Latest Articles

How to fix everything

I'm not a big fan of reform.
Politics + Other Mistakes
By AL DIAMON  |  January 25, 2013

A shot at progressive reform

With their sizeable majorities, the Democrats' reconquest of the Maine House and Senate could lead to a rebirth of progressive politics in the state — to reforms in health care, taxes, social services, and other issues.
But will the Dems seize the day?
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  January 04, 2013

Education reform: The battle ahead

Five years ago, as George W. Bush was pushing No Child Left Behind, his younger, even sleazier sibling Neil was picking the initiative's pockets.
Scream On
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  December 28, 2012

Resetting Boston's schools

Between now and the end of the year, Boston will wrestle with one of the most important policy decisions it has faced in years: reinventing the 23-year-old system used to assign 56,000 public-school students to 129 schools.

By EDITORIAL  |  October 12, 2012

Maine a model for solitary-confinement reform

In the first-ever congressional hearing June 19 on the widespread use of solitary confinement in America's prisons, Senator Richard Durbin spoke favorably of the Maine prison system's substantial reduction of inmate isolation as he pressed the federal p
Setting Examples
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  July 06, 2012
TJI: Mass Pirate Party Conference

Putting the 'Arrrr' in DRM

Forget Talk Like a Pirate Day. In the 2012 elections, November 6 will be Vote Like a Pirate Day — if you happened to have joined a growing number of hackers and Internet activists and registered as a member of the Massachusetts Pirate Party (MAPP).
Booty Call
By ARIEL SHEARER  |  March 09, 2012

Real pension reform? No thanks; Smokin’ Joe; a call for winter coats

As Phillipe and Jorge go to press, we noted that more than 30 amendments were being proposed for the pension reform bill at the State House.
Last-minute shopping
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  November 18, 2011

School reform comes to Maine

Of all the conservative policies pushed through in the wake of Maine's Republican takeover last year, there is one on which the right and left may be able to find common ground.
What we know, and what we have yet to learn, about changing education
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  August 19, 2011
property tax 3

Heavy burden

In 2012, collections on homes, buildings, and private infrastructure will feed more than 65 percent of Boston's $2.4 billion budget.
More than any other city on the East Coast, Boston is addicted to property taxes. Could the Hub be hitting a crippling tax-levy ceiling soon?
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  August 19, 2011

Digging into school nutrition

It's not only in the classroom that change is coming to Maine schools. Local cafeterias are revamping their curricula as well.
What's for lunch?
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  August 19, 2011
after the debt crisis ride

The debt crisis is only on hold

The United States was only hours away from joining in the international community of deadbeats and bunko artists — think Greece, Spain, Italy, Ireland, Portugal — when President Barack Obama signed the legislation raising the national debt ceiling and cu
Plus, what does congressman Bill Keating have against Cuban families?
By EDITORIAL  |  August 05, 2011


Pledge class

Whether it's to flags, fraternities, or charities, privileged douchebags love pledging allegiance.
This campaign season, you’re not really committed to defending the GOP agenda unless you sign on the dotted line

Reform comes to the supermax

Less than three months into his job, Maine's new corrections commissioner Joseph Ponte has begun to dramatically reform the Maine State Prison's long-troubled solitary-confinement "supermax" unit.
New commissioner cuts population by more than half; prisoner-rights advocates help in the reform
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  May 27, 2011

Activist and friend hope for DREAM Act passage

Jessy Galvéz is kneeling at the altar of El Sinai Church in Portland, at an interfaith vigil supporting the DREAM Act.
Immigrant rights
By ANNE HOFFMAN  |  December 10, 2010

Less of you

When the Legislature gets reformed, things get worse.
Reform is a bad idea
By AL DIAMON  |  August 20, 2010

Immigration activists miss a chance

New England activists had what may have been their biggest opportunity to thrust immigration front and center this past weekend — and some local activists are disappointed that the movement didn't make a better showing.
Off Base
By MARCELA GARCIA  |  July 16, 2010


Taxi turmoil

Taxis are an under-appreciated and often little-considered component in urban mass-transit systems. They fill the gaps left by the MBTA and offer a sort of curb-to-curb, citywide Zipcar service.
Plus, controlling local health costs
By EDITORIAL  |  March 19, 2010

Patrick's paradox

Governor Deval Patrick may be the incumbent, but he enters the race for the most thankless statewide job in Massachusetts as an underdog.
No shakes as a political operator, Deval has scored with many policies
By EDITORIAL  |  March 12, 2010

Roast pork

Back in January, Governor Deval Patrick declared a "season of significant government reform" on Beacon Hill.
As our state's bumbling, craven, and inept elected officials stumble toward summer, we get a few good laughs out of their promises for reform
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  May 29, 2009

Spare Change?

A tension lies at the heart of the Obama presidency. After 100 days in office, the public still seems uncertain how to interpret the historic nature of the election last November.
At the 100-day mark, Barack Obama still doesn't have a clear mandate for sweeping reforms
By STEVEN STARK  |  May 01, 2009