Mike Matthews, A Stand Up Guy

Filed in National by on October 11, 2018

Read his Facebook post.  He owns it, and knows that he is going to take his lumps.  And while he doesn’t defend anything, I feel compelled to do so.   

What shit heads like Cris Barrish don’t get is that blogging is interactive; more improv than anything.  There is an ongoing dialogue with an audience and that influences the performance.  

I use the word performance intentionally.  Mike, like all bloggers, was to some extent playing a part on Down With Absolutes.  Your blog persona is not you.  You indulge in hyperbole and comedy for an audience that you know understands the rules of the road.  That doesn’t make it fake or fraudulent.  It doesn’t excuse anything and if anyone ever bothers to dredge up shit I’ve said, I’d hope to own it with the poise and grace that Mike has.  

But if you take a shocking sentence and think you know a blogger from that sentence you are either being played or playing someone.   If you are a “journalist” and build a “story” around random sentences that someone has spoon fed you, you are no journalist.  You are a shithead.





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Jason330 is a deep cover double agent working for the GOP. Don't tell anybody.

Comments (32)

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  1. RE Vanella says:

    Speaking only for myself, my blog persona is me. I despise most of you fucking turds deep down in my heart and would be happy to tell you to your face.

    Still, if someone can’t write crude or offensive satire, we’re all fucked. Properly fucked. If he would have self published a satirical novel with the same excepts would he need to resign? This is fucking nonsense.

    Honestly I never visited DWA. I read the few snippets on the trash article Barrish produced. It’s pretty clear what that was. Both the disgusting swine “source” and Barrish himself must know very well what it was.

    To pretend otherwise is disingenuous to the point of absurdity.

  2. Martha W says:

    I believe people change and in no way do I wish any ill will against Mr. Matthews. However, I am having a hard time understanding how people are justifying his words. Forgive him and lets move on but please dont try to defend it.

    His statements arent comical in any way. Regardless of whether you think they qualify as humor, it is nonetheless toxic and the so called “humor” you mention only serves to contribute to oppressive societal norms and thus, reinforce rape culture.

    I am sure this was not Matthews intention. However, please dont encourage this type of rhetoric solely to accommodate your views of those within your own party. Imagine if a Republican leader in our state was caught saying this. You’d be singing a much different tune.

    • Alby says:

      “the so called “humor” you mention only serves to contribute to oppressive societal norms and thus, reinforce rape culture.”

      I hope you noticed how many commenters referenced the distance our society, like Mike himself, has traveled in the past 10-15 years on these issues. While such language is now common only on the right, it wasn’t so long ago that men of all political persuasions felt comfortable insulting women in sexual terms.

      If you’ve only just noticed that most men objectify women — and they do it all day, every day, to every woman — consider yourself enlightened to the real world. Even if no man, anywhere, ever says it out loud or writes it again, it still will be the case because human animals are hard-wired this way.

      As evidence, I submit “boudoir” portrait photography, in which women are photographed in skimpy lingerie and suggestive poses for pictures to be seen only by their significant other. I don’t think they’re taking such photos to remind SO of a sparkling personality or keen mind.

      • Martha W says:

        I understand the condition of our current society. What I dont understand is trying to justify it through “context” and chalking it up to humor. Rape isnt blog content or click bait material. I think if this instance proves anything, it should be that “such language” doesnt only occur on the right.

  3. RE Vanella says:

    Think about it like this.

    No one is justifying it. I don’t even think it’s funny. Doesn’t matter.

    We’re not “defending it”… you see? We’re giving it context & reacting in a measured way.

    It’s subtle, but very clear to me anyway.

    • Alby says:

      I don’t think the outraged brigade is all that hot for subtle distinctions.

      I don’t think you understand virtue signaling, either.

      • RE Vanella says:

        I guess I’m trying to discuss it without calling someone out for it…

        Do you see?

        • Alby says:

          Yes. I’m calling it out, because it seems to me what’s being demanded is more outrage.

          Robert Byrd was once a Klansman.

          I don’t get outraged when either side says it. There’s not a single thing Trump has said that has outraged me. I save my outrage for what he’s done.

          • Martha W says:

            So what were your thoughts on Trumps “grab em by the p*ssy” comment? I seem to recall bloggers on this site going nuclear over it.

            • Alby says:

              If you’re here to play What About, you’ll find few takers here. That’s a mug’s game.

