A reader writes:
When I first heard that Hannity was offering up an apology (confession?) for his video lie, I was impressed. I honestly didn't think he had it in him. And then I watched the damn thing. Turns out I was right. Forget the tone, which I found gratingly smug. Or the final punchline thanking Stewart's writers for watching, a lame attempt to diffuse the troubling transgression with humor. What keeps nagging at me is his claim that it was some sort of accident. That no one meant for it to happen. Sorry, but I don't buy that for a second. Those sorts of things don't simply "happen".
Let me explain.
I have been working in television for the past 15 years. I know in detail how these things work: 1) you are assigned a story, 2) you send out a crew to shoot the necessary footage, 3) the footage is brought back to the studio and loaded into the Avid, or whatever editing system you are using, 4) you cut together your piece based on THE FOOTAGE AT HAND.
For footage from a different event that took place months earlier to find its way into an entirely new piece, well, someone had to: 1) make the decision to lie in the first place (and lets be clear, it IS a lie), 2) locate the old footage, 3) cut the footage into the new piece, 4) a producer or the like had to approve the clip for air.
Yes, accidents can happen. But I guarantee you someone on his show said, "Man, we need to make those crowds look bigger" (don't get me started on the ethical quagmire of that decision) and a writer, producer or editor said, "I know, we can use some stuff from Glenn's rally. No one will ever notice." True, Hannity may not have been aware of that editorial decision (he cannot supervise every piece of footage that airs on his show) but let's be clear: contrary to what he said, someone DID mean for it to happen, they simply did not mean to get caught. And his lame apology is covering someone's ass. It also leads me to wonder how often this is being done on his network.
Twisting words for political gain is one thing; manipulating video to deceive millions of viewers is another, and one that makes your Pravda reference all the more prescient.
As Cartman might say: "I'm just asking questions".