Summer 2012

Summer 2012

Tap vs. bottled

Tap vs. bottled

DC Water is trying to transform cheap, environmentally friendly tap water into a powerful brand

in the battle between tap and bottled water, bottled water usually has all the zest. Perrier, Poland Spring, Fiji, Glacier—these companies reel consumers in with big-budget advertising campaigns promoting crystal clear waters from exotic locales all over the world. It’s not easy to counter those images if you’re running the local public water authority. But(...)

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Rumble in the park

Rumble in the park

The nonprofit group formed to operate and maintain Boston's Greenway is being threatened by a political fight over who should fund it

  Richard Davey, the state secretary of transportation, wants to wean the Greenway off public funds.  state transportation secretary Richard Davey darts across Atlantic Avenue, lays down his umbrella, and settles under the roof of the Boston Harbor Islands Pavilion. It’s a raw, wet day that feels more like March than June, but even with the(...)

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What would Jesus do?

What would Jesus do?

The Catholic Church is using deeds associated with its land sales to spread its word - including blocking charter schools and other churches

The Holy Trinity School in Lawrence, which closed in 2004, was recently sold with the restriction that it not be used as a charter school for the next 90 years. Photo by J. Cappuccio. Boston cardinal Seán O’Malley condemns the Obama administration’s requirement that all employers, even religious ones, offer insurance covering the cost of(...)

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Shifting alliances

Shifting alliances

the american medical Association, the venerable lobby organization for doctors, was for years a reliable Republican-leaning voice on big health care issues. For much of the past decade, however, the organization seemed to be on a drift to the left. First, it endorsed the Patients’ Bill of Rights guaranteeing patient protections against insurance companies. Then(...)

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Was it something we said?

Was it something we said?

massinc is a small nonprofit that does research, hosts civic events, and publishes CommonWealth four times a year. Most people outside of our fairly wonky world have never heard of us. Yet you’d never know that from reading the Boston Herald in June. Over the course of three days, the tabloid ran a series of(...)

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Summer 2012 Correspondence

Democracy is messy, but not a weakness Your Editor’s Note, “Closed-door dem­ocracy” (Spring ’12), was meaningful to me. It’s human nature not to appreciate what we have until we lose it. I’m sure reporters on Beacon Hill don’t have deadline problems now because without debate there aren’t many stories. Democracy’s very design makes it “slow,(...)

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Hold your fire

Hold your fire

David Kennedy, architect of Boston’s successful anti-gang strategy of the 1990s and author of a book describing it, is determined to show that the mayhem of urban gun violence can be stopped

DAVID KENNEDY IS an unlikely figure to be leading the charge on behalf of an innovative policing strategy to combat urban gun violence. For starters, he’s not a cop and has no law enforcement background. Though he’s a full professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York, the 54-year-old Kennedy has no formal(...)

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Natural gas: Good news and bad news

Natural gas: Good news and bad news

A growing supply is driving down prices, but the fuel’s dominance is posing challenges

in january 2011, extremely cold temperatures enveloped New England, and demand for natural gas soared. Why does demand for natural gas matter to ISO New England, which operates the regional electricity grid and manages the wholesale electricity markets? Because natural gas has become the dominant fuel used to generate electricity in our region. The story(...)

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