And I‘m asking question.

MALKIN: And I‘m answering it.

MATTHEWS: Did he shoot himself on purpose.

MALKIN: Some of the soldiers have made allegations that these were self-inflicted wounds.

MATTHEWS: No one has ever accused him of shooting himself on purpose.

MALKIN: That these were self-inflicted wounds.

MATTHEWS: Your saying there are—he shot himself on purpose, that‘s a criminal act?

MALKIN: I‘m saying that I‘ve read the book and some of the...

(CROSSTALK)

MATTHEWS: I want an answer yes or no, Michelle.

MALKIN: Some of the veterans say...

MATTHEWS: No. No one has every accused him of shooting himself on purpose.

MALKIN: Yes. Some of them say that.

MATTHEWS: Tell me where that...

MALKIN: Self-inflicted wounds—in February, 1969.

MATTHEWS: This is not a show for this kind of talk. Are you accusing him of shooting himself on purpose to avoid combat or to get credit?

MALKIN: I‘m saying that‘s what some of these...

MATTHEWS: Give me a name.

MALKIN: Patrick Runyan (ph) and William Zeldonaz (ph).

MATTHEWS: They said—Patrick Runyan...

MALKIN: These people have...

MATTHEWS: And they said he shot himself on purpose to avoid combat or take credit for a wound?

MALKIN: These people have cast a lot of doubt on whether or not...

MATTHEWS: That‘s cast a lot of doubt. That‘s complete nonsense.

MALKIN: Did you read the section in the book...

MATTHEWS: I want a statement from you on this program, say to me right, that you believe he shot himself to get credit for a purpose of heart.

MALKIN: I‘m not sure. I‘m saying...

Notice she never indicates one person who says they thing kerry shot himself, only citing people "casting a lot of doubt".

What does that mean exactly? That's elliptical speech, it's deliberately and REPEATEDLY vague.

Personally, she seems like she's attempting to be the next Anne Coulter. Unfortunately she doesn't have the flair or stage presence to command an audience.

She added nothing to the debate.

On the ad: Incredible!!! N... (Below threshold)
Jim:

On the ad: Incredible!!! Not misquoted. Not paraphrased. Simply "replayed". How could anyone possibly endorse Kerry for President?

On Hardball: If Chris Matthews doesn't "get it" he isn't worth the ink I've used to "print" this comment.

Luke,You're right,... (Below threshold)
JFH:

Luke,

You're right, I'm wrong; unfortunately, I wasn't being sarcastic... Michelle SHOULD have stopped it right there and said: "NO, I didn't say that." (I was listening to the actual voice stream rather than reading the transcript if it's any excuse... he asked the question and then followed up with the more inflamatory accusations if that's any excuse for me or Michelle).

Still, I DO believe that at least one of Kerry's Pearl Hearts (if not two) were the result of self-inflicted wounds NOT in the heat of battle.

Anyone who is able to look ... (Below threshold)
Luke:

Anyone who is able to look pass this pointless issue, the hyperbole and the waffling from the swiftboaters.

This does nothing but demean our political process.

Hopefully this crap will only affect people like Jim, who have already made their minds up.

Listen, they both got caugh... (Below threshold)
Mike:

Listen, they both got caught up in the argument and neither one of them came off as articulate and informed. If you are going to condemn Malkin for not stopping and saying no, you must also condemn Matthews for twisting her words around and equating self-inflicted with shot himself.

JFH, fair enough. ... (Below threshold)
Luke:

JFH,

fair enough. There is lots of speculation on one specific heart that seems to have merit. Though I did hear talk that purple hearts can be given to self-inflicted wounds if the act was in the context of disrupting or crippling the enemy.

In that context -- I wish I could remember who said it, sorry -- Kerry could be still awarded the heart for blowing up that rice because it was seen as destroying vietcong stockpiles.

I don't know if that's the heart you were talking about, it's the one I've heard the most furor over.

Once again rules are open to interpretation. The spirit of the rule is to keep people from intentionally hurting themselves to avoid duty, though I grant soldiers shouldn't be rewarded for clumsiness/stupidity either.

Anyway, I wish this issue would die--I think it will die once the bush people realize it's hurting Bush more than anyone, especially with the swifties from kerry's OWN boat and McCain on Kerry's side for this.

Mike,I don't conde... (Below threshold)
JoeY:

Mike,

I don't condemn her from not stopping and saying "No." It's much more apropos to condemn her for stopping and saying, "Yes."

MATTHEWS: No. No one has ever accused him of shooting himself on purpose.
MALKIN: Yes. Some of them say that.

Can it get any clearer than that? Matthews says that no one has ever claimed that Kerry shot himself deliberately and she directly responds that some of the veterans HAVE said that.

