January 29, 2010

Even Jon Stewart Ripping on Chris "I Forgot He Was Black for an Hour" Matthews
— Ace

I didn't deal with this because all I have to say is so friggin' obvious it pains me to say it. I don't like boring you with the obvious.

But okay:

It's not that Chris Matthews is a racist per se. It's that he's never viewed Obama as anything but black, and therefore not as a human being, nor as a politician, but as a Symbol (capital S intended).

There is a tradition in film, as Spike Lee and, frankly, I, have pointed out. The tradition of the Magical Negro.

Often called the "Numinous Negro."

The Numinous Negro is not really a character. He's not really a person, not even in the fictive world of the film. He is simply a walking Symbol of hopes about racial conciliation, or black achievement, or, especially, redemption for White Sin.

Chris Matthews has never seen Obama as anything except a Numinous Negro. Nothing except a Symbol. Nothing except a Dramatic Plot Contrivance to advance the world's script ahead a few scenes. Nothing except a stand-in for additional Meaning.

When Jack Walsh gives Jonathan "The Duke" Mardukis his watch at the end of Midnight Run, of course, he's not just giving him a watch. The watch is triple symbol for more important matters. (I won't bore you listing them -- if you've seen the film, you know what they are. If you haven't, this is irrelevant.)

To Chris Matthews, Barack Obama has never been anything but that symbolic watch passed from a white guy to a black guy, nothing but a token indicating a Redemptive Act.

And the problem is, of course, Barack Obama is not that, and never was that. He is a human being, with all the usual flaws -- and some very unusual and dangerous ones -- and furthermore he was not being elected to the office of Symbol in Chief of the United States of America, but to a position where he'd have to do things beyond merely Signifying.

Oh, he's awesome as a Signifier. One can say he is the best Signifier of any politician we've ever elected.

Trouble is, the president has many responsibilities beyond executing the power of Signification. In fact, one could say Signification and/or Reification is rather low on his list of responsibilities.

So -- for one hour, for precisely one hour, Chris Matthews finally forgot Obama was black, finally forgot he wasn't just a Numinous Negro, not just a Symbol, not just a Signifier, not just a walking breathing Metaphor for the Closure of (Also Metaphorical) Racial Wounds From the Bull Connor days, and realized -- Shit, this guy is President, he does things besides serve as quasi-literary plot device for redeeming my own racial sins and the racial sins of my father and grandfathers.

For one hour.

I'd like to go on record as noting that 99% of conservatives saw him this way -- as a person, as a candidate, and then as a president -- for, like, ever.

So good on you, Chris Matthews. After two years, and for one single hour, you actually managed to evolve past Numinous Negroes and Symbols into appreciating that Barack Obama is a human being and currently holding the most important office in the world.

After two years, and for one single hour, you managed to become every bit as advanced in your thinking and enlightened as any conservative you might bump into in the street.

Kudos. Good work.


Posted by: Ace at 10:14 AM | Comments (128)
Post contains 603 words, total size 4 kb.

1 By George, I think you've got it.

Posted by: mama winger at January 29, 2010 10:18 AM (Ue9UN)

2 Jon Stewart is black?

Posted by: Truman North at January 29, 2010 10:19 AM (e8YaH)

3

Although Chris Matthews forgot for one hour that Obama is black, you can't forget for one second that Matthews is stupid.

Posted by: Osama Obama at January 29, 2010 10:20 AM (CfmlF)

4

Voting for Obama for many Americans was so they could say the political equivalent of, "I gave at the office," or, "I'm no racist - why, some of my best Presidents are Black!"

Posted by: stuiec at January 29, 2010 10:20 AM (keSj0)

5 I don't care whether or not you remember his race as long as we never forget his infallibility.

Posted by: Ted Kennedy's Gristle Encased Head at January 29, 2010 10:21 AM (+lsX1)

6 Oops, had to come back and pick up my sock!

Posted by: runningnrn at January 29, 2010 10:21 AM (CfmlF)

7 We don't see colors.

Posted by: the color-blind at January 29, 2010 10:21 AM (apI2P)

8

 why, some of my best Presidents are Black!"

Well, Obama sure screwed them on that one!

Posted by: Sort-of-Mad Max at January 29, 2010 10:22 AM (ERJIu)

9 Obama is a product of Affirmative Signification.

Posted by: conscious, but incoherent at January 29, 2010 10:22 AM (Vu6sl)

10 5 I don't care whether or not you remember his race as long as we never forget his infallibility.

 

Which is only possible because of his race!


Posted by: runningnrn at January 29, 2010 10:22 AM (CfmlF)

11 I see numinous negroes.  They everywhere.

Posted by: Buckwheat at January 29, 2010 10:22 AM (QKKT0)

12 Of course, those of us who never gave a crap about his skin color are the real racists.  As Chris and his fellow cultists will be reminding us after the November elections.

Posted by: Methos at January 29, 2010 10:23 AM (Xsi7M)

13 6 Oops, had to come back and pick up my sock!

Posted by: runningnrn

My sock never falls off

Posted by: Truman's brother, Peter North at January 29, 2010 10:23 AM (e8YaH)

14 When you lose Jon Stewart you have lost nothing.

Posted by: Vic at January 29, 2010 10:24 AM (QrA9E)

15 But that's how all liberals saw him.  That's why I cringed at the "historic election" business.

And it's no wonder.  Universities and high schools are lousy with this stuff. You can't take a course in the humanities without race, race, race.

