John & Ken Show: “There's A Lot Of ... Korean Painter Scam Guys”

During the January 5 broadcast of Clear Channel's John and Ken Show, co-host John Kobylt discussed a suit he said he brought in a small claims court, claiming that he sued his “Korean painter” for not doing an adequate job. When news contributor Shannon Farren asked why “the fact he was Korean is relevant,” Kobylt explained that “there's a lot of, like, Korean painter scam guys” and that “there's certain cultures that become involved in certain lines of work.”


KOBYLT: I don't think anyone can have an attorney in small claims court, I went there once years ago --

KEN CHIAMPOU (cohost): It's like The People's Court, right?

KOBYLT: Yeah, exactly. It's your -- it's your argument against there's --

CHIAMPOU: You against them, and the guy listens and he picks a side.


KOBYLT: Because we went to small claims for that Korean painter, remember that guy?

CHIAMPOU: I forgot.

KOBYLT: Gave us the --

CHIAMPOU: And he didn't show up, right?

KOBYLT: He didn't show up, so we won a default judgment.

CHIAMPOU: And did you get the money? That's the key question.

KOBYLT: I think we got it off his bond, yeah. I think he actually had a state bond, and we got the money off of that.

FARREN: And the fact that he was Korean is relevant because?

KOBYLT: Oh, no, it is relevant, because --

CHIAMPOU: Good question, lawyer Shannon.

KOBYLT: Because there's -- because there's a lot of, like, Korean painter scam guys. There are certain cultures that --

CHIAMPOU: That is painting with a brush. Oh, here comes certain cultures.

KOBYLT: No, there's certain cultures that become involved in certain lines of work, and they bring their --

CHIAMPOU: And the word spreads that they can rip people off, like you.

KOBYLT: That's exactly right.

CHIAMPOU: The dumb Polish guy on the West Side.

KOBYLT: That's exactly right. Because they were charging way less money than an American painter, and my wife -- my wife went for the cheap bid, which we have never done again, because this is going back about 15 years. And, yeah, it really is -- they just invite all of their nephews and their brothers-in-law, and lets form a paint company, and let's do the quick squirt, squirt, squirt on the wall and disappear.

Inflammatory, racially charged rhetoric is nothing new on The John & Ken Show. Last October, Kobylt claimed that Native Americans should “probably [have been] better warriors” when discussing the gradual seizure of Native American lands by European immigrants. Last September, the hosts, while talking about the California DREAM Act, said that the parents of undocumented children “took jobs from Americans, and now the kid is taking grant money from the American kid. ... So now the theft is complete. Two generations. They stole your employment, now they're stealing your kids' education.” The hosts also frequently use the pejorative “illegal alien.”

Additionally, last September, the hosts aired the personal cell phone number of Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) activist Jorge-Mario Cabrera, who received hundreds of threatening calls as a result. The hosts denied responsibility, stating repeatedly that Cabrera's phone number was part of a press release, and therefore public information.

Clear Channel, KFI's parent company, later wrote a letter to National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC) president Alex Nogales defending the hosts' actions.

After a recent campaign by NHMC to educate advertisers about their anti-immigrant vitriol, Kobylt and co-host Ken Chiampou have been dropped by prominent advertisers such as AT&T, Verizon, and General Motors. Los Angeles-area grocery store chains Vons and Ralph's have also agreed not to advertise with The John and Ken Show in the future.

Despite these advertiser retreats, Kobylt and Chiampou vowed in October that “nothing on the show is changing. We're going to talk about illegal aliens all we want,” promising more of the reckless rhetoric that has led to numerous advertiser retreats.

The John & Ken Show airs weekdays from 3 to 7 p.m. PT on KFI, a Clear Channel network, and reportedly has an audience of 1.2 million listeners.