Brian Stelter took to the airwaves Sunday to complain about his opposition in conservative media; all of his opponents are doing way better in the ratings that Stelter's Reliable Sources.
"To understand why so many Republicans have abandoned democracy," Stelter began, "to see why so many believe 'the big lie,' to get why so many are trying to rewrite voting rules, you have to hear the poisonous propaganda that the GOP's activist base is listening to. You have to really hear it."
Stelter doesn't see the propaganda that he propagates, and instead of addressing concerns of his political media opposition, he seeks to discredit those who deliver the news.
The team at Reliable Sources did the hard work of watching Sean Hannity's prime time news show every night last week, and they color coded it. He said it uncovered "nasty little words, like these," and then played mili-second clips of Hannity saying words.
The words Stelter and his team of valiant researchers uncovered and disapproved of? "Socialist, stalker, weak, failure, shameless, psychotic, indoctrination, hell holes."
But Stelter's ongoing use of the phrase "the big lie," as well as calling Hannity "poisonous." What Stelter really takes issue with is that Hannity and other conservative pundits actually holding the Biden administration to account while Stelter and his cronies fawn all over the president and his aides.
That Hannity holds the leaders of the nation to account, calling out their radical agendas, is what Stelter doesn't like. And in arguing against Hannity, he picks apart the words he uses, but not any of his actual points. For Stelter, what's more important than ideas or policy positions is that Hannity is just not showing the proper respect either to the White House, or to the establishment media.
"The idea of the news media as a check and balance, as a form of accountability, flawed but essential: No, no no!" Stelter cries. "On Hannity, the media is the enemy, even though Fox is the media."
"Don't get numb to this abusive language," Stelter says, "because it is through these insults, it is through these attacks, that Hannity wields power. This dark, dire language, is fundamentally authoritarian."
For Stelter, criticizing the government in such harsh terms "softens the ground" for an authoritarian takeover of the United States, and takes aim at Trump and his election fraud claims.
While Stelter condemned Hannity for softening the ground for authoritarianism, he claimed Hannity was claiming that anyone who disagrees with Trump about election fraud is "not American."
"It's not opinion, what Hannity does," Stelter said of Hannity's opinion show. "No, saying, I don't know, that we should keep the 2017 tax cuts in place, that's an opinion, let's expand universal pre-K, that's an opinion. Hannity is spouting something else, Hannity is spouting poison."