Yep, Hannity said the FBI’s conduct in the Russia investigation was ‘Watergate times a thousand’

The old “objectivity” model of journalism hasn’t disappeared, but has mostly broken down. There are still good journalists trying to practice it. And there is value in focusing on verifiable facts, trying to emphasize the most relevant of those, and trying to avoid including only facts that the journalist “likes.”

Still, there’s plenty of room for bias in deciding which facts to put in and which to leave out. There’s no real cure for that problem except for having the news audience practice critical thinking about the news they consume, and that doesn’t seem to easy to ensure.

But the public appetite for facticity with some pretense of objectivity has been greatly undermined. And the advent of Fox News has played a big role. Fox has some good journalists, and occasionally makes a lame nod at including liberals on its panels. But it is sometimes little more than a steady stream of right-wing brainwashing.

Its highest rated show, “Hannity,” makes no pretense of objectivity or anything that could be called even-handedness, and it’s not always too fussy about what it will treat as a “fact.” That perversion of the objectivity model is legal, too, First Amendment-wise.

Hannity is Fox’s biggest star, which means he’s an important, influential voice — one that often drives his large audience into a rage. His respect even for factual accuracy is low, and he makes no pretense of recognizing the old journalistic line between fact and opinion.

Hannity is widely reported to be an informal adviser to the current incumbent in the White House, and specifically so in the recent matter of the “Release the Memo” campaign.

The memo in question is a Republican memo, authored by U.S. Rep. Devin Nunes, who had lost his credibility even before this episode. The Nunes memo itself makes no pretense of objectivity, which is sad, but it’s where we are in America. And the refusal of the Republican-controlled House Intelligence Committee to even allow the Democrats to put out their version of the truth really kinda shocks the conscience. (The Dems version may be released soon, or not. It would have to be approved by President Trump. But the Repubs obviously wanted to have all eyes on their version as long as they could get away with it.)

Anyway, to tie up the Hannity angle, I watched Hannity’s opening of his show Friday, the evening the memo was released. The Republican memo, Hannity said, reveals the work of the FBI in the matter of the its FISA application to continue the surveillance of Carter Page, about which you may have heard, to be: “The biggest abuse of power corruption case in American history.”

The abuse of power in this matter, Hannity said, amounts to: “Watergate times a thousand.”

Don’t laugh. Or laugh if you must. But that’s what Hannity said. The document asking the Federal Intelligence Surveillance Court to permit the U.S. intelligence community to continue surveilling Carter Page (the government has been surveilling Page since 2016 and — as required by the FISA law — the warrant allowing that surveillance had been renewed three times, the recent crisis is over whether it should have been renewed again. The conduct of the FBI and others in seeking the most recent renewal is what Hannity said equaled “Watergate times a thousand.”)

Hannity also said the Nunes memo, which details issues that Trump loyalists have with the renewal application, “Proves that the entire basis of the Russia investigation was based on lies that were bought and paid for by Hillary Clinton and her campaign.”

Just an aside here to say: It doesn’t. The memo is a highly selective version of reality that the Republicans were able to proffer by not allowing contrary facts and arguments to be released. 

The memo also reveals, according to Hannity, that, “The Mueller investigation is and was a witch hunt from the beginning. It’s built on a house of cards and tonight it is crashing down.”

And he had a few recommendations of what to do next, for example:

“The Mueller investigation must be shut down…

And:

“The people responsible must go to jail…”

Also:

“Look, if we as a country, if we care about our Constitution, if we believe in civil liberties, if we believe in these protections, then the special counsel must be disbanded immediately. And, by the way, nobody else will say this, all charges against Paul Manafort and General Michael Flynn need to be dropped. It’s that simple.”

He said a bit more — it’s an hour-long show. And perhaps I’m overdoing how dangerous this is. To keep this all in perspective, it’s worth noting that ABC’s evening news, the top-ranked among the network news shows, reaches about triple the audience that Hannity does.

But you see what I just did? I worried that I was overstating my case, and I brought up a fact that cuts against my overall argument. Watch Hannity sometime and see if he ever does that. He’s in full brainwash mode all the time. Personally, I don’t trust anyone who won’t even acknowledge contrary facts and arguments.

