March 22, 2009

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Page one

Patrick targets
pension loopholes

The Patrick administration today will unveil a series of proposed reforms designed to close loopholes in the state pension system that have allowed workers to dramatically inflate their retirement benefits at a cost of millions of dollars to taxpayers. (By Andrea Estes, Globe Staff)

Looking beyond grades and scores

The admissions team at Tufts University embraced the Yahtzee enthusiast and budding engineer who built a wooden catapult in his backyard and the straight-A teenager who described herself as a "wise old owl" whom her friends turn to for advice. (By Peter Schworm, Globe Staff)

Churches vie to be
Obamas' spiritual home

Aides to President Obama are quietly checking out local churches to find his new spiritual home, a delicate, complex task that must balance Obama's public profile, security needs, and personal beliefs against a discreet but intense competition among ministers to bring the first family to their pews. (By Joseph Williams, Globe Staff)

Ailing malls shopping for a new identity

Independence Mall should be celebrating its 20th birthday this year with fanfare. Instead, the shopping center here, pocked with empty storefronts like missing teeth and rattled by rumors of its demise, has postponed the festivities and is simply trying to survive. (By Jenn Abelson, Globe Staff)

As public moves on, local soldiers dig in

A fresh-from-the-box M4 rifle dangled from his right hand as Specialist Julio Rodriguez, a stocky National Guard soldier from Lowell, killed time before entering the "shoothouse." In a few minutes, in an adrenaline-stoked simulation, he barged into a 12-by-12 room where trainers had placed silhouettes of armed Iraqi insurgents. (By Brian MacQuarrie, Globe Staff)

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