Well, racism isn't just hating someone because he's another race, it's also being paternalistically condescending, noblesse oblige if you will.

The soft bigotry of low expectations is the most prevalent and most damaging form of racism we have today.

Posted by: AmishDude at January 29, 2010 10:24 AM (T0NGe)

16

"The Middle East is obviously an issue that has plagued the region for centuries."

http://tinyurl.com/y8g69ct

I did not know that.  Did you?  No wonder that guy is the president, he's such an amazing orator.

 

Posted by: Hussein the Plumber at January 29, 2010 10:24 AM (r1h5M)

17 Midnight Run is one of my favorite movies of all time.  It managed something that would normally have been all but impossible -- making Charles Grodin not only tolerable but appealing.

It's one of those movies I just cannot pass up when it comes on TV, but the triple symbolism of the watch is escaping me at the moment.

The watch was a gift from Jack's daughter, and...help me here.  I don't really even remember Jack giving it to the Duke.  He did?

He's letting go of the past, but his daughter is the past...he's letting go of his daughter?

Posted by: Kensington at January 29, 2010 10:24 AM (Cdz8I)

18 In fact, one could say Signification and/or Reification is rather low on his list of responsibilities.

Indeed, in a perfect world, the President's Signification would only matter as tool to increase his ability to execute. That is, we call the President "the Chief Executive" for a reason, to execute the laws, policies, and duties of government for our country.  If his Signification can help him do that, fine. But it should be a tool, not a goal.

Posted by: XBradTC at January 29, 2010 10:25 AM (cB95w)

19

Okay, but what does the significance of the crease in his pants mean?

I didn't see the movein, but I still need an explanation.

But not for the leg tingle; my "that's just wrong" sensor is at a level 3 warning alert.

Posted by: Arbalest at January 29, 2010 10:25 AM (AFkaI)

20 Ace: Very interesting perspective. Rings true.

Posted by: mongerel at January 29, 2010 10:25 AM (loJMW)

21 But someone ought to tell the electorate that he's a Protesteant!

Posted by: Chris Matthews at January 29, 2010 10:26 AM (e8YaH)

22 Just remember that Matthews' attitude is the same as Brooks' as Chris Buckley's as Peggy Noonan's and even the same attitude as Jon Stewart.  Matthews was just dumb enough to state it out loud.

Posted by: AmishDude at January 29, 2010 10:27 AM (T0NGe)

23

Chris Matthews finally forgot Obama was ... not just a walking breathing Metaphor for the Closure of (Also Metaphorical) Racial Wounds From the Bull Connor days

You know what's really sad?  Even in this very limited role, Obama has been a complete failure.  Not only has he not closed any racial wounds;  not only he could he not just leave well (or bad) enough alone;  he actually has done his best to make things even worse on the racial front.

 

Posted by: benjaminthomas at January 29, 2010 10:27 AM (b47d+)

24 First of all, Barack Hussein Obama is neither fully black or fully white but he is full of shit! And a total fuck-up to boot!

Posted by: McLovin at January 29, 2010 10:27 AM (RwvN1)

25

The Left could not be more clear: We cannot be colorblind, so don't even try.

Or, "If Martin was alive, he would argue that we should judge a man by the color of his skin, not the content of his character."

They are consumed by racial and ethnic differences. The Democrat Party is merely a collection of such individual, self-serving groups, with little in common but the fight for their respective shares.

Posted by: CJ at January 29, 2010 10:27 AM (9KqcB)

26 "The Middle East is obviously an issue that has plagued the region for centuries."

Brilliance.  Brilliance, I say.

Posted by: Humanities Professor at January 29, 2010 10:28 AM (wPZU5)

27

My sock never falls off

 

Yeah, I'm not in possession of one of those, um, fancy sock holders.  (Remember the Mr. Rogers's song, "Boys are Fancy on The Outside."

Posted by: runningnrn at January 29, 2010 10:28 AM (CfmlF)

28 You know what's really sad?  Even in this very limited role, Obama has been a complete failure.  Not only has he not closed any racial wounds;  not only he could he not just leave well (or bad) enough alone;  he actually has done his best to make things even worse on the racial front.

And you know what the sad irony of it is? If he had just been the guy he pretended to be during the campaign, he'd probably have ended up being regarded as a great president.

Posted by: Farmer Joe at January 29, 2010 10:28 AM (z4es9)

29 The other thing to remember about Obama-as-symbol is that Matthews and other liberals thought that symbol would give them absolute moral authority (to borrow from MoDo's claim for Cindy Sheehan) on all of their liberal agenda. They believed -- correctly for the most part -- that Republican leaders in Washington would be too scared of being labeled racist to challenge Obama on his agenda. Where they screwed up was not understanding that a public groundswell from locales across the country against the liberal agenda could derail Obama.

Using your own spokespeople and the big media to cower a handful of career politicians in the House and Senate is one thing. But they couldn't do the same to 100 million Americans, no matter how many times Matthews or Olbermann ranted that the Tea Parties were nothing but a sea of white faces. So that gambit is over and Chris in his heart thought praising Obama for his basic "non-blackness" was a way to get a new gravitas spin about the president going.

