Thursday, January 28, 2010

Chris Matthews, Goofball

I'm sure you've seen the story by now.  I sort of agree with Josh Marshall, I think, about how Matthews' penchant for saying whatever nutty thing is on his mind makes him a good entertainer...I also agree with Seth Masket that it makes Matthews (at least appear to be) a weird man.  The reason I'm commenting is only because (as a once-upon-a-time flack) I find it hard to reconcile the Matthews who blurts out stuff with his history as a press secretary.  What makes someone good at talking to the press in general, but especially on behalf of someone else, is extraordinary discipline: one has to say exactly what one wants, and refrain from saying whatever it is that the reporters want you to say.  And yet on his TV show, Matthews appears to have little if any of that kind of discipline.  Perhaps it's an act (who better than an experience pro could make blurting stuff out seem spontaneous); perhaps it's the result of having to defer to others in his earlier career...perhaps Seth's right, and he's just weird. One way or another, it does, sometimes, make for great TV.

The best serious commentary is (natch) going to be this from TNC, so go there if you want to learn something.

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