Herald Gets Top Billing in Globe Re: ‘Patriots Day’

December 22, 2016

Patriots Day, the latest production from the Wahlberg-industrial complex, is turning into the ultimate Boston Rorschach test.

Exhibit Umpteen: This tweet from the estimable David Bernstein.

 

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The Sean Burns review in NorthShoreMovies David cited includes this:

Before the closing credits roll, “Patriots Day” tacks on almost ten minutes of interview footage from some of the story’s real-life subjects, all of them offering canned aphorisms that sound over-rehearsed. It feels like a pre-emptive bid for exoneration by the filmmakers, proof they got permission to cash in on a city’s still-tender memories in order to massage the ego of their superstar producer. Without this documentary material, the movie would have ended on a shot of David Ortiz shaking Mark Wahlberg’s hand, the real slugger thanking the fake cop for his heroic service.

 

Ouch.

Here’s another pinprick: On G5 of Wednesday’s Boston Globe Food section, there’s this ad for “Patriots Day.”

 

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And check out who gets top billing.

 

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That’s right – the Herald’s Jim Verniere, who wrote in his review that “’Patriots Day’ is a film every American and anyone planning to do us harm should see.”

Crosstown, Globe movie critic Ty Burr – in that same Food section – said something quite different.

Peter Berg’s movie, starring Mark Wahlberg in an invented role, is neither great nor gawdawful. It’s professionally made, slickly heartfelt, and is offered up as an act of civic healing. At best, it’s unnecessary. At worst, it’s vaguely insulting.

 

Roll your own, splendid readers.


Hey, Kevin Cullen: The Globe’s Not Here!

January 4, 2016

The hardlyreading staff held hostage: Day 8.

Random notes from around the Globe:

• Today’s edition of the Boston Globe plunks its delivery woes right on Page One.

 

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Crosstown, the Boston Herald has yet to mention the meltdown. We don’t care who prints the fraidy local tabloid – that’s just journalistic malpractice.

 

• Are we the only ones who think the new Globe ePaper is a classic case of schlimmbesserung? You know, to make worse by trying to improve?

 

• Kevin Cullen’s front-page piece today is a hoot. Favorite part:

Whatever they pay the delivery people, it’s not enough, and it’s more than a little depressing to think this debacle has been brought about by a desire to pay them even less.

 

Interesting Twitter exchange yesterday in the wake of Cullen’s piece going online. First:

 

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Then:

 

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Huh.

 

Rapid strides! Today’s “delivery delay” list is down to 112 zip codes (from 117 yesterday).

 

• Free the Zippy the Pinhead One!

 

More, most likely, to come.


Herald Leaves Globe in Grand Prix Dust

September 30, 2015

Man, that’s some serious road rage over at the Boston Herald.

Yesterday’s front page (with Inexplicable Little Green Number!):

 

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Today the revvy local tabloid is back at it.

Race critics cry foul on taxpayer funds saying . . .

IT’S ANOTHER RUNAROUND

Screen Shot 2015-09-30 at 12.15.42 PMThe type of Grand Prix racing poised to roar through Boston’s streets next year has forced other host cities to inject taxpayer money to keep the motors running — in one case up to $4 million — spotlighting the challenges the Hub faces in avoiding a big public tab for the event, the Herald has found.

“These events do require capital, like any other type of sporting event or facility, and the onus is on the event promoter to be able to make the event work … from a promotional aspect, from an operational standpoint and also as a neighbor,” said Tim Frost, a Chicago-based motorsports business consultant.

“There is a really big economic event in there,” Frost said, and how they’ll avoid tapping public funds is “a very valid question.”

 

The Herald piece details some of the taxpayer liability in IndyCar cities San Jose, Baltimore, and St. Petersburg, Fla. The filmy local tabloid also provides this helpful video:

 

 

Crosstown, meanwhile, the Boston Globe is stuck in first gear, lamely running this piece on today’s C3.

Indy race riles condo owners

S. Boston group’s letter cites safety, noise issues

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Residents of a condo complex on the South Boston Waterfront are challenging efforts to turn their street into part of Boston’s first IndyCar race.

In a 14-page letter sent to Mayor Martin J. Walsh on Tuesday, a lawyer representing the Seaport Lofts Condominium Association raised a number of legal issues with the race.