Posted by: John at January 29, 2010 10:28 AM (vxS4M)

30 Chris, you're preachin' to choir.

Posted by: Jimmy The Greek at January 29, 2010 10:28 AM (Q41Zh)

31

For a whole year Jon Stewart never thought The Vapid One™ was funny. Now it seems like every day he's blasting him.

Welcome to the Dark Side, Jon.

Posted by: BackwardsBoy at January 29, 2010 10:28 AM (i3AsK)

32 I'm not prejudice against stupid people.  Some of my best friends are stupid.

Posted by: WalrusRex at January 29, 2010 10:29 AM (xxgag)

33 What is lost on Chris is that the vast majority of America doesn't care what color Chicago Jesus' daddy was. Chris and his type do, a lot. Most everyone else, no.

Posted by: Sgt. Fury at January 29, 2010 10:30 AM (CVZGO)

34 Zero is the carnage from the ultimate trainwreck of Affirmative Action smashing headlong into the Peter Principle.

Posted by: Fresh Air at January 29, 2010 10:30 AM (tE2Go)

35 I wish a robot would get elected president. That way, when he came to town, we could all take a shot at him and not feel too bad. - Jack Handy

I think a good gift for the President would be a chocolate revolver. and since he is so busy, you'd probably have to run up to him real quick and give it to him. - Jack Handy


Posted by: trainer at January 29, 2010 10:32 AM (K5X44)

36 Chris Matthews reminds him of a "Big Irish Lesbian Gym Teacher" he once had...Classic!

Posted by: conscious, but incoherent at January 29, 2010 10:32 AM (Vu6sl)

37 making Charles Grodin not only tolerable but appealing.

You'd feel differently if he turned you over to a bunch of geriatric Satan worshippers.

Posted by: Rosemary Woodhouse at January 29, 2010 10:33 AM (gQ+XA)

38 Dear Chris,

The Low Hanging Fruit called and said your fat ass is blocking out the sun.

Posted by: tangonine at January 29, 2010 10:34 AM (C8Pcc)

39 Related topic:  Kieth Olbermann has identified new racist code words that we need to avoid most particularly "arrogant."

Posted by: WalrusRex at January 29, 2010 10:34 AM (xxgag)

40

My accomplishments are too numinous to list here so y'all gotta stop talkin bout Barack like he's some kinda second comin...justa sayin. IYKWIM

 

Posted by: Jesse I'll chop ya balls off Jackson at January 29, 2010 10:35 AM (pr+up)

41

Well crap, too bad we can't forget that Nancy Pelosi spends taxpayer money like a drunken sailor (literally) for a minute.  From Judicial Watch:

Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, announced today that it has obtained documents from the Air Force detailing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s use of United States Air Force aircraft for Congressional Delegations (CODELs). According to the documents, obtained by Judicial Watch through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the Speaker’s military travel cost the United States Air Force $2,100,744.59 over a two-year period — $101,429.14 of which was for in-flight expenses, including food and alcohol. The following are highlights from the recent release of about 2,000 documents:

Speaker Pelosi used Air Force aircraft to travel back to her district at an average cost of $28,210.51 per flight. The average cost of an international CODEL is $228,563.33. Of the 103 Pelosi-led congressional delegations (CODEL), 31 trips included members of the House Speaker’s family. One CODEL traveling from Washington, DC, through Tel Aviv, Israel to Baghdad, Iraq May 15-20, 2008, “to discuss matters of mutual concern with government leaders” included members of Congress and their spouses and cost $17,931 per hour in aircraft alone. Purchases for the CODEL included: Johnny Walker Red scotch, Grey Goose vodka, E&J brandy, Bailey’s Irish Crème, Maker’s Mark whiskey, Courvoisier cognac, Bacardi Light rum, Jim Beam whiskey, Beefeater gin, Dewars scotch, Bombay Sapphire gin, Jack Daniels whiskey, Corona beer and several bottles of wine. According to a “Memo for Record” from a March 29—April 7, 2007, CODEL that involved a stop in Israel, “CODEL could only bring Kosher items into the Hotel. Kosher alcohol for mixing beverages in the Delegation room was purchased on the local economy i.e. Bourbon, Whiskey, Scotch, Vodka, Gin, Triple Sec, Tequila, etc.” The Department of Defense advanced a CODEL of 56 members of Congress and staff $60,000 to travel to Louisiana and Mississippi July 19-22, 2008, to “view flood relief advances from Hurricane Katrina.” The three-day trip cost the U.S. Air Force $65,505.46, exceeding authorized funding by $5,505.46.

 

 

Posted by: runningnrn at January 29, 2010 10:35 AM (CfmlF)

42 making Charles Grodin not only tolerable but appealing.

That is an impossibility. Grodin is an asshole to his core. Complete and total.

Posted by: Iskandar at January 29, 2010 10:36 AM (/o58C)

43

I think a good gift for the President would be a chocolate revolver. and since he is so busy, you'd probably have to run up to him real quick and give it to him. - Jack Handy

 

Choklit revolver for choklit Jesus.  Hmm....