>that the only case being a... (Below threshold)
Glenn F.:

>that the only case being advanced is that there was no enemy fire, hence not an injury worthy of a Purple Heart.

It doesn't matter if a wound came from enemy or friendly fire in the awarding of a Purple Heart. Any former soldier knows that, so I am assuming our commentator is a chickenhawk.

Glenn, so what are you sayi... (Below threshold)
Luke:

Glenn, so what are you saying, that you can get a purple heart via friendly fire? I'd heard the opposite . . .

Can you expand on that?

Joey, I disagree, I think (... (Below threshold)
Mike:

Joey, I disagree, I think (I can't speak for her) that Malkin was still referring to her original statement about the self-inflicted wound. And there have been questions that one of the wounds Kerry received the PH actually occured when Kerry threw a grenade into a rice patty that was too close to him. That is why there are reports of doctors pulling rice out of his ass.

Sorry, i will try and find ... (Below threshold)
Mike:

Sorry, i will try and find links to those stories if I get time.

Mike,I mentioned t... (Below threshold)
Luke:

Mike,

I mentioned that earlier:

"In that context -- I wish I could remember who said it, sorry -- Kerry could be still awarded the heart for blowing up that rice because it was seen as destroying vietcong stockpiles.

I don't know if that's the heart you were talking about, it's the one I've heard the most furor over.

Once again rules are open to interpretation. The spirit of the rule is to keep people from intentionally hurting themselves to avoid duty, though I grant soldiers shouldn't be rewarded for clumsiness/stupidity either."

Glenn F. you misread (or mi... (Below threshold)

Glenn F. you misread (or misinterpret) what I'm saying - or I'm relying on facts not mentioned. I'll try to spell it out more clearly.

Purple hearts, from what I've read, were only awarded for self inflicted wounds when those wounds occurred in the heat of battle. If you were not under fire a self inflicted wound was just a plain old accident, not friendly fire. The SwiftVets claim that the first incident was a "no enemy fire" situation.

I've never seen a claim that the wound was anything other than a grenade fragment, and Kerry was the only one firing grenades - at least that's what I recall from the various accounts.

Just swung by Hard Blogger.... (Below threshold)
Luke:

Just swung by Hard Blogger. Here is what Olberman said last night vis a vis the "self-inflicted" vs. "Intentional harm" debate and speaks directly to Thurlow and Malkin's mind frame:

"When I raised this prospect with John Harwood of 'The Wall Street Journal,' several viewers e-mailed to chastise us for not recognizing the difference between wounds that are “self-inflicted” and those that are deliberate attempts to injure one’s self. Throw a grenade, wipe out an enemy enclave, and get a piece of shrapnel in your head in the blow-back, and you’ve received a self-inflicted wound. It isn’t intentional and it isn’t dishonorable.

But of course that’s not what Thurlow said. He spoke of some vast Swift Boat Conspiracy in which Kerry steered not a crew of soldiers through hell, but rather, steered history. “A plan,” Thurlow said. “Included not only being a war hero,” Thurlow said. “But (also) getting an ‘early out’,” Thurlow said.

He’s not talking about an inadvertent blow-back wound. It was all a plan. "

Olberman is funny and in this case, I think, correct.

Chris Matthews has the "Que... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Chris Matthews has the "Questions From Under Your Bed But Not by The BoogieMan" line of "questioning" of and about others down pat.

He can blurt out anything from behind a door, from under a bed, from inside a box and when the person responds with, "yes, but..." or even a shriek, Matthews can then jump to the blurted conclusion, of, "see, you SAID 'EEK' AND IT'S ON THE RECORD" from his quickly repositioned place behind a desk, or wherever.

I've read and reread the transcripts (here, elsewhere) and, although not having yet seen the Matthews video with Malkin, I'm familiar enough with Matthews' style of "questioning" to be familiar enough with his behavior.

His plan is to get the wrong thing per the author "on record" that equates with the "right thing" for Matthews and the Liberal tow line, whatever it is.

Malkin is very, very clearly TRYING to get the point across to Matthews and whoever that "some of the...vets...think...that Kerry experienced self-inflicted wounds..." (I paraphrase to be clear here), but Matthews interrupts with his ongoing boogie-man-suprise tone and body language and there's no hope for almost anyone to ever make anything clear with Matthews constant jumps to OTHER conclusions, such as that significant jump he makes there, that by Malkin saying THAT (what I just paraphrased) that that means, as per Matthews the Boogie Man, that that means that people (even Malkin, which she isn't saying) that Kerry "shot himself on purpose."

One, a self-inflicted wound does not mean or indicate, thereby, that a wound is INTENTIONAL. It just means it's "self-inflicted."

