They really oughta take away Mikey Pom-Poms’ smartphone on weekend nights

Hard times at the Burlington Free Press. Coming off a week in which Vermont’s Shrinkingest Newspaper failed to send a reporter to Gov. Shumlin’s epochal announcement on single-payer, posted a frankly embarrassing hit piece slamming the Shumlin administration for refusing to leak the subject of the presser in advance, failed to cover the release of a significant report on the Department for Children and Families, and “covered” Entergy’s new cost estimate for decommissioning Vermont Yankee by regurgitating a brief Associated Press newsbit, Executive Editor Michael Townsend has finally found something to brag about.

High school sports scores.

Okay now, I realize that local prep sports is an important service (and readership magnet) for newspapers. But “touchstone”? Yikes.

This is the kind of thing that drains all my sympathy for MIkey. I realize he’s in a tough spot, trying to keep his ship afloat with a skeleton crew and having to implement the oft-misguided diktats of Gannett Central. But when he pulls this kind of nonsense, he comes across as a gormless corporate cheerleader.

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