New effort to destroy Hannity with O’Reilly-type advertiser boycott
Sean Hannity, who has the #1 MSM radio and TV programs opposing the Deep State fake news juggernaut that seeks to destroy the presidency of Donald J. Trump, is the target of a new attack that aims to deliver the "kill shot" to his successful 21-year reign on the Fox News channel – and, in so doing, further weaken the Trump administration's attempts to get its story out on the last surviving fair and balanced American mainstream media outlet.
It was largely a successful advertiser boycott of Fox News's longtime #1 host, Bill O'Reilly, last spring that resulted in O'Reilly's leaving the channel in late April. The enemies of Fox News, and of Hannity in particular, are gearing up for another round.
In recent weeks and months, Hannity's daily programs – three hours on nationally syndicated radio and an hour in prime time on the Fox News Channel – have established the affable 55-year-old host as the most easily accessible go-to source for accuracy and clarity on the coordinated effort to take down President Trump. Day after day and night after night, Hannity and his A-Team of expert guests – including investigative journalists Sara Carter of Circa News and John Solomon of The Hill, attorney and Fox News anchor Gregg Jarrett, and attorney and White House legal adviser Jay Sekulow, among others – have provided crisp, alternative, and accurate reporting and analyses of the day's news, especially as it relates to the POTUS.
An example was Hannity's program on Thursday, August 3 (a transcript will be online here later on August 4), which, unlike most of his FNC programs, aired live at 10 P.M. EDT due to breaking news of President Trump's address in West Virginia, which Fox, unlike CNN, carried live. After his opening monologue, Hannity had only four guests that night: Carter, Jarrett, Sekulow, and Newt Gingrich (author of the New York Times bestseller Understanding Trump), which allowed each guest ample time to have his say. The result was a complete deconstruction of the MSM's unified spin on the five key points that topped the day's news, as Hannity described it in his opening monologue. The key points included the story broken by the Wall Street Journal Thursday afternoon that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has "impaneled" a grand jury to hear evidence on the alleged collusion between Russia and Trump that has been the MSM's principal anti-Trump meme since it was created out of whole cloth almost one year ago.
An advertiser boycott of Hannity's FNC show was attempted last May, when his show had the audacity to present several segments about the unsolved murder of DNC staffer Seth Rich – which a number of independent sources and analysts have posited may be linked to the publication in WikiLeaks of damaging internal DNC emails and documents last summer. That boycott attempt failed to gain momentum, but earlier this week, the Seth Rich case received new life when former D.C. homicide detective Rod Wheeler, a key source and interviewee of Hannity's last May, changed his story and now alleges – via a lawsuit against Fox News – that he was the unwitting part of a conspiracy involving Fox News, several outside parties, and the Trump administration itself to push a fake narrative about Seth Rich's murder in order to help President Trump!
Newsweek's August 3 article.
On Thursday afternoon, the once great American weekly newsmagazine Newsweek, which I was surprised to hear is still publishing (two years ago, its print circulation had fallen to 100,000 copies from 4 million a decade ago), published its latest broadside against Hannity: "Fire Hannity Effort Intensifies."
Efforts to get Fox News to fire commentator Sean Hannity have intensified in recent days, amid allegations that the network collaborated with the White House in promulgating a conspiracy theory that sought to cast blame on Democratic operatives for the 2016 murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich, who was killed while walking home from a bar in Washington, D.C.
After mentioning the earlier "boycott Hannity" effort that failed last May, writer Alexander Nazaryan goes on to note:
The rising prominence of the site Fire Hannity suggests a redoubling of those efforts – this time independent of Media Matters, though using similar tactics. The site was founded by the Democratic Coalition, whose executive director, Nate Lerner, on Thursday told me flatly of Hannity's coverage of the Rich murder, "I absolutely believe he knowingly used false info and quotes to enhance his story."
Newsweek cover, February 6, 2009.
It would seem largely irrelevant to take note of anything that appears in Newsweek at this point – in 2010, the Washington Post company sold the beleaguered publication to the late Sidney Harman for $1 – were it not for the mention of Nathan (Nate) Lerner as the brains behind the new, dedicated anti-Hannity website. The Democratic coalition that Lerner heads describes itself as "the nation's largest grassroots Resistance organization." ("Resistance" is capitalized in the group's materials, much like "Movement," as in the 1960s antiwar movement, which eventually achieved capitalized status. These folks are aiming for history.)
Nathan (Nate) Lerner.
The purpose of the Democrat coalition is to resist and destroy the elected president, Donald J. Trump. And boycotts are one of their preferred strategies. There is even a tab at the top of the group's website to "Boycott Trump," facilitated by a free downloadable app.
Boycotts are definitely the Fire Hannity site's thing, too: the home page has a list of more than 100 of Hannity's advertisers and instructions on how to contact them to demand that they stop sponsoring his programs.
Meanwhile, the new fuel for this latest fledging "boycott Hannity" effort – the emergence three days ago of a completely new and different Rod Wheeler 2.0 – has come under increased scrutiny and challenge. On August 3, LawNewz, for example, a non-partisan site that "brings common sense written and video analysis to the often confusing and always intriguing world of the law," published an informative and richly sourced article that raises serious doubts about Wheeler's August 1 lawsuit that started this current brouhaha: "Rod Wheeler's Own Words Completely Destroy Multiple Claims In His Fox News Lawsuit:"
Multiple allegations in Rod Wheeler's defamation lawsuit against Fox News are undermined by the plaintiff's own statements both public and private.
LawNewz was founded by "TV's top legal commentator and attorney, Dan Abrams," who also previously worked as a prime-time anchor and reporter for MSNBC. Rather than quote more of the excellent LawNewz article here, interested readers are directed to the original for an important read.
Meanwhile, for his part, Sean Hannity is continuing to ignore the whole Rod Wheeler 2.0 reboot – much to the chagrin of...Newsweek! – and, up to this point, the attempted boycott of his programs undertaken by the Resistance movement.
Peter Barry Chowka is a veteran journalist who writes about national politics, media, popular culture, and health care. He is a frequent contributor to American Thinker. His new website is AltMedNews.net. On August 1, Peter appeared on The Hagmann Report to discuss the breaking news in the Seth Rich case. The recording of the entire three-hour program is here, and Peter appears at 1 hour, 45 minutes, 50 seconds.