The new Salon, misquoting Sean: In the last two nights, Sean Hannity responded to criticism of his coverage of the Cliven Bundy matter.
Last night, he repeatedly stated his position. He repeatedly said that the BLM showed a “lack of proportionality” in the way they approached the situation two weeks back.
We can’t necessarily say that’s untrue.
On Monday night, at the end of his show, Hannity did a shorter segment in which he pushed back against criticism from Big Ed Schultz and Al Sharpton. Below, you see part of what he said.
For the record, we’ve watched the tape and proofread the transcript, including the part we’ve highlighted.
This is what Hannity actually said. If you want to double-check what was said, you can watch the tape too:
HANNITY (4/21/14): Welcome back to Hannity. I’ve had enough with NBC News. Over the past couple of weeks, they’ve spent countless segments attacking little old me. Here is just one example of leftwing loudmouth—kind of a buffoon—Ed Schultz criticizing this show’s coverage, of which I’m proud of, of the Bundy ranch standoff with the feds. Take a look:At that point, Hannity played tape of some of Big Ed’s greatest hits of the past few years, including his famous denunciation of Laura Ingraham as “this right-wing slut,” “a talk slut.” Fuller transcript below.
SCHULTZ (videotape): Fox News and Sean Hannity should be ashamed of their coverage of this lawbreaker and this law-breaking Nevada rancher and his family. I think Sean Hannity is cheerleading for armed conflict with the federal government. Hannity and Fox News are playing with fire.
HANNITY: No, the federal government, their lack of proportionality and sense over a bill—are they going to send 200 armed agents to everybody’s house? Snipers to everybody’s house? Really?
Well, we’re not ashamed of our coverage. We’re actually proud of our coverage.
Now, there’s not one thing that Ed Schultz said was true. But guess what? If I was a network exec over at NBC News, I might be ashamed of having this man work for me.
We’ve highlighted the significant part of what Hannity said—and yes, we’ve proofread our transcript against the tape. We cite this matter because of what Salon readers have now been told about Hannity’s statement.
At Salon, Richard Eskow has posted this piece about Hannity’s coverage.
You can’t blame Eskow for Salon’s excited front-page headlines, which are now part of the way the site functions. (“BLOOD ON SEAN HANNITY'S HANDS/Cliven Bundy’s ‘range war’ is only getting more tense—and Fox News seems determined to touch off the tinderbox.”) In our view, Salon’s excited, premature talk about blood is hard to distinguish from the charges being made against Hannity.
You can’t blame Eskow for Salon’s headlines. But this is the way Eskow reports what Hannity said Monday night:
ESKOW (4/23/14): Now Hannity has responded to criticisms of his Bundy coverage by MSNBC’s Ed Schultz and Al Sharpton Jr. by attacking them personally. He also made a cryptic comment in response to Schultz’s claim that “I think Sean Hannity is cheerleading for armed conflict with the federal government.”According to Eskow, Hannity made “a cryptic comment” in which he agreed with Schultz’s claim that he is cheerleading for armed conflict. As you can see from our transcript, or from watching that tape, that simply isn’t true.
Hannity responded: “Now, the No. 1 thing that Ed Schultz said was true, but guess what? If I was a network exec at NBC News I might be ashamed of having this man work for me.”
However you interpret those words, it’s clear that Hannity will not be held accountable to a reasonable ethical standard. But what about his corporate bosses either at Fox, or the Koch brothers? Who’ll hold them accountable?
Where did Eskow get the idea that Hannity said that? He may have worked from the Nexis transcript, which misreports what Hannity said.
Newsflash: Official TV transcripts are often inaccurate! If you want to be right in what you present, you actually have to watch the tapes in order to proofread the work.
We’ve spent years of our life double-checking official transcripts. But this is the second time in a week in which we’ve found a writer at Salon misreporting what somebody said at Fox, apparently because they didn’t bother double-checking a transcript.
(In the first instance, Elias Isquith misreported something John Calipari said to Bill O’Reilly. Needless to say, his error created a negative inference about how vile O’Reilly is. To his credit, Isquith filed a correction after we noted his error. Our comment appears early in Isquith’s comment thread.)
Everybody makes mistakes. Some people may not realize that you have to double-check transcripts.
But the new Salon is busy creating a deeply unreliable journalistic culture. Fox News has treated its viewers this way for years. The culture is spreading to us.
We don’t think you can build a progressive culture by aping the conduct of Fox. The suits are going to try it though.
Where does each reader stand?
The sayings of Big Eddie: This is the fuller transcript from the Hannity presentation:
HANNITY: Well, we're not ashamed of our coverage. We're actually proud of our coverage.Tapes don’t really speak for themselves. They also don’t transcribe themselves.
Now, there’s not one thing that Ed Schultz said was true. But guess what? If I was a network exec over at NBC News, I might be ashamed of having this man work for me:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: The Republicans lie! They want to see you dead! They’d rather make money off your dead corpse!
You’re damn right Dick Cheney’s heart is a political football! We ought to rip it out and kick it around and stuff it back in him!
Do you know what they're talking about? Like this right-wing slut, what is her name, Laura Ingraham? Yes, she’s a talk slut.
Well you’re a freaking [bleep], how about that? Get the [bleep] out of here. How about that? I mean, gimme a—I'm sure they hit the seven-second delay on that one.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Well, that tape speaks for itself.
We don’t know why Big Ed called Ingraham a slut. It’s not a word we’d expect him to use.
We do know that the new Salon needs to start fact-checking transcripts. Or is Salon is run by the same types of suits who run the very old Fox?