If a person falls down rollerblading and harms themself, they're "wounds" are "self-inflicted." They simply fell down, and inflicted a wound by falling down, all by themselves, without someone else intervening, pushing, passing in front of them, whatever.

Two, "self-inflicted" only means that a person is wounded by course of their own actions, not intentionally, not unintentionally -- the term does not imply guilt or responsibility other than it DISALLOWS THE INTERVENTION OR CAUSE BY ANYONE ELSE in someone's "wounding" process.

If "some vets" say this, then that's their witness. They were there, everyone else -- here, there -- wasn't. If the majority of people witnessing Kerry's various wounds, or any of them, say that there was a 'self inflicted' process at play when Kerry suffered whatever wound, whenever, then, that's reality, that's what the most people observing have to say about it. If two, three, even a handful deny this reality, then they're in the minority compared with several dozens or even several hundred of witnesses to the contrary.

About Malkin and Matthews, there is no way, just no way, ANYone can guest on Matthews' show and not be startled in mid-sentence, have to try to revise what was interrupted earlier inorder to answer or even counter Matthews' jump to another point altogther...

Just read what he says there...Malkin says "some of the vets say..."

And Matthews immediately turns Boogie Man Under the Bed with his great big "Boo" statement: "are you saying that Kerry shot himself on purpose?"

You see, that's Matthews' inaccuracy, right there. But, the theme that Matthews wanted (almost certainly) to be on record has taken place (by Matthews himself) and then Malkin is left to try to be polite and try to respond to Matthews' wandering Boogie Man points.

It's a no-win situation and Matthews is a Master at this Boogie Man Guest Fragging.

Someone asked earlier about Matthews' partisanship (or lack thereof) and, yes, he's a hard-line DNC hack, attends the Bohemian Grove annual govelfest in Marin County, was a speechwriter or some sort of aid to previous Democratic Senators, prior DNC Presidential campaigns (Mondale)...

Chris Matthews has the "Que... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Chris Matthews has the "Questions From Under Your Bed But Not by The BoogieMan" line of "questioning" of and about others down pat.

He can blurt out anything from behind a door, from under a bed, from inside a box and when the person responds with, "yes, but..." or even a shriek, Matthews can then jump to the blurted conclusion, of, "see, you SAID 'EEK' AND IT'S ON THE RECORD" from his quickly repositioned place behind a desk, or wherever.

I've read and reread the transcripts (here, elsewhere) and, although not having yet seen the Matthews video with Malkin, I'm familiar enough with Matthews' style of "questioning" to be familiar enough with his behavior.

His plan is to get the wrong thing per the author "on record" that equates with the "right thing" for Matthews and the Liberal tow line, whatever it is.

Malkin is very, very clearly TRYING to get the point across to Matthews and whoever that "some of the...vets...think...that Kerry experienced self-inflicted wounds..." (I paraphrase to be clear here), but Matthews interrupts with his ongoing boogie-man-suprise tone and body language and there's no hope for almost anyone to ever make anything clear with Matthews constant jumps to OTHER conclusions, such as that significant jump he makes there, that by Malkin saying THAT (what I just paraphrased) that that means, as per Matthews the Boogie Man, that that means that people (even Malkin, which she isn't saying) that Kerry "shot himself on purpose."

One, a self-inflicted wound does not mean or indicate, thereby, that a wound is INTENTIONAL. It just means it's "self-inflicted."

If a person falls down rollerblading and harms themself, they're "wounds" are "self-inflicted." They simply fell down, and inflicted a wound by falling down, all by themselves, without someone else intervening, pushing, passing in front of them, whatever.

Two, "self-inflicted" only means that a person is wounded by course of their own actions, not intentionally, not unintentionally -- the term does not imply guilt or responsibility other than it DISALLOWS THE INTERVENTION OR CAUSE BY ANYONE ELSE in someone's "wounding" process.

If "some vets" say this, then that's their witness. They were there, everyone else -- here, there -- wasn't. If the majority of people witnessing Kerry's various wounds, or any of them, say that there was a 'self inflicted' process at play when Kerry suffered whatever wound, whenever, then, that's reality, that's what the most people observing have to say about it. If two, three, even a handful deny this reality, then they're in the minority compared with several dozens or even several hundred of witnesses to the contrary.

About Malkin and Matthews, there is no way, just no way, ANYone can guest on Matthews' show and not be startled in mid-sentence, have to try to revise what was interrupted earlier inorder to answer or even counter Matthews' jump to another point altogther...

Just read what he says there...Malkin says "some of the vets say..."

And Matthews immediately turns Boogie Man Under the Bed with his great big "Boo" statement: "are you saying that Kerry shot himself on purpose?"

