A Lesson in Patriotism for Chris Matthews

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


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Chris Matthews is the smartest man on MSNBC only because most of the rest of MSNBC consists of functional illiterates (Ed Schultz, Al Sharpton), the mentally ill (Larry O’Donnell) and the Media Matters zombies who are incapable of independent thought (Rachel Maddow, Chris Hayes).

In the kingdom of the retarded, the man with one brain cell is king. On any local television station, Chris Matthews would be the guy who brought everyone else the coffee. On MSNBC, he’s the only guy who can tell time on a clock without any help.

That doesn’t make him less of an idiot.

THOMAS ROBERTS: It’s weird Orrin Hatch — with Chuck Todd, he kept calling it a bill. He kept referring to Obamacare as a bill.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: You know why? He wants to disrespect it. Disrespect for institutions, for the election of a president, for the American voter who elected him is a real problem and why they can call themselves patriots as they do that is highly inconsistent. The patriot is the person who accepts the law and the patriot is the one who believes in compromise, who believes in government.

I’m not sure what dictionary Chris Matthews is reading from, but he couldn’t be more wrong if he were Al Sharpton. Patriot comes from Patria. It refers to love of the fatherland. The reference at its core is not even to the state, but to the homeland.

To the extent that Patria was associated with the state, it certainly wasn’t associated with some inflexible notion of submission to authority. The idea that the patriot believes in compromise rather than fighting for what he believes in is alien to the American notion of patriotism.

Chris Matthews confuses patriotism with something like obedient citizenship. If so it’s a poor choice of words.

The American usage of Patriot contrasted with that of Loyalist. It was a deliberate contrast. Unlike the Loyalist, the Patriot was devoted to his native soil rather than to any government.

Thus for example, Sam Adams wrote, “If ever time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.”

The patriots are not those obedient to the highest seats of government. They are a resistive force who have a higher loyalty.

Or as Thomas Paine put it, “It is the duty of the patriot to protect his country from its government.”

Or as Theodore Roosevelt put it, “Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does NOT mean to stand by the President or any other public official save exactly to the degree in which he himself stands by the country. It is patriotic to support him insofar as he efficiently serves the country. It is unpatriotic not to oppose him to the exact extent that by inefficiency or otherwise he fails in his duty to stand by the country.”

It’s Chris Matthews who is unpatriotic.

  • GSR

    That’s a helluva quote from Thomas Paine.

  • luckycat76

    I have a small disagreement with this otherwise brilliant short piece.

    Ed Schultz belongs in the “mentally ill” category.

  • Gee

    The founding fathers of the United States would be leading for a 2nd Revolution to free America for the tyranny of Washington

  • DogmaelJones1

    “Chris Matthews confuses patriotism with something like obedient citizenship. If so it’s a poor choice of words.” It isn’t only Chris Matthews. It’s also Obama who equates patriotism with submission to his legislative agenda, and I don’t think he’s confused by the equivocation, either. He means it.

  • Peter C. Lubrano

    Its unforgiving to think for one moment that disagreeing with this president is either racist or unpatriotic.
    On the other hand not to recognize this president’s intransigence is absurd beyond belief! How can people not see and hear this presidents’ comments and castigations leveled against congressmen who do not agree with this policies and want to make somed changes or at the very least ameliorate the situation.
    It is very apparent that this president doles not want to discuss these issues that are of great importance to this nation and he is allowed getting awayt with this by his supporters, shame on him and his party whom by and large support him!
    Peter C. Lubrano

    • Diversity Fatigue

      I am counting the days down to when this man leaves Pennsylvania Avenue. The question is, how much damage will he do until then?

      • GSR

        Love your posting name – Diversity Fatigue. Well put. Me too. “Diversity” today is such a racket. Merely an excuse to displace/replace native born Americans with foreigners by way of the obsession with mass immigration.

        • Blossom Bradley

          wow, that’s a great rationalization for being a bigot, just like the rest of the losers here. good job! it would be hilarious if it wasnt so sad.

          • DB1954

            Blossom, you don’t even know what a bigot is. I think you meant to say “racist,” but in any case, you forgot to use the other term which is part of the new McCarthyism- the McCarthyism of the Left.

  • bob e

    mathews has been left so long he can’t walk a straight line…i recommend
    the two hyena treatment…as for the other..i hope they all live reporting
    when an islamic slaughter cooks off…

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “.i hope they all live reporting when an islamic slaughter cooks off…”

      Everyone carrying any weapons of any kind, wearing any kind of desert attire will be described as tea party members.

    • trapper

      what is the “two hyena treatment”?

  • herb benty

    Wonderful and true. We keep saying great and precious truths, we keep reading true and damning articles. But not a soul is calling for 100 million Patriots to show up on Versaile’s front lawn. ORGANIZE> Communism.

  • Piran

    I’m so relieved that Chris Matthews supports the reintegration of The Colonies into the Imperial fold. Now we can all forget that little local difficulty in 1776 when a hoard of louts who refused to accept the law, weren’t prepared to compromise and positively spewed forth contempt on the government of the time created such an unpatriotic predicament.

    Chris we salute you and I propose he should be immediately considered for an award from the Benedict Arnold “Hands Across The Sea” memorial fund….

  • Jsjk

    As many others have accurately noted, Obama acts more like a South American caudillo (including repeatedly referring to “my military”) than as an American president. Obama (given his beliefs and attitudes, including his fondness for Indonesia, etc.) cannot be a patriotic American.

  • trapper

    Didn’t Hillary Clinton scream at us a while ago that Leftists were indeed patriots. No they aren’t . They don’t love America at all. They believe America is something to be “transformed” like Obama says. A person who loves something does not try to “transform” it.

  • DB1954

    Sometime in or after 2008 Matthews went from a bland, milquetoast liberal who made some effort to communicate with conservatives to a pro-Obama Stalinist whose disinformation and lies make Joseph Goebbels look like a piker. His expressions of contempt, hatred, and suspicion of conservatives make him worthy of the Catholic rite of exorcism, if Matthews had a shred of Catholic faith or just common human decency left in him.

  • Paul

    “the patriot is the one who believes in compromise, who believes in government” Regarding this quote. Would we have any doubt that were a Republican in the WH, it would never cross Matthews’ creepy mouth.

  • baystater

    LOL! Perhaps you should check the education backgrounds of Maddow and Hayes before posting such nonsense. It’s you right wingers who are incapable of an independent thought. You all rely on Rush and Fox to form your opinions, then you brag about their big ratings. Patriotism is about love of country…regardless who the resident of the WH is.