I once got the following advice from a Globie: Every now and then, when it's warranted, point out something the paper's done well--and leave it at that. No asterisks, disclaimers, snide asides, etc.
Binyamin Appelbaum's* troubling examination of the housing projects in Barack Obama's former Illinois state senate district, and of Obama's relationships with the developers who've renovated and operated those projects, certainly deserved this treatment. But I didn't laud it when it ran last week--and now, unfortunately, there is a big fat asterisk. According to sources inside the Globe, Appelbaum (who still qualifies as a recent Globe hire) is leaving the paper for the Washington Post.
One Globe staffer who spoke with DQM linked Appelbaum's departure to the Globe's worrisome financial arc. A second disagreed, saying that the Post has had its eye on Appelbaum ever since his coverage of sketchy homebuilder Beazer Homes USA garnered the Charlotte Observer a Polk Award and a Pulitzer-finalist slot. I tried to reach Appelbaum earlier today, but haven't heard back; if I do, and if he's willing to discuss the reasons for his departure, I'll post them here.
UPDATE: "I've accepted a position as the Post's national banking reporter," Appelbaum says via email. "It's an exciting opportunity for me, not a reflection on the Globe. I am in journalism largely because I grew up reading the Globe, and I continue to be inspired by the journalism produced here."
* Not "Applebaum," as I originally (and incorrectly) wrote.