Thursday :: Aug 19, 2004

Tweety Has Had Enough - Matthews Goes After Swifty Thurlow & Nutcase Malkin


by Steve

The debate and phony issue over John Kerry's war record reached a point today where even Chris Matthews on Hardball had enough tonight. While interviewing Swiftie Larry Thurlow, who was discredited in today's Washington Post, Matthews repeatedly pressed Thurlow for proof of his contentions that Kerry's boat did not come under enemy fire during the rescue of Jim Rassmann, and pressed Thurlow for proof to support his contention that Kerry wrote his own after-action report to support his medal, the same report that justified Thurlow’s medal. Thurlow could not produce any except his own personal observation. But Matthews went over the side when Thurlow went down this path:

MATTHEWS: ... the Bronze Star. The Bronze Star, that you deserve the Bronze Star, you were awarded the Bronze Star, fair enough, and you say you were not under enemy fire. You‘re now saying that John Kerry doesn‘t deserve the Bronze Start because he wasn‘t under enemy fire. Aren‘t you both in the same boat? Didn‘t you both do about the same thing, both get same award? And why are you complaining that he doesn‘t deserve it, if you deserved it?
THURLOW: I felt like I got the award because I saved some people‘s lives and saved the boat. What I say...
MATTHEWS: Well, he saved Rassmann‘s life, according to Rassmann‘s own account.
THURLOW: OK...
MATTHEWS: Why doesn‘t he deserve the award?
THURLOW: Well, I—I don‘t—I‘m not quibbling about the award.
I‘m saying he lied about the...
MATTHEWS: Oh, yes, you are, sir!
THURLOW: ... account.
MATTHEWS: You are out here in an advertisement saying, quote, “When the chips were down, you could not count on John Kerry.”
THURLOW: That‘s exactly right.
MATTHEWS: That‘s a pretty strong—because of what are you saying this?
THURLOW: Because he had this master plan that was...
MATTHEWS: You got—give me an example.
THURLOW: ... to promote his...
MATTHEWS: OK, let‘s to go your theory of the plan. Have you seen it written down? Have you heard him tell his account to someone? How do you know, in any real way, he had this plan?
THURLOW: Because of the fact that he engineered three Purple Heart incidences that allowed him to go home after he spent about one third of his tour there.
MATTHEWS: But that‘s your account of what happened. He was there for four months.
THURLOW: That‘s exactly right.
MATTHEWS: He did win the three Purple Hearts. He did get the Bronze and the Silver. And you say he had some plan to get an award as a battle hero ahead of time, but you can‘t tell me how you know he had this plan.
THURLOW: I know he had this plan because of what happened not only then but after the fact.
MATTHEWS: Did you have a plan to win the Bronze Star? You won the Bronze Star. Did you have a plan?
THURLOW: No, in fact, I didn‘t...
MATTHEWS: Why is winning the Bronze Star...
THURLOW: I didn‘t apply for it.
MATTHEWS: Why is winning the Bronze Star evidence of having had a plan to win one? I don‘t get it.
THURLOW: Well, I—we‘re not even talking about him having a plan to win the Bronze Star.
MATTHEWS: Can you honestly tell me now, sir, that you could swear in open court that you know that John Kerry, when he was a lieutenant JG in the same theater you were in had some plan for winning medals? Do you know that for a fact?
THURLOW: OK. In other words, present evidence that he had this plan?
MATTHEWS: Yes.
THURLOW: Of course, I couldn‘t.
MATTHEWS: Well, what...
THURLOW: I‘m basing it on my observations.
MATTHEWS: These are after-the-fact observations. You say he had a plan ahead of time to make himself a war hero to get elected to office.
THURLOW: I‘m saying that he had a plan that included not only being a war hero but getting an early out.
MATTHEWS: But you admit you have no tangible evidence.
THURLOW: I have my own personal observations.
MATTHEWS: Of what?
THURLOW: And you‘re right, it is not tangible evidence.
MATTHEWS: OK, so you don‘t. Let me ask you about...
THURLOW: I‘m not in a court of law here.

If that wasn’t bad enough, Matthews followed this later with a segment including interviews with Willie Brown and neo-con bimbo Michelle Malkin, the latest in a long line of conservative women ending up on TV for saying stupid things with no factual basis.

Except that Matthews had enough tonight:

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...
MATTHEWS: Why did you say?
MALKIN: I‘m talking about what‘s in the book.
MATTHEWS: What is in the book. Is there—is there a direct accusation in any book you‘ve ever read in your life that says John Kerry ever shot himself on purpose to get credit for a purple heart? On purpose?
MALKIN: On.
MATTHEWS: On purpose? Yes or no, Michelle.
MALKIN: In the February 1969 -- in the February 1969 event.
MATTHEWS: Did he say on it purpose.
MALKIN: There are doubts about whether or not it was intense rifle fire or not. And I wish you would ask these questions of John Kerry instead of me.
MATTHEWS: I have never heard anyone say he shot himself on purpose.
I haven‘t heard you say it.
MALKIN: Have you tried to ask—have you tried ask John Kerry these questions?
MATTHEWS: If he shot himself on purpose. No. I have not asked him that.
MALKIN: Don‘t you wonder?
MATTHEWS: No, I don‘t. It‘s never occurred to me.

You had to see it to believe how Matthews was disgusted at what he heard from Malkin and he wouldn’t let the usual Wurlitzer slime tactic work tonight.

Send him an email thanking him for drawing a line tonight. You can reach him at: hardball@msnbc.com

Steve :: 10:02 PM :: Comments (17) :: Digg It!