Liberal Cable Channel MSNBC Uses Smear Campaign To Bring Down Competitor
NBC Outlet Runs With Discredited Charges Against Fox Rival
With another programming day built around widely-discredited charges against a key cable rival, MSNBC has become Get Sean TV. Never mind low ratings, if the smears can be repeated often enough, perhaps they'll catch on elsewhere.
That's about the only way to explain MSNBC's new obsession with bringing down Sean Hannity at all costs. Yesterday, we covered Dylan Ratigan's liberal use of sloppy "reporting" in a particularly sleazy segment, but the latest example seems even more blatant.
From libtalker Ed Schultz's program Tuesday evening, many of the debunked claims are dishonestly repeated:
ED SCHULTZ: And more on Sean Hannity's alleged bogus charity. That's coming up tonight.
Plus, the people accusing Sean Hannity of cheating his charity, they are not backing down. They say the alleged scam is far bigger than originally reported. One of them will join me later on in the show.
Up next, the latest on Hannity's charity scandal. Stay with us.
Finally tonight on "The Ed Show," it's been 12 days since Sean Hannity hasn't answered the questions about possible fraud and misuse of funds from his charity. He may have to answer to the IRS and Federal Trade Commission.
Hannity claims all the proceeds from his prime concerts go to a scholarship fund for the children of fallen troops. Look at these numbers. In 2009, two freedom concerts brought in more than $1 million. There have been more than 18 concerts since 2003. Assuming each of those 18 concerts say, brought in a half a million dollars, the Freedom Alliance should have raised a total of $9 million for the cause.
Other night at the Talkers Convention Hannity said they had $15 million in the bank. Except for the tax forms the Freedom Alliance reports it only five million to the scholarship fund. So Hannity's charity efforts brought in $9 million, but only five million doled out, which makes me ask, where's the rest of the money? The millions of dollars? Why is it sitting in the bank?
A blogger reported that Hannity's personal expenses in each concert, around each concert, are about $200,000 per event. For private jets, hotel suites and luxury cars. Folks at the center for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington are also asking where is the money going?
Melanie, are these normal expenses for most groups like this, most organizations like this?
GUEST MELANIE SLOAN: No, their expense ratio is way out of proportion. That's why the American Institute of Philanthropy has given them an F or D since 2006 on the way they spend their money. They have very high problematic -- they put things like fund-raising in a programatic cost.
I think it's important here the concerts are actually put on by a group called Premiere Marketing, a for-profit entity. They're the ones who collect the money and give some small portion of those proceeds to the Freedom Alliance for the college scholarships. We don't know how much money. In 2007 it was reported it was $4 a ticket.
We haven't seen any kind of numbers since that time. Whatever it is it's some tiny amount. Most of money goes to premiere marketing, a for-profit company. That, by the way, is run by dwayne ward who runs the premiere speakers bureau which so happens to have oliver north, freedom alliance's chairman and sean hannity as clients.
What would they be doing with $15 million in the bank?
They say they're saving it in a trust fund because there are so many kids of wounded veterans that aren't college age yet and want to grow the money.
SCHULTZ: Okay. That is normal with some charities that are out there. We'll have more on this story again tomorrow night. Thanks.
But Schultz must know that the blogger's allegations regarding Hannity's supposed "personal expenses" were never substantiated. In fact, those expenditures were actually related to costs incurred for transportation and lodging for performing artists at the concerts.
Also key: many of the children who will benefit from scholarships are still quite young, hence the need to save and invest much of funds that have been raised.
Perhaps the most outrageous smear is the assertion that Hannity has somehow avoided answering questions about the Freedom Alliance, when in fact he has simply deferred to the organization's lengthy refutation of the charges. What more is there to say?
The bottom line: Schultz and MSNBC aren't interested in the truth, only in perpetuating a disgusting smear campaign against a key cable rival.
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