This has been the week when the mainstream, aka Deep State, media have focused a lot of their ire on their new bête noire, Alex Jones. Conveniently, that tactic can serve a dual purpose: demonize one member of the so-called Alt Right, and you can link him with others whom you want to take down. Presto: Before you know it, you have a classic McCarthyite guilt by association express train running down the track.
This collective guilt landed on a familiar target on Wednesday, June 21 when the increasingly predictable, and conspiratorial, Washington Post linked Alex Jones with Sean Hannity. Leaving no doubt, the Post's opinion writer Eric Wemple's story was headlined "Fox News's Sean Hannity is encroaching on Alex Jones territory."
Fox News host Sean Hannity in May lashed out about an effort by people on the left to "silence" him after he was busted pushing a harmful conspiracy theory. "That is what we have called on this program as liberal fascism. Attack, boycott, all in an effort to silence conservatives. I serve at the pleasure of the Fox News Channel. I'm here to do my job every night," Hannity said on his eponymous program.Now the Fox News firebrand is flirting with a scenario in which he ends up silencing himself, via pure madness.On his Tuesday night program, Hannity came forth with more froth: "A soft coup is under way right here in the United States of America in an attempt to overturn November's election results and forcibly remove a duly elected president from office," he said, not explaining how a "soft" coup ends in forcible removal. "Sinister forces quickly aligning in what is becoming now, in my mind, a clear and present danger."
So where's the link to the dreaded Alex Jones? Reading on several more paragraphs, we find (emphasis added):
And consider: Not so long ago, conspiracist Alex Jones said, "The Democrats are never going to get off the offense. They're the ones through their surrogates saying, 'Kill the president, kill us, overthrow everyone.' They're at war with us, they're funding the cop-killing groups, they're funding all the social-distortion garbage. They're a clear and present danger running around inside our country."
So, both Jones and Hannity used the term "clear and present danger." They must be in cahoots, then – or I should say "collusion." Bring on the special counsel. MSNBC and CNN: Are you paying close attention?
Does this remind anyone of NBC's and Megyn Kelly's attempt last Sunday to claim that President Trump is following the lead of Alex Jones? This all seems to be another indication – as Hannity has been suggesting on his recent radio and TV programs – that the conspiracy-mongering now lies with the left.
The Post targeting Hannity is nothing new. Last September 30, the paper headlined another story "Hannity – with his $29 million salary and private jet – slams 'overpaid' media elites." So, in the Post's view, you can't be successful and wealthy due to your own hard work over several decades and criticize "wealthy elites." Add earned wealth and success to the lengthening list of barriers to the exercise of free speech in the left's transformed America. Just ask President Donald Trump about that one.
UPDATE: In an email, Sean Hannity pointed out:
Washington Post has been so so wrong in recent months. Amazing they get away with it. I have used the phrase “clear and present danger” my entire career – not exactly original, almost a cliché.
For example, a quick search shows that Hannity used the exact phrase when he made his closing argument against Hillary Clinton on his Fox News channel program the night before the 2016 election.
HANNITY: Now, even Hillary admitted in private we can’t vet these refugees! In other words, she’s willing to gamble with our life. Donald Trump, he supports extreme vetting of refugees, especially ones coming from countries in the Middle East that have a whole lot of jihadists and represent a clear and present danger. Have we not learned anything from Europe? Hillary apparently hasn’t.
The phrase “clear and present danger” has been in widespread use for several decades. It goes back to at least 1919 when it appeared in a Supreme Court opinion by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. It really entered the public lexicon in 1989 with the best selling spy novel by Tom Clancy, Clear and Present Danger. In 1994, Clancy's book was made into a blockbuster film of the same title starring Harrison Ford, further implanting the phrase in the public's consciousness and increasing its popularity.