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An education funding formula, hailed as a breakthrough, faces its critics

Fuzzy math
For years, Rhode Island was one of just two states in the union without a funding formula for its public schools. And then, for a time, it was the only state with that dubious dis-tinction.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  June 24, 2010
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Preparing for June 8

Candidate breakdown for districts 114, 116, and 119
Stuckey vs. Vincent, Capron vs. Sharif, and Barkley vs. Dini
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  May 26, 2010
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Hire us now, Ms. Gist!

Will tap dance for free!
Wow! Bow-wow! How do we get a job to write a speech for state education commissioner Deborah Gist for a cool $10,000?
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  May 26, 2010

Can the Netroots triumph in Rhode island?

On the Hustings
Stories of State Representative David Segal’s nascent, underdog run for Congress invariably make a nod to the Progressive Change Campaign Committee. And rightly so.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  May 19, 2010
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An immigrant song

What we can learn from our neighbors to the south
Arizona has declared war on Mexico. SB1070, the incendiary new immigration bill signed into law by Governor Jan Brewer, has set off national boycotts, lawsuits, protests, and denouncements.
By DAVID KISH  |  May 17, 2010
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Library woes

Plus, Arizona declares war on immigrants
In an attempt to save four Boston Public Library branches that are slated to close due to budget shortfalls, some state legislators from Boston have threatened to block all state funding the library receives if it shutters any of its 26 branches.
By EDITORIAL  |  April 28, 2010

Fed up and low down

For once, the beleaguered taxpayers of Maine can’t lose
Just kidding. Of course they’ll lose.
By AL DIAMON  |  April 21, 2010
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Shaking up the school system

The Reformer
Rhode Island education commissioner Deborah Gist’s take-charge style could make a winner of a state that often seems destined to fail. But critics say her free-market approach won’t work.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  April 21, 2010
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Lynch’s left flank

The Southie Congressman may have pushed progressives too far this time.
US Representative Stephen Lynch has held Massachusetts’s ninth congressional district since 2001 — a fact that has irritated the state’s liberals ever since.
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  April 02, 2010

What the health-care bill really means

Reforming the System
On Tuesday, President Barack Obama signed the new health-care bill into law.
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  March 24, 2010
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Hallelujah!

Health-care reform is a new high-water mark
The Democrats won and the Republicans lost. That, in a nutshell, is the bottom line.
By EDITORIAL  |  March 24, 2010

Tanked

A few guppies short
The term "think tank" looks as if it signifies something impressive.
By AL DIAMON  |  March 17, 2010
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Pot bill progresses in Augusta

C'Mon Doc ...
At the end of February, Topsham became the latest Maine community to consider moratoriums on medical-marijuana dispensaries in the wake of last November's election.
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  March 10, 2010
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The power of money

Shame on the nation's biggest health insurer; shame on the Black Caucus
While a cadre of conservative Democrats continues to conspire with Washington's mendacious Republican minority to block national health-care reform, the nation's largest health-benefits company — amusingly called WellPoint — is going about its business of screwing policyholders and scoring record profits in the process.
By EDITORIAL  |  February 18, 2010

Rhode Island’s own stab at health reform

Get Healthy
Health care reform, if it survives the election of Republican Scott Brown to Ted Kennedy's old Senate seat, will make insurance accessible and provide a slew of new consumer protections for millions of Americans.
By MARION DAVIS  |  January 20, 2010
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Green school. Red light?

At-large City Councilor John Connolly sets his sights on creating multi-million-dollar environmental academy.
Little girls and boys frolic on swing sets whittled from recycled beech wood.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 06, 2010

Call for health-care reform

Letters to the Portland Editor, December 25, 2009
The November 7 passage of health-care reform, the Affordable Health Care for America Act, in the House of Representatives was a very important and exciting moment for everyone who is dedicated to the idea that all Americans need and deserve access to high quality, affordable health care.
By PORTLAND PHOENIX LETTERS  |  December 22, 2009

Pink ribbons: Play hardball!

Breasts and Balls
In ancient times, men appeased the gods by tossing female virgins into volcanoes and families left their newborn daughters on hillsides to die since girls were less "valuable" than boys.
By MARY ANN SORRENTINO  |  November 25, 2009
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Kennedy, Catholic Church, and Politics of Compromise

Reform Dept.
US Representative Patrick Kennedy's confrontation with Providence Bishop Thomas J. Tobin over abortion and health-care reform has soaked up quite a bit of ink.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  November 18, 2009
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Has Obama peaked? No, he hasn't

Obama’s days of greatest power and popularity lie before him. But be warned: he might not do what you want with it.
Barack Obama's popularity should not be judged by the day-to-day, media-driven vagaries of politics — nor by the wishful thinking of his opponents.
By DAVID S. BERNSTEIN  |  November 12, 2009

Look for activist postcards on First Friday and beyond

AIDS Art Action
Approximately 1300 people in Maine live with HIV/AIDS, according to the state’s Department of Health and Human Services.
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  November 04, 2009

Kennedy vs. the Catholic Church

Opinion Dept.
Last week, Congressman Patrick Kennedy took the Catholic Church to task for opposing health reform that fails to include an explicit ban on federal funding for abortion. And he was right to do it.
By MARY ANN SORRENTINO  |  October 30, 2009
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Free speech again quashed at Harvard

RSVPeeved Dept.
It should come as no surprise to readers of “Freedom Watch” that yet another instance of political, intellectual, and academic censorship has sprung up at Harvard, the self-touted pinnacle of higher education.
By HARVEY SILVERGLATE  |  October 21, 2009
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Band-Aid for expensive healthcare

Until there's a real solution, use these free and discounted medical services
Until there's a real solution, use these free and discounted medical services
By TANYA WHITON  |  October 21, 2009

The waiting game

Congress is making progress. We think.
We know, we know: Last week, Olympia Snowe made history by being the only Republican in 2009 to vote for any sort of healthcare reform, even in committee-level draft language far from its final form.
By JEFF INGLIS  |  October 21, 2009
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Compassionate or coercive?

Pro-life pregnancy counselors say they are offering women hope, but critics see manipulation
The election of Barack Obama has inspired dread among pro-lifers nationwide. But for the Rhode Island wing of the movement, the anxiety goes back quite a bit farther.
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  September 17, 2009

Snowe: A party of one

Party politics
US Senator Olympia Snowe has maneuvered herself into a position where she is the only hope Democrats have of getting a "bipartisan" agreement on healthcare reform.
By JEFF INGLIS  |  September 16, 2009

Hey, hey, we're the Monkees

Politics and other mistakes
The law of averages says if you put 100 monkeys in a room with 100 computers, they'll eventually write a workable national health-care bill. Apparently, that rule doesn't apply to 100 US senators.
By AL DIAMON  |  September 02, 2009
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Avoiding a border war

Rape in Brookline
It's a matter of moments before the likes of Lou Dobbs and Bill O'Reilly scapegoat the believed-to-be-illegal-immigrant suspects in last week's Brookline rape case for every problem in America.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  August 26, 2009
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Ted Kennedy's real record

A note on the 32-year-incumbent's accomplishments
When a 32-year incumbent seeks re-election, there is a long and well-documented record that can be examined. So it's disconcerting to note that admit all the miles of newsprint and videotape that have been expended covering the US Senate campaign, little has been said of what Ted Kennedy has or hasn't accomplished.
By AL GIORDANO  |  August 26, 2009

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