I’m also aware that a liberal channel, MSNBC, plays a somewhat similar role on the left. I watch Rachel Maddow often and some of the others in MSNBC’s liberal lineup. Maddow has ripped apart the Nunes memo for days. She, and others on MSNBC, are not playing the old objectivity game, either — at least in the sense of offering equal air time to all parts of the argument. MSNBC’s guest lists are often stacked in favor of liberal views. But they are much, much more honest and factual than Hannity. (By the way, of the top six cable news programs, by ratings, five are on Fox, the exception being Maddow.)

Why am I bothering you with this? Because I often worry about the danger of having a growing share of the news audience that decides they will get their news and views from shows that are heavily biased in either direction.

If all the quotes from Hannity above leaves any of you craving a different, leftier take on the ludicrous Nunes memo, here’s Bernie Sanders brief reaction, from his Facebook page.

But I’m not sure that listening to a voice on the far right to balance off on from the far left is the solution to what ails us.

Comments (33)

  1. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 02/05/2018 - 11:44 am.

    All of this over Carter Page–who either was a key foreign policy advisor to Trump or someone that Trump didn’t even know.

    By the way, do you know that Carter Page is a Minnesota-born guy that had been under surveillance by the FBI off -and-on since 2013. He has made many claims about his Russian experience, including being a Kremlin adviser and had acknowledging that he had been approached by Russian intelligence agencies over the years. He has been involved in efforts to remedy the bad PR Russia gets and was offered money by the Russia to roll back the Magnitsky Act during the Trump campaign. By the way, Sam Clovis of the Trump campaign made him sign a non-disclosure statement after he came back from the meeting where the money offer was made.

    So rather than the “fruit of a poisoned tree”, the FISA warrant was justified on lots of other things than the Steele dossier.

    He seems to be just one of the dozen or so Putinophiles who found a home in the Trump campaign. All so eager to smooth the way for greater Russian input into the functioning of the US government. All so eager for lucrative side-deals and back-door routes between the US and Russia.

    “No puppet. No puppet, you’re the puppet!”

    • Submitted by Bill Willy on 02/05/2018 - 03:06 pm.

      Carter Page

      The day after I heard H Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, say (in July, 2016) that Russia had hacked the DNC’s system, as a joke, I did a quick search on “Comrade Trump,” not expecting much, if anything, serious to show up.

      I got a surprise and ticket down a sprawling rabbit hole . . . There was a boatload of surprising accounts of things that, in terms of “public awareness,” have become much more “mainstream” since (and, of course, things the Mueller investigation is focusing on). Of all the articles I read then, one of the best, simplest and most comprehensive summaries of the basics was one by Josh Marshall (the founder of and editor of talkingpointsmemo.com), “Trump and Putin. Yes, It’s Really a Thing”

      Whenever the name Carter Page pops up it reminds me of that article. Here’s what Josh Marshall had to say about the guy (in his laying out of the main points of what was known at the time about possible “Russian interference” and how some of Trump’s key campaign advisors seemed to know their way around the Russian power structure pretty well):

      “Trump’s foreign policy advisor on Russia and Europe is Carter Page, a man whose entire professional career has revolved around investments in Russia and who has deep and continuing financial and employment ties to Gazprom. If you’re not familiar with Gazprom, imagine if most or all of the US energy industry were rolled up into a single company and it were personally controlled by the US President who used it as a source of revenue and patronage. That is Gazprom’s role in the Russian political and economic system. It is no exaggeration to say that you cannot be involved with Gazprom at the very high level which Page has been without being wholly in alignment with Putin’s policies. Those ties also allow Putin to put Page out of business at any time.”

      https://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/trump-putin-yes-it-s-really-a-thing

  2. Submitted by Edward Blaise on 02/05/2018 - 01:06 pm.

    Well…

    What I can’t quite come to grips with from the “Stop Mueller” crowd is what would they do with the evidence gathered to this point? Are they asking (demanding) that the investigation end immediately and someone from “Men in Black” drops into the Special Prosecutor’s office and neuralize the staff so everything just goes away?

