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Chris Matthews, host of MSNBC's "Hardball" and perennial thorn-in-the-side of actual liberals and anyone who does not hate women, announced last night that he will finally be retiring. Phil Donahue could not be reached for comment, on account of the fact that I have no way of contacting Phil Donahue. Which is unfortunate, because Marlo Thomas is super cool.

Matthews's announcement was abrupt and and occurred in the middle of the show's very first segment, leaving MSNBC with a random hour of airtime to fill.

Matthews explained that although he really loves his job and is excited to get up and do it every morning, and loves his producers, after a talk with the bigwigs at MSNBC, he has realized it's time for him to step aside for someone more hip and with it.


"After a conversation with MSNBC, I decided tonight will be my last 'Hardball,' so let me tell you why. The younger generation's out there ready to take the reins. We see them in politics, in media, in fighting for their causes. They're improving the workplace."

The workplace, you say? Do go on!

"Compliments on a woman's appearance that some men, including me, might have once incorrectly thought were okay, were never okay. Not then and certainly not today. And for making such comments in the past, I'm sorry."

This comes on the heels of accusations of sexism from female guests, along with a few recent unpleasant incidents — including one in which he could not get over Elizabeth Warren believing a woman (and several other witnesses) who said that when Michael Bloomberg found out she was pregnant, he told her to "kill it," instead of believing Mike Bloomberg, who he claimed would have no reason to lie.

But I am not an ageist person. I don't think that Chris Matthews's age has anything to do with him acting like a jackass. It is one thing, I suppose, to be terrible when everyone around you is terrible and you think that being terrible is normal and you somehow have no way of knowing that being that way is bad. And that might even be a fair excuse if 9 to 5 had not come out in 1980, before I was even born. Or if those "this is sexual harassment and I don't have to take it!" commercials did not run constantly throughout the '90s. If Anita Hill hadn't happened in 1991. But Matthews purposely chose not to see the way the world was changing around him, and he purposely chose not to learn or to reevaluate his own behavior. He wanted things to stay the same, so he stayed the same hoping he could hold back progress.

This also comes on the heels of me writing a post on Wonkette this past Saturday all about how Chris Matthews should stop Chris Matthewsing all over our television sets and should be replaced with someone who is comfortable with women existing outside of the Madonna-Whore dichotomy and does not go around accusing presidential candidates of secretly hoping to have him beheaded by Fidel Castro in Central Park.

Please to recall:

There are so many people in the world! So many, many people! Why must the Chris Matthewsing continue? Matthews occupies a very, very crowded political lane. There are many people out there with a similar "I'm a Democrat but sometimes those Republicans do have a point!" thing going on, if that is what MSNBC wants. Surely, among those people, there is someone who can manage to say fewer obviously offensive things, be less sexist and also tell black people apart. Lots of someones, probably! And you know what? MSNBC keeping Chris Matthews on in this capacity should be insulting to them all.

I think we know what this means. I put the maloik on Chris Matthews. The malocchio, the evil eye, if you will. I probably have magic powers, is what I'm saying. Let's hope!

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Robyn Pennacchia

Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. In addition to her work at Wonkette, she also has a biweekly column at Dame. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse

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