Posted by: runningnrn at January 29, 2010 10:37 AM (CfmlF)

44 >>>It's one of those movies I just cannot pass up when it comes on TV, but the triple symbolism of the watch is escaping me at the moment. 1) Obviously, it indicates they are friends. Friends exchange gifts. 2) It indicates the End of the Hunt. We know that Jack will never track down The Duke again. It is a closing moment, the end of the drama, the end of the chase. 3) The watch was a gift from his EX-WIFE, not his daughter. He kept it because he was holding on for hope of reconciling with his wife. The Duke had advised him earlier, "You need to get a new watch," when Walsh admitted the watch was from his wife, and that he still had hopes of getting her back, which he wouldn't.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 10:38 AM (jlvw3)

45 This numinous symbol surely has something to do with Freemasonry. Or the Illuminati. Would you believe the Loyal Order of Water Buffaloes?

Posted by: Robert Langdon at January 29, 2010 10:38 AM (27KAF)

46

Welcome to the Dark Side, Jon.

 

RACIST!

Posted by: runningnrn at January 29, 2010 10:38 AM (CfmlF)

47 And for the record, Stewart is a tool.  But, he can be a pretty funny tool.

Posted by: tangonine at January 29, 2010 10:39 AM (C8Pcc)

48 The "Friend" symbolism may be obvious as shit, but symbols don't need to be complicated. Remember, at no point in the film, up until that last scene, were these men ever actually allies. They were always at cross purposes, always enemies, and didn't like each other personally to boot. The gift of the watch is the affirmation that yes, they are friends now, though they will never again see each other.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 10:39 AM (jlvw3)

49 the watch closes three character and plot arcs -- Jack and John, The Chase, and Jack and His Ex-Wife. All end there, or, rather, the watch is intended to drum those points home, in case you were wondering.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 10:41 AM (jlvw3)

50 I guess there's actually another meaning, sort of embedded in the End of the Hunt meaning -- they will never ever see each other again, so this is goodbye and farewell.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 10:41 AM (jlvw3)

51 Chris Mathews should be ashamed to even show his face again. What an absolute embarrasment. What kind of people think like that?

Posted by: nikkolai at January 29, 2010 10:42 AM (i4ujc)

52 I think the watch in Pulp Fiction has a symbolic parallel to Chris Matthews's feelings about Barack Obama.

Just as Christopher Walken had the watch up his ass, Chris Matthews would like to have Barack Obama up his ass.

Symbolism!

Posted by: Kensington at January 29, 2010 10:42 AM (Cdz8I)

53 new racist code words that we need to avoid most particularly "arrogant."

I was unaware John F'n Kerry was black.

Posted by: HeatherRadish at January 29, 2010 10:44 AM (mR7mk)

54 And for the record, Stewart is a tool.  But, he can be a pretty funny tool.

Posted by: tangonine at January 29, 2010 03:39 PM (C8Pcc)

Because when it comes right down to it, Jon Stewart's professional survival and his fat-ass paycheck depend on his being funny, not on his being a loyal Progressive mouthpiece.

Posted by: stuiec at January 29, 2010 10:45 AM (keSj0)

55 Chris Matthews is the AOL of newscasters. Or is that Olbermann?

Posted by: Dr. Varno at January 29, 2010 10:46 AM (QMtmy)

56 I am not sure, but I think these guys are Black, except the light skinned smoking hot girls!  Watch this!  They can really sing and dance, that's for sure!
Amazing stuff!  This isn't your bro's rap!
http://tinyurl.com/yeq5z7a


Posted by: Kemp at January 29, 2010 10:48 AM (2+9Yx)

57 I still don't think he's funny.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 10:49 AM (jlvw3)

58 If you substitute "most-racial" for "post-racial", you'll find that most of the MSM commentary is dead-on.

Posted by: the peanut gallery at January 29, 2010 10:50 AM (l71WL)

59 Why do Jim Cramer, Olberman, Matthews, etc. feel that they need to bow and scrape before John Stewart? This lib hierarchy is weird.

Posted by: elliot m at January 29, 2010 10:52 AM (rHQQw)

60 I love seeing libs eating other libs like their own children. They should try them with butter. Yum....

Posted by: Little Black Sambo at January 29, 2010 10:53 AM (gbCNS)

61 27 "The Middle East is obviously an issue that has plagued the region for centuries."

Just in the interest of completeness, what region(s) did it plague before that?  Did it ever get around to plaguing South America?  How about Antarctica?  And for exactly how many centuries has this plaguing in this current region been occurring - since perhaps the 7th century, or thereabouts?

Posted by: sherlock at January 29, 2010 10:53 AM (N7uu0)

62 61 Why do Jim Cramer, Olberman, Matthews, etc. feel that they need to bow and scrape before John Stewart? This lib hierarchy is weird.

Did anyone mention, Stewart is a Joooo?



Posted by: Kemp at January 29, 2010 10:54 AM (2+9Yx)

63
he's not just giving him a watch.

So he hid the watch in the one place they wouldnt find it: his ASS... no wait, wrong movie.

Posted by: Cpt Koons at January 29, 2010 10:55 AM (fx8sm)

64 Hey, Ace, a bit of trivia:  "Magic negro" was coined by David Ehrenstein, a fellow Fraygrant.  I think he called himself "cellardr."  Later he modified the name because pseudoerasmus started calling him "cellar dweller."  Anyway, small world, eh?

Posted by: rdbrewer at January 29, 2010 10:57 AM (IIYyC)

65 It is a shame Media-ite does not have the bandwidth to stream the video.  After watching the three minute video for seven minutes I am giving up.

