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Hannity's High Tech Lynching Of Obama

Reported by Ellen - April 7, 2009 -

Sean Hannity has stopped just one step short of calling for vigilanteism against Barack Obama. In the meanwhile, he's doing everything possible to “hang” Obama on national television night after night. Without a trace of regret or remorse over his disagreements with Obama, indeed he seems to relish his animosity, “Great American” Hannity does his best to foment fear and loathing of our new president by shrieking that he is a threat to the United States. There are the run-of-the-mill accusations: Obama is a socialist, and an America hater, a radical, and, on last night's (4/6/09) Hannity, now a terrorism appeaser, a threat to national security, and surrendering our sovereignty... and later in the show (see next post) much to Hannity's obvious satisfaction, Dick Morris accused Obama of repealing the Declaration of Independence. With video.

Hannity's inflammatory hostility toward a president in office less than 100 days, facing grave economic and international problems, is troubling enough, particularly given his self-righteous mantra during the previous administration about how Democrats had emboldened our enemies when they criticized Bush. Apparently, with Hannity, what's bad for the goose is good for the gander as he seems to take special pride in his hate-mongering about Obama.

But worse than that is how he lies, distorts and manipulates facts in the process.

Hannity opened his eponymous show last night with the accusation that President Obama's trip to Europe “culminated this morning in a speech that could have disastrous consequences for America as it reveals a pre-9/11 appeasement mentality, an approach to national security that is a threat to the United States.”

Part of the threat, according to Hannity, is that, “They have promised to unlock the cells at Guantanamo Bay.” As Hannity well knows, or at least he ought to, the Obama administration's plans to shut Guantanamo Bay prison is nothing close to what was suggested. Far from just turning prisoners loose, Obama has put forth a multi-layered process that involves review of cases, and the transfer or release of prisoners “consistent with the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States.” Hannity's dire rhetoric about Gitmo (and nearly everything else Obama) would seem much less disingenuous if he ever bothered to put forth a substantive opposition to the policies he opposes rather than just wave the red flag of provocation.

In typical fashion, Hannity took another swipe at Obama, accusing him of cutting defense spending. If Hannity cared a fig about that (other than for its usefulness as a club against Obama), he might have spent at least one segment of the show discussing the sweeping changes proposed by Defense Secretary Robert Gates. But, as it turns out, Obama has NOT cut defense spending. Obviously, for Hannity, the smear was more important than the facts. And "fair and balanced" FOX News lets him get away with this kind of thing again and again.

During his press conference yesterday, Gates explained that he wanted to shift the focus away from preparing for conflicts with major powers such as Russia and China and more toward insurgencies and countries with rogue programs, such as North Korea. Although it's not mentioned in the ABC News report of Gates' conference, I'm sure that Iran must be on the list of countries with “rogue programs.” Considering how anxious Hannity is to go to war – correction: for other Americans to go to war – with Iran, you'd think he would have been especially interested in what Gates had to say. But if you only watched Hannity for your roundup of the day's news, you wouldn't even know the presser had happened, much less what Gates actually wants to do.

Instead, Hannity completed his “coverage” of Gates' proposal by saying, “That noise you hear off in he distance? Those are the mullahs. Well, they're cheering.”

Hannity's voice rose with ever greater Hanctimonious fury as he went on to accuse Obama of “making excuses” and “marginalizing” our country, i.e. not talking it up enough, as though Hannity's own near-constant diatribes of acrimony toward our president somehow don't count.

After a few more attacks, Hannity concluded by saying, “The age of Obama promises to be a dangerous one, indeed.”

If Hannity's obsessive hate-mongering continues apace over the next four years (and there's every indication that it will), I'm afraid he may be right.