              Define “going nuclear.” If you mean offended, leave me out. I’d never heard that particular phrase before, and the whole idea seems like a poor way to pursue women to me, but I chalked it up to a weak, insecure man trying to impress the guy he was with. Men often objectify women to other men to demonstrate how masculine they are.

              But your comparison is way off. Mike was a young guy just out of school writing provocative things to get noticed. Trump was a nominally successful businessman with a needy ego bragging about things he claimed he did.

              I make an enormous distinction between things people say and things they do. I don’t give much weight to arguments that think otherwise.

            • RE Vanella says:


              One, that wasn’t obvious political satire. It was a candid comment.

              Two, indicative of broader behavior.

              You really don’t see the difference? It’s very big.

  4. RE Vanella says:

    And no… Regarding different tunes.

    To wit…

    If the only “charge” Kavanaugh was having to defend was crude yearbook posts…

    And he admitted what Devil’s Triangle & Beach Week Ralph Club were. And didn’t pretend that saying you’re an “alumnus” of a woman mean you all had her…

    If he just said yeah I was kinda if a shit head kid sorry…

    No story…

    Do you see?

  5. RE Vanella says:

    Jason wrote the N word in relation to Huck Finn last night to make a point. A very strong point. Context is key.

    If you’re into education I think you’ll agree “Zero Tolerance” backfires and provides bad results….

  6. I knew Cris’s ex-wife in college – mother of his kid. I wonder how he would feel if her past scandals were suddenly rippling through polite society.

    How he keeps sinking .. http://www.delawareliberal.net/2011/03/06/chris-barrish%E2%80%99s-journalistic-malpractice-of-the-day/

    • jason330 says:

      Nancy, Thanks for that link. The post and comments is a good example of the improvisational style group truth seeking that I tried (but failed) to discuss on the post.

      I stand by my statement: If you take a shocking sentence and think you know a blogger from that sentence you are either being played or playing someone. Martha is being played.

    • Alby says:

      @Nancy: You’d have to have evidence. Without the Wayback Machine, this story doesn’t exist.

      People really should stop blaming the messenger here. If Barrish had turned down the story, someone else would have run it instead.

      As for the 2006 story, I was no longer there so I can’t tell you how they wound up with Barrish on a budget story. The only possible explanation I can imagine is that they really had no Dover reporter available that day, unless someone was looking to embarrass him by putting him on the budget on short notice. I oversaw both the Dover bureau and Barrish for several years, and he is literally the last person on my team I would assign that story. But then, that was the ’90s; by 2006 it was a much smaller team.

    • Rufus Y. Kneedog says:

      I know Mary, I expect I will see her tomorrow at her brother’s funeral. She’s a nice lady,and has absolutely nothing to do with this. Leave her alone.

    • Joshua W says:

      So you’re threatening to publicly humiliate a woman, not for anything she did personally or had anything to do with whatsoever except that her ex-husband (emphasis on ex) wrote an article that you didn’t like?

      What happened to Matthews was terrible, but jfc that’s shitty and nonsensical. What’s next, are you going to feed anti-freeze to his dog?

  7. Formerfemaleelected says:

    As a woman who was in elected office during the time of DWA’s “heyday,” I just would like to place some focus in this discussion on not just the words that Matthews used in his blog, but rather on his targets and the difficulty that his posts presented for THEM. To be clear, I was a target of DWA, but an infrequent one. And today as I read about this, I am firmly of the belief that neither DWA nor Mike Matthews did me any harm at all. But just please remember that when a woman in public office is sexualized just for the fun of it and/or to be provocative, that creates discomfort, brings unwanted inappropriate attention from others (by both men and women) and is a distraction from her already difficult efforts to minimize gender and just be taken seriously. DWA was certainly the work of a 22 year old, immature kid. But it was also most certainly a disservice to women in public service.

  8. puck says:

    If it’s any consolation, the social media scythe cuts both ways:


    Can’t have one without the other.

    • Alby says:

      The 22-year-old candidate’s political statements included:

      “The people trying to destroy the country I love and impose 1984 meets Brave New World meets the will of Satan on my family are my enemies. I could pretend to be a white knight and say that I don’t hate them but that would be a lie. I hate them.”

      Damn. He figured out that I wanted, more than anything, to impose “1984” meets “Brave New World” meets the will of Satan on his family. And I had almost figured out where they are, too.

      BTW, “1984” meets “Brave New World” meets the will of Satan sounds like a winning pitch for a Hollywood blockbuster.