    I just finished reading “Red Notice” by Bill Browder which tells the story of Sergei Magnitsky. It also tells the story of Putin and the Oligarchs rise to power. Combine these primarily internal events in Russia with the external events of Russia meddling in our elections and any rational, thinking person comes to the conclusion: Putin is one of the most evil, dangerous threats to our country at this time.

    And Hannity and his like are willing to give Putin a free pass because if we dig at all, Trump may fall some where on a line from being the beneficiary of some suspicious condo sales to Oligarchs to being completely compromised by Putin. Hannity won’t allow those potential negatives to reflect on Donald Trump:

    “Look, if we as a country, if we care about our Constitution, if we believe in civil liberties, if we believe in these protections, then the special counsel must be disbanded immediately. And, by the way, nobody else will say this, all charges against Paul Manafort and General Michael Flynn need to be dropped. It’s that simple.”

    If and when, Mueller finds indisputable and comprehensive evidence that Trump has been compromised by the Russians, will Hannity ever show remorse?

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 02/05/2018 - 01:17 pm.

      will Hannity ever show remorse?

      No.
      No matter what facts (and supporting evidence) are presented, he and his fans will continue to hold on to their ‘alternative ‘facts. Myths trump truth any day.

      • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 02/06/2018 - 09:55 am.

        Yes…

        And to further answer my own question (from US News & World Report):

        “A few months after Nixon’s resignation, publisher Henry Regnery – who had earlier said of Watergate “I can see no grounds for impeachment, or even to get worked up about” – drew this lesson from the scandal: “The most ominous thing about Watergate, in my opinion, is that it clearly demonstrates that the press and the bureaucracy, working together, can destroy the president.” True, these conservatives were less interested in exonerating the president than excoriating the press. But at a time when friends were few, these former adversaries made up the core of Nixon’s defenders.

        This conception of Watergate as a liberal media witch-hunt endures in conservative circles, where Nixon remains a victim rather than a villian. In 2005 Pat Buchanan, who fought in the trenches with Nixon until the bitter end, called Watergate “a coup d’etat by an obsessed press.” Conrad Black talks about the “great Watergate fraud” and insists on Nixon’s innocence. For these Nixonites, Nixon isn’t due forgiveness – he’s due an apology. It’s a fascinating side-effect of the scandal: Watergate may have earned Nixon decades of well-deserved opprobrium, but it won him some defenders as well.

    • Submitted by jim hughes on 02/05/2018 - 04:47 pm.

      there is no plan

      Republicans still on the Trump bus don’t have any idea what would happen to the case or the evidence, and don’t care. The long term goal is just to keep pushing it further into the future, indefinitely. The short term goal is to be sure it doesn’t blow up before the midterm election.

      If you’re asking what Hannity has in mind, that’s easy. There is nothing there other than the possible terms of his next contract with Fox.

  3. Submitted by Robert Owen on 02/05/2018 - 01:23 pm.

    These people aren’t journalists. Hannity, Carlson, Maddow, Matthews, Cooper, Lemon are Jerry Springer but with better dressed guests and no chair throwing. If a scandal agrees with their party platform they cover it and if not – crickets.

    • Submitted by Connie Sullivan on 02/05/2018 - 02:30 pm.

      No, these TV news people are definitely not all the same, and not all like [ugh!] Jerry Springer.

      When my DVD player broke down and I couldn’t use Netflix for a while late last year, I discovered Rachel Mddow’s program, and then Chris Hayes’s program just before hers. What I like is the intellectual nature of the way they present news. They lean left, but then, the truth leans left.

      They do not, ever, have the right-wing “screamers” on–you know, the ones who routinely talk over everyone else and raise their voices so no one else can be heard. A real problem on CNN, these right-wing “screamers.” (I think there’s a school or clinic offered to Trump supporters, so they learn how to do that; I don’t know any leftie except the mayor of Chicago’s high-strung doctor brother who helped design the Affordable Care Act, who screams like that.)

