Rascovar: ‘Free’ tuition isn’t free

Talk on the far left about “free” college tuition got a boost last week from an acolyte of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, the foremost proponent of this marvelous-sounding idea. Benjamin Jealous, former head of the NAACP who is running for governor, told a group of college students and progressive activists, to no one’s surprise, that his gubernatorial pitch includes free education for Marylanders at the state’s public colleges and universities.

The racial nutrition gap can be narrowed — even in food deserts

resh fruits and vegetables are important in lowering the risk of heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and even some cancers. But according to researchers at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future, a quarter of Baltimore residents live in food deserts, which are neighborhoods with poor access to these healthy foods.

Our poll was about the state of public thinking, not a prediction

The central argument in Mr. Rascovar’s piece is that a poll taken in mid-September can’t predict what will happen in June 2018. You will get no argument from me, or any other pollster, on this point. Polls can tell you the current state of a race or opinion toward a policy or elected officials during the time the survey is fielded, but can’t tell you what the public will be thinking in the future. The purpose of our poll was to find out where Democratic voters are at now—in mid-September—not to say where they will be in June 2018. 

Practical solutions for schools based on facts, not ideology

Gov. Hogan and his Republican allies in the General Assembly have offered only unproven right-wing pabulum about school vouchers and unregulated charter schools. They suggest that the best solution for under-performing public schools is some form of privatization. And they buttress this argument by claiming that adequate education funding can’t solve these problems.

Rascovar: Warning to voters: Beware of polls 

Too many Americans look upon polls as Gospel, the definitive word on how elections will come out. Wrong. Polls can be useful at times but only as an indicator of the shifting winds of public sentiment. They cannot predict accurately the outcome because polling is an art, not a science.

What’s black and white and should be read by greens? The Wall Street Journal

By Tom Horton

Bay Journal News Service

People are surprised when I say that for my profession of environmental writing, I read as much as I can absorb about economics and business. Put articles from the Sierra Club, The Nature Conservancy or the Chesapeake Bay Foundation next to those of the Wall Street Journal or the Financial Times, and my eyes go first to the latter two. The reason is that the big economies, especially ours in the United States, have come to pursue a hyper-capitalism that drives everything, including the environment. If we can’t get our economics on a more sustainable path, environmentalism will be consigned forever to putting green lipstick on the pig. Our environmental crisis is really a crisis of economics.

Delegate challenges Rascovar on school choice, funding

No one is arguing that charter schools, school vouchers and programs such as the BOOST scholarship program can cure all ills, and no one is suggesting that private alternatives should replace public education.  But it’s simply wrong to refuse to consider such programs as an alternative to a public school that has failed its students year after year.  

Rascovar: Hogan, king of the road(s)

Gov. Larry Hogan never met a highway project he didn’t like. He’s a 1950s type of politician – solve all the state’s transportation gridlock and congestion by paving the countryside with lanes of new concrete. 

At half-way mark, Vietnam series is even-handed, balanced and fair

The best description of this spectacular new production is even-handed, balanced, and fair. If you’re watching it as I’ve been doing, you need no further appellations from me. If not, you should see the series when it’s repeated over the next several years. You won’t regret it. Rather than tell you what you’ve seen or may see, therefore, I choose to inform you a bit of the magnificent new illustrated book based on the series.