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Advantage Democrats

Advantage Democrats

Despite recent gains by the GOP, Democrats have a nearly insurmountable advantage in retaining the White House in 2016.

THIRTY YEARS AGO this month marked the last time a Republican assumed the presidency with the approval of Massachusetts voters. Ronald Reagan won 49 states in the previous November’s election, including every state in New England. Four years before, he won all of them but Rhode Island. This month, a new Republican governor, Charlie Baker,(...)

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The solar disconnect

The solar disconnect

If sun power is expensive, why is it saving municipalities money?

THE US ENERGY Information Administration says solar power is expensive relative to other types of electricity generation, yet cities, towns, and schools across Massachusetts are finding that solar can save them lots of money. The federal agency, which tries to compare the cost of electricity produced from various sources, says solar is one of the(...)

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MassLive’s statewide strategy

MassLive’s statewide strategy

Digital-first Springfield news outlet is trying to expand its brand across the state to Worcester and Boston.

A SPRINGFIELD-BASED NEWS outlet is taking a run at being the go-to source for state news in Massachusetts. MassLive, a website affiliated with the Springfield Republican, is trying to expand its brand beyond western Massachusetts by offering coverage across the state, with a special emphasis on Worcester and Boston. Newspaper websites traditionally piggyback on their(...)

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Guest workers

Comprehensive immigration reform is a long-shot, but a Republican takeover of the Senate could mean more visas for Massachusetts.

most of the attention on the immigration bill that is now foundering in Congress is on the 11 million or so immigrants who live in this country without the government’s permission. The bill the Senate passed last year—the focus of the debate on so-called comprehensive immigration reform in Washington—would provide them with an arduous pathway(...)

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Boston’s grass roots

Jim Vrabel offers a rich history of community organizing in Boston told through the voices of the activists of the 1960s and 1970s who helped shape the city

A People’s History of the New Boston By Jim Vrabel Amherst, University of Massachusetts Press 288 pages history is replete with the stories of the mighty and powerful. Jim Vrabel’s latest book, A People’s History of the New Boston, tells another story. Vrabel, a former newspaper reporter and longtime community activist who has worked for(...)

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Tracking student migration

Massachusetts is a winner under the Regional Student Program, while New Hampshire is a loser

a program set up to provide more educational opportunity for New England college students is proving to be a brain gain for some states and a brain drain for others. Massachusetts and Maine are big winners, while New Hampshire and Connecticut are losing more students than they’re taking in. For Vermont and Rhode Island, the(...)

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Do Not Call

Do Not Call

The list is leaking like a sieve, and Massachusetts residents are among those complaining the loudest

the federal trade Commission’s Do Not Call Registry, once an effective deterrent to unwanted telemarketing calls, is now a toothless tiger. Telemarketing scam artists have found ways around the registry, as reflected in the rising number of complaints from angry consumers. Americans filed more than 3.7 million complaints about unwanted phone calls last year, more(...)

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Not exactly party time in Massachusetts

Not exactly party time in Massachusetts

The number of unenrolled voters is climbing to historic highs

political parties in Massachusetts are approaching a crossroads, as fewer new registrants choose to affiliate with either party and the number of unenrolled voters climbs to historic highs. Since 1978, the number of unenrolled voters in Massachusetts has soared by 97 percent, while the two major parties each added just 9 percent to their rolls.(...)

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A can-do attitude

A can-do attitude

A recounting of the race to build the nation’s first subway is as much about American bravado as it is about a transformative transportation project.

The Race Underground: Boston, New York, and the Incredible Rivalry that Built America’s First Subway By Doug Most New York: St. Martin’s Press 404 pages once upon a time, before the invention of the internal combustion engine and before Henry Ford perfected the mass production of affordable automobiles, transit was king. It was a brief(...)

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Back to school on the American Dream

Congress needs lessons in bipartisan cooperation to get US higher education policy back on track

Degrees of Inequality: How the Politics of Higher Education Sabotaged the American Dream By Suzanne Mettler New York: Basic Books 261 pages the american dream is in trouble. As our economy has become more globalized and competitive, it has become harder to achieve what was once available to most Americans—a good job with a good(...)

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