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Conservative Bomb Thrower Has a Bomb Explode in His Lap

By       Message Roger Shuler     Permalink
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Cross Posted at Legal Schnauzer

One of the South's most nauseating right-wing media puppets recently had someone return fire. The puppet howled in pain when the buckshot found its target--right in his white, doughy flanks. We're still struggling to wipe the smile from our face.

John Archibald, a columnist for The Birmingham News,  consistently has trumpeted the Karl Rove agenda in Alabama over the past 10 years or so. Anything GOP Governor Bob Riley did was pure and honorable. Anyone pursued by Bush-appointed U.S. attorneys Alice Martin and Leura Canary was guilty. Official "corruption"--if it involved a Democrat, person of color, or individual who refused to testify falsely against Don Siegelman--was public enemy No. 1.

Archibald (photo above) specializes in clucking at the misfortune of others--whether they have committed wrongdoing or not. So imagine our delight in learning Archibald has some untidiness in his own closet. When confronted about his personal mess, Archibald first lied about it, claimed ignorance, and then essentially blamed his wife. What a guy!

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This all came to light thanks to a new blog called The Birmingham Skews, which apparently is dedicated to uncovering the foibles of the folks who produce Alabama's largest newspaper. Our hats are off to the producers of The Birmingham Skews, and our only regret is that we weren't involved in the effort to unmask John Archibald as a massive hypocrite.

How did Archibald step in doo-doo? It started with the usual clucking sounds and one of his favorite topics--the financial difficulties of the Jefferson County Commission. In a column dated March 18, 2011, Archibald noted with barely restrained glee that the commission might be moving closer to bankruptcy, and he took it as an opportunity to make fun of public figures (especially black ones) who have experienced bankruptcies. Among his targets were the late actor Gary Coleman, boxer Mike Tyson, actor Sherman Hemsley, and musician M.C. Hammer. The over-the-mountain, white suburbanites who make up Archibald's target audience must have been rolling on the floor in laughter. Archibald threw in a few white folks in an apparent effort to conceal the racism that tends to permeate his newspaper's pages.

In the comments to the Archibald column, an alert reader going by the name "The Truth," raised an intriguing issue--public records show that Archibald himself has gone through bankruptcy. That apparently caused some serious shuffling in chairs at News  headquarters.

Is there anything inherently bad about having experienced a bankruptcy? Of course not. It's a common legal remedy to problems that occur in our capitalistic system. But when one skewers others over their financial troubles, only to have had such troubles of his own, it raises the big "h word"--hypocrisy.

The Truth fired his first shot at 7:54 a.m. on May 18, with this comment:

Pot, say hello to kettle!!! It is my memory that John Archibald filed for bankruptcy sometime in his past!

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About five hours later, Archibald resorted to his natural instincts--he lied, posting this comment:

Wrong John Archibald, unTruth. Check yourself.

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I live in Birmingham, Alabama, and work in higher education. I became interested in justice-related issues after experiencing gross judicial corruption in Alabama state courts. This corruption has a strong political component. The corrupt judges are (more...)

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