Winter 2009

Winter 2009

Ending the one-party state

As a pistol-packing, SUV-driving conservative in liberal St. Paul, Minnesota, David Carlson knew he was fighting an uphill battle. Still, on the day before the 2008 election, the 27-year-old candidate for the state House of Representatives drove through his district of tidy, split-level homes for a final campaign push. He checked the placement of his(...)

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The maverick

The maverick

Bristol County SheriffThomas Hodgson is in a showdown with the governor. Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson is headed for a high-noon showdown with Gov. Deval Patrick. The Patrick administration is trying to rein in Hodgson and the state’s other elected sheriffs in an effort to consolidate control over an overcrowded state and county corrections system(...)

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Broken homes

Broken homes

Helen Williams, of Dorchester, thought she was getting “a good deal”but is now facing foreclosure. Helen Williams certainly doesn’t know anything about credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, or mortgage-backed securities. It turns out there is a lot she didn’t even understand about the $395,000 mortgage she got to refinance the three-family house she owns(...)

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Frank, Syron, and the blame game

Two Massachusetts guys, Richard Syron and Barney Frank, are among those at the center of the blame game going on in Washington concerning the root causes of the country’s worst financial disaster since the Great Depression. Syron, the former chief executive of mortgage giant Freddie Mac, lost not only his job but also his reputation(...)

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Staying put

Staying put

With so much attention given to the business of selling houses (and, now, losing houses to banks), it may be easy to forget that few Americans actually change residences in any given year. According to the Census Bureau’s recently expanded American Community Survey (which uses polling data covering three years), 83.5 percent of Americans in(...)

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Utahs financial literacy requirement

Utahs financial literacy requirement

INTRO TEXT States want to be trendsetters, but not all trends are worth bragging about. That was Utah’s predicament from 2002 through 2004, when the Beehive State ranked No. 1 in the country in personal bankruptcy filings (adjusted for population). However, the story behind the numbers was even more disturbing. “We saw a younger demographic(...)

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