Cancer, Spin-Control and the Shrinking VT Press Corps! | Freyne Land
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Sunday, February 11, 2007

Cancer, Spin-Control and the Shrinking VT Press Corps!

Posted By on Sun, Feb 11, 2007 at 12:28 PM

click to enlarge pf_feb_10.jpg

That's yours truly (at right), the shrinking yours-truly, caught at Capital Grounds yesterday. Went to Montpeculiar to meet an old pal. Nice town and what's really nice about it is the fact it isn't Burlington or Chittenden County. Maybe I should move?

Perhaps, when I finish the chemotherapy at the Mary Fanny. This is week three of 18 weeks of treatment for cancer - my surprise for 2007! Dose #2 of the 6 planned all-day intravenous doses is set for next Friday.

So far so good.

And the mail, thank god,  keeps coming. Truly lifts ones spirits:

I’ve counted on you to give me a certain bent to the news for almost a quarter of century now, but this is going a little over the top even for you, don’t ya think?  I mean, sucking up to the hospital and all!

Seriously, I was shocked to go on-line this morning and read about your new relationship with a tumor.  I ain’t religious (born Protestant….like I said…. I ain’t religious) but I do want you to know that there are very positive vibes coming your way from Manchester, Vt.  You’re one of the toughest people I know so I have little doubt that you will come through this just fine.  Besides, you’re just too miserable, caustic, annoying, and a big pain-in-the-ass for some (not me mind you), so that should clinch it right there.

Get back at it.  We can’t have the pols of Vermont thinking that they can kick back now can we?

Get well,


Thanks, S.

Will do.

Especially with the way the Douglas Administration has pretty much hired the Montpeculiar press corps as reported in AP Writer Ross Sneyd's fine feature in the Sunday papers titled "The Spin Doctor is In."

WATERBURY — Public relations under Gov. James Douglas is moving out of a broom closet — figuratively and literally.

Thereare at least 14 people scattered throughout state government whoseprimary responsibility is dealing with the media, earning salariesranging from $47,444 to $80,017. A total of $768,738 is spent annuallyin pay for the "communicators," as they're known in the administration.

More here.

And the 14 spin doctors do not include veteran broadcast journalist Anson Tebbetts who recently left WGOP, er, sorry, WCAX-TV to become a new deputy secretary of agriculture.

The fact is, the press, the Fourth Estate in Vermont, has never been this thin of a line since I started in 1979. And there are no signs the shrinkage is going to be reversed anytime soon.

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

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About The Author

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne, 1949-2009, wrote the weekly political column "Inside Track," which originated in the Vanguard Press in the mid 1980s; he brought it to Seven Days in 1995. He retired it shortly before his death in January, 2009. We all miss him.

More by Peter Freyne


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