Posted by: Steve In Tulsa at January 29, 2010 10:58 AM (lv+sJ)

66 Chris Matthews’ interview on the Daily Show from 2007. “This is a book interview from hell!” http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/tue-october-2-2007/chris-matthews

Posted by: Mad Saint Jack at January 29, 2010 10:59 AM (zVgnK)

67 You know what?  I just don't have..uh... much of an appetite after this.  Anybody..uhh..want this here..uhh..slice of pie?

Posted by: Prezadizzle McAwesomepecs at January 29, 2010 10:59 AM (E0EDC)

68 >>> "Magic negro" was coined by David Ehrenstein, a fellow Fraygrant. I think he called himself "cellardr." No it wasn't. I had been using the term well before him, and I don't think it was original with me, either. Although I THOUGHT I made it up, I think I remember now Spike Lee had used it earlier. It was not his invention at all. He just got press because Paul Shaklin did that parody based on his article about it.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 10:59 AM (jlvw3)

69 Is there a Film Studies major in the house?


Wow, I never in my entire life thought I'd ever say that in a non-ironic fashion.

Posted by: HeatherRadish at January 29, 2010 11:01 AM (mR7mk)

70 Heh.  He probably got it from you!

Posted by: rdbrewer at January 29, 2010 11:01 AM (IIYyC)

71 Welcome to the mind of a true liberal.

Posted by: GarandFan at January 29, 2010 11:02 AM (ZQBnQ)

72 #70

Hey, Ace, I AM THE MAGICAL NEGRO! 

Don't forget it whitey.

Posted by: Rev. Wright at January 29, 2010 11:02 AM (2+9Yx)

73

You know what's really sad?  Even in this very limited role, Obama has been a complete failure.  Not only has he not closed any racial wounds;  not only he could he not just leave well (or bad) enough alone;  he actually has done his best to make things even worse on the racial front.

Posted by: benjaminthomas at January 29, 2010 03:27 PM (b47d+)

I actually cut him some slack on this one.  He is personally trying very hard to be a non-racially-conscious President - to the point where Magic Johnson is now whining that Obama needs to appoint him as a "czar" for minority affairs!  Before he became Black Jesus, he was getting hammered pretty good in some circles for being "not black enough."

It's Obama's supporters who all think like Chris Matthews who are the problem.  It's Janeane Garofalo with her description of the Tea Parties as "straight-up racism," it's Keef Olberman finding a racial dog-whistle in every comment made by a conservative, it's Maureen Dowd and her "You lie, boy" and on and on.   Some of this is pure politics, trying to paint the GOP into a white Southern redneck corner and further alienate midwestern suburbanites.  But I think most of it is exactly as Ace describe here - they are all so invested in the Symbol of Obama as Black Jesus that their minds cannot process any criticism of him except as being overt or covert racism.

Posted by: rockmom at January 29, 2010 11:05 AM (w/gVZ)

74 re: "the magic negro": in the past year we have seen troubled times for several prominent african-americans, which leads this observer to ask the trenchant question: what is happening to the trans-racial african americans? look at the evidence: -obama gets elected. -tiger woods' game tanks & he doesn't win a major. not even close -this summer, michael jackson dies under mysterious circumstances as he prepares to embark on his comeback. -text messages are revealed that destroy tiger's career, costing him hundreds of millions in endorsements. is the unthinkable possible, that these calamities stem from the very heart of power? yes! obama is very possibly destroying the trans-racial african americans we hold in highest esteem. connect the dots: coincidence? about a trillion to one. metaphysical order? while jackson followed cosby, and tiger followed jackson, does the universe allow only ONE trans-racial afr. amer. at a time? if you believe in the tooth fairy. no! j'accuse! who had the motive to destroy the shining competition to his exalted position? who had the opportunity and wields the mechanisms of supreme power? obama! as we saw with the evil, murderous bush administration, the president of the united states is capable of supreme evil for power and money. i propose that obama directed black ops to kill michael jackson and destroy tiger woods. well, it's an idle thought...

Posted by: gomm at January 29, 2010 11:07 AM (Ibk1S)

75 I'm still waiting for the Magic Negro to make the recession disappear.  But I'd settle for Olbermann disappearing, instead.

Posted by: Mikey at January 29, 2010 11:09 AM (TJoID)

76 right-o, it's both, it's cynical from some, some of the time, and for others, it's just that they have so much invested in this Dynamite Script -- this Million Dollar Script -- they are angry that the script isn't going to plan and seems to have an Unhappy Ending a-coming. And he has been a failure on healing the races. That is partly his fault -- he encouraged people to think that. His candidacy used it's own "racial dog whistles" to indicate that, to sell himself as the One Who Came to Heal. But that was always jackass. Black people (as a group) are poor and have several serious social malignancies not shared by most races. There are always going to be problems due to that, and resentments, and counter-resentments from whites, etc. How the hell does electing one guy change those facts? It doesn't.

Posted by: ace at January 29, 2010 11:10 AM (jlvw3)

77 He is personally trying very hard to be a non-racially-conscious President

Sonia Sotormayor, Eric Holder and the Black Panthers, and the benediction at the inaugural would indicate otherwise.

Posted by: HeatherRadish at January 29, 2010 11:12 AM (mR7mk)

78 "Numinous Negroes".  Never heard of him.