You see, that's Matthews' inaccuracy, right there. But, the theme that Matthews wanted (almost certainly) to be on record has taken place (by Matthews himself) and then Malkin is left to try to be polite and try to respond to Matthews' wandering Boogie Man points.

It's a no-win situation and Matthews is a Master at this Boogie Man Guest Fragging.

Someone asked earlier about Matthews' partisanship (or lack thereof) and, yes, he's a hard-line DNC hack, attends the Bohemian Grove annual govelfest in Marin County, was a speechwriter or some sort of aid to previous Democratic Senators, prior DNC Presidential campaigns (Mondale)...

AND, what seems to fly past... (Below threshold)
-S-:

AND, what seems to fly past the heads of many here, the effect of that Matthews' Boogie Man Surprise method of "questioning" -- particularly -- conservatives and Republicans, is that the point that would otherwise require a complicated or uncomfortable, even expositional, response by Matthews/Democrats, is lost.

The actual point, the important point to reality and discussion and public information, is never discussed.

Instead, what is discussed -- if you can call it that -- is the Matthews' Boogie Man redirect. He gets to deflect and avoid answering or even discussing the heart of the matter by putting his "guests" in Fright Response.

Then Matthews and liberals everywhere can all agree that, yes, the conservative, that there Republican, actually DID say "eeek." It's right there, on the record, they SAID it, they said "eeek."

What was the point? No one remembers or ever gets back to what the original suspicion or point ever was, that may or probably would implicate or expose the Democrat, the Liberal perspective. Instead, all that anyone ever remembers is that Matthews got the person to say, "eeek." On the recored.

JoeY-As an example, ... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

JoeY-
As an example, you said "I don't condemn her from not stopping and saying "No." It's much more apropos to condemn her for stopping and saying, "Yes.""

If you were interviewed by Matthews, it would have gone like this :

JoeY: "I don't condemn her ..."
(interruption by Matthews) "Aha!You just said you don't condemn her!And we have it on tape!I can't believe you support her.Becauseifyoudon'tcondemnheryoumustsupporther! O.K., my next question is..."

That's the type of ambush 'interview' Matthews does.

It goes beyond tough questioning; it's dishonest.

Les,I agree that Chr... (Below threshold)
JoeY:

Les,
I agree that Chris Matthews is more desperate for ratings than the truth and his frequent "cutoff the guest" style is not appealing and can lead to inaccuracies. However, it is very clear from the interview that Malkin does not want to say that the supposedly self-inflicted wounds were not intentional. He let her answer this direct question in full, twice, without cutting her off. Her answer was merely to repeat "self-inflicted wounds" twice and NOT answer the direct question:

MATTHEWS: Did he shoot himself on purpose?
MALKIN: Some of the soldiers have made allegations that these were self-inflicted wounds.
MATTHEWS: No one has ever accused him of shooting himself on purpose.
MALKIN: That these were self-inflicted wounds.

After repeatedly getting back the same canned quote from Malkin, he really started cutting her answers off when they appeared to be another repeat.

Of course, in your example of me on Chris's show you neglect for him to ask me the question twice and wait for a complete response and then tell me that he wants a yes or no answer to the question he's already asked twice before having him cut me off at, "I don't condemn her…"

One last point. Since you're against Matthew's cutoff style and consider it to be dishonest, I assume you're even more against the Bush approved ads that cutoff Kerry quotes to make him appear to flip his position on the Iraq War. For example, cutting Kerry's answer to the question, "Are you one of the anti-war candidates?" down to "I am. Yes." Intead of, "I am. Yes; in the sense that I don‘t believe the president took to us war as he should have, yes." In this case, we actually know what Kerry said and his intended clarification, so I would think that's even a bit more dishonest.


JoeIf Matthews can't... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

Joe
If Matthews can't conduct himself with basic civility wrt asking and answering questions, what is the point of his show? Why should anyone watch it? (The ratings of his show seem to reflect this.)

I don't like political ads from either side to use cutoff quotes. But both do it. All politicians face this, and they know it going in.

I don't watch Matthews' sho... (Below threshold)
JoeY:

I don't watch Matthews' show very often. As I said, he is desperate for ratings. Controversy often generates ratings. I've certainly seen more coverage of his show in the blogsphere recently with his contentious interviews with SBVFT members and Malkin. I don't know if this will help his ratings or not, but the conventional wisdom is that there is no such thing as bad publicity for a TV show. Given Olbermann's write-up, it appears that MSNBC is pushing this as a selling point.

As you note, using cutoff quotes is something sleazy that both sides do and "they know it going in." However, the same could also be said of the guests on "Hardball". They know perfectly well that Matthews is the host, what his interview style is, and what may happen to them, especially if they can't seem to directly answer the simplest of questions.




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