      Maddow-Hayes, et al. interview not commenters so much as the Real Horses, to get the news from The Horses’ Mouths. They ask probing questions, including whatever probing the right might make noises about, and they provide experts to inform us of legal intricacies. Maddow has a guy who regularly appears when there’s a need for serious legal explanation of laws, procedures, norms, etc. That guy’s affect is almost anti-TV, but I am thrilled to see him pop up on her screen because I know I’m going to learn. You have to bring your brain to Rachel Maddow’s show. No one brings their brain to Hannity’s.

      And MSNBC, unlike Fox “News”–what Chris Hayes now regularly refers to as “Trump TV”–does investigative journalism and always quotes from and praises other investigative journalism; the authors of news scoops from the Washington Post, Politico, Vox, Axios, The New York Times, and a long list of others appear all the time on the Maddox show. She’s not making the news up, and she celebrates good work by others who have dug up the truth in a time when Sean Hannity so closely advises our president by television every day that Congressman Adam Schiff (ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee) tweeted the president yesterday to turn off the TV and get to work himself.

      Ertic: When you charge Maddow for disputing the Nunes “memo” for days, not only are you wrong–she hadn’t seen it, but was filling us all in again on what Glenn Simpson testified to in 17 hours of sworn testimony (he’s the CEO of Fusion GPS), and on what the House Intelligence Committee was doing last Monday when the Republicans refused to let the FBI testify before it, refused to permit the Democratic minority’s rebuttal to be issued, and generally stone-walled. Putting Maddow’s contextualization of the Nunes “memo” in its own context: Have you checked on the several-weeks-long Republican hyping of that “memo”? A real and hard campaign.

      That hype dominated social media. And journalists who dig into these things have found that. . . (wait for it!) . . . there were many thousands of Russian bots doing tweeting and retweeting of that hype!

      We’re not just divided ourselves. There are nasty forces on the right, and from Russia as well, who are pushing us farther apart. That’s the story.

  4. Submitted by Curtis Senker on 02/05/2018 - 01:59 pm.

    I don’t think the FBI or the DOJ are corrupt as institutions. It was a few highly placed individuals that are gone that either played along, or were played, depending on how you choose to look at it, by a corrupt DNC and a feckless, power hungry candidate.

    The memo is embarrassing to honest Democrats, and yes,to the FBI, but it’s nothing new and certainly not anything Earth shattering. I’m sure it will be a loooong time before the FBI uses information from political parties to initiate investigations, or apply for warrants.

    • Submitted by ian wade on 02/05/2018 - 02:29 pm.

      Actually, the memo is embarrassing

      to honest Republicans, few as they may be. This memo proves nothing and is the political equivalent of me attempting to prove that my car runs only on windshield wiper fluid by providing a receipt from a gas station that has nothing else on it.

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 02/05/2018 - 03:10 pm.

      A small bit of research will show that the FISA warrant for Carter Page is said to be over 100 pages long–certainly not reliant on the relatively short Steele work. That small bit of research will also show that the investigation was begun when Papadopoulos bragged to an Australian diplomat how the Russians had hacked into the Democratic computers and had “dirt” on Clinton. And the fact that Page had claimed a few years back to be a Kremlin adviser and had previously been surveilled via FISA warrant process–that kind of makes renewed surveillance no a big surprise.

      But hey–what do facts have to do with it.

      It’s embarrassing–just not for whom you say.

      • Submitted by Curtis Senker on 02/06/2018 - 04:07 pm.

        A small bit of research among those 100 pages will reveal that the FBI used a laughable piece of political smearing to support an application for a warrant. That’s a fact, for you fact lovers.

        There may well have been other pieces, but the inclusion of the so-called “dossier” poisons the entire well, and will stand as an embarrassing story for the FBI for some time to come.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s not used to teach agents what NOT to do.

        • Submitted by Robert Lilly on 02/07/2018 - 12:24 pm.

          Really Cutis?

          If Donald Trump was paying you to do opposition research on Hillary and during your research you found evidence that she was committing treason, are you telling us you would sit on that evidence because of how it was found?
          You may not be embarrassed but I am embarrassed for you.

        • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 02/07/2018 - 04:42 pm.

