Southerners top most corrupt list

Published 9:04pm Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A recent Fortune magazine article ranks Alabama as one of the top 10 states when it comes to corruption. We were ranked No. 6.

The rankings were determined by a study of convictions of public officials for violations of federal corruption laws between 1976 and 2008. A good many of our sister southern states also made the list. Not surprisingly, Louisiana came in at No. 2. They are a perennial corruption leader. It is part of their culture. They are proud of their status as one of the nation’s most corrupt environs. They are probably disappointed that they are not No. 1.

Mississippi grabbed that ranking.

Our sister states of Kentucky, Florida and Tennessee made the top 10 along with us. That is six of the top 10. It looks like a final Associated Press Top 10 College Football ranking. It looks like corruption and college football go hand-in-hand.

There actually might be a tie to the two in our next corruption scandal. A Lee County Grand Jury has been scrutinizing House Speaker Mike Hubbard of Auburn for close to a year. Hubbard’s business career has revolved around being the producer of programming for Auburn athletics, more specifically, Auburn football. The Grand Jury may be looking into this contract to televise Auburn football.There has been a lot of smoke, speculation, and rampant rumors coming out of Auburn and Lee County for quite awhile. It’s about time they either fish or cut bait.

It is easy to indict someone. There is an old saying that you can indict a potato, and it rings true. If they do not indict Mike Hubbard then he comes back stronger than ever. He is a powerful Speaker of the House and if he survives this invasion then “Katie bar the door” for his enemies. There is another old tried and true saying made famous by Machiavelli that if you attempt to slay the King, make sure you kill him.

The first name on Hubbard’s enemy list is his nemesis, Attorney General Luther Strange. Big Luther brought the investigation against Hubbard for political purposes. Perusing the future political landscape, Luther saw that Gov. Bentley would breeze to reelection this year. It looked to him as though he and Hubbard would be the two top rivals for the brass ring in 2018.

Hubbard and his allies will never forgive nor forget this calculated attack by Big Luther. They will seek retribution. In fact, they already have. The attorney general’s budget was cut to zero next year.

Strange’s selective prosecution has not been hidden and has surprisingly been noted by rank and file Alabama voters.

The average citizen is aware that all of the Indian casinos, as well as Greene County gaming facilities, are open. Yet, the one with the largest out-of-state allure and the state’s Crown jewel casino, Victoryland in Macon County is closed down. The Macon County track has the strongest constitutional amendment of all locations. The people of Macon County approved it overwhelmingly and any high level federal tribunal void of Alabama politics would laugh at Bob Riley’s and Luther Strange’s heavy-handed political grandstanding. There have also been more than 2,000 jobs lost in one of Alabama’s poorer counties.

Turn about may be fair play. Big Luther may be on the hot seat himself. In a recent ruling out of Greene County, a Jefferson County judge, Houston Brown, angrily decried the actions of Strange and his agents. The judge declared, “It is apparent the State has presented statements which are clearly false, misleading, and made with a reckless disregard for the truth.” Judge Brown’s ruling is a devastating blow to the credibility and integrity of Luther Strange’s staff.

In conjunction with this stinging judicial rebuke, District Attorney Greg Griggers has secured an indictment of three people on Attorney General Luther Strange’s staff for “perjury and lying.” The three indicted Strange staffers are the same men used to close down VictoryLand.

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