“In times like the present, men should utter nothing for which they would not willingly be responsible through time and eternity.” -- Abraham Lincoln, Message to Congress, December 1, 1862
-- finding nothing but a scorched hinge and a doorknocker where an entire Library of Alexandria of shitty takes and bad faith had once stood.
So what are we to make of this? Of Mr. Dowd burning down his entire Twitter archives, especially the Tweets during the years when he was the official political voice of ABC News?
Well, in case you hadn't noticed (and why would you?) Mr. Dowd has been shopping his resume pretty aggressively to MSNBC as just the sort of Man of Righteous Indignation they could plug into any time slot. Defender of media virtue. Scourge of the wicked and hackish. A crusader against False Equivalence who goes after Both Siderism with his fiery sword of Truth! From a post of mine back in April, "Matthew Dowd is a Fundamentally Ridiculous Person: A Series of Miraculous Conversions":
And since you should not have to watch this video, here are some parts of it transcribed, free of charge, for your reading pleasure:
Dowd And I'm gonna speak some truth, not to you Nicole, but, uh, maybe other people on other networks or other platforms.
driftglass: I'm ready Matthew Dowd! Knock me out with your truth bomb!
Dowd We have to stop treating this like this is some game where the opposition on each side is the same.
driftglass: Oh you must be fucking kidding me.
Dowd That there's some equal value on Each Side. That we're gonna listen to Kevin McCarthy and we'll listen to Nancy Pelosi and therefor we did our job. We'll interview Ted Cruz and we'll interview a sane United States senator and we've done our job.
driftglass: You're killin' me Smalls.
Dowd: ...But also, us in the media have to stop presenting this as if there are two equal partners in politics that we have to talk to. We don’t. You don’t talk to crazy people. You don’t talk to crazy people and we have to stop getting into a place where we equal the sides and we discuss it as if it’s some fun game that both players are equally responsible.
But of course, anyone with access to Twitter and even a smidge of curiosity would have no trouble finding out that Mr. Dowd wasn't just a Both Siderist back when it mattered, he was the Both Siderist. To quote myself once again from not so very long ago, he was fanatical about it, and his fanaticism had a few, simple precepts --
- Both Sides are equally bad. Therefor...
- The K'rupt Duopoly is the Enemy. Therefor..
- Disrupting the System by voting third party is our only salvation. Also...
- Most voters who support Trump are decent, sensible, patriots. Only a few around the fringe are wackos. Just like the Left!!
-- which he rained down on his audience from his perch as ABC News' chief political analyst with all the fervor and fire of an Old Testament prophet.
With all the fervor and fire that he now deploys telling the MSNBC audience the exact opposite of every single thing he used to tell his ABC News audience.
In other words, Mr. Dowd has spent most of his adult life compiling a truly epic and humiliating public record of being a complete, know-nothing fuckup when it comes to politics. Which, I feel compelled to remind you, was his one fucking job.
But he's a member of the Beltway Insider Club and very good friend of Nicolle Wallace, so no matter how much of a hollow embarrassment he may be to profession of journalism, a place must be found for him. Therefor, insofar as possible, his disgraceful history needs to be Memory Holed.
On the air this is no problem since he is safe among fellow members of the same conspiracy, each sworn to protect the others from any mention of their inconvenient pasts.
And on social media this is also quite feasible since Mr. Dowd immediately blocks anyone who even lightly brushes up against his activities during the Before Time.
But against us pesky picklocks of Twitter history another solution had to be found. Something drastic.
And so, without any hint of confession, repentance, contrition or atonement the extremely Catholic Matthew Dowd went straight to absolution and absolved himself of his toxic past by simply wiping it all away and pretending it never happened.
Which is why this sort of thing keep happening:
Ego te absolvo a me.