Xandra Ellin | WYPR

Xandra Ellin

Midday Intern

Xandra is an intern with the Midday program.

Eighteen years ago, the state of Maryland deregulated its electricity market with the idea that a free market would give consumers cheaper rates. This has since led to the proliferation of retail electricity suppliers competing for the attention and affection of consumers. With renewable energy production currently on the rise, these suppliers have also been touting what they call “green electricity” plans.

Have consumers made the switch toward these alternative energy plans? Has deregulation delivered on the promise of lowering prices?

Joining Tom in the studio to help us answer these questions is Kent Mottice, Energy Policy Manager at the Maryland Energy Administration, the state agency whose mission is "to promote affordable, reliable and cleaner energy for the benefit of all Marylanders."

With us on the line from DC is Tim Brennan, a professor at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, where he teaches Economics and Public Policy. He’s also a senior fellow at Resources for the Future, an organization that conducts economic research on environmental policy. And on the line from Pacifica affiliate KPFT in Houston is Ryan Handy. She covers the regulation of public utilities and the oil and gas industry as energy reporter for the Houston Chronicle.

Courtesy Jaclyn Borowski / Baltimore Business Journal

Cities from Tallahassee to Spokane have implemented comprehensive networks of protected bike lanes on major city streets. Baltimore City has been steadily following suit, though not without controversy.

Baltimore City recently installed semi-protected bike lanes on several major roads throughout the city, most recently on Maryland Avenue, Roland Avenue, and Potomac Street. Immediately after the construction of the Potomac Street lane in Canton, nearby residents began to register their complaints, primarily about limited options for parking. However, it wasn’t until the Baltimore City Fire Department assessed that the road was too narrow for emergency vehicles to pass that Mayor Pugh decided to take action.

Nina Subin

This week, we are taking a look back at the Presidency of Barack Obama. Tom is joined by Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, a searing provocateur whose unstinting critique of the historic nature of Obama’s tenure includes what he considers to be the missed opportunities to advance the cause of racial equality. One of Dyson’s chief criticisms is the President’s reluctance to hold white people at least partially responsible for black suffering.  

In his latest book, Tears We Cannot Stop: A  Sermon to White America, Dyson argues that the responsibility lies not just with uninformed bigots, but with people who may consider themselves enlightened and fair-minded, but who can’t accept the truth of racial history.  Dr. Michael Eric Dyson is a sociology professor at Georgetown University. He is the author of 18 other books, including The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America.