• Education report card

    A quality education should be the goal for every citizen. Our livelihoods depend on a healthy, sustainable economy propelled by a knowledgeable workforce. As a leading advocacy group states, “At the heart of it all, it’s about our people.” No one questions the intentions or efforts to make our state’s education system better. However, the

  • Beware of unintended consequences

    In his novel “Cat’s Cradle,” Kurt Vonnegut introduces a fictional element called ice-nine. It’s an ice that does not melt until the temperature hits 114.4 F. When ice-nine comes into contact with any kind of water, it freezes that water solid. Ice-nine was invented by the novel’s Defense Department so that infantry units would no

  • Citizen sausage

    The Maine Legislature is spending a great deal of time these days wrestling with wording. The wording of the marijuana legalization law has been found to be misleading and incomplete. Lawmakers have asked that implementation of the law be delayed until they can sort things out. And the Senate has asked the state’s Supreme Judicial

  • Grandma’s money is gone

    For baby-boomers working toward or thinking about retiring, this is becoming a more common refrain as senior theft and identity theft are ensnaring millions of this country’s most vulnerable citizens. If you aren’t prepared, if your parents are not protected, you too could become a victim. More trusting than many of us, our seniors are

  • Marketing Main Street

    As reported in last week’s American, a St. Petersburg, Fla., man has purchased two downtown Blue Hill buildings and has plans to breathe new life into downtown Blue Hill. An intriguing detail is the fact that John Warren had not been courted by an economic development director or any other advocate. A Bangor native, he

  • Maine lawmakers take a stand

    Maine Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King and Rep. Chellie Pingree — a Republican, an Independent and a Democrat — have taken an informed, principled stand against a presidential executive order that was neither informed nor principled. We salute them and hope the global outcry prompted by President Trump’s ill-conceived, erratically enforced order on immigration

  • How we communicate

    Ten years ago this month, Apple introduced to the world the very first iPhone at the Mac-World Convention. A multi-touch screen device with a virtual keyboard that could take photos, play music, surf the web, text messages and occasionally place a cell-phone call, the first “Smartphone” has forever altered how we interact with each other.

  • Joint action on joints

    The Maine Legislature last week took an important step to tackle issues not addressed and questions arising from the Marijuana Legalization Act narrowly approved by voters Nov. 8. The House and Senate approved the creation of a 17-member, ad hoc, joint select Committee on Marijuana Legalization. Made up of legislators from six standing committees, the

  • Energy costs up, but stable

    Data from the Governor’s Energy Office and the U.S. Energy Information Agency point to rising gasoline and heating oil costs nationally and locally that will exact an increase on Maine households this heating season compared to last year’s low price levels. This data also shows that 2013 saw one of the most expensive heating oil

  • Maine’s hidden gem

    Barely a month goes by that one of Maine’s well-regarded boat builders isn’t being recognized with extensive profiling in national maritime magazines and newspapers. Prolific positive reviews bordering on unabashed admiration have covered Maine’s small-boat building industry with the kind of attention that money just can’t buy. From Washington County and Hancock County’s myriad builders