“The man who never looks into a newspaper is better informed than he who reads them, inasmuch as he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods and errors. ” – Thomas Jefferson
Never were Jefferson’s words more true than when the subject of a media report in Arkansas is Secretary of State Mark Martin. You simply cannot believe anything you read in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette, the Arkansas Times, or the other “establishment” media sources in this state when the subject is Martin. They do not seem to know how to tell the truth about this man, and so you can’t trust a single word they say about him. Not. One. Word.
I have written about it before, here and here for example, but those reports barely scratch the surface. This most recent barrage of dishonest propaganda probably takes the cake. Some of us wonder why a state with great natural resources, a prime location, and hard working people consistently lags behind the rest of the country in prosperity and achievement.
To me the answer is simple- those who led must take the responsibility. It’s the leadership. It’s always the leadership. When something under-performs over a long period of time and those in charge have authority, and they have had authority, then the reason for under-performance can almost always be traced back to a failure of leadership. An example of such a failure of leadership might be enriching themselves and their cronies at the expense of the overall prosperity of the state.
The ruling class of this state has been what has been keeping Arkansas and the people who live here behind. And the state’s establishment media are their mouth pieces, and sometimes character assassins.
My take is that Mark Martin is the most honest man closest to real power in this state. He is not in the club, because what you have to do to be in the club is, when the chips are down you have to be willing to do the wrong thing for the right people. They don’t trust him to do that so they are freaking out because he is too close to getting some real say-so. That is the simplest explanation for the outrageous falsehoods and slanders that these newspapers knowingly spew about your Secretary of State.
In this latest example, Martin hired outside counsel to defend his office against accusations from a liberal blogger that they violated the Freedom of Information Act. Well, that got nowhere so now the liberal blogger is suing on the grounds that Martin should use the Attorney General’s Office to defend his office against lawsuits. The blogger, liberal Matt Campbell, took the position that only Democrat Dustin McDaniel should be allowed to represent Republican Secretary of State Martin in court.
That is like insisting the chickens hire the fox as their defense counsel as to whether or not they should be on the menu! McDaniel has blatantly abused the powers of his office, so much so that even the media of this state gave it some notice, though they did not attack him with the glee they do Martin.
This City Wire report is typical of the one-sided reporting we are subjected to on this issue. This is the only cite from the Arkansas Code you have ever seen from them on this issue:
§ 25-16-702: “The Attorney General shall be the attorney for all state officials, departments, institutions, and agencies. Whenever any officer or department, institution, or agency of the state needs the services of an attorney, the matter shall be certified to the Attorney General for attention.”
When you read that, if that is all you read, you think “well, Martin is doing something wrong.” And then you read that it is punishable by removal from office and you think “how could anyone mess up that badly.” But here is what they refuse to tell you. There are exceptions to the above statement written into the Arkansas Code. Exceptions such as…..
Republican constitutional officers have used this law for decades to avoid having their office represented by the AG on questions like the application of the FOIA. Mike Huckabee did it repeatedly. It is nothing new. The judge in the case, Judge Fox, just decided to get activist and rule against Martin no mater what the law said. We will see how long his ruling stands on appeal.
The press has known about this part of the law, they are just so dishonest and one-sided that they refuse to tell you about it in an effort to paint a false picture of Martin. Again, they are afraid of having a man who will deal equitably that close to real power. Favoritism is their currency, not equity. It is the way things have always been down in this state, and its holding us back.
Update: Let me prove to you my claim that all the insiders calling for Martin’s head know already that the accusation is groundless, so that you might with more certainty belief the truth: They are deliberately misleading you. You cannot trust them. Here is Arktimes yesterday repeating the same charges and citing only the first part of the law. Here is the Arktimes two years ago when they first tried to raise this same bogus issue only, to have McDaniel Spokesman Aaron Sadler himself say that Constitutional offices do not have to use the Attorney General’s Office to represent them.
“…approval by the Attorney General’s Office to hire outside counsel is only necessary if there is special language in an agency appropriation bill that states that such approval is specifically required. So, agencies occasionally obtain outside counsel through the normal professional-service contract process. ” – McDaniel Spokesman Aaron Sadler (and former Demozette Reporter) in 2011.
Read those two articles linked above that quote.. This is a blatant smear job.
That leaves only the accusation that Martin is wasting taxpayer money by using outside counsel instead of putting the People’s hopes in the corrupt Democrat McDaniel. Yes, his office spent a lot of money on legal fees, mostly defending themselves against lawsuits brought by the very people complaining how much money he is spending on legal fees! But overall, Martin has actually conserved taxpayer money. He hires outside help, but his permanent staff is less than the norm because he has left positions unfilled. Martin came in way under budget, and forced some very interesting revelations about the state’s budgeting in the process.
Grassroots, the very fact they hate him so much is very positive. It means the ruling class which has kept this state behind suspects that he is not with them, but with the people, or rather, he is with fairness and equity rather than favoritism. To me their attacks are all the more reason to get behind him.
From ARKANSAS WATCH