Pharmacies miss half of dangerous drug combinations

Sam Roe, Ray Long and Karisa King, Pharmacies miss half of dangerous drug combinations. Part 3 of “Dangerous Doses.” Chicago Tribune, 15 December 2016. “The [Chicago] Tribune reporter walked into an Evanston [Illinois] CVS pharmacy carrying two prescriptions: one for a common antibiotic, the other for a popular anti-cholesterol drug. Taken alone, these two drugs, clarithromycin and simvastatin, are relatively safe. But taken together they can cause a severe breakdown in muscle tissue and lead to kidney failure and death. When the reporter tried to fill the prescriptions, the pharmacist should have warned him of the dangers. But that’s not what happened. The two medications were packaged, labeled and sold within minutes, without a word of caution. In the largest and most comprehensive study of its kind, the Tribune tested 255 pharmacies to see how often stores would dispense dangerous drug pairs without warning patients. Fifty-two percent of the pharmacies sold the medications without mentioning the potential interaction, striking evidence of an industrywide failure that places millions of consumers at risk.”

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Donald Trump Tax Records Show He Could Have Avoided Taxes for Nearly Two Decades, The Times Found

David Barstow, Susanne Craig, Russ Buettner and Megan Twohey, Donald Trump Tax Records Show He Could Have Avoided Taxes for Nearly Two Decades, The Times Found. The New York Times, 1 October 2016.

Donald J. Trump declared a $916 million loss on his 1995 income tax returns, a tax deduction so substantial it could have allowed him to legally avoid paying any federal income taxes for up to 18 years, records obtained by The New York Times show. The 1995 tax records, never before disclosed, reveal the extraordinary tax benefits that Mr. Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, derived from the financial wreckage he left behind in the early 1990s through mismanagement of three Atlantic City casinos, his ill-fated foray into the airline business and his ill-timed purchase of the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan.”

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How Elizabeth Holmes’s House of Cards [Theranos] Came Tumbling Down

Nick Bilton, How Elizabeth Holmes’s House of Cards Came Tumbling Down. Vanity Fair, 6 September 2016. “In a searing investigation into the once lauded biotech start-up Theranos, Nick Bilton discovers that its precocious founder defied medical experts–even her own chief scientist–about the veracity of its now discredited blood-testing technology. She built a corporation based on secrecy in the hope that she could still pull it off. Then, it all fell apart.”

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How Fox News Women Took Down Roger Ailes

Gabriel Sherman, How Fox News Women Took Down Roger Ailes. New York Magazine, 2 September 2016. “It took 15 days to end the mighty 20-year reign of Roger Ailes at Fox News, one of the most storied runs in media and political history. Ailes built not just a conservative cable news channel but something like a fourth branch of government; a propaganda arm for the GOP; an organization that determined Republican presidential candidates, sold wars, and decided the issues of the day for 2 million viewers. That the place turned out to be rife with grotesque abuses of power has left even its liberal critics stunned. More than two dozen women have come forward to accuse Ailes of sexual harassment, and what they have exposed is both a culture of misogyny and one of corruption and surveillance, smear campaigns and hush money, with implications reaching far wider than one disturbed man at the top.”

Update: Sarah Ellison, Fox Settles With Gretchen Carlson for $20 Million–and Offers an Unprecedented Apology. Vanity Fair, 6 September 2016.

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Think Tank Scholar or Corporate Consultant? It Depends on the Day

Eric Lipton, Nicholas Confessore and Brooke Williams, Think Tank Scholar or Corporate Consultant? It Depends on the Day. The New York Times and the New England Center for Investigative Reporting, 8 August 2016. “Acting as independent arbiters to shape government policy, many [think tank] researchers also have corporate roles that are sometimes undisclosed.”

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How Think Tanks Amplify Corporate America’s Influence

Eric Lipton and Brooke Williams, How Think Tanks Amplify Corporate America’s Influence.” The New York Times and the New England Center for Investigative Reporting, 7 August 2016. “Think tanks are seen as independent, but their scholars often push donors’ agendas, amplifying a culture of corporate influence in Washington.”

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Donald Trump’s Deals Rely on Being Creative With the Truth

David Barstow, Donald Trump’s Deals Rely on Being Creative With the Truth. The New York Times, 16 July 2016. “…[A] survey of Mr. Trump’s four decades of wheeling and dealing…reveals an…operatic record of dissembling and deception, some of it unabashedly confirmed by Mr. Trump himself, who nearly 30 years ago first extolled the business advantages of “truthful hyperbole.” Indeed, based on the mountain of court records churned out over the span of Mr. Trump’s career, it is hard to find a project he touched that did not produce allegations of broken promises, blatant lies or outright fraud.”

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Inside the Deadly World of Private Prisoner Transport

Eli Hager and Alysia Santo, Inside the Deadly World of Private Prisoner Transport. The Marshall Project, 6 July 2016. This story was produced in collaboration with The New York Times. “Every year, tens of thousands of fugitives and suspects — many of whom have not been convicted of a crime — are entrusted to a handful of small private companies that specialize in state and local extraditions. A Marshall Project review of thousands of court documents, federal records and local news articles and interviews with more than 50 current or former guards and executives reveals a pattern of prisoner abuse and neglect in an industry that operates with almost no oversight.”

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My four months as a private prison guard

Shane Bauer, My four months as a private prison guard. Mother Jones, July/August 2016. David Uberti writes in Columbia Journalism Review that Shane Bauer’s exposé of the conditions at Winn Correctional Center, a private prison in Louisiana, “confirms many of our worst fears about the private prison industry. Corporate hunger for profits led to a woeful lack of resources in the cell blocks that Bauer patrolled. Inmates lived in squalor and were denied health care for serious sickness. Prison officials resorted to the use of force in lieu of proper staffing. Low wages begat a constant turnover among employees. It was a bad dream for prison guards like Bauer and a hopeless nightmare for the men behind bars.”

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How Donald Trump Bankrupted His Atlantic City Casinos, but Still Earned Millions

Russ Buettner and Charles V. Bagli, How Donald Trump Bankrupted His Atlantic City Casinos, but Still Earned Millions. The New York Times, 11 June 2016. “[Trump’s] audacious personality and opulent properties brought attention — and countless players — to Atlantic City as it sought to overtake Las Vegas as the country’s gambling capital. But a close examination of regulatory reviews, court records and security filings by The New York Times leaves little doubt that Mr. Trump’s casino business was a protracted failure. Though he now says his casinos were overtaken by the same tidal wave that eventually slammed this seaside city’s gambling industry, in reality he was failing in Atlantic City long before Atlantic City itself was failing.”

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