basic shoeleather journalism

Conservative ‘Bad Boy’ Ambush Reporter Sticks It To Bono (Impersonator)

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Jason Mattera is the official Bad Boy Reporter of Washington, D.C. — always wearing his rebellious leather jacket, pickin’ up chicks with his Harley, showin’ ‘tude to the Man, the Liberals. The guy will do anything! He’s a wildcat, and he don’t care. Just check how he stuck it to Bono in this video shot last month, calling out that Irish fuck on his taxes — what kind of Irish fuck cheats his taxes but also tries to “save Africa”? WHAT IS THAT? Stupid hypocrite Bono! Expose him! Sean Hannity aired the audio on his radio show yesterday, while The Blaze and each posted the ambush video. But wait a minute… why is the story page down? Why are the YouTubes now private? Was there some sort of… problem… The Blaze? “There is widespread discussion on Twitter that the person Mattera interviewed in the videos may have been a Bono impersonator.” Oops!

Media Matters has dutifully recovered Mattera’s pulled ambush video where he’s yelling at a Bono impersonator, about his taxes. You may watch that up top. Who could’ve known? The impersonator’s different voice and nonexistent Irish accent are pretty convincing.

It’s all so sad. Just listen to how excited Mattera and Hannity were on the radio yesterday, gloating about this latest coup for 11 minutes. “The master of ambush video strikes again,” Hannity tells us. In a sense!

During an appearance on Sean Hannity’s radio program yesterday, which includes a brief snippet of the Mattera interview with “Bono,” Hannity and Mattera touted “bad boy reporter” Mattera’s impressive ambush interview skills. Asked by Hannity how he managed to get an interview with “Bono,” Mattera replied that it was “basic shoeleather journalism.” (Hannity promised to run the video on last night’s edition of his Fox News program, but said on Twitter this morning that Mattera’s appearance was preempted by election coverage and that they would run the video tonight instead.)

Mattera and Hannity complained about how “Bono” refused to answer Mattera’s inquiries about controversy over U2’s taxes. As Mattera put it, “He just filibusters forever without any actual explanation.”

[Media Matters]

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About the author

Jim Newell is Wonkette's beloved Capitol Hill Typing Demon. He joined in 2007, left for some other dumb job in 2010, and proudly returned in 2012 as our "Senior Editor at Large." He lives in Washington and also writes for things such as The Guardian, the Manchester paper of liberals.

View all articles by Jim Newell


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  • Barb

    He's the poor man's Baba Booey!

    • Pres.Beeblebrox

      I see O.J., man, and he be lookin' scared….and Baba Booey to y'all!

      • johnnymeatworth

        Baba Booey! Baba Booey! Larry Mullen, Jr.'s penis!

  • actor212

    Um, it don't even look like Paul Hewson….that should have been the first clue

    In fact, it looks more like Jeff Dunham.

    "Hey, Dunham! Why does your dead terrorist still talk? Huh? HUH?"

    • Biff


  • Gratuitous World

    last month he nailed Elvis on his Drug War hypocrisy. s.h.o.e.l.e.a.t.h.e.r.

    • actor212

      Next up on Mattera's radar: exposing FDR's polio and the great liberal media coverup.

  • Sue4466

    Guess Jason Mattera still hasn't found what he's looking for.

    • ChernobylSoup

      That's just wrong.

      • Sue4466

        Comedy always comes down to timing.

  • ChernobylSoup

    So the reporter still hasn't found what he's looking for?

    • Barb


    • actor212

      I guess Mattera got the Unforgettable BURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRN!

    • Gratuitous World

      bono – he's doing it with or without you

  • Maman

    Perfect. Stupid and nasty. Just what I am looking for in a journalist.

    • mrpuma2u

      The first part of being a journalist should be have a friggin clue as to who is really a celebrity. With those glasses on, I coulda done a better Bono impression. Again, hardcore right wing values do not make up for stupidity and incompetence (See Sarah Palin)

    • JohnnyQuick

      I'm amazed Hannity found someone as dumb as his dumbself to work with. How often does that happen?