Posted by: Charlie Gibson at January 29, 2010 11:15 AM (UPNlB)

79

That was beautiful, Ace. The tears are steaming down my face and, for a moment there, I forgot you were an Ewok.

Posted by: andycanuck at January 29, 2010 11:17 AM (2qU2d)

80

Yes, but would you let Chris Matthews marry your sister?

Posted by: andycanuck at January 29, 2010 11:18 AM (2qU2d)

81

Ace has done some pretty insightful work on other "magic" characters as well.  In particular, I like the commentary about retards.  Makes me laugh just thinking about it.  Part of what makes this stuff funny is that it's true.

He nailed Rosie O'Donnell in her retard movie, but there were a few things before that.  I guess it was critical analysis--movie review type stuff--but I don't remember specific subject.

Posted by: rdbrewer at January 29, 2010 11:18 AM (IIYyC)

82 1st time I heard The Magic Negro phrase was in an LA times article during the campaign about how The One didn't have real blackness  going for him or some shit like that.

Posted by: GrumpyUnk at January 29, 2010 11:21 AM (d7zzZ)

83 Maybe it was the magic disabled, like blind people or something.

Posted by: rdbrewer at January 29, 2010 11:22 AM (IIYyC)

84 Hey!  Anyone want to share my Nilla wafers?  I've got pudding cups, too!

Posted by: Slow Joe at January 29, 2010 11:22 AM (UOM48)

85 Ace, coming 'round with the watch, the tool delineating Chrissy's hour, you nailed him so well.

/In simplistic fashion, that racist said he forgot Barack's color in order to keep it the center of his attention, and public discourse. He didn't even realize his epiphany while he had it; only claiming it after the fact when he no longer "forgot" his color code, back in the saddle again remembering his system of bigoted stupidity.

Posted by: maverick muse at January 29, 2010 11:24 AM (+CLh/)

86

I actually cut him some slack on this one.  He is personally trying very hard to be a non-racially-conscious President - to the point where Magic Johnson is now whining that Obama needs to appoint him as a "czar" for minority affairs!  Before he became Black Jesus, he was getting hammered pretty good in some circles for being "not black enough."

 

Because of his "infectious enthusiasm"?

Posted by: Decco at January 29, 2010 11:30 AM (CfmlF)

87

Often called the "Numinous Negro."

Ace,  I adore the alliteration! 

Posted by: Decco at January 29, 2010 11:31 AM (CfmlF)

88 "Some of this is pure politics, trying to paint the GOP into a white Southern redneck corner and further alienate midwestern suburbanites."

I understand. 'Everyone' exempts himself at the expense of the South.

Historically, Midwesterners wouldn't even tolerate Negros living on the "wrong side" of the tracks--no blacks were permitted to settle at all into the all white communities in the Midwest. As if Midwestern suburbanites aren't as racist as the Northerner's biased opinion of a Southerner; and as if Northerners aren't as racist as everyone else, if not more, with their own horrible history exploiting hordes of starving immigrants and children in factories and slums.


Posted by: maverick muse at January 29, 2010 11:37 AM (+CLh/)

89 for a post that will rock your world and forever change the way you see obama, the presidency and trans-racialism see comment #76.

Posted by: gomm at January 29, 2010 11:40 AM (Ibk1S)

90

You know what's really sad?  Even in this very limited role, Obama has been a complete failure.  Not only has he not closed any racial wounds;  not only he could he not just leave well (or bad) enough alone;  he actually has done his best to make things even worse on the racial front.

 He's no Jackie Robinson.

Posted by: nickless at January 29, 2010 11:40 AM (MMC8r)

91 Well crap, too bad we can't forget that Nancy Pelosi spends taxpayer money like a drunken sailor (literally)

I take great umbrage at that statement.  As a former (often) drunken Sailor I can say that I only spent my OWN money.  For Pelosi to spend like one she, too, would only be limited to her own money.  And we all know that's not happening.

Posted by: GreenGasEmissions at January 29, 2010 11:42 AM (nx1kg)

92 See, this is why I like to read Ace, despite the really, really foul language.  This is really insightful stuff.

Posted by: Dan at January 29, 2010 11:42 AM (Kq8Qr)

93 he actually has done his best to make things even worse on the racial front. 

He's no Jackie Robinson.

He's no MLK, Jr.

Posted by: maverick muse at January 29, 2010 11:43 AM (+CLh/)

94 This is why so many countries have ceremonial heads of state, while the heavy executive (and frequently legislative) lifting is left to a prime minister or a premier.  (Like Israel, with it's President and Prime Minister system.)

Barack the Boy King would make a fine ceremonial head of state. He's tall, attractive, has a nice sonorous voice, and looks good in a suit (think how much better he'd look with a ceremonial sash with some ribbons and medals on it).

Unfortunately, as an American President, who you know, is like responsible for shit and stuff, he blows. 


Posted by: DelD at January 29, 2010 11:43 AM (eWtdM)

95

[A]s if Northerners aren't as racist as everyone else, if not more, with their own horrible history exploiting hordes of starving immigrants and children in factories and slums.

James Earl Jones said, to paraphrase, he'd much rather live in the south where what racism there is is out in the open.  He indicated it's worse in the north, and that it's hidden.

