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Jun 27 , 2017


Dispatches From Away

by Andrew Douglas

How low can Nova Scotia’s former paper of record go? It’s likely safe to say the quality of the product hasn’t hit bottom yet.
While it’s well-known to people who are keeping track of the Chronicle Herald as it circles the drain that an angry, late middle-aged man named James Risdon has been contributing articles to the paper’s business section from Bathurst, New Brunswick for over a year now, would you believe that a lady is waxing poetic in the paper about the glories of a do-it-yourself Peggy’s Cove seaside lobster boil from her home office on Vancouver Island?
Although her byline appeared in the Herald starting last year right up until May, sources say Ucluelet resident Jackie Carmichael continues to work a regular shift at the paper from her prime vantage point, over 6,000 kilometres away.
And she’s a wily one, Jackie is. Two different sources have told me that she has a tendency to pretend she’s in the province while making calls for her now-unbylined articles, making comments about the local weather, a la, “Oh, nice day we’re having today,” despite the fact that the caller ID makes a liar out of her.
Among her bylined pieces still featured on the Herald’s website are a travel story on Antwerp, Belgium from January, and another from March about how Canada came of age as a country during Vimy Ridge.
It would seem that Herald management — that’s Sarah Dennis and Mark Lever — aren’t bright enough to realize that they should at least have their scabs writing stuff that has something to do with Nova Scotia. Otherwise, get it off the wire. No point in paying some chick from four timezones away to try and re-invent the wheel.
I would be remiss not to mention another notable Herald scab who does the vast majority of his work from Upper Canada.
Although sports reporter Jose Colorado has at least been to Halifax before — he was in town for the university sports Final 8 basketball thingy in March — he works less high-profile stuff, local soccer and the N.S. Senior Baseball League and such from Hogtown. Pat Connolly is rolling over in his grave right now, I’d imagine.
As of this writing, the Herald newsroom has been on strike for 514 days.

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