MSNBC's Chris Matthews was full of compliments after last night's Obama presser, most notably for "our breed" -- the press. The media, he said, "looked very good tonight. They asked great questions." By which he meant that the traditional White House press had the moxie -- the sheer goddamn masculine middle class Pennsylvanian guts! -- to avoid asking the sorts of questions that totally bring down the moods at fancy weekend cocktail parties, choosing instead to hew to the sorts of damp inquiries that fascinate reporters. Like: "Isn't presidenting hard?" and "Do you still think bipartisanship is dreamy, because I do ... so dreamy, like a fluffy cloud of hallucinogenic vapor?"
Of course, Matthews was also highly complimentary of Obama as well, touting the president's "amazing ability" to communicate.
MATTHEWS: He was precise and I was very impressed with his amazing ability, standing in front of the American people on a roadblock -- by the way, you couldn't find a channel that he wasn't on tonight -- a roadblock of American attention. And he was at his best intellectually. I thought it was a great example of how his mind works. And I think we're going to have to know that, the next four years.
And, hey, this is widely held to be Matthews' Default Position on Obama. But when the demands of media meta-narrative call for it, Matthews is quick to support his "breed." Check out Matthews' general assessment of Obama's communicative ability from last Thursday.
MATTHEWS: Lawrence, why does he need a teleprompter to do a good speech?
O'DONNELL: This one --
MATTHEWS: I'm dead serious. No good on give and take. Just average. No good on stump. Only good when he's got that teleprompter. Seems that works for him and nothing else does. I may be wrong.
Actually, he just may be inconsistent. But with a remarkable consistency!