If there's a trend to Larry Platt's columnist hires at the Philadelphia Daily News—aside from the fact that his "new"voices are familiar faces—it's that many of them seem not to bother being in Philadelphia that much.
Buzz Bissinger lives at least part-time in the Pacific Northwest. Ombudsman Richard Aregood is planted in North Dakota. And Marc Lamont Hill's main professional gig these days is at Columbia University ... in New York. Ed Rendell apparently still lives in Pennsylvania, at least, but he's writing about sports—and despite the former governor's enthusiasm, I actually don't care at all what he thinks about the topic. (I've tried reading his sports columns. They're boring, and would be utterly unremarkable were it not for the fact that Big Ed was writing them.)
Now, these guys all have far deeper roots in Philadelphia than I do, admittedly, so my grounds for criticism are maybe pretty thin. But the great thing about the Daily News has been its relentless focus on the city; filling up the pages with celebrities who have one foot out the door seems like a departure from that mission.
*Part of my ongoing series to ensure I never work for a Philadelphia newspaper, apparently.