Monday, December 14, 2015

On Page 1, editors make big deal out of small transit story

In downtown Englewood, this North Dean Street storefront has been vacant forever, perhaps a testament to the exorbitant rent demanded by the landlord.

Syros Taverna on Palisade Avenue in Englewood was virtually empty on Thursday around 6 p.m., as were many other nearby restaurant.


The Record has had a long line of reporters too lazy to ride NJ Transit buses and trains, and report on the quality of service, as did top journalists who wrote subway columns for the New York City papers.

That may be why the Woodland Park daily ignored for months, if not years, long delays faced by North Jersey commuters who board buses for home at the antiquated Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan.

And that's why The Record hasn't reported commuters from Bergen and Passaic counties often can't find seats on buses and trains during the morning rush.

Off the rails

Now, Christopher Maag, the latest in a long line of mediocre transportation reporters, goes on and on today about a decidedly minor transit story, the AirTrain at Newark Liberty International Airport.

The big-black headline is so wrong it's criminal:

AirTrain's demise
comes as no surprise

Few readers will plow through this history lesson to find out the AirTrain's "demise" or death isn't coming until at least 2022 (A-6).

The Port Authority may have squandered millions or billions of dollars on the monorail, but this bi-state agency isn't, after all, supported by taxes.

Patronage mill

What can you expect from an agency famous for cost overruns, one that is little more than a patronage mill for the governors of New York and New Jersey?

That's why Governor Christie apparently was able to get his cronies to shut down lanes on the George Washington Bridge, using the span to retaliate against Democrats who refused to endorse him for reelection.

Maag and the editors who give him his marching orders continue to ignore the biggest transportation stories of all:

The fallout from Christie's 2010 decision to pull the plug on Hudson River rail tunnels, and his refusal to back a higher gasoline tax to fund road and bridge repairs, and transit improvements.

Muslims, Syrians

Editorial Page Editor Alfred P. Doblin is so eager to breath life into Christie's dying campaign for the White House he completely forgets to mention the GOP bully wanted to bar all Syrians, even orphans, from entering New Jersey (A-9).

And he made that statement long before Donald Trump said he would bar all Muslims from entering the United States.

Local news?

Today's Local section carries two stories about Teaneck (L-1), and one on Englewood (L-3), but nothing from Hackensack, biggest of the three.

Staff Writer Stephanie Noda's piece on cleanup of the old police pistol range doesn't mention how the noise of early morning gunfire awakened hundreds of Englewood residents for years, especially those who worked at night in hospitals or on the copy desk of The Record.  

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