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This Week in Tarbell
Physicians for M4A? The field of medicine is a challenging one that costs students a heavy investment upfront and a lot of stress throughout their career (I sure couldn’t be a doctor). Doctors should get paid well for the time and energy they invest, but the current system allows some to restrict their practices to high-paying customers in order to profit generously. Dr. Raymond Feierabend, the family physician from Appalachia, argues that doctors can be paid fairly under a single payer health system, without excluding Americans who need better care.
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Notable Investigations and Solutions
Google flouts HIPAA? In its quest to predict every little thing about your life on and offline, Google has started a partnership with Ascension, the largest nonprofit health system that has more than 2,600 locations. At least 150 Google employees have access to Ascension users’ data, and they swear it’s not a HIPAA violation, but the Department of Health and Human Services is opening an inquiry.
Impeachment inquiry pays off: The two House lawmakers leading President Trump’s impeachment inquiry have become the highest earning representatives, carrying $7 million and $6.8 million in funds, respectively.
USD in Ukraine: While we’re talking impeachment, ProPublica this week released an explainer on the Ukrainian oligarch who made his fortunes as a slippery middleman, his connections to the Trump administration, and his ventures, ranging from ostentatious luxuries to shell companies.
Ticking time bomb: For decades, American officials had told local government officials in the U.S. Marshall Islands that their war-related projects would be taken care of. Now the waters are shifting, and the 3.1 million cubic feet of American-made nuclear waste are at risk of being opened from a supposed protective dome in the U.S. associated state.
Friends of friends of Facebook: Among Facebook’s growing stockpile of lobbyists, almost all of them have worked federal government jobs before joining K Street, and many have made significant donations to current lawmakers, Sludge found.
Spotlight on Local Stories
PA Gov scrutinized: After a series of explosions and damage plagued the volatile construction of the Mariner East pipelines, the FBI is opening a corruption investigation as to why Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf approved these projects in the first place.
CA Gov turns off utility: While the wildfires rage across the state, California Gov. Gavin Newsom has accused state utility Pacific Gas & Energy of not investing in upgrades to their power grid. Which is bold, because PG&E’s foundation and employees managed to invest more than $700,000 into Newsom over the past two decades.