Category Archives: Massachusetts

In Memoriam

Observed on the Boston Common, one flag for every fallen Massachusetts service member:

Posted in Massachusetts | 2 Comments

How to Game Educational Metrics

Before I get to an interesting Boston Globe op-ed, it’s worth noting that how ‘good schools’ are defined depends on the details. One definition simply involves seeing how well students perform and using that to determine if a school is … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Massachusetts | 1 Comment

Massachusetts Is Doing Defense Spending Wrong

I’ve never liked massive defense spending. In the best case scenario, the stuff we purchase ends up never being used, and, in the worst case, Little Lord Pontchartrain decides to invade the wrong fucking country. As macroeconomic policy, it creates … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Fucking Morons, Massachusetts, Military, Taxes | 1 Comment

How Bad Is Massachusetts’ Opiate Epidemic?

No one really seems to know (boldface mine): Massachusetts is under siege from a frightening surge of heroin overdoses, Governor Deval Patrick said last month in declaring a state of emergency. That grim view has become unquestioned consensus among law … Continue reading

Posted in Drugs, Massachusetts

Why Regulation Matters: A Tragic Fire

There’s no way to know for certain, but two regulatory failures might have contributed to the tragic death of two firefighters in Back Bay. The first remedy should be mandating sprinkler systems (boldface mine): With two major fires in the … Continue reading

Posted in Boston, Massachusetts, The Rule of Law

More Bureaucracy: Another Result of Education Reform

Even though I think Massachusetts’ education system should be emulated nationally, the various education reform initiatives, No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, Put Your Right Foot In, Put Your Right Foot Out, Do the Hokey Pokey and Shake … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Massachusetts | 1 Comment

Once Again: For Real Education Reform, You Can Just Visit Massachusetts

Although, unlike Finland, it doesn’t have reindeer. I know I’ve beaten this to a pulp, but flogging dead horses is what we do around here: if you want a model for education reform, you don’t need to travel to Finland, … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Massachusetts | 4 Comments

I Thought the Commonwealth Was Smarter About Education Than This

I often sing Massachusetts’ praises when it comes to education, but whoever in the Department of Education decided that four to six year old kids would be tested repeatedly fell out of the goddamn stupid tree and hit every fucking … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Fucking Morons, Massachusetts

Give Me That Ol’ Time British–and Boston–Accent

While Boston is known as the home of the non-rhotic accent (“pahked the cah in Hahvahd Yahd”), the modern British accent, also known as Received Pronunciation, is also non-rhotic (the ‘twang’ is obviously different, but the “r’s” are often lessened … Continue reading

Posted in Boston, Massachusetts | 1 Comment

Another Triumph For Campbell’s Law: Trapping Massachusetts Kids Behind “Data Walls”

“The more any quantitative social indicator (or even some qualitative indicator) is used for social decision-making, the more subject it will be to corruption pressures and the more apt it will be to distort and corrupt the social processes it … Continue reading

Posted in Education, Massachusetts | 4 Comments