I love it when Scott Horton, of Harper's, accurately predicts what The Birmingham News is going to do before the paper even does it.
It happened a few weeks ago when the News evidently assigned Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Brett Blackledge to write a story calling into question the accuracy of Jill Simpson's affidavit in the Don Siegelman case. Horton wrote about the brewing story on a Saturday evening, and it appeared in the News the next morning.
Well, it's happened again. And evidently Mr. Horton has some darn good sources on the inside at The Birmingham News. That indicates the paper has at least one employee with the conscience, and the guts, to stand up to his or her employer's right-wing, low-rent tactics. Perhaps there is hope for the world yet.
Horton posted yesterday that the News was about to publish a major piece, sliming U.S. Rep. Artur Davis (D-AL), who is leading the Congressional investigation into the Bush Department of Justice scandal. And what to our wandering eyes should appear this morning upon perusing the front page of the News? Why, the very story to which Horton had referred, written by the one and only Brett Blackledge.
As Horton says, by casting a critical eye toward the News' conservative brethren Artur Davis clearly has pissed off the big dogs at Birmingham's trusted daily. Check out the story yourself and decide if it has any significant news value, other than to send this message to Davis: Watch your step, bub. I guess it was this or burn down Davis' house.
Horton has come to calling Birmingham's daily "the Pravda of the South." I'm starting to think it's unfair to sully Pravda's good name by making that comparison.