  • BaldarTFlagass

    Turns out it was Sonny Bono he ambushed.

    • MozakiBlocks

      Now that would have been a neat trick.

      • Doktor StrangeZoom

        It's not like he can run away or anything

    • Chichikovovich

      Mattera had the instinct to hide behind a tree. Good shoe-leather journalist that he is, he knew it was just a matter of time.

    • Baconzgood


    • Biel_ze_Bubba

      That certainly explains the refusal to answer questions.

  • jtalaska

    Thats the same thing as doing it with a transvestite.

  • Canmon

    I think that's Chaz Bono.

  • Goonemeritus

    Bono/ impersonator what’s the difference, if you’re willingly Irish or pretend to be you should be held to account.

  • SexySmurf

    I know he doesn't look anything like Bono, but in Mattera's defense, what are the odds that there would be two douche bags in the world who dress in all black and wear sunglasses in doors?

    • actor212


      Oh. Wait…

    • Chet Kincaid

      Horatio Caine libel. YEAAHHH!!

    • gingerland62

      Have you ever been to L.A.?

  • SwanSwanH

    Sometimes you can't make it on your own
    Sometimes you can't make it
    The best you can do is to fake it
    Sometimes you can't make it on your own

  • bumfug

    Next up, expose Rich Little's poor performance as Federal Reserve Chairman.

  • Callyson

    Time for Bono to Beat on the Brat.

    • WiscDad

      fwap fwap fwap fwap….like that? Ohhh…that's brat with a long a sound. My bad

  • BlueStateLibel

    Guy doesn't even vaguely look like Bono. As we do a tit-for-tit, and interview Tina Fey about physics, thus making Sarah Palin look like a fool.

    • actor212

      Oh come on now! Every one knows that Bono takes a page out of Saddam Hussein's book and sends out body doubles!

      Hell, he hasn't performed with the band since 1989! That's actually one Ciaran O'Sullivan fronting for "the Udge", "Adam Playton" and little "Joey Mullins"

    • chicken_thief

      Goodness,. Make Sarah look like a fool?! Is that possible?

    • OneYieldRegular

      Guy looks more like Dr. No than like Bono.

    • Crank_Tango

      Somehow I think that would end up making Snowkunt look a lot smarter about physics than she actually is.

      But I like where you're going with the tit-for-tat. I think we need more tits for whatever the hell we can trade for them.

  • BaldarTFlagass

    Can't wait till this guy runs across Tortelvis and Dread Zeppelin.

    He sure works in mysterious ways.

    • Baconzgood

      Any man who brings up Dread Zeppelin can drink from my canteen any day.

    • C_R_Eature

      5,000,000 Tortelvis Fans can't be wrong.
      But every single one of Breitbart's So-Called "Journalists" are.

      • doloras

        Bring back Gary Bibb!

        • C_R_Eature

          Fresh Cheese and Cheese

  • SayItWithWookies

    Well, it's better than Mattera's last ambush video, in which animatronic Abraham Lincoln just kept avoiding the issue of Reconstruction and said the same shit over and over again.

    • dadanarchist

      Even worse was his interview with that Socialist harpy and welfare queen, Helen Keller. Mattera reported that not only did she refuse to answer any questions, she wouldn't even look him in the eye.

      • chicken_thief

        How was he sure it was Helen? – by the bruises on her shins.

        • NorthStarSpanx

          According to the Right, the real Ambush Videographers are Katie Couric and Charles Gibson.

  • Callyson

    By the way, Jason, how much have *you* done to help people living in poverty?
    Thought not…

  • BaldarTFlagass

    Hey, I thought O'Keefe was the "Bad Boy" darling of the right!

    • WiscDad

      Dude…It was O'Keefe impersonating Bono

  • Beowoof

    Liberals aren't allowed to use the tax structure set up? Typical, tax benefits are only available to people who are rich and willing to be pricks to the poor. I understand the right so much better now.

  • Sassomatic

    Meanwhile, in Vegas, a reporter from the Daily Caller has cornered a drag queen to yell at her about Sony Bono's voting record.

