Friday, May 09, 2008

Hugh Reynolds Let Go by Freeman


BREAKING NEWS : This is the beginning of the end for the Daily Freeman. Their best asset is gone, like or dislike the guy he was a great political editor, I didn't always agree with his opinions but I have a tremendous amount of respect for him and as someone involved in journalism, he was someone I looked up to.


While many people are happy that Hugh Reynolds is gone, remember that the Freeman just ended this guy's career without the proper respect of an employee that dedicated over 30 years to their organization. To Reynolds this was not just a job, you can't do it for as long as he did if it was, this was his passion.

This is the equivalent of an attorney losing his law license. Being the political editor of the Freeman was what he did and what he will be remembered for. I understand that the Freeman is in financial trouble but a proper send off would have been more appropriate then just laying the guy off as if he was some regular employee. When you think of the Freeman you think of Hugh Reynolds, not Ira Fusfeld or anyone else. This move for the Freeman was not a smart one, and I think in the end they will regret it.

When you do something you love you never have to work a day in your life, and I think was true for Hugh Reynolds. I wish him the best in retirement. His departure from the Freeman is probably a good thing, the owner of the franchise just got knocked off the NY Stock exchange and it is now cheaper to buy their stock than to buy a copy of the Freeman. In two years the paper will be history, like their credibility.

Hope to see you around, Reynolds.

54 comments:

Bill Berardi said...

I hope this is a joke. Hugh was the only one keeping the politicos on their toes - I am afraid that now we will be like a Communist State with only filtered controlled press spun by the taxpayer fed leeches.

Anonymous said...

Fusfeld should be next.

Anonymous said...

Blaber, people read Reynolds, but they didn't respect him. He didn't do his research. He played favorites. His time has passed. I'm glad the Freeman finally realized his column was a waste of time.

Anonymous said...

I like Hugh. Nice guy. Bad temper. But he's from a different era in this town. The Freeman will probably miss him for awhile and then people will forget about him.

Anonymous said...

With their best asset gone there is no other reason to read the Freeman.

Kevin Cahill will not allow himself to be interviewed and Jim Sottile is quoted through eMails now.

Forget it....time to move on.

Tell Ira to make sure he yells, "Last one out turn off the lights!"

Anonymous said...

Blab's any speculation on who his replacement will be??

Anonymous said...

When is it changing over to Blaber's Freeman? I love that comptroller poll! Doesn't Elliot know that it's obvious he's stuffing the ballot? Yeah, real likely a locally famous screwup from Ellenville who mismanages his village budget would even be considered for a higher office. Lmao.

Anonymous said...

Like him or not, respect him or not......most people with political interests couldn't wait to read him!

Anonymous said...

Let's see if the Freeman gets that story right - if they have the guts to print it

Anonymous said...

Blaber, unless Reynolds quit or retired, the Freeman must not think doing without him is the beginning of the end, like you say it is. You did say they let him go, didn't you?

Anonymous said...

When I think of the Freeman, I don't think of Hugh Reynolds or Ira Fusfeld. I think of a local newspaper. Some people will miss Reynolds, some people won't. When you grow up, you'll understand.

Jeremy Blaber said...

Part of that local newspaper was Hugh Reynolds. Now they will replace his column with more AP stories that are not local or community minded

Jeanette Provenzano said...

I believe Hugh Reynolds retired. I don't have the inside line but it makes sense. He is, I'm sure, as tired of the political scene as anyone. Over my 20 yr career as a County Legislator, I enjoyed reading his columm (back to when he had his own paper.)Over all, he treat me pretty good. When I was upset over an article I let him know about, we would have words, and when he gave me credit I thanked him. I will miss him and the column, The freeman will not be the same without him.

Anonymous said...

Na Na Na Na, Na Na Na Na, Hey ey ey Goodbye!

Thank God that Idiot is Gone!

Anonymous said...

Reynolds was a little bitter at the end, he must have sensed this coming.
You have to give Cahill credit, he knew what scumbags were running the paper as was proven by how they unceremoniously dumped Reynolds. How Fusfeld put someones life's work ahead of a nameless, faceless corporation is beyond me.

Anonymous said...

Freeman needs to dump payroll to simply stay afloat. Hugh today, Ira Tomorrow...It's a shame, because the paper itself is far more profitable and the financial crisis is a reflection of the poor management of its parent company, Journal Register. Blame their greed for Michigan media outlets, and their failure to turn them around. A decade ago, when the paper was owned by Goodsen Enterprises, the Freeman was a great paper. To see how its quality has steadily declined over the years to that just above toilet paper is sad commentary.

