MSNBC's Ratigan Pumps Anti-Hannity Charity Smear Campaign
MSNBC Accepts Dishonest Smear Campaign As Factual
It's time for Anatomy of a Smear II: The Crappy Sequel. Today's target: Sean Hannity.
When Rush Limbaugh was ridiculously targeted by Harry Reid's Democrats as anti-troops two years ago, the talk titan famously fought back by turning lemons into lemonade. His auction of Reid's letter to the head of the company that syndicates Limbaugh brought millions for charity.
Now that Hannity finds himself in a similar situation, falsely accused of misrepresenting a charity's expenditures (which helps the children of troops), it will be interesting to see how he might go about implementing a similarly successful strategy.
Oddly enough, the latest anti-Sean campaign began with a "conservative" blogger's hit piece, one with a case so weak it even made the left-wing Media Matters a bit nervous. But that didn't stop other liberal bloggers from accepting the charges at face value.
And from there, a "progressive" organization announced yesterday it was filing federal complaints against Hannity and the Freedom Alliance, the charity in question.
That had hotheaded MSNBC libtalker Dylan Ratigan salivating at the opportunity to promote the smear campaign during yesterday's program. Ratigan even used a "Busted" graphic image to introduce the segment:
RATIGAN (4.50 Monday 29 March 2010): Up next, a series of charity concerts organized by Fox News' Sean Hannity hitting a sour note.
[Here's] Hannity himself explaining the charity's mission:
These guys have kids. The purpose is all of the money that we make we put in a scholarship fund for the children of these slain heroes.
A noble cause, no doubt. It's simply not the case, according to the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.
They have now filed -- that's a funny title for that town. Any way, they filed complaints with both the Federal Trade Commission and the IRS claiming we will never know if every penny goes to the kids.
The complaint alleges that illegal and deceptive marketing practices by suggesting that all money generated by ticket sales for the freedom concerts he sponsors each summer goes to scholarships for children of killed and wounded service members.
The group actually gave 12% of its revenue to the children of fallen soldiers while spending more than 150 grand on travel expenses. The list goes on. The Freedom Alliance says their financial records not only meet but exceed charity standards. What the heck. You come up with a good cause.
Give 10% or 15% away and keep the rest for yourself. What do I know? Who knows what happens to the rest of it? Not going to the kids, apparently.
But as we had reported nearly two weeks ago, the Freedom Alliance has easily refuted the charges, making it clear this is nothing more than a targeted political attack against a key opponent.
But that won't stop careless MSNBC rats from scurrying about in an excited state.
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