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Town Meeting, State Budget

Yesterday, as I have almost every year since the mid-80’s, I had the privilege of moderating the annual town meeting in the place where I live, Leeds, Maine. This exercise in pure democratic government always inspires me. There are challenging moments, when people annoy or confuse each other, but it always works out. My job […]

Budgets: Love, War, and Poverty

At least once every two years, Maine’s constitution says, the Governor will propose and the Legislature will consider, revise, and adopt a budget for the operation of the state’s government.  A similar process occurs at the federal level, with the President proposing and Congress voting into law the spending authorizations and priorities of our nation.  […]

The Survival of Obamacare: What is Government Good For?

Yes, I’m still celebrating the collapse of the bill that was supposed to put an end to Obamacare.[1] I’m celebrating because the proposed repeal-and-replace law would have taken health care coverage away from 24 million people while delivering big tax breaks to those who need them least.  And remember Kathy, who has COPD and can’t […]

Not Dead Yet: a Very Short and Casual History of Obamacare

Since the dramatic collapse of the bill to “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act more than a week ago, I’ve been thinking about why that happened and what it means.  I want to share some thoughts with you about why the repeal effort failed, and a wider lesson that the event may offer. I’m […]