Winter 2004

Winter 2004

Economist David Cutler says increased life expectancy comes at a price and we havent figured out how many more years we want to pay for

Economist David Cutler says increased life expectancy comes at a price and we havent figured out how many more years we want to pay for

Harvard economist David M. Cutler’s new book, his first, has a catchy, if somewhat threatening, title: Your Money or Your Life. The subtitle promises “strong medicine for America’s health care system,” and the book delivers on that promise in a number of ways. But the real dose of castor oil Cutler dispenses is for the(...)

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North Andover says the state is nothing but a tax deadbeat

NORTH ANDOVER–With the help of some thoughtful planning, the town of North Andover has been able to enjoy economic development without losing its historic character. About 27,000 residents coexist with such employers as Merrimack College and the Lawrence Municipal Airport. But in one sense, North Andover is among the Commonwealth’s biggest losers, and town leaders(...)

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Where the odds favor single men, the Bay States mysterious budget a looming shortage of dentists, homeowners who stay put, a business-climate report card, whos buckling up

Where the odds favor single men, the Bay States mysterious budget a looming shortage of dentists, homeowners who stay put, a business-climate report card, whos buckling up

Temptation island? Single women who like the odds to be in their favor might consider moving to Nantucket. According to the Web site ePodunk.com, the island is the only county in New England that has more single men than single women, with 105 available guys for every 100 detached dolls. (Essex County, Vt., comes the(...)

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Counterpoint

In recent months, a growing number of public officials here in the Commonwealth and across the country have proposed schemes for city and state governments to import prescription drugs from Canada. While I am pleased that policy-makers are seeking ways to cut prescription drug costs for seniors and the uninsured, the importation of drugs from(...)

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Argument

Can we talk honestly for a minute? Prescription drug prices are exorbitant. Drug companies defend their high prices–in particular, for the brand-name drugs they advertise incessantly on our televisions –by talking about the need to pay for developing and bringing new life-saving drugs to market. Unfortunately, these medications will not help if elderly and sick(...)

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Tim Cahill targets pols pensions

INTRO TEXT Nobody likes getting fired. Well, almost nobody. For long-time state workers, getting the heave-ho or having their position eliminated can be a pension bonanza under a controversial provision of the state retirement laws. Nearly two years ago, CommonWealth reported that the granting of so-called Section 10 “termination pensions” appears to be rife with(...)

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The state considers carrots for smart growth

The state considers carrots for smart growth

With Massachusetts home prices continuing to soar, the housing crisis has begun to sound like the old Mark Twain saw about the weather: Everybody talks about it, but nobody does anything. ALISON WILLIAMS Smart-growth housing in Manchester-by-the Sea. Hoping to match deeds to words, the Romney administration and an independent task force of housing, business,(...)

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Commonwealth Forum ponders middle-class debt crisis

MUCH HAS BEEN WRITTEN about federal and state governments spending beyond their means, but many middle-class American households are also awash in red ink. At the Commonwealth Forum “Going for Broke: Middle Class Families on the Financial Edge,” held on December 5 at the Omni Parker House Hotel in Boston, panelists discussed the reasons and remedies(...)

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