Latest Articles

Roger Williams gets his due

Roger Williams — the iconoclast who founded Rhode Island nearly 400 years ago with a radical call for religious tolerance — is held in high regard in these parts. But he is a little-known figure nationwide.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  January 06, 2012

Tourist trap

To hear the experts talk, you'd think reducing the state budget by up to $100 million is a task only slightly less difficult than walking into a ritzy ocean-side restaurant without a reservation on a tourist-clogged Saturday night in the summer and expec
State budgeting
By AL DIAMON  |  October 21, 2011

State to workers: just die, already; a variety of occupations

As Governor Lincoln Chafee, Treasurer Gina Raimondo, and state legislators who have been forced to get out of bed earlier than usual — poor dears — buckle up and take on the job of reforming the state's mutilated pension system, Phillipe and Jorge know
Pension pains
By  |  October 15, 2011
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In a job-starved economy, casinos are still a good bet

As Beacon Hill considers — yet again — an expanded gaming proposal, some say that the opportunity has passed. We disagree, and continue to support a carefully crafted plan for bringing resort casinos to Massachusetts.
The issue provoked a rare show of common purpose on Beacon Hill
By EDITORIAL  |  September 02, 2011
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For Memphis Three, a bitter guilty plea

On Friday — after inspiring songs, award-winning documentaries, and celebrity-led protests — the West Memphis Three were suddenly freed from state custody, but only after all three pleaded guilty to the murders as part of the deal that secured their free
Prosecutorial discretion
By RICK WORMWOOD  |  August 26, 2011
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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

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Cruelty, compassion, and a capuchin, a decade later

I had tried not to look at the monkey's tits — the result, Janet told me later, of a glandular disorder. They bounced whenever the monkey moved. If you shaved them, they would have been a pretty nice set.
The baby in the box
By S.I. ROSENBAUM  |  August 05, 2011

The Curse of the Big Dig

Call it the Curse of the Big Dig: virtually every politician with statewide significance who has over the years become intertwined with the Central Artery Project (as it is officially known) has seen his or her dreams of higher office dashed.
Tthe mere mention of the Central Artery Project can derail one's hopes for higher office. Charlie Baker is finding that out now.
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  March 19, 2010

Get smart

There are lots of theories about what's wrong with Maine's economy.
Budget problems? It's the stupidity, stupid.
By AL DIAMON  |  March 12, 2010

The Cultural Caucus's big gamble

The recently formed Cultural Caucus, a loose, formal coalition comprising a dozen arts-friendly state legislators, appears poised to christen its political life by inserting itself into what could be the most intense statewide political battle of the spr
Formed to be a savior of the arts in the Bay State, a political coalition is playing high-stakes poker by putting casinos in its sights
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  March 05, 2010

Cartoon angst revisited: Daria set for May DVD release

Clip from Daria season 2 ep "The Daria Hunter" In perhaps the most hotly anticipated move the folks over at MTV have made since finally...
By Alexandra Cavallo  |  February 26, 2010

Looking for a new kind of mayor

Perhaps you've seen the ads ...
By MARION DAVIS  |  February 26, 2010

We heart even more people!

We were right. We told you two weeks ago that any list of Portland's Most Influential people was inherently incomplete — and so it was.
By JEFF INGLIS  |  February 26, 2010

Secret Harbor

A home for the criminally insane it might not be, but the real-life Shutter Island is, like the one in the new Martin Scorsese film that hits theaters this week, a spooky and controversial land mass in Boston Harbor that is indeed off-limits to the publi
The real-life version of Scorsese's Shutter Island imports hundreds of homeless from the South End every evening; they’re among the few allowed on Boston Harbor’s isle of mystery.
By CHRISTOPHER KLEIN  |  February 19, 2010

A clean mind and dirty hands

Three people walk into a bank ...
Moral dilemmas for the Maine Clean Election Fund
By AL DIAMON  |  February 12, 2010

Revenge of the Idiots

To my fellow Massachusetts Democrats: please don’t blame Martha Coakley for this shocking defeat.
Letters to the Boston editor, January 29, 2010
By BOSTON PHOENIX LETTERS  |  January 29, 2010


Massachusetts: You might be living in a red state if

Scott Brown’s Senatorial victory is merely the latest sign that red tides are creeping upon our once-progressive Commonwealth. Don’t believe us? Consider that Kenny Chesney sells out Gillette Stadium every summer, and, of course, that wealthy Republican
31 signs that Scott Brown’s victory is changing the face of the commonwealth for the worse
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 22, 2010

Obama's year two to-do's

This week marks the one-year anniversary of Barack Obama's inauguration. Can you believe it?
What Have You Done for Me Lately Dept.
By MIKE MILIARD  |  January 22, 2010

Front Room battle goes to court

Next time you're at the Front Room, order that Old Fashioned with extra bitters. There's enough to go around.
Food Fight
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  January 15, 2010

It will not be a dull year!

The New Year is shaping up as potent dope for the political junkie.
The governor’s race, gambling, drama on Smith Hill, and more is on tap in 2010
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  January 08, 2010

Losing our religion

All those pretty churches. So many of them white clapboard buildings with tall steeples and stained glass windows. The kind of thing that makes you think Mainers are a hardy, God-fearing, churchgoing lot.
Diverse City
By SHAY STEWART-BOULEY  |  January 08, 2010


Green school. Red light?

Little girls and boys frolic on swing sets whittled from recycled beech wood.
At-large City Councilor John Connolly sets his sights on creating multi-million-dollar environmental academy.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 08, 2010

Menino's promise

Boston's political tribes checked their traditional hostilities at the door this week when they trooped into Faneuil Hall for the inauguration of Mayor Thomas Menino, who took the oath to serve an unprecedented fifth term.
Realizing his pledge of flexibility is the key to Boston's future success
By EDITORIAL  |  January 08, 2010

Grumpy World

P&J were strangely drawn to the story by Linda Borg in the Sunday BeloJo on the exceptionally low marks the Biggest Little received in a happiness index conceived by what we suspect are a bunch of elite jickies from across the pond for the journal S
Happy? Not us! Plus, Pawtucket pride, saluting the navy, and a New Year’s toast.
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  January 01, 2010

Nobody dies

Some things in life are essential — beer, the MLB Network, caller ID — and some things aren't — tofu, Jay Leno, the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development.
The Department of Economic and Community Development dodges the axe
By AL DIAMON  |  January 01, 2010

Caprio's ad campaign quietly goes dark

A month-and-a-half ago, Treasurer Frank T. Caprio erased any doubt that he was running for governor with a splashy, front-page announcement of his candidacy and the launch of a $100,000-per-month advertising campaign.
Off the Air
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  December 25, 2009

Gifts of the magi

OK, so math isn't Poliquin's strong point. And he's a little shaky on consistency. But are those minor flaws enough to convince Santa to leave coal in his stocking?
Who's on the naughty list?
By AL DIAMON  |  December 25, 2009

2009 had some redeeming qualities - really

Let's get serious: For many Portlanders, 2009 was a crap year.
Don’t look back in anger

A lawyer’s adventures in bad judgment

People who know Keven McKenna know he is not a stupid man. Whether or not the Providence attorney, ex-state representative, and Harold Stassen of Providence mayoral races uses good judgment is another question.
Contempt of Court
By MARY ANN SORRENTINO  |  December 25, 2009

Change? What change?

Nice to see Goldman Sachs employee Barack "President" Obama get rolled by Gen. Stanley McChrystal so we can send more troops to Afghanistan on a hopeless mission.
Operation Afghan Tragedy. Plus, getting steamed over global warming and men in tights.
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  December 18, 2009