Monday, May 2, 2011

Bin Laden slaying has North Jersey ties

Hamid Mir interviewing Osama bin Laden for Dai...Image via Wikipedia
Osama bin Laden, right, during a 1997 newspaper interview. The Record's A-1 photo today should have at least shown a weapon or some menace.

The slaying of Osama bin Laden inadvertently dramatizes North Jersey's wildly inflated home values before the bubble burst a couple of years ago -- a greed party encouraged by The Record's promotional Sunday Real Estate section.

The al-Qaida financier was hiding out in a $1 million mansion in Pakistan -- according to CNN -- a home worth less than a third of Publisher Stephen A. Borg's monstrosity in Tenafly, bought with a $3.65 million company mortgage.

 Lame effort

The news broke late Sunday night, and likely required the Woodland Park newsroom to remake the front page. 

The Associated Press story, headlines and a huge photo of Bin Laden -- not the best choice, because it shows no menace -- appear to have been hastily thrown together.

The photo has no caption, the heads contain an "Obama" echo and the text on second reference should have given the terrorist mastermind's last name as "Bin Laden," which is Record style, not "bin Laden."

But you can be sure Editor Francis Scandale didn't make a special trip to the newsroom from his Glen Rock home or the story would have ended up on a back page -- which is what he did with the iconic, flag-raising photo taken by Staff Photographer Thomas E. Franklin on 9/11.

Cartoon madness

Is Margulies on drugs? 

His cartoon today shows Santa Claus complaining about solar panels on his block's telephone poles (A-9). Huh?

That's only slightly less bizarre than his Sunday cartoon (o-2), in which an apparently underage woman tries to use President Obama's birth certificate to gain entrance to a bar  (O-2).

Heaven on Earth

Head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes' Local section today is filled with lots of feel-good stories, but not a single word of municipal news.

Fund-raisers, a home for teen mothers, a party for flood victims, a squad for girls with special needs -- isn't North Jersey such a great place to live?

On L-6, a photo shows the Rev. Mark Giordani sprinkling holy water on motorcycle owners in an annual Blessing of the Bikes.

Readers who have been awakened by the roar of these bikes -- which are modified to make as much noise as possible -- wish Giordani was wielding a sledge hammer instead. 

The caption on a second L-6 photo doesn't say how many Armenians attended the Turkish Olympiad in Lodi -- held a week after Genocide Remembrance Day.

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