Homer Bush Jr.

Anonymous said...

705pm : Why pick on Elliott? It looks as if Donaldson and Elliott's people are voting on the poll. It's been pretty close from the start.

BeenThereDoneThat said...

Does anyone remember political columnist Bert Burns of the Poughkeepsie Journal back in the 1970's?

While Reynolds speculated with election results and was proved wrong most of the time; his favorite axiom concerning potential candidates was "money talks, BS walks".

Taking that analogy one step further:
The Freemen is broke and Reynolds exits the political playing field for good.

Anonymous said...

Blaber, maybe they'll replace him with different local opinions. Who knows. You don't, that's for sure. I'm tired of reading Reynolds. I'm sorry if he's out of a job if he wanted to stay, but I won't miss him in the paper.

Anonymous said...

How is Alan Lomita going to get his name in the paper now?

dan gartenstein said...

Have to agree with what Madsen said on his blog. Whether he was right or wrong about an issue or an election, whether his rumor reporting turned out to be acurate or not, most of us who follow local issues open the Freeman in the morning and read his column.

When he attended a public meeting or an event, his arrival was always noticed and his presence changed the tone and direction of countless meetings that he attended. He would arrive quietly, slip in the back of the room and almost immediately have some impact.

As someone who was repeatedly mentioned in both negative and positve light (I mention negative first for a reason) I always recognized that he was doing his job and no one could doubt that he believed in what he was doing.

I hope that his departure is being misreported and that this was mutual. I also hope that he will be given the sendoff and retirement that his years of service merit. If the Freeman does not do the right thing, perhaps certain members of the community will step up and arrange something.

Basically, just one more reason to go right to the sports section.

Vince Perry Sr. said...

Hugh Reynolds was an absolute professional and an honorable man. Men like him should leave on their own terms and never be asked to leave. Tremendous loss for the Freeman. Goodbye Freeman, Hello Middletown Record.

Anonymous said...

I hear king Mario will give him a job writing commentary on why republicans should support an independent. Bonachoke will offer to pay half the salary for writing speeches and press releases.

Anonymous said...

Several years ago, when I complained to the publisher that Hugh Reynolds unfairly and inaccurately minimized Democrats (meaning he misinformed readers with personal opinion based upon obvious and verifiable facts that that Reynolds simply ignored because they complicated the opinion he wanted to express in his opinion column) Ira Fusfield defended Hugh Reynolds as "as equal opportunity minimizer" to suggest that he treated Republicans and Democrats equally - bad. This column should have never have been good enough for Ulster County. At the end, I remember that Fusfeld and Reynolds were unapologetic about his false political column. Good riddance.
-Guy Thomas Kempe

Anonymous said...

Should a political editor be tough on candidates and elected officials? Absolutely.

Should a political editor adhere to reporting the facts and respect basic rules of journalism? Absolutely.

Reynolds made stuff up as he went and at any other paper would have been fired a long time ago. Do you think Ira's pal at the Times Union would have put up with sloppy reporting? Not for a minute.

For years, Reynolds had "untouchable" status at the Freeman because helped sell papers. Now the ship is sinking. Too much dead wood.

In celebration of Hugh's departure, perhaps Sottile and Cahill will pay for a ticker tape parade down Broadway. I know where they can get LOTS of scrap newsprint.

H. Murphy said...

I had the priviledge to work with columinists like Pete Hamill, Jimmy Breslin, Mike Lupica, Bill Gallo at The New York Daily News years ago and I'm proud that Kingston had such a dedicated man as Hugh Reynolds help bring the truth to the people for many years. Half the Universities across the USA would love to have a Journalism Department headed by a man talented as Hugh. And I'm proud to sign my name also. Good Luck Hughie! H. Murphy, Kingston NY

Anonymous said...

Mr. Murphy obviously did not have the pleasure of being falsely publicly humiliated by inaccurate and sloppy reporting done by Reynolds.

Then, when corrections we requested they were blown off by Reynolds and top brass at the paper.

Remember the time he reported the wife of a public servant had brain cancer. She did not. That is serious stuff. Other incidents are too numerous to count.

Thank you Mr. Fusfeld for giving Reynolds his "Last Writes."