          Well…

          So, one page, not proven to be unreliable in anyway, out of one hundred pages of evidence, backing up the 4th or 5th renewal of a FISA surveillance of an individual with known contacts to Russian spies who had been described by the Trump campaign as a non-entity in their hierarchy all adds up to Watergate times 1000?

          It is breathtaking to the extent that Trumpians will go to cover up the role of a foreign government and indisputable enemy to disrupt and control the results of our last Presidential election.

          You want Watergate times a thousand? It would/could be the installation of a corrupt and compromised President who is controlled by our number one geo-political enemy.

  5. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 02/05/2018 - 02:07 pm.

    A thousand times

    Like many others of his ilk, both on and off the airwaves, Mr. Hannity is not well-connected to the real world, but dwells, as do many of his supporters, in a fantasy. In that fantasy, remorse for gross errors made is never necessary, since it’s assumed that gross errors are never made in the first place.

    Infallibility is…um…a trait typically reserved for deities. Mr. Hannity does not qualify. Nor does Ms. Maddow, for that matter, though she comes closer in that she does usually have more facts – the real world – as part of her work, which is often opinionated, but nonetheless has a greater grasp of reality than many of the hyperventilators far to her right. The response from at least some on the right, in tune with the genuinely loathsome Dick Cheney a few years ago, is that “We make our own reality.”

    In many circles, “making your own reality” would be characterized as mental illness.

  6. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 02/05/2018 - 02:52 pm.

    Nothingburger with a Side of Bupkes

    The Nunes memo exposed nothing that wasn’t already known: some of the information relied upon for a continuation of the surveillance of Carter Page came from a probably (?) biased source. That should be the first sign that there is no there there. Judges who sign warrants know that the information supporting a claim of probable cause often comes from biased sources. If that were grounds for invalidating a warrant, none would ever be issued again (“Sorry, Officer O’Flanagan, you clearly want to arrest Mugsy. That shows you’re biased, and that means I can’t sign the warrant.”).

    Hannity, like the Trump he serves, doesn’t have time for nuance. Passed over is the fact that a judge had to make a finding of probable cause before authorizing surveillance. The fact that the warrant was to continue previously authorized surveillance isn’t addressed, nor is the fact that the scurrilous lies were only part of the evidence submitted (In fact, do they even call them lies? Are they avoiding the question of whether true information can come from a biased source?).

    The memo is nothing more than an embarrassment to the Trump people, and especially to Rep. Nunes. Nevertheless, it has become an article of faith that this is the document that will–what? Stop the investigation? No, even the toadies in Congress who are supposed to be overseeing this affair are edging away and trying to distance themselves. Lead to the firing of the Independent Counsel, provoking what could be a constitutional show-down? Maybe, but I don’t think Trump cares enough about the Constitution to stretch its boundaries. Throw some red meat to the base, who need something, no matter how devoid of substance? There we go.

  7. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 02/05/2018 - 03:52 pm.

    Hannity Lies but He Doesn’t Care

    Just like Trump, Hannity lies continuously and feels no remorse for doing so (if he even realizes that’s what he’s doing).

    When your entire perspective on reality depends on maintaining a warped set of perspectives in which Trump is a Prince among men,…

    and everything espoused on weasel news and “conservative” talk radio is undeniably filled with truth and light,…

    lying to protect those perspectives probably seems completely justified,…

    even necessary.

    People such as Hannity can’t help themselves. They can’t even sense that they are out of touch with reality.

    It’s up to the rest of us to convince anyone capable of realizing that there is ZERO truth and NOTHING of value to be found in such sources,…

    to tune away and, thereby, end the brainwashing to which they’ve been subjecting themselves.

    Meanwhile, I predict that, considering that he’s purported to be planning a series of NEW memos that attack several OTHER government agencies as well,…

    the time will soon come when the term “Nunes memo” will be used to describe any and all dubiously sourced, factually twisted, “memos,”…

    produced by a political figure or committee as transparent political hit pieces,…

    as in the person receiving such a memo reads the first few lines, then says, “Ah! A Nunes memo.” before depositing it in the circular file or paper shredder.

    • Submitted by Tom Christensen on 02/06/2018 - 07:46 am.

