Monday, August 11, 2008

Beth Quinn Appreciation Day

Saturday, August 9, 2008 was Beth Quinn Appreciation Day at Thomas Bull Memorial Park in Montogmery, NY. For those of you who don't know, for over a quarter of a century Beth was the gifted and popular progressive columnist for the Times Herald-Record, which is (or was) the paper of note in the city of Middletown, NY. Earlier this year, that paper (which I now dismiss as the Times Herald-Wreckage) was purchased by Rupert Murdoch - the same Rupert Murdoch who has blighted our culture in recent years with FOX Noise and the New York Toast. Predictably, within a matter of weeks Beth was fired with no explanation. That paper, which proclaims on the front page of every issue, "SERVING THE HUDSON VALLEY AND THE CATSKILLS", has been bombarded with letters to the editor protesting her dismissal. They have yet to print a single one. Nor did they send a reporter to cover the event which was held this past weekend in her honor. So much for freedom of the press.

For those of you who live in Orange County and the surrounding area (an hour or so north of merrie ol' Manhattan), remember you only know about this because it has been printed in "The Rant". Don't hold your breath waiting for The Record to tell you about it.
For the last several years, at the close of each of her columns, Beth would remind her many, devoted readers exactly how many days were left until George W. Bush and crew were out of office. I have decided to pick up the torch in her honor:
There are one-hundred and sixty-two days left until this disgusting administration is history.
January 20, 2009 just can't come soon enough for me (and Beth!)
Tom Degan
Goshen, NY

Photograph of Beth Quinn and Tom Degan taken at Beth Quinn Appreciation Day, Thomas Bull Memorial Park, Montgomery, NY, August 9, 2008


Saturday also marked the fortieth anniversary of the birth of my longtime, beloved and very conservative Republican friend (I deal with it - day by day), Francesca Hubner Polli. Happy Birthday, Fran! You are truly loved - not only by me - but by every other person whose life has been graced by your friendship. We are all blessed. Now if I could only get you to vote for Barack Obama.

All my love,



At 9:41 AM, Blogger Unknown said...


Thank you for the update regarding Beth. I am an avid reader and fan of hers living in the south (Virginia), and need her wit and countdown (thank you for picking up the torch)to get through the week. She will surely be missed. Please keep us posted on her wherabouts, so I can link up and be encouraged/uplifted by her great humor wherever she goes. No, I am not a stalker, I just really miss her.

Best regards,

At 9:51 AM, Blogger Tom Degan said...

Dear Barbara,

I wrote to Beth just this morning. I asked her to start her own blog. If people knew that she was still out there writing and raising hell, she'd still have pleanty of readers.


Tom Degan

At 10:27 PM, Blogger stoney13 said...

I'm not familiar with the lady, but I wish I was!

At 9:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks for all you do.

At 4:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

thans for posting
I had been curious regarding the cause of Beth's departure from the paper. My wife and I have been reular readers of her column and neither of us remember hearing nor reading anything about her leaving/retiring from the paper. Although I did not always agree with Beth's perspective,I have admired her intelligence and her way of stringing sentences together to form a powerful image and/or potent idea. I particularly liked the "Bush count down clock," and the implied belief and reassurance that this is the USA...Things will begin to get better (hopefully) when the clock tuns to 0.

I will miss the laughter and the tears that Beth's writing elicited, but am glad that she is apparently healthy. Was there some sort of anouncement made prior to her departure? Was a final column ever printed? We must have been out of town when this happened.

please convey our thanks to her for the many good reads that she provided us over the years.

At 4:25 AM, Blogger Tom Degan said...


No, there was no "final Beth Quinn column". You would figure after a quarter of a century or more of being (along with the late, great Mike Levine) the voice of the Hudson Valley, they would at least have allowed her the dignity of saying goodbye.

Not on your life.

She was fired without notice or explanation. I have no doubt that, had Mike Levine left us a year and a half ago so unexpectedly, he would be looking for a job today as well.

Fuck Rupert Murdoch.


Tom Degan

At 12:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i often wondered what beth thought about the school teachers around the nation that are having relations with students-

At 11:32 PM, Blogger BeeMickTee said...

Tom - I just went online to the Record to search for Beth and found nothing - no explanation - just archives. If you speak to Beth, tell her she is missed. I think she might have been part of the reason that red Orange county was turning purple.

At 3:40 AM, Blogger Tom Degan said...


I have forwarded your little note to Beth. I've got a funny feeling that she'll be back.

All the best,

Tom Degan

At 7:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I lost use of my computer for a year, and no longer read the Record, so didn't know for sure what had happened until I did a search on her name just now.

I remember writing to her when Murkdoc took over the paper that she would probably soon be history. I thought hopefully that the new owners would want to keep at least some pretense of openness, but apparently I misoverestimated the conservative mind.

I think the best reaction might be to stage a mass unsubscription to the Record, and boycott advertising thses as much as is possible. I know there aren't that many papers in this area, so I wouldn't ask local businesses to not advertise. What would really be nice is to publish local news and views in a progressive web site on the internet, maybe with multimedia (video and audio included). Local news is getting harder and harder to find everywhere, simply because the media magnets can't get enough quick money from it.

At 8:23 AM, Blogger Tom Degan said...

Hello, Christopher....

Thanks for the comment. I forwarded it to Beth last night. She replied this morning by asking if you had left your e-mail address. If you read this, here is her e-mail address:

She would like to hear from you.

All the best,

Tom Degan

At 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wah wah wah/.//Beth quinn contributed nothing to the Times Herald Record or the hudson valley for that matter...

Hearing every week about the same crap..her stupid dogs..or the president....

well you know what look what we got...

how is all that hope and change going for you tom..have fun paying higher premuims you communist slime//

At 7:36 PM, Blogger Tom Degan said...




Tom Degan

PS - You should have dropped by Beth Quinn Appreciation Day. You might have learned a thing or two about all she contributed to our little Hudson Valley.


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