  • SorosBot

    Next will be his groundbreaking ambush of both Barack Obama and Joe Biden!

    OK Fred Armisen and Jason Sudeikis.

  • RadioStalingrad

    Oldest Alinsky trick in the book, use an impersonator to fool your unwitting enemies. You think this guy could learn a thing or two from James O'Kweef.

    • Biff

      Damnit, beat me by 3 minutes.

  • freakishlywrong

    So is that asshole going to show the "sting" tonight? His viewers won't know anything. Hell they can't see, hear or read, so, why not?

    • BaldarTFlagass

      And, "What the hell is a Bono?"

      • YasserArraFeck

        it's what you get when you take Viagro

    • James Michael Curley

      Sting is going to be on Hannity tonight? I want him to make Hannity blow up like a big, bloated, pock marked balloon and float into the air.

  • Baconzgood

    “bad boy reporter”? is that sort of like being the valedictorian of summer school? Like the use of " "

  • Biff

    Little Jimmy O'Queef weeps.

    • RadioStalingrad

      JOKe queefs.

  • Lionel[redacted]Esq

    In a way, this is a step up in journalism for Hannity and the Blaze, as their story is not based only on the ravings of a deranged mind, but on the ravings of a celebrity impersonator. Cronkite would be proud!

  • actor212

    Jason Mattera self-punked? Self-pwned?

    It's a beautiful day

  • OneYieldRegular

    I can't believe FOX put this on the air. They usually exhibit such professionalism and accuracy.

  • actor212

    Boy, quality control sure has collapsed ever since Breitbart died…

    • chicken_thief

      "died"….. or was MURDERED?!!!! We may never know….

      • actor212

        Maybe he died in an ambush reporting?

        • GOPCrusher

          Are we sure he's really dead?

  • Serolf_Divad

    This reminds me of the time we visited the Thomas Wolfe house with my high school English teacher. My teacher started interrogating a character actor who played one of the guests (Thomas Wolfe's mother took in boarders when the writer was a child) about all going ons that are described in Look Homeward Angel and the actor really had no clue. It was pretty embarrassing.

  • Doktor StrangeZoom

    I was thinking of doing an ambush interview with Hannity, but decided instead to interview a Labrador retriever who was far more pleasant to deal with. The only downside is that my arm is now tired from hurling a tennis ball across the park. Thank god for the "Chuck-It" tennis ball hurling apparatus!

    • gingerland62

      "Labrador retriever who was far more pleasant to deal with"

      as well as more interesting and intelligent.

  • dadanarchist

    "the person Mattera interviewed in the videos may have been a Bono impersonator.”

    Sounds like he's ready for the big leagues – when does he get called up to the The Game (Fox)?

  • SoBeach

    "…but said on Twitter this morning that Mattera’s appearance was preempted by election coverage and that they would run the video tonight instead."

    Wonder what he'll do tonight now that he and his boy wonder "journalist" got punked. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess it'll be an hour of ranting hysterics where Hannity never seems to pause for a breath.

    • actor212

      It's days like this that I regret Olbermann stopped doing "Worst Persons In The World".

      • Chet Kincaid


        • actor212

          You know, that guy who used to be on MSNBC but now puts on private performances in your living room to boost his ratings.

  • Baconzgood

    That was Bono pretending to be a Bono impersonator! Haven't you people ever seen that little documentary about ELVIS called Bubba Ho Tep? WAKE UP SHEEPLE!!!!!

    • actor212

      Wait….maybe it was a Bono impersonator pretending to be Bono pretending to be a Bono impersonator while he undergoes a facelift in some private hospital in Gstaad!

      We're thru the looking glass here, people!

      • Andrew Drinker


    • dadanarchist

      Does that mean that Barack Obama is black JFK?

      • actor212

        Ossie Davis is Barack Obama?

        • Baconzgood

          I KNEW IT!

          • dadanarchist

            It explains the Birth Certificate "problems."

  • Mahousu

    Jason Mattera is the Neil C. Livingstone of celebrity ambush interviewers.

  • dubyatf

    Major Bono-r.

