Captain Tingles: How dare these Republicans let the mother of a Benghazi victim criticize Hillary

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Published by: Dan Calabrese on Tuesday July 19th, 2016

No thrill up the leg, but maybe something running down it.

I first noticed this with Joe the Plumber. Ordinary citizen finds himself with a moment in the spotlight and uses it to criticize the president. The media immediately springs into action - not in support of the citizen's right to dissent, but as a mass prosecution team demanding to know who this ingrate is, and what right he thinks he has to cast aspersions on the high exalted leader. He heard in the days that followed the Obama/Joe interaction that Joe was not a real plumber, didn't have a license (no government papers? egad!) and maybe had experienced problems with his business.

The clear lesson: If you dare criticize a Democrat, you'd better be prepared for a media rectal exam, because this is just . . . not . . . done.

So it really came as no surprise to me that Chris Matthews pull the same schtick last night as Patricia Smith took the stage at the opening night of the Republican National Convention and blasted Hillary for her role in, and subsequent lies about, the death of her son Sean Smith in Benghazi:

Tingles is oh so generous in allowing that Ms. Smith is allowed to "feel" any way she wants, but draws the line at telling "lies about Hillary Clinton," which of course is not what Ms. Smith did at all.

We know that Chris Stevens made multiple requests for stronger security at the consulate, and that Hillary denied the requests.

We know that Hillary told Smith and other parents of the dead that a YouTube video was responsible for what happened at Benghazi, even though we know that Hillary told others via e-mail that very night that she knew it was a planned terrorist attack.

In Matthews's demented mind, this story should be over because (he thinks) the Republican investigations of the matter failed to indict Hillary with any sort of political smoking gun or chargeable criminal offense. And it's a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy at that: The political class and their media servants (like Matthews) were not forced by the evidence to turn on Hillary, therefore what Hillary did is irrelevant, therefore there is no story, therefore it's outrageous for anyone to still be talking about it.

The only problem with that is that everything Patricia Smith said about Hillary is true. It's one of the weird arguments that Hillary's defenders can use, and do with frequency: Because Hillary is so awful, telling the truth about her is really nasty business. That means that anyone who tells said truth can be accused of being really nasty, and this becomes Hillary's all-purpose defense. The more truthful you are in talking about her, the more awful you're being. Stop being awful!

That pretty much sums up Matthews's objection here. If only Hillary's critics would just ignore how horrendous she is, we wouldn't have to have all this unpleasantness. Gosh. We're sorry.

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