'Governing by crisis'

The bundle of invectives on Thursday’s front page spelled it out: “Idiots” was the most commonly used description of Congress. “Infantile” and “inept” stood out, as did “useless,” “worthless,” “thoughtless” and “toxic.” President Barack Obama said the GOP was “governing by crisis” at a news conference Wednesday night, after legislation ending the shutdown. He is right. This is no way for a representative democracy to work, not one facing the problems America has right now. (News-Post)

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Military culture on trial

Maybe a highly publicized military trial will bring about what years of bad behavior, years of reactive and preventive training, and years of cringe-inducing headlines have failed to accomplish. What has unfolded is the umpteenth case of sexual misconduct, be it rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment or simply boorish behavior to afflict the U.S. military and the service academies — institutions where discipline is supposed to be a bedrock principle. (News-Post)

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Ed Hartman: Thoughts On The Annapolis City Dock Master Plan

I oppose City Dock Master Plan concepts. For example, if destroying 200 parking spaces has no adverse economic effect, why is the city considering rebuilding the Hillman garage? Just tear it down and save millions. If you think Jakubiak’s idea that the city Circulator bus is going to be the answer, ask anyone and everyone if they have used that means of transportation to shop downtown. The answer will be absolutely not. (Capital)

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Robert Ehrlich: The real culprits of the housing crisis go unpunished

Those of you who read my first book ("Turn This Car Around") will recall my indictment of the many contributors to our historic mortgage industry meltdown and worldwide recession, AKA "The greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression," per President Barack Obama. (Balt. Sun)

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Kalman Hettleman: Ravitch misfires on school reform

Diane Ravitch is all the rage in education circles these days, but rage, unfortunately, is what's she's selling. There are many reasons why, despite decades of efforts, U.S. public schools continue to fail, especially for low-income and minority children. Perhaps the most destructive one is the polarization of the debate over school reform and the refusal of opposing factions to look for middle ground. Sad to say, Ms. Ravitch's new best-selling book, "Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America's Public Schools," fits this pattern. (Balt. Sun)

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Darrell Gaskin: What used cars have to do with health insurance

Recently, the Maryland Health Connection — the online health insurance marketplace created under the Affordable Care Act — announced premiums as low as $114 a month for a bronze plan for a 20 year old and $260 for a silver plan for a 50- year old. Other state exchanges are announcing similarly low premiums. These affordable premiums in the individual market for health insurance by state health exchanges are tributes to the scholarly work four decades ago of George Akerloff. (Balt. Sun)

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Extremists weaken party

Rep. Andy Harris, R-District 1, isn’t being totally honest with himself, or the people he was elected to serve, with his reasons for not voting for the bill that ended the government shutdown and temporarily suspended debt ceiling limits. (Carroll Co. Times)

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Oct. 18 // C. Fraser Smith: Flashers on for Gansler’s campaign 

Is this a dead man walking or what? Dead, that is, as a candidate for governor. Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler may have been thrust into that status as he tried to deflect questions raised about Maryland State Police assigned to protect him — from himself, it seemed. He denies it, but a state police paper trail says otherwise. The story inevitably raises questions: Does Gansler have the judgment or temperament to run the $37 billion state government? (Daily Record)

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