Longtime Gossip Columnist Departs Over “Politics”
FOR THE REAL SCOOP ON THIS STORY, SEE J’AMY BROWN’S MONTECITO MONTAGE HERE.
The rumors are true: Martha Smilgis (pictured here by J’Amy Brown), the author of the popular News-Press column “The Dish,” left the paper last week. According to insider reports picked up by the SB Media Blog early last week, Smilgis and the upper management had conflicts over politics. Secondhand reports suggest that Smilgis’ recent coverage of an event at the Fess Parker with Bianca Jagger peeved off someone on the top-floor, to which they told her they didn’t want her covering anything political. Despite attempts by at least one Independent.com contributor to reach Martha for the inside scoop, she has not yet responded.
What exactly the politics of the top News-Press brass are these days remains quite a conundrum — we’re not entirely sure what political word combines Libertarian and environmentalist, not to mention encompassing the seemingly contradictory stances of anti-tax, pro-alternative transportation, anti-growth, pro-business, anti-union, pro-suppression of free speech, anti-journalism, and pro-newspaper ownership. But whatever they’re calling themselves, it seems that Martha doesn’t quite fit, much like the more than 30 other editors, reporters, layout people, and assorted newspaperfolk who’ve also quit or been fired.
One lingering question: Who does? Will it end up being only Arthur, Wendy, and Scott Steepleton running the show in a few weeks, plus whatever youngsters they can throw enough pennies at?