Bless His Heart...

A good friend rang my phone just after 10am this morning to warn me: “He’s doing it again!”  I immediately asked my friend who was doing what?  “Mark Davis is bashing Sarah Palin again!”  My friend considers Davis a worthless RINO and makes no bones about it. I think he e-mails Davis regularly, but to verify what my friend was saying, I flipped over to WBAP and began to listen.  My friend listens via a stream, and there’s almost a minute’s worth of lag between the two modes, so I hung up with him so I could listen to the broadcast.  I was surprised to find that my old friend’s warning was indeed justified, but since I missed the first couple of minutes, I decided to reserve judgment until I could here the entire podcast at a later time.  Still, as I listened, it was clear that Davis was using the story from yesterday about the flap over Indianola and Sarah Palin’s keynote speech there as a vehicle for attack. I’ve heard Davis say many things I didn’t much appreciate in the past, and like the remainder of Rush’s national audience, I heard him gush incessantly about Perry less than two weeks ago.  It was pathetic. To hear him clobber Palin confirms it: He’s in the tank for Perry.

Mark Davis, the mid-morning host on WBAP in the Metroplex, and frequent fill-in for Rush Limbaugh, has been carefully agitating for a Rick Perry presidential run for a long time.  Today, he went on a rant about Sarah Palin, who he “loves to death.”  This is Davis’ way of using the “bless his heart” theorem, meaning you can say anything you want about somebody, and get away with it if you simply end the statement with “bless his heart.” For example, my friend might say “Mark Davis is a simpering, argumentative dolt, bless his heart.”  (Actually, I think he did make this statement, today, although I believed he didn’t use the “bless his heart.”)  Somebody else might say  “Mark Davis is a moderate Republican wolf in conservative sheep’s clothing, bless his heart.”  No harm at all, because you’ve added “bless his heart.”  I could say, as one reader wrote in email today that “Mark Davis is a shill for Rick Perry who is carefully misleading the public and is in no way unbiased about his choice for the Republican nomination, bless his heart,” and therefore having said it in this polite manner, avoid the appearance of a naked attack.  I won’t be tacking the “bless his heart” onto any other statements in the  remainder of this post.  When Mark Davis says “I love her, but…” referencing Sarah Palin, what he hopes to conceal is his real thinking, left unstated: “I wish she would just go away.” Am I a mind-reader? No. That’s what the rest of his statements imply.

Let’s be honest and admit that Mark Davis has been on the Perry train for some time now.  I love him to death, but on Thursday morning, he continued his pitch about how Sarah Palin needs to go away, though he “loves her, but...”  I love him to death, but to pretend Mr. Davis is some sort of honest broker in this primary season is laughable, and I can absolutely bet you what his pay-off may be.  Like so many media personalities and organizations, Davis is undoubtedly betting on a future Perry campaign and administration, and in exchange for the favorable coverage he’s now delivering, you can bet there may well be some sort of quid pro quo in the form of first interviews and scoops from Perry.  Though we may love them to death, this is the way it works in the media, and while Davis claims to be a conservative, what he really may be can only be described as a cheap propagandist who will sell his voice and airtime to the bidder with the greatest commercial appeal.  Don’t you just love him to death?  Being able to land a front-runner and potential President on a reliable basis is the kind of unspoken, unreferenced media property that permits the incestuous relationships between media and government to go on without challenge.  I’m challenging it.  Of course, there will be no proof, and I’ll be dismissed as a conspiracy kook, or other such accusations, but frankly, I don’t give a damn, and besides, I love him to death, so I’m i n the clear.

Let’s review the facts: It has been revealed that the organizer who’s created the media flap for which Davis ridiculed Palin is none other than Ken Crow, a gentleman well known for his support of Rick Perry.  Mr. Davis should have mentioned this at some point along his way to his “I love her, but…” statements about Sarah Palin, but instead, he seems to have ignored this information in favor of perpetuating a smear.  Since this involves a supporter of the same candidate for whom Mr. Davis is now a self-evident shill, I would contend that you will get no untainted information from Mr. Davis (who we all love to death) if you ever got it from him at all.

This is how the incestuous relationship between media and politicians develops.  I love them, but it’s purely a case of mutual back-scratching, and it effectively perverts the electoral process.  I’m in favor of full disclosure. Just as I have made it clear who I support for the Republican nomination and for President in 2012, so should Mark Davis. Rather than what seems to be a false pretense at some sort of objectivity by his claim that he doesn’t endorse candidates, he should simply, clearly tell his listeners to whom his support is going.  That way, rather than being a stealth campaign appendage for Rick Perry, he can be out in the open about his support and not “unintentionally” mislead his listeners when he speaks about other candidates.  Instead, he seems to have become an undeclared advocate who is in all ways a proponent for Perry’s campaign, now resorting to reading an anti-Palin article from the Los Angeles Times.  On Thursday, he went on to criticize Palin over her continuing considerations with respect to her family.  At the same time, Mr. Davis doesn’t seem to have any particular issue with Perry’s reliance upon his wife’s conclusion that he should run.   Most damning, however, Mr. Davis fails to mention that the man responsible for organizing the event at which Palin is to be keynote speaker this Saturday is also an avid Perry supporter.  That’s a rather convenient omission, isn’t it?   Sure, Davis mentions the man, but fails to point out this link, and his key role in creating the flap.  For what reason would Davis do this? What could be his motive?  He’s an objective observer, right?  That’s why he doesn’t endorse candidates, right?  Sure, a lack of endorsement permits Mr. Davis to maintain the appearance of objectivity, but is he? Knowing this, you be the judge.  I’ve grabbed short snippets of what Mr. Davis said this morning:

First, he takes a crack at those who would run her campaign, implying they would be the same as the people setting up this Tea Party of America event. We already know this is false, and very likely, so did he, but it didn’t stop him from saying it. All you Palin organizers should know he regards you as rubes and boobs:

Here, he suggests the Indianola incident almost became another quitter story about Palin, again, in his estimation:

Here, he sets up the notion that if she does enter in late September, it’s going to look like she was avoiding the debates. As if there won’t be more debates as the field narrows? It’s okay for Perry to enter in August, but not okay for Palin to choose September.  Why isn’t Perry guilty of trying to avoid the Iowa debate prior to his entry? No answer, but listen to this garbage:

Here, he reads from the LA Times Article, with dramatic and sarcastic flair. Apparently not nearly all the sarcasm is feigned:

Here, Davis says Palin’s running a “nutty exercise” as to whether she’ll run:

Here, he accuses her of “teasing” the electorate:

If you don’t see the Perry shill shining through, I hardly know what more to say.  I’ve begun to question his conservatism myself, lately, and while I love him to death, it’s dawning on me that he’s not so much a conservative as a GOP party loyalist.  His single biggest argument seemingly reduces to the fallacy about “who can win.”  I love that, but it’s still a fraud and a hoax perpetrated on us by people who we undoubtedly love to death.  Davis is a great example of why you can’t trust some of what is presumptively right-wing media, particularly in a Republican primary, and while we may all love them to death, we must also acknowledge that sometimes, their own interests intervene and remove them from the stage of credibility.

My friend cc’d me on the e-mail correspondence he had with Davis.  I got a laugh, and while I won’t share it here, it’s clear my good friend is inclined to find other radio stations, and I can’t disagree.   We must use the slim influence we have by turning the dial in the face of such misbehavior.  Mark Davis is no exception, bless his heart.  No, I mean it this time, because I love him, but…

You can listen to the whole segment from the last hour of his show, provided here in podcast form. It starts approximately four or five minutes into the podcast.