Saturday, April 4, 2015

Long legal battle facing Menendez is no popularity contest

The 1:10 p.m. NY Waterway Ferry from Manhattan approaching the Weehawken terminal on Wednesday. Even if you take mass transit to the ferry, it is one of the most expensive ways to commute. The round-trip senior fare is $16.50 compared to $3.80 round-trip for an NJ Transit express bus to the city. Garage parking in Weehawken costs an additional $14.
In Manhattan, the NY Waterway Ferry Terminal on 12th Avenue was built next to the towering Lincoln Tunnel vent. Red, white and blue shuttle buses are free.


What's the point of comparing the legal battle facing Sen. Bob Menendez to a sports contest or looking for his supporters on the streets of Union City, the onetime Cuban-American stronghold?

Today, on the front page, the editors of The Record continue to minimize the federal bribery indictment handed up against New Jersey's senior senator and a wealthy eye doctor, Salomon Melgen (A-1).

The Page 1 headline -- "Hometown advantage" -- is even sillier than Friday's "Friendship under fire."

The long federal trial facing the defendants will be no popularity contest, and you can be sure none of the people interviewed by The Record will be serving on the jury that will decide Menendez's and Melgen's guilt or innocence.

Deep doo-doo

The truth is Menendez, a Democrat who now lives in Paramus, finds himself in deep doo-doo for accepting free travel, expensive hotel rooms and campaign contributions from Melgen, then pushing the doctor's business and personal interests with other government officials.

Like Menendez, most of the Cuban-Americans who lived in Union City moved out long ago, so calling it "Havana on the Hudson" in the first paragraph of today's story is inaccurate.

The editors had to send Staff Writer Monsy Alvarado to Union City with reporter Melissa Hayes because the former is one of the few newsroom staffers fluent in Spanish. LOL.

Christie record

More than five long years into the Christie administration, The Record finally discovers what everyone already knew:

Governor Christie is no friend of the environment, having filed only two new environmental damage suits, compared to the hundreds filed in the six years before he took office (A-1).

Local news?

The Record's Local section, including today's, often resembles a print version of Jerry DeMarco's Cliffview, but missing all the detail that Law & Order news site is known for.

Today, crime or court news appears on all but one of the six pages edited so poorly by The Record's head assignment editor, Deirdre Sykes, and her incompetent minions, including her deputy, Dan Sforza (L-1 to L-6).

On Friday, Sykes and Sforza used a filler photo of two cars and a motorcycle that had crashed in Paramus, but typically, the caption was devoid of any information.

Today, both Cliffview and The Record report one of the drivers, John Pavloski, 82, of Fair Lawn was issued a summons for cutting off the motorcycle and crashing into an SUV (L-3).

The role of an elderly driver in that accident highlights how The Record and Road Warrior Columnist John Cichowski have routinely ignored the challenges facing older drivers and older journalists.

Just as Cichowski hasn't bothered to find out whether retraining is available for older drivers, the editors haven't bothered reigning in the confused reporter's propensity to commit error after error in column after column.

See the Facebook page for Road Warrior Bloopers for a discussion of how Cichowski screwed up his column on "The Car Book" last Sunday:

Reporter is unsafe at any speed 

Small minds

No one seems to have edited a story on L-3 today.

It reports a tapas restaurant that opened "along" East Ridgewood Avenue in Ridgewood was closed for fire-code violations.

The reporter, Chris Harris, says a notice is "adorning" the front door of Finca.

Later, Harris reports "the eatery resides in the former shell of the Stable [italics added]."

Second look

If you think that's embarrassing, on Friday, Elisa Ung rated Tom Yum Koong, a small Thai restaurant in Hasbrouck Heights, Good to Excellent despite:

"Leathery slices of beef" in a green curry, overly crusty spring rolls and crispy shrimp,  overcooked whole red snapper, unripe fruit in a dessert with banana, bland red-bean flavor in red-bean ice cream and no sticky rice with mango, which the overfed restaurant reviewer calls "the most famous Thai dessert."

The week before, she gave the same Good to Excellent rating to Grissini, the "wildly expensive" Italian-American restaurant in Englewood Cliffs.

Is Ung's judgment reliable or is it time to replace the dessert- and meat-obsessed reporter, who has been beating this dead horse since 2006?


  1. No sticky rice with mango? I'm shocked. Shocked.


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