    And also, too: when smarmy Asswipe imbeciles not only commit a comically ridiculous blunder in the guise of "Gotcha journalism" but then go so far as to record it for public consumption? And THEN go on the air to crow about the "takedown of the Left" before the "interview" is properly vetted (I think there's a lesson here somewhere, but I can't quite put the back of my hand with its hastily scribbled crib notes on it) and exposed? When that happens, my friends, it's a beautiful day.

    • actor212

      There's only one way to get out of this with any grace and aplomb, Mattera.

      Repeat after me: "I meant to do that."

  • StarsUponThars

    Slightly OT, what's the difference between God and Bono? God doesn't walk around acting like he's Bono.

    • actor212

      Now 'at 'ere is funnay…

  • Mahousu

    FYI, "Bono" is available for hire for your next party or corporate event. Very reasonable rates. Call now!

    • DemmeFatale

      Oh, Pavel!
      (He sorta looks like Kurt Russel, if he was ugly, bloated and hung-over.)

  • hagajim

    Anyone notice that the bigger an asshole you are, the more of a darling of the right you are?

    • freakishlywrong

      Assholism is a feature, not a bug.

    • dadanarchist

      There's a section on the application form: "On a scale from 1 to 5…"

    • dubyatf

      I noticed that when Poppy Bush chose Dan Quayle as his running mate.

    • YasserArraFeck

      The "Tards like their assholes roomy

  • ElPinche

    Move over O'Keefe. Mattera doesn't use fake ass videos. He fakes it live with impersonators, wax figures, and muppets.

  • dadanarchist

    They got the chyron wrong: Jason Mattera, Bad Boy Reporter.

    • dubyatf

      Jason Mattera, Boy What a Fuckin Idiot.
      (I'm on my stupid, old IPad2 so I can't use formatting. Someone can fix it for me?)

  • MaxUdargo

    Thank you Bono impersonator guy for staying cool and coy and not giving the game away so that these idiots would broadcast their idiocy before realizing they were broadcasting their idiocy. You are my hero for the day. "I don't have any control over that," indeed.

    • Sue4466

      Seriously, that was some great poker face he had there.

  • dubyatf

    And another thing: what does Bad Boy know from "shoe leather?" Methinks the cheap quality of his purview rings loudly of PVC journalism.
    But I guess it just doesn't Mattera.

  • Baconzgood

    As Nelson Muntz would say


  • DaRooster

    Shoe Leather Journalism??

    That's made of bootstraps right?

  • glamourdammerung

    What exactly is the big deal on why Bono's management using a tax shelter is somehow making whining about Africa somehow not valid? Unless the only reason Africa is in such bad shape in parts is due to Irish tax spending, the conservatives are not making any sense. Again.

    • BaldarTFlagass

      Or "ever," too.

    • actor212

      Well, one of the first governments he approached about more funding to Africa was Ireland's, so keeping money sheltered from taxes there sort of defeats his purpose.

      Mattera is on the bleeding edge (no pun intended) of this story, which Bloomberg News broke back in 2006

      • glamourdammerung

        Unless something has changed in the last couple of years, Ireland gets foreign aid. So again, I am not really sure how they would fund meaningful African programs in the first place.

        • Biel_ze_Bubba

          By not taxing Bono, so he has more money to give to Africa.

          Wait .. what was the original question, again?

          • glamourdammerung

            I just do not even get what the conservatives' big gripe is with his management company using a tax shelter somehow making him a hypocrite. I know I am being silly and expecting conservative hate to be based on reality, but I do try to understand it sometimes.

          • Biel_ze_Bubba

            Don't even try.

            It's like Al Gore having the audacity to fly on CO2-emitting airplanes, when it's obvious that anybody who really believes in climate change would only cross the Atlantic on a sailboat.

  • Oblios_Cap

    Don't feel so bad, Mattera. I thought I as watching an Ayn Rand interview, but it turns out I turned out I was watching Dennis Miller on HBO.

    • Andrew Drinker

      Ayn Rand makes her point much quicker than Dennis Miller.

      Atlas Shrugged was only 1180 pages or so with John Galt's big speech clocking in around 60 pages.

