PAYING A HIGH PRICE…. Earlier this week, Jon Stewart did a segment on “The Daily Show” about Sean Hannity’s coverage of last week’s right-wing rally against health care reform. Stewart noticed that Hannity combined footage from a right-wing rally in September, in the hopes of confusing the Fox News audience. (Or, as Stewart later explained, the deceptive editing was “a literal manifestation of what we feel is the metaphorical methodology of the entire Fox network, which, of course, is the subtle altering of reality to sell a preconceived narrative.”)

On Wednesday, at the very end of his Fox News program, Hannity spent 30 seconds acknowledging the mistake and apologizing.

Last night, Stewart aired a follow-up segment, showing his “live” reaction to Hannity’s program. After having to suffer through the entire Hannity show, just to get to the apology at the very end, Stewart says through his tears, “It wasn’t worth it. Nothing’s worth sitting through this.”

Towards the end of last night’s segment, Stewart brought out the “young” man who originally caught Hannity’s deception. The man, ostensibly a recent college graduate, has apparently been watching Hannity’s show every night for five months, which has in turn made him appear to be an old, frail man.

“Kill me,” he says. “Be a man and get me out of here.”

I could relate to this on a personal level. Several years ago, I worked for Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and was frequently told to watch Pat Robertson’s “700 Club” program. Before I got used to it, I was convinced it’d take years off my life, too.

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Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.