Wednesday, May 11, 2011

There's so little news on the front page

New Meadowlands Stadium: Touchdown ClubImage by babyknight via Flickr
The Record rented the New Meadowlands Stadium and invited readers to meet with Francis Scandale, Deirdre Sykes and other editors, as well as Staff Writer John Brennan. See the photo for how many showed up.

Instead of listing credit cards that give you 5% off at the pump, The Record leads the paper today with all the partisan rhetoric sparked by high gas prices -- a process story that amounts to little more than toilet paper.

Meanwhile, the editors of the Woodland Park daily buried a consumer column reporting gasoline prices ended their climb and actually fell last week (L-8). 

And where is the story telling drivers whether cheaper fuel at off-brand stations is just as good for their engines as the high-priced stuff?

Stalling the GOP bully

Readers get more non-news in the off-lead story on Page 1 -- Governor Christie's stalled attack on teacher tenure, plus lots of blather on the success of his Republican cohorts in other states.

The final long, boring A-1 story is aimed at a tiny but greedy minority who own those pricey "seat licenses" at the New Meadowlands Stadium. Yikes. Why is this news?

Someone should check Editor Francis Scandale's journalism "license" and how much seat time he's spending in the men's room.

Journalism jam

When I was at The Record, the reporter, Staff Writer John Brennan, earned a reputation among editors as a royal pain in the ass, loudly talking up his sports-business stories nearly every afternoon in a usually successful bid to get them on A-1 -- no matter how trivial or obscure.

Brennan, a former sports reporter who still struggles with reporting and writing fundamentals, would invade Tim Nostrand's office -- forcing the editor to stop planning his next meal.

Then, Brennan would obsessively describe in excruciating detail what he was working on, forcing every news copy editor to listen to his loud voice through the editor's open door.

To get him to shut up, Nostrand usually agreed to push Brennan's tripe for the front.

Killing readers

Instead of focusing on how most motorcycle owners deliberately modify their bikes to make as much noise as possible and disturb as many people as possible, Road Warrior John Cichowski devotes his column today to a spike in bikers' deaths (L-1).

Petty potentate

Should any mayor rule for 20 years? The story on state Sen. Nicholas Sacco winning another term in North Bergen makes no attempt to evaluate whether his tenure has been good for the town, but does quote the incumbents'  campaign claims (L-1).

Thanks to head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes, the same superficial treatment is given to the victory of incumbents in Lodi's municipal election (L-3).

A rare story on mass transit appears on L-3, likely because those noisy diesel locomotives have awakened Staff Writer Karen Rouse, who lives next to the tracks, one too many times.

Free advertising

The only food coverage in Better Living today is shameless promotion of two cookbooks on F-1 and a cafe in Manhattan on F-3. 

Features Director Barbara Jaeger wanted her section to carry the letter "F" for all the times she has f--ked employees and readers.


  1. Victor, Sacco can't hold a candle to Cliffside Park's mayor for life, Gerry Calabrese. He thinks he's Frank Hague, only Gerry has a bigger ego and rules over a smaller pond. I moved out 30 years ago and when I am sometimes back in the area, I can't believe how the town had literally deteriorated. Gerry's lackies kiss up to get their town and county jobs while CP goes to $#!t. Sad, but I guess Wolfe was right - you can't go home again.

  2. You're right. You can't go home because people like Sacco and Calabrese rule with iron fists, and The Record has done little to expose them.


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