      Dennis Miller is still trying to finish a monologue from a 1997 episode of his HBO show before he was a neocon douchebag.

    • GOPCrusher

      I feel bad. I really used to dig Dennis Miller on HBO back in the day. But his gig on MNF tarnished his image and after 9/11 when he became a full blown neoclown asshat, I disavowed any knowledge of his existence.

    • EmileZoloft

      Mistaking Dennis Miller for Ayn Rand, who makes Robert Boyle look like Marcel Marceau, is like going to a Chumbawumba concert with Annie Hall-era Diane Keaton and winding up in the bathroom sharing a line with Foshaug the Deceiver, hey cha-cha?

  • johnnyzhivago

    This story certainly exposes the sorry state of celebrity impersonation these days.

  • SoBeach

    And the way he struggles to come up with ever more syntactically complex ways to repeat the same shit he's been saying decades.

  • gurukalehuru

    Mind over Mattera.

  • Tundra Grifter

    Jason Mattera's latest scoop – Elvis is still alive and well!

    Oops – he saw El Vez.

  • DonnyKerabotsos

    Solidad O'Brien is very grateful to Jason Mattera for knocking her out of the #1 spot on the 'utterly clueless journalists' list.

    On the other hand, Wolf Blitzer is probably jealous.

  • AlaskaGrrl

    I surprised that Hannity didn't just bluff it out and accuse Bono of being a fake. He's never let facts get in the way before, why the sudden concern? Could it be that Bono has enough money to sue Hannity's pants off?

  • Eve8Apples

    A guy pretending to be a reporter interviewing a guy pretending to be a rock star broadcast on a GOP propaganda machine pretending to be a news network. Brilliant!

  • tihond


  • GortRay

    From now on Fux will only do impersonator interviews. They can get all sorts of good gotcha stuff and their fat slobbering half-wit white trash meth-mouthed audience will never know the difference.

    • glamourdammerung

      I recall they did something like that with an Obama "impersonator".

  • DrunkIrishman

    Looks more like George Michaels. But I know that can't be because he isn't hanging out by a public restroom.

  • thefrontpage

    Mattera, Hannity, and "Media Matters" would not know "shoe-leather journalism" if Shoe Leather Journalism was personified and walked up to them on the street and said hello. These are the very last people in real journalism who would know anything about shoe-leather journalism. In fact, it's questionable if Mattera, Hannity or Media Matters actually knows what real journalism actually is.

  • thefrontpage

    Mattera is to journalism what Santorum is to politics.

  • rmjagg1

    I can't get excited about this mattera person at all ., it's like taking half a dump because the boss is looking for you , all angry and stuff …

  • gingerland62

    This guy is about 40lbs. less than Bono about 10 years younger than him and bears a slight resemblance to him. This reporter took the investigative out of investigative reporting. What a joke. Can he really control a Harley? Not buying it.

  • fitley

    It's fun to watch a bad boy reporter (as Dice would say) jerk-off all over himself.

  • glamourdammerung

    Also, not trying to sound like a psycho here, but how is this clown and the other morons that pull this nonsense not injured/dead? If some lunatic was screaming at me, followed me onto my property, and entered my house, their probability of being shot is pretty high.

  • LakeLucilleLoon

    I thought it was George Michael, impersonating Bono!

  • dokrider

    Now we know how Jason Mattera came to the conclusion in his book, Hollywood Hypocrites, that celebs all pretend to be someone they're not. Research. Lots and lots of research.

  • Antispandex


  • doloras

    But the thing is, the Left knows perfectly well that Bono is a smug, pompous, hypocrite. All my socialist friends, especially the Irish ones, hate his guts. Are there liberals who actually like him?

  • Biel_ze_Bubba

    How's that old-fashioned "basic shoe leather" taste, Mattera?

  • ttommyunger

    I prefer my Three Stooges in Black & White; and funny.

  • telecustom1972

    Pretend journalist interviewing pretend rocks star. Oh, the irony!

  • DesertTed

    Since when did Hannity look down on anyone who avoided paying taxes?

  • DahBoner A place where dumbasses get together…