A giggleworthy palate cleanser via Tom Elia. The irony of this will be evident if you’ve seen so much as one episode of “Hardball,” but judging by the ratings, you probably haven’t. In which case, go watch this Matthews classic from November to prepare yourself. In fairness, his standards aren’t necessarily inconsistent: Respect for the presidency might demand unusual deference from an interviewer, which explains why it may be inappropriate to politely interrupt him but not inappropriate to ramble on aimlessly for minutes on end while your C-list-pundit guests struggle to get a word in edgewise.

I wonder if it would have been okay to interrupt Bush to challenge him for avoiding a tough question on, say, Iraq. I’ll bet David Zurawik thinks so:

As much credit as I give Obama for taking his healthcare message to Fox News and staying on point, I also praise Baier for being thoroughly prepared and hitting a very difficult tone of being appropriately aggressive without being hectoring or rude. It was a textbook encounter of how the press should engage the executive branch of government. Think of it as the antidote to NBC anchorman Brian Williams’ bow to Obama in his prime-time White House special last year.

It’s a short clip, but do note as well the lockstep anti-Fox sneering by Walsh and Tucker. That’s a little bonus irony for you.