Among them: the allegation that the city improperly negotiated a contract with event organizer Grand Prix of Boston without going through the proper public review.

The condo residents’ goals include blocking the race, scheduled to take place during Labor Day weekend next year, or forcing it to be moved.

 

But nothing about the hosing taxpayers might get from the five-year event.

Both local dailies, however, are drafting on David Bernstein’s major takeout in Boston magazine three months ago.

Is the Grand Prix Taking Boston for a Ride?

Since Boston is already mired in a mud fight over whether or not the city can afford to host the 2024 Olympics, you might think Mayor Marty Walsh would be reluctant to take on any big, new, public sporting events. Not so. In mid-May, without public hearings, Walsh signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Grand Prix of Boston, clearing the way for the city to host five annual IndyCar road races on the South Boston waterfront, each Labor Day weekend from 2016 to 2020. Speaking by phone on Tuesday, Walsh compared the Grand Prix to the Tall Ships display, which returns to Boston in 2017. “The economic opportunity is something that made me interested in it,” he says.

It’s an interesting comparison, given Boston’s wild, sometimes comical, occasionally acrimonious disagreements about the economic value of the Tall Ships over the past 25 years. Those events either brought close to $1 billion to greater Boston, or were a net loss, or anywhere in between, depending on whom you ask.

 

Bernstein proceeds to chronicle, in eye-popping detail, the financial burdens the Grand Prix has imposed on other IndyCar cities. If it’s not the definitive piece on this topic, it’ll do until something better comes along.

Take a victory lap, David.


The Fix Is In? No Love for Boston Herald in WashPost Top Political Reporters List

January 28, 2015

Washington Post reporter Chris Cillizza posted this on his political blog The Fix today.  (Tip o’ the pixel to Dan Kennedy at Media Nation.)

The Fix’s 2015 list of best state political reporters

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The most under-appreciated reporters in the political world are the scribes covering state and local politics. They rarely get the attention of their colleagues at the national level but are often covering the very politicians and national trends that come to impact the broad political landscape.

Every two years (or so), I like to honor these reporters with a look at the best of the best from each of the 50 states plus the District of Columbia. The list below was built almost entirely on recommendations from the Fix community — here on the blog, on Twitter at #fixreporters and on Facebook. A few of my personal favorites are included as well.

 

Skim down about halfway and here’s what you find:

 

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Conspicuous by its absence? That’s right – the Herald. Granted, this was a beauty pageant judged by political junkies who gravitate toward the Washington Post, but it’s unlikely ideology was the driving force here. It just might be that people fail to take the flighty local tabloid seriously anymore.

As for us, we don’t know Jim Hand’s work, but there’s no one here we’d pull to plug a Heraldnik into the mix. They just don’t really belong. Then again, that’s pretty much how they like it.


Herald Scoops Globe on Mass. Dem Shenanigans

November 24, 2012

Special election rules in Massachusetts are the Silly Putty of legislation, taking whatever shape best suits the Democratic majority at the time.

Back in 2004, they eliminated a governor’s power to appoint replacements for U.S. Senate vacancies, the better to keep then-Gov. Mitt Romney’s mitts off John Kerry’s seat should he win the presidency. When one of their own returned to the corner office, state lawmakers gave back the power to appoint a temporary replacement.

Now they apparently want to give Gov. Deval Patrick the power to appoint a permanent replacement to serve out an interrupted term, the Boston Herald’s Hillary Chabot reports:

Whispers build of change to special election rules

Power-hungry Bay State Democrats — eyeing another potential Senate opening if U.S. Sen. John F. Kerry joins the Obama Cabinet— are quietly discussing reinstating a 2004 law that would let Gov. Deval Patrick appoint a permanent replacement to help keep the seat under party control until at least 2014.

“I think that would be preferable. It would certainly save the taxpayers money if they don’t have to pay for another election,” said Phil Johnston, former chairman of the Massachusetts Democratic Party.

“I think people are campaigned out. I think the governor is very popular and most voters would be happy to support his choice until the next general election,” Johnston added.

Not if the voters are David Bernstein, the intrepid political maven at the Phoenix. Here’s what he tweeted earlier today:

If history is any guide, shame will be the least important factor going forward.