On July 6, 2016, Gannett, the nation's biggest newspaper chain, paid the Borgs $40 million for North Jersey Media Group (The Record of Woodland Park, Herald News, NorthJersey.com, (201) magazine and 50 weeklies). Stephen A. Borg, publisher for a decade, oversaw the biggest downsizing ever. Local news declined, errors mounted and most employees were denied raises. Gannett replaced Editor Deirdre Sykes, revised The Record's website and redesigned the print edition, cutting another 350-plus jobs.
Governor Christie to teachers and everyone else: Do what I say or else.
A governor full of hubris, saying he might defy a ruling of the state's highest court, would be front-page news anywhere but at The Record of Woodland Park, where Editor Francis Scandale is famous for news misjudgment going way back to 9/11.
So, readers have to turn to Page A-3 for a Star-Ledger story reporting Governor-cum-Dictator Christie will close hospitals and lay off cops and firefighters, if the Supreme Court orders him to restore more than $1 billion in education funds -- if he even obeys the ruling.
Christie -- at heart, an argumentative lawyer who has The Record and other media in his pocket -- is really pissed that Associate Justice Barry Albin twice mentioned how Christie cut school aid to low-income children, but refused to impose a millionaires tax to raise $1 billion in new revenue.
To Scandale, this brewing constitutional crisis appears to be less far less significant than more of Christie's do-what-I say-or-else tough talk to teachers, a story that leads A-1 today.
When I first looked at Page 1, I thought the news clerks and reporters had seized control of the newsroom and run a story on the rise of the Tea Party and the Republicans' drive to preserve wealth:
How greed movement
shaped North Jersey
Wait a second. That story is about a different kind of "green." I misread the headline. Never mind. The Record's editors still are marching to the drums of the spoiled Borg siblings.
Searching for municipal news in Local, readers find lots of Law & Order news -- courtesy of head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes and her minions.
Sykes needed two gee-whiz but non-fatal accident photos to fill space on L-2 and L-8.
Poor geography lesson
A huge Better Living cover photo of chicken -- presumably pumped up with antibiotics -- whets readers' appetites for Elisa Ung's review of Mekong Grill, a new Vietnamese restaurant in Ridgewood.
Ung reports that for years before Mekong Grill opened, "Bergen-based food lovers" drove to Spring Valley, N.Y., "to get their Vietnamese fix."
But nothing could be farther from the truth: Chef K.T. Tran has been dishing out great Vietnamese food at a take-out stand or restaurants in Cresskill, Fort Lee, Englewood and Tenafly for well over 15 years.
In fact, in a review just three months ago, Ung praised Tran's "precise cooking and fresh Vietnamese flavors" at her newest restaurant, Simply Vietnamese.