Anonymous said...

I hope we do see more AP articles in the press now - and more from the syndicated columnists. Still, we need a local person to cover local events honestly and objectively - so I hope someone, perhaps at a lower rate of pay (?) steps up to the plate.

I'm thrilled with the Kingston Times, more often as not. But I also hope the Kingston Freeman stays afloat.

I don't think there can be too many news resources. There is a lot going on in this city.

Anonymous said...

It's not Reynolds that is the problem. It's the Freeman.

Casting him off the ship is just more of the same Journal Register Company "management". Many do not know it, but Reynolds often took the heat for editorials written by others. In particular, Adamis'* rants (he of endless scatological references)were often blamed on Reynolds.

For the sake of the remaining employees and the community, the captain of the sinking ship should leave gracefully, Fusfeld and his management crew have taken a small town newspaper and turned it into, well, nothing!

Here is to hoping a rescuer is on the way.

Reynolds had his obvious warts but his smarmy, cynical writing was, I believe, management driven. Good luck, Reynolds.

* Have you ever met Adamis? Something is truly wrong with that individual.

Anonymous said...

to H Murphy.

Reynolds relied on second and sometimes 3rd or 4th hand accounts, bar room talk,and diner gossip for his columns. Rarely at public meetings, he somehow had information about them that invariably was slanted by the person who fed him the stories. He reported that as fact and it was anything but fact. He would then defend it a s being an opinion column. The problem is, he never would acknowledge that what he printed or was printing was hearsay, innuendo or what turned out to be outright lies. That is the problem locals have with the man you say brought "truth" to the people. He brought something alright, but it was not truth.

So Mr or Mrs. H. Murphy, about the universities that would love to have him, please provide me those names so my children do not go there.

Anonymous said...

The Freeman is a bitter paper run by bitter people. Fusfeld's arrogant refusal to debate Kevin Cahill, except in private at the Freeman's headquarters is offensive. The Freeman, on a near weekly basis publishes some of the nastiest editorials across the entire State about our dysfunctional government.

However, when you put the writers of those editorials on the spot, as Kevin Cahill did to Fufeld when Fusfeld was on WGHQ AM 920, and called for a public debate of what the Freeman's editorial page said, Fusfeld refused. Fusfeld said he would only debate Cahill in private, in the Daily Freeman's own offices, covered by the Daily Freeman's own reporters. That was when the Freeman lost credibility with me.

Reynolds grew increasingly bitter toward those he covered. Many of us feel the same way about the people he covered, but he was paid, at least when he was writing news stories for his objectivity, which he lost a long time ago.

The Freeman's editorial Board and leadership needs to step out from the shadows and stand in public and go toe to toe with Kevin Cahill and some of the other politicians they demean. Then we the public can come to our own conclusions about who is right and who is just writing what they want.

Anonymous said...

The Freeman in general has a reputation of sloppy, inaccurate reporting. Whether you like Hugh's column or not--it was the least of the Freeman's troubles. Ira Fusfeld's bad choices and greed has run the paper into the ground. Mr. Fusfeld has made a lot of money capitalizing on other people's misfortunes, let's all boycott this rag and enjoy watching his "baby" become it's own Page One Headline.

Anonymous said...

The Freeman--its voice, style and management--is from a bygone era. While a newspaper should not become chummy with anyone they should by the same token not take out its abusive inner style on its customers.

Will someone please forward this blog to the board of directors of the Journal Register company.

Although, I am not sure that will help. Their former president was once credited with checking reporter's odometer's to make sure that the miles they were billing on expense accounts were accurate.

The fish at this company maybe rotten from the head down. At least they have something to wrap the dead fish in.

Anonymous said...

Just for the record, the last time Hugh Reynolds mentioned me in his column (this spring when I spoke at the Southern Ulster Chamber of Commerce) he inexplicably left the final "e" off my last name, misstated my title and misidentified the agency I work for. All these matter-of-facts were revealed in the written press release from the Chamber, and also appear on my business card and the agency website. How much research or fact checking would that take?

Guy Thomas Kempe
Director of Comunity Development
Rural Ulster Preservation Company
(RUPCO)

At best, Reynolds was sloppy, lazy or deliberately uninformed.

Anonymous said...

I keep reading how much people liked the Freeman in the old days. Seems to me, the same people who were running it in the old days are same people who are running it now.

Anonymous said...