      It is attention and money that drives them

      Like you said Hannity lies just like Trump without any remorse. I would add Limbaugh in with Hannity. They both do it without any consequences, just like Trump. Both are unelected and yet are the unofficial leaders of the Republican Party. Why do they do it without remorse, Just look at their bank accounts piling up minute by minute with controversial statement after controversial statement. There is no need for remorse as they are meeting their goal which has two destructive forces working only for them, attention and money. Both men lack a conscience. It is attention and money that drives them.

  8. Submitted by John Appelen on 02/05/2018 - 06:38 pm.

    Split Personality

    Fox news definitely has a split personality with excellent hard news journalists like Chris Wallace on FOX News Sunday on one end, and the deranged opinion guys like Hannity on the other…

    Of course my family members who agree with FOX News think the opinion guys know the truth of it, and that Chris is a “liberal”… 🙂

    This certainly is a crazy world we live in…

  9. Submitted by Tom Anderson on 02/05/2018 - 07:00 pm.

    Much like high school test questions

    Always beware of the terms ZERO and NOTHING because those answers are never the right ones.

    It seems odd that anyone would argue against the release of the memo since there is absolutely nothing incriminating in it and that it includes nothing but false information. Democrats should have leaked the memo a long time ago rather than try to keep it hidden.

  10. Submitted by Solly Johnson on 02/05/2018 - 08:00 pm.

    Objective news

    Many people, me included, prefer to get news from independent sources on the internet such as The Intercept, Common Dreams, Alternet, TheRealNews, and others that offer a variety of opinions and challenge many government positions. Fox is terrible, but MSNBC, CNN, The New York Times, Washington Post, and the other mainstream media are not exactly neutral in their coverage and they promote establishment positions. We must remember that many of these mainstream outlets, an example being Judith Miller at The New York Times, championed the idea of weapons of mass destruction and war in Iraq. The fact that a few large corporations own most of the media ensures that people working for them cite company line positions or they lose their jobs. Chris Hedges was let go at the New York Times for challenging the war in Iraq, MSNBC released Ed Shultz when he opposed international trade agreements, and MSNBC never allowed Jesse Ventura to even open his show when it learned he was in opposition to the war in Iraq.
    The USA does not rank high in freedom and honesty in the media when compared to several other industrial nations. Perhaps the media should more thoroughly address the fact that the USA is one of the few nations that does not use paper ballots to ensure fair and free elections, the problems in the primary election process, the assault on our first and fourth amendment rights, economic inequality etc.

    • Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 02/07/2018 - 12:49 pm.

      Your preferred news sources may be independent but it doesn’t mean that they are not biased – every single one you listed has a left leaning bias https://mediabiasfactcheck.com/.

      • Submitted by Solly Johnson on 02/08/2018 - 07:44 pm.

        Your source also lists the St. Paul Pioneer Press as having a center to left bias. Compared to fifty years ago, the USA has swung so far to the right that there are very few outlets that would be considered liberal today if using the standards of a half century ago. Liberalism of that period and the neoliberalism of today are two different matters.

  11. Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 02/05/2018 - 08:34 pm.

    Hannity the Propagandist

    Hannity got some heat last year after some advertisers pulled their ads in response to an ad boycott over Hannity’s support of Judge Roy Moore, his coverage of the Charlottesville white supremecist marches and other outrages. It’s probably hard to tell how many people watch Hannity and believe every word he says versus how many (like Eric, whom I’m glad does watch so I don’t have to) watch to see how much he lies.

    But when coffee maker Keurig announced it was dropping its sponsorship, they experienced a backlash from the Hannity “tribe.” According to a USA Today story, some analyst named Tyndall says there’s a large pool of advertisers ready to step in if any should leave. Tyndall, the analyst (whom gather is not stating any support or opposition to Hannity) said:

    “The publicity generated by the boycott campaign only underlines Hannity’s status as the primary source of, and cheerleader for, the strain of radical right-wing populism that Roy Moore belongs to,” he said. “It makes watching Hannity more of a symbol of tribal and ideological loyalty than ever.”

