Boston Globe falls victim to Trump Derangement Syndrome
Standards have fallen so far at the once-prestigious Boston Globe that the paper has resorted to a clumsy imitation of The Onion, publishing a purportedly satirical front page from 2017 displaying what it projects would be the news if President Trump took office. I can only conclude that a mental disability, Trump Derangement Syndrome, has overcome the editorial page staff. Brian Stelter, the CNN media critic who formerly had the media beat for the New York Times (which used to own the Globe) was too charitable, writing that it “resembles an April Fools Day prank by a college newspaper.”
Here is the front page:
And here is tweet from the Globe, proudly publicizing it, and demonstrating that the editorial page product could easily be confused with the news product, something that ought to disturb the news side of the paper deeply.
It looks to me as if this stupid trick is backfiring on the Globe. Joe Concha of Mediaite, no Trump supporter, is scathing:
The Boston Globe — once a proud, profitable publication — is reaching the end of its rope. The New York Times once tried to save the Globe in 2001 and sold it three ago at a 95 percent loss (NYT paid $1.1 billion while only fetching $70 million upon selling it). Its delivery woes after hiring a new California-based company were so apparent this year that its own writers had to help pitch in to get the paper to their final destinations. Job cuts via buyouts and layoffs continue to shrink the paper to a skeleton of its former self. Circulation and revenue have suffered as a result, as the Globe doesn’t even rank in the Top 20 on the circulation front, trailing much smaller cities/regions evidenced by it getting beat by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and Las Vegas Review.
Most papers are struggling in a digital media age, that’s understood. But the Globe has won 23 Pulitzers since 1966, including in 2003 after its investigation into sexual abuse in the Catholic Church that spawned 2015’s Best Picture winner in Spotlight (my review here). Most impressive about the movie? The professionalism and meticulous nature of its reporters and their allergy to all-things sensational and phony. The Globe should be doing better than losing $85 million annually.
And those two words serve as an appropriate transition to what the Globe has become as evidenced by its front page full of fake news this morning in its Ideas section in a pathetic effort to save a sinking ship (conveniently leaked to the Drudge Report yesterday to create buzz in advance). The sole focus, of course, is Donald Trump… and what would happen to the country in the eyes of the Globe editorial board if he somehow won the presidency.
It would idiotic to do so, but one could, as an exercise, produce a similar page for President Bernie Sanders, detailing the flight of capital, the collapse of banks, the inability of pension funds to pay beneficiaries owing to the stock market collapse, the mass emigration of talented and ambitious people, the shuttering of businesses. And of course, the riots.
Embedded in the many assumptions the Globe makes is the notion that deportation of border violators is somehow radical. Haven’t they heard the Obama administration’s (phony – because the metrics have been changed) claim to have deported more people than any previous administration?
I just wonder how much damage has been done to the Globe’s viability? Now that it is a joke, there is even less reason to subscribe. The Onion does a far better job.
And Boston has another newspaper, the feisty Herald. If I had to guess, the Globe’s loss will be the Herald’s gain.