Friday, October 30, 2009

He's Outta Here!

Yes, it's true. Travis Armstrong has left the building. He has resigned as editorial page editor of the Santa Barbara News-Press.

The news was first broken by the News-Press itself in a breaking news crawl on the website time-stamped at 5:41 pm Friday evening.

Although he has jumped ship there's no evidence that he was pushed overboard, forced to walk the plank or even perp-walked out of the building.

My information is that he and his longtime partner, Greg Gauthier, have purchased a home in the Palm Springs area and are relocating there.

At most newspapers, the editorial page editor is a faceless name. But by working for an owner who is obsessively reclusive and shy as Wendy McCaw, Armstrong became the face of the News-Press and a target of those who despised it.

And yes, his scowling face regularly graced the opinion pages whenever one of his op-ed page columns ran.

Under Armstrong's reign, many came to regard the tone of the editorial pages as "humorless" and "uncivil." Public officials, especially progressive Democrats, were pilloried on a regular basis.

Targets of his wrath were rarely given the opportunity to respond to his editorials and op-ed page columns.

When the news of his resignation broke Friday the local social networks exploded. Here is a sampling of some of the comments that were posted on my Facebook and Twitter feeds reacting to the news of Armstrong's departure.

Now there is a bombshell.

Did Yolanda escort him out? Was anyone left to say 'F U Travis'?

He could make some money writing a tell- all about Wendy. C'mon, Travis, spill the beans!

Thank you, God!

Even "Sara de la Guerra" has come out of retirement to blog about it.

Yes, if Santa Barbarans have a little more pep in their step this weekend or a little more glide in their stride as they stroll the Farmer's Market on Saturday, you'll know why.
© 2009 by Craig Smith and