Mitt Romney, Scott Brown, Eric Fehrnstrom, aftermath also depicts the decline of journalism

Media Guy Eric Fehrnstrom being blamed for President Wantabe Mitt Romney and Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown defeats. A former dynamic Investigative Reporter like Many who Lacked Career Opportunities in the Declining Media Being Forced Into Public Relations

The Boston Herald wrote a recent front page news article about its former reporter turned political guru Eric Fehrnstrom of the Shawmut  Group Consulting Group I took exception to the column and writer that has raised my reflection. This one time promising investigative journalist whose lack of career job opportunities in the declining media apparently forced him to become a public relations spokesperson.

I recall Eric as a new reporter working at the statehouse for the Boston Herald. He was an excellent of being an inquisitive investigative reporter working under fellow reporters Jon Wells, Bob Connolly, and Peter Lucas. Wells and Fehrnstrom as a team worked above and beyond scooping the Globe and plying their trades through hard work.

Eric was always fair and objective as well as helpful. When other reporters would only listen to the establishment elected politicos to always gain stories and access, both Eric and Jon Wells would listen to those of us seeking a reporter to expose improprieties. These two would even report our accurate views even in contradiction to the Herald Editorial Board.

Unfortunately for Eric, the career path in the media was not there and the wage scale quite low. Journalism then lost a bright competent investigative reporter.

Supporting a family, he stunned me when he accepted a job with State Treasurer Joe Malone, later Governor Mitt Romney and Scott Brown.

With Malone, I and others who stood up to the waste, fraud, and abuse in the State Treasurer’s Office found Eric as a hard hitting adversary. We had several confrontations during legislative hearings before the Public Service committee and at times quite caustic.

There were also differences when working later for Mitt Romney and at times in agreement.

I do not agree with Eric on many issues. However, he was always available to have a discussion on issues that I disagreed with him on.

Journalism and the media have changed in the last 20 years and newspapers are becoming relics of the past. The free press that our citizens expect and taken for granted is in rapid decline. I just imagine what Eric Fehrnstrom could have been like so many other potential investigative reporters if newspapers and investigative reporting was not in such decline. There are so little or no job opportunities and stable career path for those in the broadcast or print media that must shun the profession to make a living for themselves and their families. This further is evidenced by the decline in the statehouse press corps and the almost distinct current population which a shell of decades past.

Unfortunately, the Herald did not amplify the decline of career journalists. It is disappointing to observe the carnage of a once great profession.