Posted by: rdbrewer at January 29, 2010 11:47 AM (IIYyC)

96 1st time I heard The Magic Negro phrase was in an LA times article during the campaign about how The One didn't have real blackness  going for him or some shit like that.

Yes, and the author is himself African-American. I first heard this when Rush picked up on it with Shanklin's "Barack the Magic Negro" parody (sung by Al Sharpton through a bullhorn).

Naturally, liberals used this as yet more evidence of Rush's supposed racism...

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 29, 2010 11:50 AM (hoowK)

97 DelD

That rich baritone was a squealing tenor during his tirade that itself did not represent a SOTU address. Obama's truncated enunciation is unbearable, becoming more and more prevalent in his painfully mannered elocution.

B+rry is the President of Antipathy which is not representative of America.

Posted by: maverick muse at January 29, 2010 11:50 AM (+CLh/)

98 #54 he shoots....he scores!!

Posted by: TheThinMan at January 29, 2010 11:51 AM (W3XUk)

99 Nebulous Numinous Negro with a Nimbus

Posted by: eleven at January 29, 2010 11:51 AM (OGbpf)

100 See, this is why I like to read Ace, despite the really, really foul language.

The fuck you say...

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 29, 2010 11:51 AM (hoowK)

101 "and looks good in a suit (think how much better he'd look with a ceremonial sash with some ribbons and medals on it).""



Like Idi Amin? lol

Posted by: Berserker at January 29, 2010 11:56 AM (gWHrG)

102 They are consumed by racial and ethnic differences. The Democrat Party is merely a collection of such individual, self-serving groups, with little in common but the fight for their respective shares.

One party has perpetually been obsessed with classifying people by accident of birth.  Whether it's the color of your skin or the name of your family, Democrats see it as your defining characteristic (and have done so since their founding).  With race, the Democrats' have only changed from hating blacks because of some perceived inferiority, to patronizing pity because of some perceived inferiority.  But Democrats have always seen being black as a handicap.

Viewing everything as an accident of birth is also why Democrats reject the notion of class mobility, believing that your status in life is controlled more by luck than hard work.  This explains the Democratic obsession with affirmative action, envy of profits, disdain for middle America, and comfort with central planning.  A caste system would suit the Democrats just fine.

Posted by: wooga at January 29, 2010 11:59 AM (2p0e3)

103

James Earl Jones said, to paraphrase, he'd much rather live in the south where what racism there is is out in the open.  He indicated it's worse in the north, and that it's hidden.

Posted by: rdbrewer at January 29, 2010 04:47 PM (IIYyC)

Interesting parallel to a post I read at Hillbuzz, touching on treatment of gays:

"More and more we think about the difference between the way we are personally treated by the Left and the Right.  To be blunt, neither extreme likes gays all that much.  Liberals are smart enough to put on a good face about it in public, but behind closed doors they make their jokes, too, and can be far crueler than you could ever imagine."

Posted by: mongerel at January 29, 2010 12:02 PM (loJMW)

104 There is a tradition in film, as Spike Lee and, frankly, I, have pointed out. The tradition of the Magical Negro.

There's a far older tradition of the "noble savage" which is about the same thing.

Posted by: progressoverpeace at January 29, 2010 12:03 PM (A46hP)

105 We Are Not Buying

This administration consists of 93% Ivy League criminal bums, and led by the pious fraud is trying to impress the public with the dumbest and most transparent lies for propaganda. As if being told with a multi-syllabic vocabulary by an Ivy League grad makes the lie credible or even attractive, not. LOL at the illustrious stupidity coming from this administration. They wasted their tuition money if it was a classical education they wanted bestowed upon them from Marxists.

Posted by: maverick muse at January 29, 2010 12:24 PM (+CLh/)

106 It's hard to see as black, as someone who's able to Symbolize All That, a guy who not only doesn't have a drop of slave blood in him, but is indeed half white... and didn't grow up in the segregated south, but in an island paradise, after which he went to fucking Harvard.

Posted by: G$ at January 29, 2010 12:26 PM (nEatY)

107 Why didn't you act like a fucking man and tell me that Obama is black!

Posted by: Chris Matthews at January 29, 2010 12:32 PM (sYxEE)

108 he is no magic negro, he is at most a magic half nilo-saharan

Posted by: av at January 29, 2010 12:36 PM (rG4O2)

109

Heh, yeah, the "noble savage" crap has got to go.

And I'm sick of playing the smiling wop too.

Overt racism (as I've experienced it, so it could be all wrong) can be very frightening (to a small child) or cause you to get mad as hell, but the behind closed doors, snide crap and condescending bullshit is a real soul crusher -- why?  Because from what I've experienced of it (personally and objective viewing) at first you might just believe that those bastards are your friends, and in finding out their true feelings you learn to neither trust nor believe in anyone.

That's a rotten frakking thing to do to a person (and usually during your formative years of childhood, youth, and early adulthood -- so it sticks with you for life).  Long, moralistic story short -- people aren't things, so don't treat them that way...and at least be honest about your bigotries and try to be polite and civil in spite of them.

Posted by: unknown jane at January 29, 2010 12:56 PM (5/yRG)

110 Best post evah Ace!

Posted by: thefritz at January 29, 2010 01:35 PM (pH+yu)

111

Chris Matthew's brain is leaking tingly fluid. But I'll cut him some slack, he was after-all Jimmy Carter's presidential speechwriter.

