Friday, June 17, 2011

Borgs sound death knell for unions

Thirteen/WNET's Former logo, 1999-2009. Still ...Image via Wikipedia
On WNET, Governor Christie told a caller it is none of her business that he sends his kids to private school while cutting aid to public schools.

The Record puts a positive spin on Governor Christie's end run around collective bargaining laws, labeling it "reform" in a big, black headline on Page 1 today.

Just below the A-1 fold, Political Stile Columnist Charles Stile celebrates a funeral Mass for public unions, and on the OpEd Page, Editorial Page Editor Alfred P. Doblin piles on (A-23). 

Are their strings being pulled by the Borg family, whose disdain for unions is well-known?

Christie said on a WNET call-in show that the deal with lawmakers to cut public employee benefits will make the state pension system solvent again in 30 years. 

Is that how long we'll have to wait for him to cut property taxes? 

Rape and shame

The off-lead story on the front page reports the arrest of two students in the rape of a 15-year-old girl at Clifton High School.

But surely, there is more important and relevant news than the story at the bottom of the page on the resignation of Rep. Anthony Weiner, who doesn't even represent anyone in New Jersey?

Can't Editor Francis Scandale get his mind out of the gutter?

Another embarrassing correction from Better Living  appears on A-2 today.

Road kill

With standing-room-only on the morning rail or bus commute to Manhattan and disappearing E-ZPass discounts, can't Road Warrior Columnist John Cichowski find anything else to write about than a man who got a speeding ticket in Florida and points on his New Jersey license (L-1)?  

The lead story on the front of head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes' Local section is about a new athletic field for Wallington High School. You can't get any more compelling than that.

Sykes also makes sure she runs another story by Staff Writer John Brennan on privatization of horse racing -- in response to the thousands of calls to the news desk (L-3).


Those food photos with this week's restaurant review -- Taphouse Grille in Wayne -- are an instant turnoff (Better Living centerfold).

Let's rename the place Tapped Out Grill.

In contrast, Staff Writer Elisa Ung positively gushed last Friday in her appraisal of Bibi'z, a Westwood restaurant from Ida Assaf, who was born in Lebanon. She rated it only a half-star away from perfect.

Ung still bores readers with the owner's and chef's resumes, but she appears to be coming around to the realization that reviewing restaurants is more than just telling readers what tastes good.

Something is missing

Her Bibi'z review has lots of detailed information about menu items that are organic and which dishes come with vegetables or fruit, but why does the restaurant uses wild fish only some of the time? 

The swordfish entree pictured on the Better Living cover is an especially poor choice, because it is endangered and contains a large amount of harmful mercury.

And Ung is silent about the meat served at Bibi'z. Are readers to assume it is conventionally raised with antibiotics, growth hormones and animal byproducts? 

And what does "Bibi'z" mean?

Of course, the headlines can't make up for all that's missing in Ung's reviews, but they've been excellent in recent weeks. "Bibi'z feast" appears to be a play on the 1987 film "Babette's Feast," a lavish celebration of food.

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