A Public School Goes Commercial

The basic strategy of free-market champions is to discredit government and "starve the beast," in the infamous phrase of Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform — and then to go in for the kill by privatizing the assets that remain. The spoils of our once-great public institutions can then be bought for a song, and private market exploitation can be cast as serving the public good, because desperate institutions will welcome any help that they can get.

Corporatizing the Boston Common

The Boston Common could be going corporate. Really. And with the mayor's apparent blessing.

For centuries, the storied Boston Common has been at the center of the city's life, a place where anyone could hang out and find a bit of relief from the bustling city in the park's green expanses. The Common belongs to everyone. It has been a place for military drills, concerts, political rallies, religious revivals, picnics, Frisbee-throwing and much else.