Posted by: Buffalobob at January 29, 2010 01:49 PM (XjviO)

112 For an hour, I managed to forget that was a savage spear-chucker with a bone through his nose.

Posted by: Chris Matthews - MSNBC at January 29, 2010 02:30 PM (qs11W)

113 Red? but your hairs brown. Why do they call you Red? My last name is Wood. It's short for RedWood. oh Jack, you ever had sex with an animal? And I'll put your head back in that hole and I'll BUST your head and make it FUCKING stay there. I'm aware of that. So you're aware of your behaviour and yet you still do things that are bad for you? Don't you think that's living in denial? No. Stealing 5million$ from JimmySoranto and expecting to get away with it IS living in denial, John?

Posted by: ron dorque at January 29, 2010 02:31 PM (jFWpp)

114

I didn't deal with this because all I have to say is so friggin' obvious it pains me to say it. I don't like boring you with the obvious.

Yeah, it's obvious, but you pin it down and describe it in a way most of us can't.

 Great post.

Posted by: Mikki at January 29, 2010 02:42 PM (wxSIC)

115 Why didn't you act like a fucking man and tell me that Obama is black!

Posted by: Chris Matthews at January 29, 2010 05:32 PM (sYxEE)

Bwahahaha! 

ps.  Like your hash SEXY!

Posted by: Jade Sea at January 29, 2010 03:03 PM (1unj7)

116 40 Dear Chris,

The Low Hanging Fruit called and said your fat ass is blocking out the sun.

Posted by: tangonine at January 29, 2010 03:34 PM (C8Pcc)


THREAD WINNER!

Posted by: Gina E at January 29, 2010 03:11 PM (mvlsi)

117 "[He] was not being elected to the office of Symbol in Chief of the United States of America, but to a position where he'd have to do things beyond merely Signifying." See also, BREAKING: Missing Article of U.S. Constitution Discovered – Creates Fourth Branch of Government: The Celebritist.. http://bit.ly/1kp1lN

Posted by: Moog Rogue at January 29, 2010 03:15 PM (iZVJq)

118 BREAKING: Missing Article of U.S. Constitution Discovered – Creates Fourth Branch of Government: The Celebritist... http://bit.ly/1kp1lN

Posted by: Moog Rogue at January 29, 2010 03:17 PM (iZVJq)

119 Bravo Ace. Bravo!

Posted by: TheBigOldDog at January 29, 2010 04:57 PM (LPaj6)

120 Wait, Obama's Bagger Vance?

Posted by: SuperCool at January 29, 2010 05:06 PM (DRsTV)

121

 Bull Connor was a Democrat.

 

 

Posted by: Lazarus Long at January 29, 2010 05:36 PM (RbtXl)

122

The President is a ni*churchbell chimes*!!!!!

What's that you say there, Chris? The President is near?

Posted by: Chris Matthews as Gabby Johnson in Blazing Saddles at January 29, 2010 05:50 PM (cZtT3)

123 <a target="_blank" title="ÏÑÏÔÉ" href="ÏÑÏÔÉÏÑÏÔÉhttp://www.2wc2.com">ÏÑÏÔÉ</a> -
<a target="_blank" title="ÏÑÏÔå" href="ÏÑÏÔåÏÑÏÔåhttp://www.2wc2.com">ÏÑÏÔå</a> -

Posted by: basim at January 29, 2010 07:14 PM (4LPhe)

124 dum dum the alleged romneybot should spin this and why he can never be racist

Posted by: B35tomothergaston at January 30, 2010 02:45 AM (3Oj+s)

125

The way I see it, Matthews was seeking a redemption of his own with that comment. Not redemption as an enlightened, non-bigoted white person cleasing the sins of racism; this goes further. He's seeking the redemption of his profession. (And thanks, Ace, for helping me to finnaly put this into words.)

Journalists also have a very important function in our society: They tell us what's going on. But they've seen themselves as something a lot different for too long now. They see themselves as the authors of "the first draft of history," of people who can "make a difference," of the setters of the public agenda. And through it all, they've essentially stopped telling us what's going on.

Yes, the election of Barack Obama was historic. Even the candidacy of Barack Obama was historic. But instead of getting all weepy-eyed and tingly, Chris Matthews and his peers had a duty to tell us about this man. (Of course Obama has flaws. What are they? Could they impede his presdiency, should he win the election?) It was in this duty that the entire institution of journalism failed -- and in doing so, they failed us -- horribly.

So, as Ace said, good on you, Chris Matthews. For one hour, you remembered that you were journalist, and the tools of your trade are facts. But it's going to take more than an off-the-cuff confession to redeem yourself.

Welcome back to the real world. I hope you stay awhile. Now get back to work, and do your job. We'll see how it goes.

Posted by: FireHorse at January 30, 2010 05:36 AM (cQyWA)

126

#48:

Join the Sith, Jon Stewart.  You know you want to.

Resistance is Futile.

Posted by: Darth Hotness, Sith Recruiting at January 30, 2010 07:18 AM (TUWci)

127 To say that the MSM sucks ass is an insult to sucked asses everywhere.

Posted by: Jade Sea at January 30, 2010 07:46 AM (1unj7)

128 I give  him all the respect I gave Jimmy Carter, what more do you   want from me?

Posted by: MarkD at January 30, 2010 04:07 PM (nur8S)

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