Spunky DeMaio Scandal Watch #1: Where in the World is Carl in San Diego?

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The Voice of OC has done the heavy lifting — to be distinguished from the heavy pulling — with its seminal story of San Diego Republican Carl “the Wanker” DeMaio being fingered for masturbating into a men’s room sink behind the Council Chambers in 2009.  He apparently routinely excused himself to do so after exciting himself with his own impassioned speeches from the dais — coming back to enjoy the rest of the meeting and then later press the flesh.

Our usually staid and respectable cousin publication, though, is not really cut out for the long-term, obsessive — yes,  even crazed pursuit of the degree that the story’s release will have stained DeMaio’s reputation.  No, that sort of clean-up task is pretty much a job for a spunky publication like the Orange Juice Blog — only because we’re so deeply into media criticism, of course.  Will DeMaio manage to rub the story out of the local political headlines — or will he get the shaft?

So: we today introduce a new feature: the Spunky DeMaio Scandal Watch — intended to be weekly but you just never know (unless someone else comes forward to do the reporting, as has not happened with the Dearthwatch — to chronicle two things:

(1) What are the top 20 stories obtained on a Google search over the previous week of the terms “DeMaio” and “San Diego” — including their headlines and where and when they appeared?

(2) What rank does the seminal Voice of OC story get among the search results?

My hypothesis is: the story will get a lot less coverage than it would if DeMaio were a Democrat (and almost infinitely less than if he were a gay Democrat rather than a gay Republican).  And that means that everyone complaining (with good reason) about how Filner got away with murder because Democrats didn’t want to talk about his scandal will have another story to complain about — except that this time the refusal to discuss it will be unfolding in real time.

So, after the graphic, let’s head down to Spunky Central for the first installment!

DeMaio #1 - Spanking the Monkey

Credit or blame to: http://static.baseballtoaster.com/blogs/u/bronxbanter/2008/1004/0001/2234992576_cbb1c95d76_640.jpg

All right, let’s go.  First of all, this week one would expect many of the “DeMaio San Diego” stories not to include this information because they would have come earlier in the week.  (The Voice story is only about 48 hours old as I post.)  Those stories are linked in orange.  This will not be a problem by next weekend.

The point here is to assess how likely it is that a reasonably aware San Diego voter would know about the existence of — or beyond that, the “meat” of — these allegations.  If the major media merely, shall we say, “averts their eyes,” then we learn something important: it’s possible to get away with this.  Hey, morals evolve, right?  That’s something important for DeMaio to know if he becomes Mayor and ever wants to “hand off the gavel” in the middle of a meeting.

My sense is that the non-political reader probably would not yet know about the story.  The coverage started with our county’s beloved Voice of OC, but that link doesn’t arise until #55 in my Google search.  No, if you were using Google and found out about this, it would most likely be from a Daily Caller story attacking liberals for raising the story.  The next highest ranking one would be from the alt-weekly San Diego Reader.  And those are the only two stories in the top 10 (actually top 12, given the tie for #2.)

After that, the places one would encounter it would be another Daily Caller story at #11, a Daily Kos story from this afternoon at #15, then stories from rawstory.com and mediaite.com.

At this point, I’d say, the well-informed San Diegan probably thinks that Carl DeMaio has got a great shot to run for Mayor.  And if the media keeps on averting its eyes, maybe they’ll be right!



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About Greg Diamond

Somewhat verbose worker's rights and government accountability attorney, residing in northwest Brea. General Counsel of CATER, the Coalition of Anaheim Taxpayers for Economic Responsibility, a non-partisan group of people sick of local corruption. Deposed as Northern Vice Chair of DPOC in April 2014 when his anti-corruption and pro-consumer work in Anaheim infuriated the Building Trades and Teamsters in spring 2014, who then worked with the lawless and power-mad DPOC Chair to eliminate his internal oversight. Occasionally runs for office to challenge some nasty incumbent who would otherwise run unopposed. (Someday he might pick a fight with the intent to win rather than just dent someone. You'll know it when you see it.) He got 45% of the vote against Bob Huff for State Senate in 2012 and in 2014 became the first attorney to challenge OCDA Tony Rackauckas since 2002. None of his pre-putsch writings ever spoke for the Democratic Party at the local, county, state, national, or galactic level, nor do they now. A family member co-owns a business offering campaign treasurer services to Democratic candidates and the odd independent. He is very proud of her. He doesn't directly profit from her work and it doesn't affect his coverage. (He does not always favor her clients, though she might hesitate to take one that he truly hated.) He does advise some local campaigns informally and (so far) without compensation. (If that last bit changes, he will declare the interest.)