Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Is this really good news?

Runaway Overrun and Collision, Bombardier Chal...Image via Wikipedia

Do you ever read the inane stuff that appears every day on Page A-3 of  The Record of Woodland Park labeled "GOOD NEWS"?

Today, the incompetent editors shoved into that space a staff-written story about a proposed new traffic control tower at Teterboro Airport to improve safety at the hub. The tower would be built by 2016.

But what about the safety of homeowners and high-rise dwellers when those low-flying private jets skim Hackensack rooftops on their approach to the airport? What about the seemingly endless racket and the impact on quality of life from big and small jets, small planes and some of the vintage aircraft that use Teterboro? On these subjects, The Record and transportation reporter Tom Davis have long been silent.

In the Local section today, there are no fewer than eight crime stories, but no municipal, education or development news about Hackensack, Englewood or Teaneck. Ridgewood? No. Glen Rock? No. Westwood? No.

But on the front of the section is an expose about town workers on the 'gravy train.' You'd think a newspaper like the former Hackensnack daily would have done this story years ago. But, then, you don't know how lazy the editors and  local reporters are. You don't know how little time the reporters spend in the towns they are supposed to cover or how some of them are sidetracked for months, even years on an interminable "investigation."

It's likely few local reporters have ever asked to examine the budget of the town they cover -- line by line -- or questioned the manager or administrator about employees' paid absences. So, when you have a newspaper like that, you wait for a report exposing these corrupt practices, as in this case. This one, from the State Commission of Investigation, is just like the one the paper waited for before detailing the ridiculously high salaries and perks of schools superintendents a couple of years ago.
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