    I can’t believe watching a show like Hannity can even be good for one’s mental health, let alone bad for the country. But even some of the worst Republicans in public office (Jeff Flake for example) apparently have their limits because they have operate on some level in the real world where they deal with voters who all don’t watch propaganda TV.

  12. Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 02/05/2018 - 10:24 pm.

    Hannity declared that journalism was dead and some liberals agreed with him http://thefederalist.com/2017/11/30/im-liberal-agree-sean-hannity-american-journalism-dead/. But I don’t think Hannity counts himself as journalist (I think he said it himself) – he is an opinion presenter and so doesn’t need to hide his bias. But Maddow doesn’t care about facts either so she is no better.

    However, I wholeheartedly agree with Mr. Black that “There’s no real cure for that problem except for having the news audience practice critical thinking about the news they consume,” and I wrote about that in my comments many times. But critical thinking includes knowing the actual facts to begin with and it is impossible to know all the facts and nothing but the facts without getting information from different sources so the news audience should also stop watching (or reading) just one news source (and some, unfortunately, learn the news from late night comedy shows).

    • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 02/06/2018 - 08:51 am.

      Not exactly…

      “But Maddow doesn’t care about facts either so she is no better.”

      A thing known as the retraction tells if they care about facts or not.

      Retractions and corrections are common on the Maddow show: People make mistakes and should own up to them. She frequently does.

      While not a reliable Hannity listener, I have yet to learn of any retraction / correction consistency. And, boy, does he have a lot of opportunity in that area…

      • Submitted by Ilya Gutman on 02/06/2018 - 10:12 pm.

        Or, you can look at this differently: Too many retractions and corrections mean that reporting is not careful with facts and is forced into those actions when confronted… However, the biggest problem is not “fake” facts, which are relatively easy to distinguish, but hiding some facts, those that do not fit into promoted theory or reality. In this case, it is almost impossible for those who rely on one source only to know the truth…

  13. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 02/06/2018 - 07:43 am.

    “A Thousand Watergates”–perhaps the best, full measure of Trump’s presidency.

    • Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 02/06/2018 - 10:04 am.

      Watergate as analogy

      I agree but it’s a bit ironic that Hannity would choose Watergate as a measure of the investigation. Watergate is seen on the right as a liberal shibboleth. Is Hannity simply trying to bait liberals with this analogy?

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 02/07/2018 - 11:59 am.

      Remembering Watergate

      I remember Watergate as a time when courageous members of Congress from both parties stood up to investigate and ultimately check unrestrained lawlessness in the Executive Branch.

      If that’s what we have to look forward to now, I say bring it on.

  14. Submitted by ian wade on 02/06/2018 - 05:33 pm.

    Sean Hannity…

    A stupid person’s idea of what a smart person sounds like.

  15. Submitted by cory johnson on 02/07/2018 - 10:27 am.

    If the memo is so insignificant….

    Why did Schiff and the DOJ fight for a year to keep it classified? Its quite obvious the Media and Democracts hate Trump so much they don’t care what lengths are needed to get rid of him.

    • Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 02/07/2018 - 02:44 pm.

      Why keep classified?

      It might seem obvious to some people that “the Media and the Democrats” are willing to use any means to the end of getting rid of Trump. To me, it looks like the Republicans in Congress and Trump are willing to go any lengths to prevent the Truth about Trump’s Russian connections secret. That includes discrediting the FBI and the Courts, if that’s what it takes. For some reason, the Republicans seem to not want the full truth about Trump’s relationship with Putin and the Russian oligarchs through the campaign or otherwise to see daylight.

      I don’t know if it’s fair to accuse Schiff and the Justice Department of “fighting” to keep classified information classified. Without knowing what all of the information really is, no one can really say who’s not privy to the information which is classified. Suffice it to say that the Nunes memo is a partisan document which cherry picked the information it wanted to include probably for the purposes of trying to discredit the FBI or the Mueller investigation or both.

      Basically, the DOJ and Schiff on the Committee have said that the memo is false and misleading. It’s hard to know if only one side gets released to the public. That’s why the Democrats on the Committee have asked Trump to declassify their minority memo which criticizes the Nunes memo.

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