Cahill is an elected politician. Fusfeld is the publisher of a newspaper. Why should he want to debate Cahill? He's not running for anything. I don't know who writes the editorials, but if they make Cahill angry, they're OK in my book.

Anonymous said...

Everything about the freeman is stale. Old school doesn't play well in the Internet Age.

Anonymous said...

Fusfeld is the big wig there. He makes the decisions that end up in the editorial columns. He made some serious,personal derogatory comments about Cahill and the Legislature as a whole. That is what Cahill challenged Fusfeld to debate about. Publicly like Fusfeld publishes his opinions, only this time, Cahill would have a chance to argue his side.

Anonymous said...

Hugh should sign on with Ulster Publishing or the Ulster County Press. A once a week gig would be perfect. Often his columns were Kingston centric and not of interest to those from other towns. I like Hugh, and hope we'll be able to continue to read his commentary. The fact that he often pissed off everyone is a sign of even-handedness.

Anonymous said...

You mean the Freeman has been making negative comments about the New York State Legislature and Cahill is mad about it? The New York State Legislature is criticized all the time in other papers I read. They deserve every drop they get.

Jeremy Blaber said...

1223, the problem is and this has nothing to do with Reynolds, the Freeman does not cover the State Legislature, they run AP stories on all their state coverage. Which is fine, but how can you run negative or positive editorials about the legislature or individual legislators when you don't know what is going on. It would be like me covering the town of Olive board...I'm never there so who am I to talk about it.

Anonymous said...

Too bad Hugh wasn't a county legislator - he could have a nice pension, health insurance and maybe appointed to a commisioner of jurors job to boot or maybe a City employee - he could get high paid jobs for his kids and a building named after him when he dies.

Anonymous said...

The Legislature certainly deserves some criticism, but the Freeman tends to get very personal. In some cases even resorting to lowbrow name calling. Then there is Ira's little side job on NPR. I heard Ira call Cahill "Silver's butt buddy" with my own ears. Is that what an editor or publisher should be saying? I don't know, but to me there is a line that was definitely crossed at the freeman. Defending the Freeman?

Anonymous said...

Blaber, you don't personally cover the legislature, but you have to make a decision on who to vote for, don't you? You can have an opinion about the legislature or Washington or Ulster's legislature without being there.

Anonymous said...

2:56. You really should see what the New York City columnists and talk radio people say about the state legislature. That's where the real tough stuff is.

Anonymous said...

to 2:56....None of those respectable press outlets single out individuals and call them juvenile names. The freeman does. BIG DIFFERENCE!

Anonymous said...

6:14. Go back and read Hammond and Goodwin in the News and Dicker in the Post.

Anonymous said...

I knew Hugh Reynold's to be a mean and vicious man who used his column to spread falsehoods. All I can say is, WHAT GOES AROUND, COMES AROUND. You deserve this "early retirement" Mr. Reynolds. You REALLY do.

Mr Jody C Edinger said...

Best of Luck Mr. Reynolds.....

Anonymous said...

Replacements for Hugh Reynolds?

Paul Kirby?

I notice Bob Mitchell still writes for them.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Bill--it is a joke. It is a joke heaped upon a joke wrapped in the circus called politics that you have noted many a time in other, less convincing ways as you did here ol' boy. Reynolds was a convenient foil for the politicos;now the politicos have no target and nothing to play off either--Lord have mercy--their absolute WORST NIGHTMARE. This also cannot be a winning business combination, at least not in the short run, until the public including politicos has a chance to adjust to this relative 8.0 quake on the local political Richter Scale.
I predict they will put a factory or a store, maybe an IGA, where the Freeman is now, unless Fusfeld decides to do something to resurrect his error. The Kingston Times will ascend and so will The Lincoln Eagle.
Jeannette Provenzano obviously thinks of a man retiring as something of the macho event that could be the only explanation in her high and particular perversions in her brain of the original feminism as well as at least a bit of "wishful thinking"("say it ain't so, politico")...how sad and predictable but how typically...(well, that too ya know).

Anonymous said...

What sells newspapers? Controversy.

Freeman now has no teeth or agitator to rattle sacred cows. No investigative journalists to dig and uncover true news.

Blaber news has more of that than the deadly freeman. Turn the Freeman building into a rest home for retired journalists.

Anonymous said...

pp

Anonymous said...

Forget rest home for retired journalists...how about graveyard.